This week in food news, hungry Nordstrom shoppers at Bellevue Square can now sate their appetites with fresh bento boxes at Department Bento, a new restaurant from Tom Douglas. Plus, Seattle gets new lunch options from Black Cat and Sushi Kashiba, Southside Pizza joins the recent boom of new openings in White Center, and Shake Shack will bring their pop-up to Canlis this weekend. Read on for all that and more. For more ideas, check out our list of places to get berry desserts in Seattle right now, our list of June food and drink specials, and our complete food and drink calendar.
Building on the increasingly popular fast-casual build-your-own-bowl concept, Tom Douglas has opened his first restaurant on the Eastside, a bento-themed establishment inside the Nordstrom at Bellevue Square (on the second floor, where Nordstrom Grill was previously located), which opened on June 18. Diners can choose between three bases: a bento box, rice bowl, or a salad. Next, they can add their choice of rice (with options like wasabi furikake or shiitake mushroom); veggies like matcha green beans, charred broccoli, or orange-miso cauliflower; and proteins like salmon, skirt steak, albacore tuna poke, or seared tofu. To drink, there's also Japanese beer and cocktails, sake slushies, wine, and Japanese sodas. There's a kids' menu with items like teriyaki chicken or buttered miso noodles.
This Thai restaurant in Haller Lake, which appears to have opened on May 27 according to Yelp, serves street food-style Thai dishes, including Thai basil chicken, swimming rama, crispy pork belly, and crispy duck. Reviews on Yelp are mostly positive so far.
The White Center Chinese spot CTO Chinese Takeout, which opened just last August, announced that it is officially closed. The good news is that after a soft-opening this weekend, the CTO crew will re-open the restaurant on June 25 as Southside Pizza, a family-friendly pizzeria with Jersey-style pizza with a sourdough crust available by the slice or whole pie. (That also means the building, which also houses Li'l Woody's and Beer Star, will host the trifecta of pizza, burgers, and beer. The Southside space has its own window and shares seating with Li'l Woody's, and guests can take grub from Li'l Woody's or Southside into Beer Star if they want to have a drink.) Besides cheese and pepperoni pizza and specialty pies, the restaurant will also offer buffalo wings, garlic breadsticks, mozzarella sticks, salads, pasta, warm skillet-baked chocolate chip cookies, and ice cream. CTO chef Manny Arce, who cut his teeth working for a pizzeria in high school and has spent time at Poquitos, Union, La Spiga, and Bastille, will bring his years of pizza experience to the new venture. (Previously, Arce raved about his love of another White Center pizza fixture, Proletariat Pizza, to Eater Seattle.) The owners also teased a "rebirth" elsewhere for CTO on their website.
OTHER FOOD NEWS
Black Cat introduces lunch menu
On Monday, June 25, Belltown bar Black Cat will roll out a new lunch menu. For the launch, they'll offer a decadent '80s Wall Street-themed three-martini lunch, complete with the American Psycho soundtrack, martini specials, and specials on shots of Fernet.
Sushi Kashiba serving lunch
As of June 19, legendary sushi master Shiro Kashiba's Pike Place market sushi bar Sushi Kashiba now serves lunch from 11:30 am-2:30 pm on weekdays. Options include a seven- or nine-piece nigiri set for $40 or $50, each with a roll and seasonal appetizer.
Big Mario's co-owner leaves business
Seattle restaurateur Dave Meinert announced that he has sold the beloved pizza chainlet to his co-owners and collaborators, Mike McConnell of Caffe Vita and Jason Lajeunesse of Neumos and Capitol Hill Block Party.
Lady Yum plans to open Pioneer Square location
Kirkland-based macaron maven Lady Yum will open a fourth location in Pioneer Square sometime this summer. The new space will also serve an afternoon tea, tapas-style snacks with Northwest ingredients, house-brewed craft beer, and gluten-free pastries.
Revolution Wine rebrands as The Belmont
The Capitol Hill wine bar Revolution Wine has closed and re-opened as The Belmont, a club with a self-described "British colonial" feel, complete with a lounge area with luxe new leather sofas, oriental rugs, and a collection of Toulouse-Lautrec sketches. To account for the growing popularity of their bar, they've expanded to focus on craft cocktails in addition to wine, and serve small plates, like Tuscan meatballs and stuffed mushrooms, as well as cheese and charcuterie plates. (Fans of their frosé will be happy to know they've kept the refreshing treat on their menu.)
Washington Beer awards announced
The sixth annual Washington Beer awards were announced on June 16. Grains of Wrath Brewing, Populuxe Brewing, E9 Brewery, and Wander Brewing took home prizes for "Brewery of the Year" in their respective size categories.
Local restaurants recognized in Wine Enthusiast magazine
According to a press release, Seattle's RN74 and Lummi Island's Willows Inn earned spots on the 2018 list of Top 100 Wine Restaurants in America in Wine Enthusiast's August issue. (RN74's lead sommelier Jeff Lindsay Thorsen recently expanded the restaurant's wine collection to nearly twice its original size, making theirs possibly the largest collection of French burgundies of any restaurant on the West Coast and widening their selection of Pacific Northwest wine.) The Herbfarm and Canlis were also recognized in a newly added Hall of Fame category, which notes restaurants that have made the Top 100 list four or more times.
FRIDAY, JUNE 22
Beers, Friends, and Food - On a Boat!
Board the Trek - The Adventure Ferry with a pal or two to relish in summery food and drink pairings concocted by Bread and Cicuses chef Syd Suntha (like Cambodian pork-stuffed chicken wings paired with the Out of Office hoppy pilsner, scallop ceviche paired with the Cucumber Crush sour ale, and prawns and grits paired with the Sinistor black ale). DJ Indica will spin.
