West Seattle, Washington
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
At 3 pm today, The Junction’s newest drinking/eating establishment, Alchemy, officially opens its doors.
And that’s where we sat down earlier this week to talk with the trio behind it – bar director Tony Larson, executive chef Larkin Young, and marketing/operations director Matt Mead.
The photos in our story are from last night’s “soft open” – right up until then, Matt explained, they had a “whole squadron of people building furniture.” They had also “gone antique shopping” for some of the decor, from chandeliers to “a tea kettle from the 1800s.” Alchemy seats 45.
Tony is the West Seattleite in the group – more than a decade here, including a few years working at Matador just up the street. Read More
By Randall Hauk
Reporting for West Seattle Blog
Oliver Stormshak tells WSB that he and business partner Sam Schroeder were excited to choose West Seattle for their fourth location, the company’s first outside of Olympia.
“Sam grew up a few blocks from the new location, and his parents still live there,” says Stormshak. “When we first started looking at possible locations in Seattle, West Seattle was high on our list. … We love it there. It feels like home to us.” Read More
Two and a half months ago, we told you about the Best of Hands Barrelhouse, coming to the southeast corner of 35th/Webster. Last night, we heard from proprietor Nicholas Marianetti, who is asking for neighbors to keep an eye on the site, after metal thieves struck:
We began working at around 2:00 PM (Monday, May 8th) at the former site of John’s Corner Deli (we’ve been demoing there since mid April), and noticed that someone had come by between then and Sunday night when we were there last, and had cut apart and stolen copper piping from the back of the building. It looks like they may have been scared off by something as they left one large piece of piping behind as well as a tool they were using.
Earlier in the day, a reader had in fact asked us how Best of Hands was coming along, so we asked about that – here’s the reply:
So, right now we’re aiming for a December opening. Of course, this will depend on how quickly permitting works its way through the city and the Federal governments. According to our architect, we should expect to see our building permits sometime early-mid June. We plan to demo the rest of the month and perhaps into June, and be ready to build out as soon as the permits arrive. Hopefully build-out will be done by September, and we’ll be able to test-batch while we’re waiting for our federal TTB permits to clear (they were about 6 months out when we applied in April). We’ve already acquired a 7BBL brewhouse, so we’ve got our ducks in a row.
John’s Corner Deli closed in late January.
By Randall Hauk
Reporting for West Seattle Blog
Two veteran bartenders are working to bring a neighborhood bar to an evolving stretch of South Delridge.
West Seattle residents Andrew Spence and Ed Wheeler have worked in bars and restaurants throughout the city since moving here from Oakland, California and Las Vegas, Nevada, respectively. Now the two have become business partners working toward a summertime opening of 2 Fingers Social at 9211 Delridge Way SW, a site that has seen a variety of businesses come and go in recent years, as noted here when we first mentioned an early-stage plan for the site in March.
Spence and Wheeler hope their experience in the food-and-beverage industry will help them establish their bar as a fixture in a rapidly changing area, where neighbors have already been working hard on improvements.
“It will be a place where people can come socialize with their neighbors and feel connected. It will have an old-school feel with a very old-fashioned aesthetic to it,” says Spence in describing the overall concept for the space. “It’s going to be a ‘bar’ in the traditional sense of the term, like what you would expect to see in a classic movie. It’d be a place where you would see Humphrey Bogart sitting next to Elvira.”
Beer and wine will be available at 2 Fingers Social, but the full bar will be the primary star. Spence and Wheeler are still putting their liquor lists together, but already have ruled out any cut-rate labels.
“Our well liquors are going to be what other bars serve as their calls,” says Wheeler. “Our prices may reflect that a bit, but people will quickly recognize that they’re getting quality drinks.”
Between the bar seating and tables, 2 Fingers Social will seat 50 people upon opening. The owners plan to eventually add outdoor seating on a patio in front of the building.
Though there is a heavy focus on the bar, Spence and Wheeler say their food offerings will be just as compelling. The menu will consist of hot sandwiches and sides. They plan to keep selections fairly limited and “off the beaten path.” Wheeler says they hope to work with the nearby shop Meat the Live Butcher on sourcing quality, local meats for their sandwiches. They will also have vegan and vegetarian sandwiches on the menu.
Both fathers themselves, Spence and Wheeler are dedicated to making the atmosphere of 2 Fingers Social as family-friendly as possible so that everyone feels welcome, whether they are coming for cocktails, dinner, or both.
“We want people to come into what would be an extension of our living room . . . if we could have a bar in our living room,” says Spence
The two are working hard on renovations and paperwork in the hopes they will be able to open within a few months, though typical delays in processing could push them into August before they could open their doors.
Once open, 2 Fingers Social will be open from 4 pm to midnight, seven days a week, with the potential to expand in the future into both the lunch and late-night hours.
That’s Kayla Huggins, store manager at Starbucks in Morgan Junction, with boxes full of donations they’ve received for a drive continuing until 4 this afternoon, for the women and children of Hope Place:
Seattle Union Gospel Mission’s Hope Place is one of the few shelters for women and children in Seattle and one of the only to accept women with male children up to the age of 18. Hope Place is an essential lifeline for families fleeing from domestic violence, recovering from substance abuse, or simply without a safe place to stay.
*To include and connect our community around a single objective, where together we can support the needs of the women and children at Hope Place!
*To collect as many clothing items for woman (All sizes), boys and girls clothing items (birth – 18 years), and unused, unopened hygiene products for women and children.
PLEASE CONSIDER BEING A PART OF THIS EVENT! THANK YOU!
