An excellent addition to Renee Erickson's Capitol Hill spots, Belltown might not be entirely ruined, Amazon gets up in your food and more.
1. GOODBYE TO SHORTY’S, TULA’S AND ROCCO’S?: Fans of pinball, jazz, cocktails and Belltown in general were very unhappy when news broke that three neighborhood favorites were to be razed for an apartment building. Now, after a meeting crowded with supporters for historic preservation of part of the block, they might be saved. Next stop: Another public meeting on October 7.
2. DOING DOUGHNUTS: This just in: Pastry chef Clare Gordon is joining Renee Erickson for her new Capitol Hill places Bar Melusine, Bateau and General Porpoise Coffee and Doughnuts. Gordon moved here from Portland — where she was pastry chef at the renowned Ava Gene’s — for the opening of the ill-fated Aragona, then went on to oversee pastry at Mamnoon. Making the move was a “tough decision,” but, Gordon says, “Renee’s restaurants have been my favorites in Seattle since I moved here.” For her part, Erickson is “really thrilled” to have Gordon “in charge of desserts for both restaurants, as well as making sure that each and every doughnut is delicious!”
(Meanwhile, in related chef-shuffling, former Aragona and Spinasse chef Jason Stratton has ended his tenure as Mamnoon’s general manager to become its executive chef, and Carrie Mashaney will be joining him in Gordon’s former pastry chef role. Garrett Melkonian, who left the Mamnoon exec chef spot after being named a James Beard Award semifinalist, is still working on a Mamnoon-related mystery project.)
3. AMAZON ON YOUR PLATE: Because there aren’t enough restaurant-delivery services out there right now, our hometown online behemoth is testing its own in Seattle, making food from Skillet Diner, Re:public, Green Leaf and more available for one-hour transport to your desk or couch in certain parts of the city. (The best part of this article is the quote from competing restaurant-delivery service Peach: “Peach is in the lunch-curation business.”) Meanwhile, in L.A., Amazon is trying out delivering food from farmers markets. Next up: trials for drone-delivery of food from plate to mouth, for those who want to bypass the outmoded logistics of the fork.
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4. MAKE IT STOP: In just a taste of extremely depressing recent food-related environmental news, what’s happening to Northwest glaciers is “disastrous,” our fruit orchards are serving as “natural fire breaks,” Yakima farmers are saying water mismanagement added to their problems during our hottest-ever-summer, and even low levels of oil are giving our native salmon and herring heart defects. Meanwhile, local meat-over-open-fires extravaganza Burning Beast has been officially cancelled. President Obama better hurry up.
5. A BUZZ-WORTHY NEW BAR: It’s coming to your neighborhood! You’re going to love it.
NOW OPEN: Super Six in Columbia City (Asian/Pacific Northwest comfort food from the women of Marination, with help from Ma’ono’s Mark Fuller); Eden Hill on Queen Anne (“avant-garde New American small plates” from a talented young chef named Maximillian Petty); Heyday in Mount Baker (world-ranging burgers with a menu from Dinette’s Melissa Nyffeler); Sugar Plum on Capitol Hill (vegan sweets from Plum owner Makini Howell); The Lodge Sports Grille in Greenwood (#6 in the chain).
COMING (RELATIVELY) SOON: Saboteur (probably incredible baked goods from pastry chef Matt Tinder, formerly of Bay Area biggies The Restaurant at Meadowood and Coi).
FOOD EVENTS: Two promising pop-ups sound like good deals at $45 and $40 per person respectively: Mar y Montaña at Cortona Cafe (Spanish food from chef Joe Bayley of Tallulah’s) and Northwest Provisions at Foundation nightclub (the best of what’s local now from Ty Blana of Canlis). Sunday, September 13 is the Fifth Annual Heirloom Tomato Festival, with chefs including Mike Easton, probably excellent bloody Marys, optional tomato spa treatments (!?) and more. The $5-a-pop Seattle sugar rush that is Sweet Week starts Monday, September 14. And here’s more to amuse your bouche.