Openings/Behind the Bar

Lot No. 3: Bellevue’s Newest Bar

Casey Robison is responsible for the stellar cocktail program at Barrio. Here’s what he’s up to at Lot No. 3.

June 4, 2010

Bellevue’s newest bar is Lot No. 3, a brown-liquor-centric offering from the Heavy Restaurant Group, the people behind both Barrios and all the Purple Cafes. It’s also a much-needed place to have a drink as late as 2am—one of only two or three such spots in all the town of Bellevue.

Say what you will about chain restaurants, there is no denying that Barrio has one of the best cocktail programs in the city. The drinks are challenging, original, some of them esoterically smoky, and nearly all of them very tasty. Frankly, the food there could learn a lot from the drinks. And those drinks you can credit, for the most part, to Casey Robison.

Robison was also responsible for the bar at Lot No. 3. For this new spot, which specializes in simple comfort food and fine beers as well as aged spirits, Robison created a list of classic cocktails and designed a build-your-own Manhattan menu: you choose your whiskey (bourbon or rye) your bitters, and your vermouth. Cool idea, though one he openly admits to stealing from a bar in San Francisco.

Lot No. 3 has been open for about two weeks, and in that time Robinson says he has been surprised by Bellevue’s thirst for cocktails and esoteric spirits. He says he’s already had to reorder Japanese whiskey, which kind of shocked him. (I credit Naga for introducing B-ville to Yamazaki in the first place.)

So will we see a Lot No. 3 in Seattle sometime soon? “Let’s just chill for a minute,” laughs Robison, who helped open three restaurants for Heavy within the space of a year and a half. Still, he says, “it would not surprise me” if another one popped up one day on the west side of Lake Washington.

Lot No. 3 is located in the Bellevue Towers at 460 106th Ave NE. Robison works the bar on Thursday nights.

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