Miles James's careful, yet meaty cooking style is so spiritually aligned with the food at Quinn's, it's weird to think the two never crossed professional paths until now. James, the guy behind the defunct, but still lamented Dot's Butcher and Deli in Fremont, then Pike Place Market, is the new chef at the Pike/Pine gastropub. He starts work on Friday.
Quinn's turned 10 this past fall, and while owners Scott and Heather Staples just announced they've sold it (and sibling event space Sole Repair) to new owners, James came on board before that happened. Still, he says neither he nor his new bosses—a pair of brothers named Charles and Peter Kim—plan to shake things up.
"There's stuff that nobody should really touch," says James—the burger, that wild boar sloppy Joe. "The style of the menu is pretty much my style anyway."
He plans to spend his first few months just learning the ropes. "Don't expect a Reuben on the menu next week," says James, but down the road he'd like to add more seafood and vegetable-centered dishes, ones that fit within Quinn's thoughtful pub fare. After all, it's been a hit for more than a decade in a neighborhood famously competitive for bars and restaurants.
Fans of James's reuben shouldn't give up hope, though. There's talk of perhaps adding a lunch menu in the spring.
Scott Staples will bid his seminal spot adieu with a month of throwback Thursdays. Every Thursday through February 22, Quinn's will revisit some favorites from years past, from duck deviled eggs to pigface nuggets and house bagels with foie gras cream cheese. Staples and his wife, Heather, are still going strong with Feed Co. Burgers, Uneeda Burger, and Zoe, the restaurant turned event space a few blocks south of Quinn's.