Shifts & Shakeups

The Week in Restaurant News: Murray's Back!

Murray Stenson is tending bar at Il Bistro, and Ethan Stowell and Renee Erickson both open tiny new places.

By Malcolm Griffes September 27, 2013

He's back! Photo via Facebook


Renee Erickson’s new wine bar opened Monday night. Adjacent to the Walrus and the Carpenter, the new bar features a small, simple food menu to go along with a well-chosen list of wines, aperitifs, and digestifs. Space is limited. Very limited. Which is part of its charm.

E. Smith Mercantile
The very cool new shop on First Ave has opened its long-promised back bar, serving small bites and classic cocktails. The early word is very positive.

West Seattle is about to get a new sandwich and pizza shop,located at 4304 SW Oregon. West Seattle Blog reports it will open on a Monday, either September 30 or October 7.

For reals, Ethan Stowell's diminutive new space opens tonight in Tangletown. Here are five reasons we're excited.


Murray Stenson Back at Il Bistro
After being sidelined by heart issues (and inspiring a major donation campaign), Stenson will be tending bar at Il Bistro again. Tan Vinh at the Seattle Times reports that Stenson is scheduled to work Sundays and Mondays. The Blur tended bar at Il Bistro for over a decade until leaving for Zig Zag Café where he earned his “Best Bartender in America” honor.


Peaks Frozen Custard
Ravenna Blog says Sunday, September 29, is the last day to have a frozen custard here (the word "custardmers" is bandied about). Peak says it will still sell its frozen wares at festivals, and apparently a frozen yogurt shop is taking over the space at1026 NE 65th Street.


8oz. Burger Bar
8oz Burger Bar, or I should say the soon-to-be-called 8oz Burger and Co, is opening a Ballard location at 2409 NW Market St...and changing its name slightly to distinguish itself as a locally owned business. Neighborhood denizens can expect burger gratification shortly after Thanksgiving.

Ballard Bridge Cafe
A new breakfast spot is on the way, according to My Ballard. It’s called the Ballard Bridge Café and according to the website, an October opening is likely. The new café is opening in the space where the Counter used to be.

Shibumi Ramenya
Chef, resturautuer, and momentary tabloid star Eric Stapelman is planning a ramen restaurant on East Pine, according to the Capitol Hill Seattle Blog. Building designs are just wrapping up according to Shibumi Ramenya’s Facebook page, so the opening still may be a little ways out. Possibly--possibly--there will be a new ramen joint on the Hill in time for winter.


A New Season for Check, Please! Northwest
KCTS 9 announced this week that the show where locals review area restaurants will be back for a second season. Check, Please! NW should return to the airwaves in the spring of 2014. Check out an episode from last season here.


The Cronut
The frenzy-inducing combination of doughnut croissant may be on hiatus at Ba Bar, but you can find other variations at Lost Lake, 5 Point Cafe, Meander’s Kitchen, and Frost Doughnuts.


Football Sunday Brunch at Kickin’ Boot Whiskey Kitchen
The Ballard barbecue and booze hall has a new Sunday brunch menu geared towards Seahawks fans and the fall game schedule. The seven TVs don't hurt, either. The kitchen will be serving up plates like steak and eggs, hot chicken and waffles, and beignets. Check out the menu here, and thing kick off this Sunday at 9:30am.


Montana's Public Parklet
There is a new public parklet on E. Olive Way in front of Montana. It's a trial project with the city, replacing a few curbside parking spaces with a tiny park area It's open to the public with tables where patrons can enjoy a seat and maybe a pastry form the adjacent Crumble and Flake, or takeout from the Malaysian street food Kedai Makan. Just no booze.


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