Pig and Pink 2018
The bright, airy Fremont cafe will greet summer with their annual pig roast and some picnic-perfect side dishes, accompanied by a selection of rosé available by the glass or bottle (including several from Magnum).
SILVA - The Story of Washington
At this pop-up named after the Latin word meaning "forest," chef Eric Rivera will tell the story of Washington with an evolving 12-15 course tasting menu that will teach guests about the "people, ingredients, and preparations from across Washington."
SATURDAY, JUNE 23
Beer Brats and Onions
Lowercase Brewing will fire up the grill for some beer bratwurst and onions at their taproom.
Beyond Chèvre and Manchego: Goat and Sheep Cheeses
Sample an assortment of local and foreign goat and sheep cheeses and learn about their seasonality, how they differ from cow cheeses, and why they tend to be easier to digest.
Shake Shack x Canlis Pop-Up
No disrespect to the venerable institution that is Dick’s, but Seattleites have been yearning for the Angus beef burgers, golden crinkle-cut fries, and luscious, creamy shakes and blended frozen-custard concretes of Shake Shack for years. Now that dream is finally nigh, as the first Seattle location of the fast-casual chain approaches its opening sometime later this year in South Lake Union. Before then, it will be popping up with a family-friendly outdoor festival preview in the back lot of Canlis, of all places. (As it turns out, Shake Shack CEO Randy Garutti is a longtime friend of the Canlis family and was previously the general manager of Canlis.) They'll have those classic burgers and fries, yes, but also unique items like Canlis-inspired Dungeness crab melts and crème brûlée whoopie pies, with the chain’s own ShackMeister beer, Charles & Charles rosé, and Jones Soda root beer to wash it all down. Local bands SISTERS, Spirit Award, and the Moondoggies will perform, and guests will be able to play lawn games like cornhole and Connect Four. Attendance is first come, first served, so RSVP and get there early for your only chance to get a taste of the Shack in Seattle before the new location lands.
Shrub-a-dub-dub: Cocktails (and Mocktails!) with Everyone's Favorite Drinking Vinegar
In this case, a shrub refers not to foliage but to the deliciously tangy drinking vinegar that's increasingly popular as a cocktail or mocktail mixer. Sip cocktails made with different flavors and methods and learn the history behind shrubs (originally conceived as a "punch-like drink" and later used as a way to preserve fruit during colonial times), then whip up your own custom batch in class using local berries and infusions.
Sweet Tooth Pop-Up
Sate your bottomless need for sweets at this South Lake Union pop-up, which will showcase sucrose-laden treats, including cookies, ice cream, macarons, toffee, crepes, pastries, and more, from more than 20 artisan vendors. The confection selection will include the pastel-hued meringue creations of Alexandra’s Macarons; cookies crammed with flavors like salted toffee pecan, brown butter triple chocolate chunk, and s’mores from Lowrider Baking Company; incandescently good ice cream from former Poppy pastry chef Matt Bumpas’s pop-up, Sweet Bumpas; and super-smooth scoops from local microcreamery Bluebird Ice Cream (sleep on their vegan horchata at your own peril)—just to name a few.
Artusi Pop-Up Brunch
Just for June, the Italian aperitivo bar will offer a brunch on the weekends, with a $20 buffet spread of cured meats, fresh fruit, pastries from Cafe Besalu, bruschetta, and more, as well as a la carte egg dishes and other items, including baked eggs with anchovy cream and rosemary and French toast with hazelnuts. Plus, there'll be Herkimer coffee and brunch cocktails from bar manager Bryn Quarles.
SUNDAY, JUNE 24
Dinner and a DJ - Volume 18: Meaty Johnson's BBQ & DJ 100 Proof
The Pioneer Square BBQ joint will provide the food while DJ 100 Proof provides the tunes.
Lamb Jam Seattle 2018
At this competition brought to you by Tasty Creative and the American Lamb Board, 16 rising-star chefs will duke it out to concoct the ultimate lamb dish and be crowned the Lamb Jam Seattle Champion. Lamb belly ramen? Lamb ham Cubanos? Anything goes. The categories include Asian, Latin, Mediterranean, and Middle Eastern, and restaurants represented in the competition will include laudable local establishments like Lark, Mamnoon, Omega Ouzeri, Lola, Heartwood Provisions, and Le Petit Cochon, to name a few. Meanwhile, bartenders, brewers, winemakers, and other culinary artisans will round out the experience, and you can expect surprises like butcher pop-ups and local musicians. The Seattle “best in show” winner will advance to the next round to contend with the finalists from Austin, Boston, San Francisco, and Washington, DC, in a finale to be proclaimed “Lamb Jam Master."
Rosé All Day
Imbibe pink wine all day long. Pay $8 per glass or $30 for bottomless tasting.
Whiskey & BBQ Workshop
If you're partial to smoky meats and smooth whiskey, check out this workshop with a custom whiskey blending session from OOLA Distillery with owner and head distiller Kirby Kallas-Lewis, who will explain how barrels are pulled to create balanced whiskey blends, and a demonstration from Hot S'Awesome chef and owner Cam Orgaard on the techniques he uses to barbecue brisket and pork shoulder. Guests will get to create their own custom blend from a selection of different whiskeys.
MONDAY, JUNE 25
MASAYA: CHEERFUL Boodle Fight Pop-Up
The "boodle fight" is a military tradition in the Phillipines, where all ranks share a meal at a communal table and eat on banana leaves with their hands to signify "camaraderie and unity." At this pop-up, chef Jan Z. Parker will pay tribute to her Filipino heritage while incorporating European techniques she picked up while living abroad, with interpretations like Cabernet Sauvignon Leche Flan on Buttered & Toasted Pandesal with Spooner Farm Strawberries.