The Port of Seattle just released the latest round of approved dining and retail destined for Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Get ready for Skillet, Monica Dimas's excellent fried chicken sandwiches, and a market and bar curated by Thierry Rautureau.
Dimas's Sunset Fried Chicken Sandwiches, the popular Skillet chainlet, and Caffe D'Arte are on the latest list of upcoming Sea-Tac businesses. So is a concept called Lummi Marche and Bar, a "petit bistro and artisan market" whose French-meets-Northwest ethos is overseen by Rautureau, aka the Chef in the Hat. In other prominent local names, Jason Stoneburner will design the menu for a project called Seattle Beer Union. The excitement even stretches beyond food: Filson and Elliott Bay Book Co. have airport outposts in the works. Here's the press release with the full list of newcomers.
Yes, all this is still a ways off: The Port of Seattle says this latest round of approved spots will open in 2019 and 2020. Scoring a shop or restaurant space at Sea-Tac means navigating a byzantine federal bidding process. It can take years and applicants are subject to the Port of Seattle’s preferences for things like minority-owned businesses and environmental sustainability. Most small local businesses partner with an experienced airport host company who handles most operating logistics (one distinct exception is Cafe Flora's vegetarian spinoff, Floret).
Some restaurants and shops awarded contracts in previous round of bids arrive later this year—including the Li'l Woody's collaboration with SubPop and a Ballard-themed beer hall. Floret, one of the first announcements in the airport's ongoing food overhaul, opened its doors earlier this month.