This week brings two new openings from Seattle bar-scene pros: Veteran bartender Paul Shanrock's swanky new jungle-themed Stampede Cocktail Club that opened in Wallingford, and former Zig Zag Cafe co-owner Kacy Fitch has opened a new neighborhood bar called Corner Spot in Ballard. Plus, learn about a (literally) smoking hot new makeover in store for Seven Beef, get ready for a restaurant with oxtail nachos and fancy choco tacos from a Lark alum, welcome brunch back to the beloved Union Saloon, and find out which local chef is facing off against Bobby Flay on TV next week. But that's not all: We've also got lists of May food and drink specials around town, cheap and easy things to do for Cinco de Mayo, places to party in fancy hats for the Kentucky Derby, and all the Mother's Day meals in town, as well as our full food & drink calendar.
Corner Spot Ballard
Former Zig Zag Cafe co-owner Kacy Fitch is behind this new neighborhood bar in the former space of the Crooked Nail. There's a menu of soups, salads, sandwiches, and small plates from chef Mario Pujals, in addition to cocktails, beer, and wine.
The Fig and the Judge
This new restaurant on the second floor of the Renaissance Seattle Hotel, which had its first Yelp review on March 30 and participated in Restaurant Week, offers "globally inspired dishes along with Pacific Northwest favorites," including the Fig & Judge Burger (with fresh figs and bacon), Draper Valley Chicken Ballotine and Vietnamese Crepes.
The Organic Coup
This organic, health-conscious fast-food chain has opened two new locations, one in the Columbia Tower and one in the Skyline Tower in Bellevue. The menu features sandwiches, salads, and wraps made with organic chicken. In addition, there's also a breakfast menu of acai bowls, breakfast wraps, and breakfast bowls.
Seattle-Lite Brewing Company
A new low-alcohol beer establishment with an all-ages taproom opens at 3 pm Friday in South Park, in the former space of Burdick Brewery (which closed down in February). Business partners Dan Martinez and Seiky Huerta plan to offer light, low-alcohol session lagers. Food trucks are in the works, too. A grand opening celebration is coming in June, with more details to follow.
Stampede Cocktail Club
Bartender Paul Shanrock, who's previously spent time at the Sexton, Rocco's, Joli, and Rider, opened his new craft cocktail bar in the former space of recently closed bar the Helm on May 1. The swanky new spot features dark, moody lighting and quirky details like a dinosaur head mounted on the wall, plus 10 signature cocktails. As for food, Little Ting's will provide dumplings to complement Shanrock's creations (though Shanrock says they'll eventually make their own).
This Taiwanese fusion restaurant in Bellevue, which opened last November but is just getting buzz, features traditional street-food favorites like bao (stuffed with savory fillings like pork belly, kalbi beef, and tofu), bubble tea, rice bowls, and popcorn chicken. People love their popular "Tiger Fries" (nacho-like fries loaded with kalbi beef, kimchi and onion and topped with spicy-sweet mayo).
Zane and Wylie's
Kevin and Terresa Davis, the owners of Steelhead Diner, Blueacre Seafood, Orfeo, and Tempesta, are opening a new "modern, approachable" steakhouse downtown Friday. The restaurant is christened after their twin sons and features a local meat and seafood-heavy menu in addition to exclusively Pacific Northwest-sourced beer, wine, and cider.
The fast-casual vegetarian burger joint, owned by Mark Fuller (New Luck Toy, Ma'ono, Supreme) and restaurateur Doug Kawasaki, has closed after five months. Unfortunately, the restaurant was not attracting enough traffic to make ends meet.
OTHER FOOD NEWS
Shota Nakajima faces off against Bobby Flay
Chef Shota Nakajima of Adana will compete against Food Network personality Bobby Flay on Flay's TV show, Beat Bobby Flay. The episode will air next Friday, May 11. Adana is hosting a viewing party that evening with cocktails and bites.
Unified Brewing changes name
To avoid conflict with another company, Unified Brewing, a brewery set to open in White Center in June, has changed its name to Future Primitive Brewing.
Belltown Brewing head brewer moves to Sound to Summit Brewing
Adam Frantz, head brewer of Belltown Brewing, has joined the team at Sound to Summit Brewing in Snohomish, which was recently acquired by another small brewery, Lost Canoe Brewing.
That’s A Some Pizza wins Best Northwest Pizza
It sounds like that really is some pizza: Bainbridge Island pizzeria That's A Some Pizza, which has been family-owned and operated since it opened in 1984 and uses a 120-year-old Klondike Gold Rush sourdough starter to make its pies, took home Best Northwest Pizza at the International Pizza Expo in Las Vegas with their black olive mushroom pizza.
Chef Amy Beaumier leaves Joli
Following a positive review from Seattle Met, chef Amy Beamier left her seasonal French- and Italian-inspired restaurant Joli on April 28. There's no word yet on what she plans to do now.
Poke Wai chef and co-owner leaves business
Poke Wai chef and co-owner Jeriel Calamayan has left the Southcenter poke restaurant, explaining via Instagram that he has decided to spend more time with his family.
Lunchbox Lab brunch comes to Redmond location
The local mad-scientist burger joint recently rolled out a new brunch menu (appropriately named "Brunchbox") at its new Green Lake location. Now, it's also available at its Redmond location. The brunch includes items like fresh squeezed orange juice, "Biscuit Lab," and hash tots.
