BRAND-NEW: The 4,000-square-foot quadripartite restaurant project known as Trove (500 E Pike St, 234-1234) just opened on Capitol Hill, brought to you by Seattle chefs Rachel Yang and Seif Chirchi, who run the great Joule and Revel. Trove is on the corner of Pike and Summit, where, before it closed down last year, Brocklind's outfitted Seattle with tuxedoes and shiny shoes to match for 106 years (yes, really!), as well as gorilla masks, chicken suits, and fake mustaches. Trove, employing Yang's creative, Korean-influenced expertise (her impressive résumé includes Per Se and a couple of James Beard nominations), is four restaurants in one: house-made noodles, soft-serve frozen custard, "elevated" Korean barbecue, and a full bar.
In the entryway is Trove Parfait, in the shell of an ice-cream truck lettered "SUPER DELUXE," "THE ONE THE ONLY THE VERY WOW BEST!!" and "HYPNO MAGIC." Six-dollar jars of soft-serve come in "Old School" and "New School" flavors, which, on day two of Trove's existence, included "Snickers": peanut butter nougat, caramel peanut, and dark chocolate sauce for old school; and black sesame cake, miso caramel, and candied peanuts for new. Inside, everything's black and white and red all over, streamlined and mod. From the lab-like Trove Noodle on day two, the discs of chewy rice cake with lamb and kale were excellent, but the yellow curry rigatoni was bland (though note that day two is not a fair time to judge a place). The short menu of noodles go for $12 per compostable bowlful, which are served on cute metal trays. The adjoining Trove Bar has a diorama of an erupting Mount Rainier, while the dining room—aka Trove BBQ—features tabletop grills for DIY barbecue, which should be really, really good. Happy hour wasn't happening as of day two, though it's posted on the website; we've asked Yang about that, so check this column online for when it officially starts. UPDATE: Happy hour has now begun, Yang says; it's in Trove Bar every day from 4 to 6 p.m. with $2 off noodles and assorted drink specials.
The space was originally slated to become "a grand Roman-style trattoria" installed by Quentin Ertel, owner of the Saint and Havana—but that fell through. Meanwhile, with the writing on the wall, or on the ceiling, as the case may be, downstairs neighbor Theater Schmeater faced either installing an amount of soundproofing that would prohibit any actors over 5' 6" tall, or else moving; they are now happily housed in Belltown.
NOW CLOSED: Belltown Billiards appears to have shut down without anybody noticing, probably because its patrons are now inflicting themselves on Pike/Pine instead. (No response about the closure from Belltown Group LLC; its Frontier Room also closed a while back, but its Queen City Grill is still open.)
CLOSING SOON: Ballard's 2 Bit Saloon closes September 20. Go there—and to any other Seattle dive—while you still can.
NOW OPEN IN LESCHI : Peter Kuang—of the beloved Green Leaf in the ID and Belltown (have you been to the Belltown one? Its subterranean space is an excellent hideaway) and First Hill’s Lotus—has opened Alicia Fusion Bistro (200 Lake Washington Blvd, 324-6388). It’s in Leschi, near Daniel’s Broiler, and it’s named after Kuang’s daughter; it looks pretty with its hardwood floors, custom cubbyhole shelving for candles, and lots of windows. The menu includes a Mishima Ranch burger, Whidbey Island mussels with green curry, and pho, with most items under $15.
BRAND-NEW IN HILLMAN CITY : Big Chickie (5520 Rainier Ave S, bigchickie.com) opened in Hillman City on September 9 and sold out of all its chicken in three and a half hours. They’re making it marinated and charcoal-rotisseried, aka pollo a la brasa (which sounds really good), at the mostly takeout spot in a former gas station. The outdoor seating area looks great.
Also, just down the block in Hillman City, La Isla de Mojito (5300 Rainier Ave S, 525-6725) is open and serving traditional Latin food (and mojitos!), with Cuban sandwiches coming soon. According to Columbia City Source, La Isla’s owners also run the Grecian Delight in Columbia City, which an SUV plowed into recently; they anticipate six months of repairs there, but luckily, no one was hurt.
ONE CLOSED, ANOTHER OPENED : Darlene Boline has closed down Zaccagni’s, her sandwich counter across from the hot-mini-doughnuts stand in Pike Place Market. She says she’ll reopen sometime early next year, and meanwhile, she’s the chef at her new loungelike Belltown spot Vittles (2330 Second Ave, 448-3348), serving small plates ($8–$14), sandwiches ($10–$12), and entrées like roasted chicken ($18) and steak frites ($24). Her eggplant Parmesan at Zaccagni’s was very good; maybe it’ll turn up on the menu at Vittles.
LESS PIE IN GEORGETOWN, BUT EXCITING NEWS : American Pie in Georgetown is closed (UPDATE: same with their Wallingford location—thanks, commenter James C.!). But good news, everyone: Longtime White Center favorite Zippy’s Giant Burgers is opening a second location in its place. Neat!