Shifts & Shakeups

This Week in Restaurant News: Sake for Days and Starbucks on Demand

Six dining developments on our radar this week.

By Philip Kiefer May 3, 2019

Yessss: Brunch has landed at Bang Bang Kitchen.

Image: Yvonne Chan

Hannyatou Opens Real Soon

Hannyatou, the "drinking sake at a liquor store" project from chef Mutsuko Soma, will open next Tuesday in the same Fremont building as Kamonegi, Seattle Met's 2018 Restaurant of the Year. And it has a back patio (just in time for warm weather, mind you)—but it's mostly for what Soma calls a "fermentation command center" that houses tsukemono pickles, miso, and koji. Fermentation will feature heavily on a short menu, but the real focus is going to be sake: flights, professional guidance, even a retail area.

Bang Bang Does Brunch

Bang Bang Kitchen sisters and co-owners Miki and Yuki Sodos miss the ubiquitous hatch chiles of their home state, New Mexico. But they're spinning that yearning for the common good: Othello dwellers can partake in those glossy green chiles atop a burger or stuffed in sopapillas now that Bang Bang is open for brunch Friday through Sunday. Also on the menu: cornbread pancakes, coffee or matcha margaritas, and a bloody mary topped with a mini taco. It sounds like a leap of faith, but we're willing to trust them on this one: The bar manager was once a commercial agave buyer, and knows his way around tequila.

A Spiced Up Capitol Hill

What began as a food cart making the neighborhood market rounds has scaled up into a permanent brick-and-mortar venture: Spice Waala is officially open in the former Kanak Cuisine of India space on the Hill. The passion project of owners Aakanksha Sinha and Uttam Mukherjee, the Indian restaurant doles out street food, heavy on the grilling-right-in-front-of-you aspect. The specialty—kathi rolls stuffed with paneer masala, lamb kebab, chicken tikki, or aloo tikki, all topped with green chutney—is sticking around, joined by snacks like aloo tikki chaat and Indian beer, per Capitol Hill Seattle. And though Sinha and Mukherjee pay employees a living wage—rather than just minimum—the prices are still street food friendly: Everything's less than $10.

A Fresh Start for FareStart

After a month of renovations, James Beard Award–winning FareStart Restaurant reopened on Wednesday. The Denny Regrade restaurant is the flagship of the nonprofit, which provides culinary training to people who have experienced homelessness and poverty, and underwent a facelift after 12 years in the current location. The lunch menu remains largely the same with a few important additions, namely beer, wine, and cocktails; a jerk pork sandwich; and (!) a Seattle dog, cream cheese, sauteed onions, and all. Guest Chef Nights are back too, with Adana's Shota Nakajima and Zoi Antonitsas of Little Fish taking over next Thursday night.

Another Way to Cut Down on Human Contact

Seattle continues its march towards an all-delivery food culture now that Starbucks has rolled out an Uber Eats–based delivery service in its hometown. Apparently, you can get almost anything on the menu with a flat fee of $2.49 per delivery. The most recent iteration of the program began in Miami last year, and expanded to San Francisco in late January. Now Starbucks Delivers has taken hold in eight cities across the country. Of course, the coffee giant doesn't plan to stop here: It's also piloting delivery services in London and eyeing everywhere from Hong Kong to Colombia.

Phoenecia the Phoenix

After a forced break last winter, The Phoenecia will reopen in Alaska Junction sometime this summer, according to a Facebook post. The Lebanese restaurant, beloved in its old Alki home for the food—baklava, lamb shank, pizzas—and the warmth with which the owners served it, was pushed out last winter by a redevelopment. Now, per Westside Seattle, the Khazaal family has found a new space in Alchemy's old home at 4717 42nd Southwest.

This Week in Food & Drink

Sansei's closed, but OMG Dough Zone will fill the void—with steaming hot soup dumplings!—this summer.

Ch-ch-changes at Batch 206: After Oaky's Tex Mex departs (and goes mobile via truck), an Addo spin-off will settle into the space.

Here's the scoop on Petite Soif—a Vif spin-off wine bar and bottle shop arriving on Beacon Hill (hopefully) by September.

Mother's Day brunch is a must (and so are reservations). Here are 15 Seattle spots for your—er, um, mom's—consideration.

There's so much good bar food in Seattle right now. Especially at these 8 counters.

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