Where to Eat and Drink During Capitol Hill Block Party Weekend
Oh, you know, it’s totally normal to wall off a six-block radius of a super busy urban area for an entire weekend in summer. No biggie, just about 100 bands are playing. I don’t know if you’ve heard of any of them—The Flaming Lips, Girl Talk, maybe Pickwick? In all seriousness, Capitol Hill is readying itself once again for its signature ridiculously huge street party. Which just so happens to call for lots of street-boozing, resulting in lots of street-eating—but hopefully not to any street-sleeping.
Here are some of the restaurants, bars, and booths, a few inside the gates and some on the outside, offering up specials for the weekend.
Outside the madness (kind of)…
Down that little alley lining Cal Anderson Park there’s a hole-in-the-wall shop with house cured meats and cheese plates. Owner Amy Haldane says her little spot is perfect for those who “want to get away from the zany crowd.” Stop in Friday for $6 Manhattans, Saturday for $6 Sweet Tea bourbon and lemonade, and Sunday for a $12 bottle of prosecco.
It’s outside the gates, so you’re not technically right in the midst of craziness, but I have a feeling that this spot might get packed. Considering it’s all weekend long happy hour with $2 Fireball shots, $5 kamikazes, and $3 wells. That also means 12 small plates all under $8, which includes pork belly mac and cheese and seared ahi tuna.
The cooks had fun with this one; they named all the specials after bands playing this year at the Block Party. So have a Wild Club sandwich, which is a garden burger patty with a BLT on sourdough. I love adding bacon to a meat free burger; it’s delicious and full of mixed messages. Maybe if you sit on the back patio you’ll be able to hear the music drifting down the hill.
Right in the thick of it…
I don't know if you can get more in the middle of the Block Party than at this corner at Tenth and Pike. Chef Manny Arce will have a limited menu for the weekend, but not to worry, the huevos rancheros is definitely on it. The restaurant hours will be 2pm to 2am on Friday and 1pm to 2am Saturday and Sunday.
If the humongous slice of super thin crust wasn’t enough to bring you to this New York pizzeria, maybe a $7 shot of tequila with a baby Pacifico back will. The shot and a beer special runs all weekend.
Though it is technically outside the gates of the festival, based on location alone this spot is bound to be bumping. Pulled pork sandwiches with classic potato salad for $10 is the jam here. A new housemade coffee soda made with Stumptown espresso will be the right pick me up for $4. And it’s free refills all weekend long.
Usually a destination for cult beer favorites, Quinn's general manager Jeremy Ravetz says it will become the “unofficial CHBP Jello shot headquarters.” Expect lime, orange, and raspberry flavors at two bucks a pop. On Friday, the pub is teaming up with Bacardi for live DJs and rum drink specials. Saturday and Sunday will be cheap PBRs and boozy summer punch. Along with the full menu inside, hit the sidewalk food tent for burgers and grilled pork belly sandwiches and French fries.
Eat on the street…
Hitchcock Deli Booth
We told you about that Bainbridge bacon and pastrami that’s super tasty, and now you can try it for yourself at Block Party. Chef Brendan McGill will be serving up BLT and pastrami with kraut sandwiches, a cold watermelon salad, and strawberry lemonade in the parking lot next to Havana.
Von Trapp's Brat Cart
In the Poquitos parking lot, chef Pete Fjosne will be serving up the VT brats from 2pm to 10pm Friday through Sunday. It'll be "Seattle Dog Style" with obatzda (Bavarian creamy cheese and butter mix) and caramelized onions on a housemade brioche bun.
Bourbon and Bones
Chef Michael Law, one of our Rising Star Chefs, has been busy building out the old Anita’s Crepes space for his upcoming spot Bourbon and Bones. He’s hoping for a September open, but for the Block Party weekend he’ll be in the Havana parking lot giving us a preview. And it sounds like a deliciously southern one: a smoked pork shoulder sandwich with a tangy vinegar slaw and a big ol’ glass of sweet tea.
Off the Rez
We know what a day in the life is like with this food truck, but for Block Party weekend it'll be parked at the Havana lot. Find a crisp and fluffy frybread in naked, sweet, or taco form. Naked means plain, sweet means things like honey or housemade lemon curd, and taco means wrapped around hearty chili or pulled pork. In order to keep the line moving, the burger might be off the menu, but don’t freak, it’s just for the festival weekend.