Seven Beef becomes Central Smoke
Seven Beef, the Central District Vietnamese restaurant from the owners of Ba Bar and Monsoon, is becoming Central Smoke in early summer. Along with the name-change comes a rebranding: the menu will focus on smoke-infused cocktails and smoked meats, like tea-smoked duck, smoked brisket, and cured sausages, from chef Mike Whisenhunt, who's previously spent time at Brimmer & Heeltap and Joule. The restaurant will also undergo a renovation and install a new custom-built smoker.
Red Mill burgers wins Seattle magazine's Best Burger
Seattle magazine hosted a "Burger Smackdown" on Instagram, with a bracket of the best burgers in town. The final round was a battle between Red Mill and Katsu, but Red Mill emerged victorious, winning by eight votes.
Cafe Hitchcock ordered to stop serving CBD lattes
Chef Brendan McGill, who introduced a menu of CBD "wellness lattes" (which contain the non-psychoactive element of cannabis for a calming effect) at his downtown cafe Cafe Hitchcock in February, has been ordered to stop serving the lattes by the health department. This will affect Cafe Hitchcock Express, McGill's forthcoming cafe, which planned to focus on the lattes as well as coffee and grab-and-go food. Cafe Hitchcock posted on Facebook, "We plan on stocking our shelves with our CBD-rich oil for retail sale; you'll be able to purchase a bottle and add it to whatever you'd like. Seems silly to make this differentiation in the name of public health and safety, but in the mean time we'll work to educate the proper authorities and see if we can't get back on track."
Molly Moon’s re-opens 19th and Mercer shop window at Hello Robin
The local ice cream shop has re-opened their walk-up window inside cookie shop Hello Robin (owned by Molly Moon Neitzel's friend Robin Wehl Martin).
Catering and chef business Birch Basket features indigenous foods only
Former Stranger contributor and current Seattle Times food writer Bethany Jean Clement spoke to Hillel Echo-Hawk of Birch Basket, a native-owned Seattle private chef and catering company that focuses on only foods indigenous to America before colonization, which means no foods like beef, chicken, wheat, eggs, and milk.
Union Saloon brings back brunch
Union Saloon, the beloved Wallingford neighborhood joint owned by Michelle Magidow (formerly of Salumi, Harvest Vine, Lark, and Delancey), announced on Instagram that it will be reviving its brunch program, which was discontinued in November due to a shortage of cooks. Their brunch will return on May 6 and be available every Sunday after.
Former Lark chef plans to open new restaurant in Ballard
Former Lark chef de cuisine Mitch Mayers is opening his own restaurant in the former space of Kickin’ Boot Whiskey Kitchen in Ballard, slated to open in early July. The restaurant, which will be called Sawyer in tribute to the building's previous life as a sawmill, will offer an extensive menu with elevated-casual fare like oxtail nachos; a Reuben tartine; shareable porchetta with an assortment of flatbreads and condiments; fancy choco tacos; and ice cream bars of cookie dough semifreddo covered in Theo chocolate. July can’t come soon enough, but if you want a sneak peek, Mayers will offer a preview at Upstream Music Fest + Summit (more on that below). Meanwhile, following Mayers’ departure, Lark owner John Sundstrom has promoted employee Kelsey Carter (formerly of Hitchcock and Tarsan i Jane) to sous chef.
Upstream announces new Sound Bites program
Upstream Music Fest + Summit announced its new Sound Bites "food and drink experience" program, curated by Joshua Henderson of Westward, Quality Athletics, Great State Burger, and Saint Helens. The featured chefs will include Brendan McGill of Hitchcock, Jay Blackinton of Hogstone Wood Oven on Orcas Island, Jeffery Vance of No Anchor, Melissa Miranda of the recurring Musang pop-up at Bar del Corso, Irbille Donia of the Filipino pop-up Lahi, Zachary and Seth Placleb of the catering service Brothers and Co., Cam Haim of Ma'ono, Matt Lewis of Where Ya At Matt, and Lark alum Mitch Mayers of Sawyer, as well as Henderson's own Poulet Galore pop-up (a revival of Henderson's erstwhile rotisserie chicken walk-up window of the same name).
FRIDAY, MAY 4
Classic Dungeness Crab Boil
Get cracking and dig into a three-course feast showcasing the inimitable crab in all of its glory.
Calling all latte magicians: For a $5 buy-in, you could win some cash by dazzling judges with your ability to make cool designs in steamed milk.
SATURDAY, MAY 5
8th Annual Savor Seabrook Seafood & Wine Festival
Abscond to laidback beach resort town Seabrook and partake in the felicitous pairing of seafood and wine.
Big Brew Day 2018
All home brewers are summoned to submit their original brews at this annual competition in its second year. The winner will be brewed on Lowercase's system and be available in their taproom this summer.
SUNDAY, MAY 6
Tavolàta Sunday Feast: Heritage Pig
Chef Joel DeBilzan will transform an entire roasted heritage pig into a multi-course, family-style supper, with house-made salumi, bucatini carbonara with pancetta, and whole roasted pig served with freshly made condiments.
MONDAY, MAY 7
Fattoria di Petroio Wine Dinner
The Ballard wood-fired pizzeria welcomes their friend Diana Lenzi of Tuscan winery Fattoria di Petroio for a five-course dinner of dishes like risotto with ramps, Meyer lemon, and grana and crème fraîche panna cotta, accompanied by Lenzi's wines and other pairings.
No Cookbooks Allowed Vol. 2: Southern Thai Home Cooking
At this pop-up series honoring homestyle dishes that are passed down for generations through oral tradition (rather than recipes), Somsri Suthi will present a five-course family-style meal of foods unique to southern Thailand. DJ Blueyed Soul will provide the soundtrack.