The investors behind one of the best ramen spots in Western Washington opened a Japanese restaurant on Capitol Hill, while the Eastside sees about a dozen more newcomers, including a pastry shop in Redmond.
City of Seattle
The big opening this month is JUNKICHI Robata Izakaya on Capitol Hill, specializing in Japanese barbecue and small plates. The investors are the same folks behind one of the best ramen spots in Western Washington, Santouka. That’s big news because JUNKICHI will also serve shoyu and miso ramen for lunch. JUNKICHI is scheduled to open on April 15.
Hiro Tamara of Shiro’s Sushi and Sushi Kappo Tamura opened an ambitious Japanese restaurant in Belltown, Wa’z, offering “Kaiseki,” a multi-course meal with seasonal ingredients, served along the counter where diners can watch and interact with the chef.
Wood Shop BBQ has expanded to Georgetown with a trailer on Airport Way South by South Doris Street. It’s a smaller menu than what’s offered at its brick-and-mortar spot in the Central District, though you can get the signature ribs and all the barbecue sandwiches. And yes, the wings (brined, smoked and fried), which have been a big hit at the restaurant (200 pounds of wings sold every week) will also be available in Georgetown.
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Renee Erickson expanded with two more General Porpoise doughnut spots, in Pioneer Square and inside The Spheres in Denny Regrade; the latter is for Amazon employees only. Laurelhurst will also get a General Porpoise branch soon.
Sal Y Limon opened in Lower Queen Anne, with handmade tortillas, even for its nachos. Its specialty is Menudo pork soup.
Seattle Biscuit Company, the popular food truck that hawks fried-chicken biscuits, now has a brick-and-mortar in Frelard.
Geo’s Bar and Grill serves Cuban cuisine including the Cubano and Caribbean-inspired sandwiches on Broadview.
From the people behind the popular Facing East restaurant in Bellevue, QQ Taiwanese Bites offers to-go sandwiches and Taiwanese street food such as five-spiced chicken, pork burger baos and pork dumplings. Located in the Denny Triangle, it’s tailored for the Amazon lunch rush.
Miss Café in Pike Place Market makes “Turkish pizza,” flatbreads topped with ground beef and various other toppings from chicken to traditional pepperoni. There’s also Turkish coffee.
Pasta Casalinga serves fresh pasta in Pike Place — affordable prices too, lasagna and pasta dishes for around $9-$11.
Petite Galerie, the French restaurant, opened in Madison Valley, headed by Rob Sevcik who worked for Thierry Rautureau at Rover’s and Loulay.
Breezy Town Pizza, from the owner behind Windy City Pie in Interbay, opened in Beacon Hill. According to its website, the pie “will be a Chicago and Detroit inspired deep-dish pan pizza with the sourdough we’ve been working on for a year.” It’s located inside the new Clock-Out Lounge.
Nine Pies Pizzeria, a 50-seat Italian eatery, opened in Sodo next to Nine Hats Wine tasting room, and is from the same owners. Expect New York-style pizza from Cary Kemp of West Seattle’s Pizzeria 22. He’s the consultant on the Nine Pies project.
BOCA Resto Bar & Grill, a Latin American-themed restaurant with mostly Argentine influence, opened along Broadway East on Capitol Hill. It offers a generous happy hour including all-day on Sundays.
Lao Bar Restaurant also opened along Broadway East, serving Southeast Asian street food. Its best seller: Nam Khao, rice salad with deep-fried rice balls and sausage, served with lettuce and herbs.
Verve Bowls on Capitol Hill expands to Ballard, doing Acai bowls and smoothies.
The bubble tea spot 20 Oz Tea opened in Eastlake.
Starbucks has another Reserve store at its headquarters in Sodo. Similar to Starbucks Reserve Roastery & Tasting Room on Pike Street, its south branch features small-lot coffee beans, an Italian Princi Bakery and a bar.
The Organic Coup, the USDA certified organic fast-food chain, opened in the Columbia Tower in downtown Seattle. It also recently opened in the Skyline Tower in Bellevue.
The Fig and the Judge Market Restaurant is in the Renaissance Seattle Hotel downtown, offering New American cuisine.
Bua 9 Thai Cuisine opened in Columbia City with seafood specials such as crab fried rice and salmon Panang Curry.
Urban Luxe Cafe, billed as a “Mediterranean coffeehouse,” opened in North Seattle with kebabs and dips such as hummus, eggplant-based Baba Ganoush, fava-bean Muddumas and lentils. There’s also beer and wine.
In White Center, Brass Knuckle Bistro, a sandwich shop, makes brined chicken and cured meats in house. Don’t miss its chili cheese fries. Nearby, Patrick’s Café & Bakery sells noodles and loco moco, along with baked goods.
The vegan ice cream spot Frankie & Jo’s has expanded to Ballard.
Babirusa has moved to Belltown and brought with it the much-loved dinner menu from the late Blind Pig Bistro. Those who loved that Eastlake bistro will recall its excellent tasting menu. This time around, the owners have combined both ventures under the Babirusa banner.
The popular A Pizza Mart downtown is now across the street in a bigger space at the corner of Stewart Street and Terry Avenue. And after delays, Cafe Racer has reopened. Its new food menu includes the much-loved Two Bells burger.
On the Eastside
The owner behind the Pho Cyclo Cafes in Seattle and Bellevue brings high-end Vietnamese food to Redmond with the opening of District One Saigon. Happy hour is a good time to check this restaurant out since every food-and-drink item is 30 percent off. It’s located next to another new restaurant, Maxwella Cafe & Bar, both under same owner.
Also in Redmond, The London Pastry offers croissants, quiches and baked goods, and Spicy City serves Sichuan cuisine. (Not to be confused with Spicy Talk Bistro, which used to be in Redmond but recently relocated to Kirkland.)
If you love Bottle and Bull bar restaurant, you might enjoy Park Lane Public House, in downtown Kirkland. It’s a gastropub from the team behind Bottle and Bull. There’s steak frites and Wild boar Bolognese. And like its brethren, Park Lane Public House features lots of cocktails and happy-hour grub.
Two veggie options, Dosa House and Radish Creative Salad Co. come to Bellevue. The most popular Bellevue newcomer though (at least with the teens), is the Taiwan-bubble-tea chain Sharetea, which opened on 110th Avenue Northeast.
On Mercer Island, Sano Café offers a plant-based menu with smoothies, juices, salads, acai bowls and plenty of gluten-free and dairy-free options.
Poquitos, which has been a hit in the Pike/Pine corridor, takes its Mexican-inspired cuisine to downtown Bothell with an even bigger bar (5,000 square feet).
The Guest House restaurant, focusing on wood-fired- pizza and farm-to-table dining, opened in Kenmore.