Bar Taglio: Back at it after sitting dark for more than a year.

Image: Suzi Pratt

Optimism about our incoming vaccine mandate? The end of takeout-friendly summer weather? Whatever the reason, a burst of really great Seattle bars and restaurants reopened their doors this past week.

Bar Taglio

This place was a dual bright spot when it opened in September 2019: a cool lunch and bar hangout in Pioneer Square, and truly impressive pizza for anyone who digs square Roman-style slices. Brendan McGill fired up the ovens and reopened September 15. The chef, James Lorimer, is also the guy behind the Kilroy’s Pizza popup, so he’ll balance the house pizza style with some New York–style pies. Hoist one of the handsome bar’s two-ounce martinis in celebration; hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 3–9.

Cafe Hitchcock

Meanwhile, McGill’s Cafe Hitchcock across the hall reopened September 20 and launched right back into its all-day program. This place is a dazzling and versatile resource for anyone in Pioneer Square, from breakfast toasts and great coffee to lunchtime porchetta or BLT sandwiches and detail-oriented salads. Not to mention that pastry case; McGill recently installed Sarah Henderson from his Hitchcock Bakeshop (and her own Rabbit Hole Pie) to run the space and fill the case with sticky buns, croissants, and kouign-amann. Cafe Hitchcock is open Monday through Friday, 8–3.

Essex

Delancey’s deeply charming next-door bar is back at it, serving fancy-but-not-froofy cocktails (some new, some longtime favorites) and a handful of snacks. Take heed: The Sunday-only house burger isn’t back on the menu just yet (soon, says owner Brandon Pettit) but it’s easy to distract yourself with heirloom tomato salad with sheep's milk feta, or some shishito peppers roasted in the wood oven. Essex is open Thursday through Sunday.

Hood Famous Cafe and Bar

The business that brought us its life-giving ube cheesecake kept its Chinatown­–International District dining room closed for 18 months to focus on takeout, shipping dessert boxes and sharing its space with other nascent local businesses. But that stylish dining room is officially back in action as self-seating for folks who roll in for grab-n-go ube lattes and buko pie. New hours are Wednesday through Saturday, 8–5, and Sunday 11–4.

New Luck Toy

The General Tso’s and umbrella drinks are back, West Seattle. Mark Fuller and Patric Gabre-Kidan’s bar, with its menu of gleefully Americanized Chinese food, quietly reopened over the weekend. New Luck Toy has paused on takeout or to-go orders, but dinner hours are Wednesday through Saturday, 5­–10 (the bar is open until midnight).

Deep Dive

Okay, technically the Sea Creatures' striking cocktail bar at the base of the Amazon Spheres reopened September 9, slightly more than a week ago. The food situation is mostly snacks, for now, with the glorious exception of the house hot dog, topped with caviar and cream cheese. An online waitlist makes the first-come, first-served seating policy a little easier to navigate. Hours are Tuesday through Thursday, 4–9, and Friday and Saturday, 4–11.