Shifts & Shakeups

This Week in Restaurant News: Are You Ready for This?

Could there BE any more openings?

By Kristen Farnam December 5, 2014

Can we get an amen for the lighting in Lark's new space? Photo via Lark's Facebook page


This seriously beautiful space has kept us waiting for quite some time, but now that it’s open, clearly it was worth the wait. Enjoy the restaurant’s classic dishes or try the new burger in the main Lark dining area OR head upstairs to Bitter/Raw and order a shellfish tower with your amaro cocktail. The new location is at 952 E Seneca and opens at 5pm.

Cantina Leña
Tom Douglas has opened his Mexican cantina near Cinerama. The kitchen runs entirely on fire, the masa-grinding machine runs on volcanic stones. And there’s talk of a really fine Paloma (tequila, grapefruit juice, and magic) in the bar area. 

Starbucks Reserve Roastery and Tasting Room
This is a coffee shop/roastery/museum-of sorts, that has eight different brew methods, custom-made Glassybaby drinkers (yes, mom you’ll get one for Christmas), pretzel bagel breakfast sandwiches from Dahlia Bakery, and a Serious Pie. Can we move in? The roastery opens today on the corner of Pike and Melrose and will have regular hours of 7am–11pm. This whole new concept is Starbucks’ way of appealing to hardcore coffee drinkers...or just saying: “can’t stop, won’t stop”

Katsu Burger
Stephanie Kang pulled the Georgetown Katsu Burger from the brink this summer and has now opened a second location in Bellevue. The restaurant opened in Yang’s former Kimchi Amigos (12700 SE 38th Street) space. The menu is the same, Mt. Fuji burger and all.

Once a parking garage, 300 E Pike is now a French-Vietnamese restaurant, though if you look closely you can still see the parking lines on the floor. Chef Eric Johnson’s menu is a mix of faithful Vietnamese dishes and others that take liberties of the French and Chinese influences intermixed. Try the cha ca la vong (black cod in a turmeric marinade with dill, mint and cilantro). Drink choices are mostly tropical in nature, but we’re not complaining.

No, that is not a typo. John Howie has opened a restaurant on the Microsoft campus. Yes, it is the fanciest place to eat in all of Microsoftland. The menu offers seasonal three course meals that change every three weeks. According to Seattle Times, a recent lunch included ahi, braised short ribs, and pumpkin pie crème brulee. For $15. Wow.

BB Ranch Woodinville
The original location of Bill the Butcher is now home to the second location of BB Ranch. The owner, William von Schneidau, was the co-founder of Bill the Butcher before leaving the company and opening his own shop, BB Ranch, in Pike Place Market in 2011. Still following? Bill the Butcher closed all six of its locations in October and according to Seattle Times, the landlord called von Schneidau to offer him the space. More locations of BB Ranch are planned for 2015. Talk about coming full circle. 

The owners of this lovely new seafood bar on Stone Way hail from Walrus and the Carpenter and the Whale Wins. While they share some sensibilities with the aforementioned Renee Erickson establishments, here the lineup of crudo and wood-fired dishes take a sunny, slightly southern hemispheric turn: think plaintain chips, ceviche, wood-fired chicken thighs, and tequila. Not a raw oyster in sight. 


The Plate and Pint
The owners of Cafe Nola on Bainbridge Island are opening a second restaurant in early 2015. It will be located in Island Village, a newer development, and will double as a family-friendly restaurant and sports bar. 


Derek May at Percy’s and Co.
The Ballard bar has a new chef in the kitchen. Derek May comes from Anchovies and Olives where he was a sous chef. He has retooled the menu to be decidedly more Southern, with pickled fried okra, fried chicken, shrimp and grits, and even a fried green tomato BLT. Did you know Percy’s also has a heated rooftop patio and herb garden that you can reserve? And an offsite farm? Well now you do.

Pomegranate Bistro
Lisa Dupar has named Michael Zimmer as Chef-de-Cuisine of her catering business and of the restaurant. He is replacing his father in the kitchen, who is looking to new projects. He has worked with the business for many years, so this seems to be a natural succession. 


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