If you were hoping to be among the first to try the cocktails and small plates at Alchemy, you’ll have to wait a little longer. We were first to report last month that the new bar/lounge was planning to open in the West Seattle Junction on April 28th; since that’s this Friday, we checked in today with spokesperson Sara Ryan to see about a preview, and she told us the opening had been “pushed.” No new date yet. It’s one of two new enterprises that F2T Hospitality is opening at Junction 47 (California/Alaska/42nd), as first reported here last June.
If you had hoped to check out the first West Seattle edition of Coffee With a Cop at the Junction Starbucks this afternoon, but couldn’t get there … there will be a sequel. It seems Starbucks thought it had been rescheduled, explained Crime Prevention Coordinator Jennifer Burbridge, but nobody got the memo, so she and some officers showed up, including the bicycle squad, as evidenced by parking outside:
Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis dropped by too:
We haven’t yet verified the new date – hoping to get that info tomorrow – but we’re hearing early May. This is a national program, and Starbucks is supporting 100 of the meetings coast-to-coast this year.
Some weeks after Thailanding on Alki quietly closed, its signage and blue paint are gone, and a building-permit application confirms a reader tip that El Chupacabra is expanding into that upstairs space at 2620 Alki SW. We asked proprietor Aaron Wright for details:
We are excited to be expanding the Chupacabra into the upstairs soon. The plan is to add another full bar upstairs with additional seating for 29 inside and 15 on the upper patio. We will be using the upstairs for overflow seating for the summer months. For the winters we will be using the space for private parties and events. The current plan is to add a covered pergola and gas heating to the upper patio for outside dining on the cooler days.
No date for completion yet – Wright says that “the permit process is taking longer than expected” which seems to be the case for just about every commercial project these days – but he’s hoping to be ready “by early summer, June-ish.” It’s been six years now since the Alki location opened – the second El Chupacabra, after Greenwood – and Wright added a third location at South Lake Union in 2015.
Going to the Sounders FC match on Sunday (March 19th)? The Westy Sports and Spirits (WSB sponsor) is bringing back the Westside Sounders Shuttle, starting with Sunday’s home opener vs. NY. Here’s the announcement that shuttle tickets are on sale now at The Westy:
Since this is the Opening Ceremony coming off the Seattle Sounders FC MLS Championship, the shuttle will be departing 90 minutes (all other games, 60 minutes) before the scheduled game time.
Dates currently available for purchase: 3/19, 4/8, 4/29, 5/6, 5/20
Tickets are $25 each and include:
-Round-Trip transportation from The Westy
-One Beer/Wine/Well Cocktail
-20% off at The Westy on your Shuttle Game Day
-Plus other Bonus items
Pre-buy tickets for 4 Dates and save $20 – making it $20 per ticket.
Shuttle will operate for Sounder Weekend Home Games. Shuttle is all ages; however, the full benefit of the ticket package and The Westy are still 21+.
Buy your ticket(s) in person at The Westy, 7908 35th SW.
Two West Seattle beverage-venue notes tonight:
ALCHEMY’S OPENING DATE: Nine months after we first reported on two new venues going into Junction 47 at California/Alaska/42nd, we have an opening date for one: Alchemy, described as “a chemistry-themed cocktail bar,” is planning to open April 28th, according to spokesperson Jayme Stocker. (As reported here earlier this week, Vine & Spoon hasn’t set a date yet but is aiming for mid-May.)
STARBUCKS REMODEL: During a routine check of the city’s permit/building use files, we found a remodeling plan for the drive-through/walk-up Starbucks at 4408 Fauntleroy Way SW. We asked the company’s media team for comment first thing this morning, but no reply by day’s end; the “site plan” in city files has a list of planned changes to 13 features including signage, the walk-up and drive-up ordering areas, and patio furniture. No indication of when the work is scheduled or how it will affect operations; we hope to hear that from the company soon.
One month after John’s Corner Deli closed in Sunrise Heights, we know more about The Best of Hands Barrelhouse, which is taking over the space at 7500 35th Avenue SW. When we first contacted co-proprietor
Nicholas Marianetti last month, after we found an early-stage site plan in city permit files, he said he’d be happy to comment once they finished negotiating a lease. Now, he tells WSB that’s happened, and they’re signing this week, so here’s what’s planned:
The Best of Hands Barrelhouse is a startup specialty brewery with a target launch date of late fall/early winter 2017.
The Barrelhouse will specialize in barrel-aged and barrel-fermented beers as well as wild ales that utilize different souring methods and multiple strains of Brettanomyces. While these sour and/or funky beers will be the brewery’s main focus, we will also produce “clean beers” fermented exclusively by Saccharomyces (brewer’s yeast) that have a proven following here in the Pacific Northwest. We aim to yield styles such as IPAs, barrel-aged stouts, farmhouse ales (such as saisons), and beers crafted in various traditional brewing methods from around the world.
The brewery and taproom will be managed and directed by co-owners Nicholas Marianetti, Gregory Marlor, and Chris Richardson. All three are longtime West Seattleites and veterans of the food and beverage industry. Nicholas and Gregory are Certified Cicerones®, and award winning homebrewers. Chris is a small business owner with 20 years experience in small business operations.
The team is excited to bring their brews and vision to the West Seattle community later this year!
As part of the permit process, the city has to grant a permit for changing the building’s use from retail to “drinking establishment”; Monday’s Land Use Information Bulletin included notice of that application, opening a comment period until March 13th.
Today we’re welcoming new WSB sponsor Welcome Road Winery, whose proprietors Leigh McMillan and Kristen Dorrity invite you to their tasting room at 3804 California SW.
Here’s what Welcome Road Winery would like you to know: We are local to West Seattle and make award-winning wine from Washington’s renowned Yakima Valley, and our tasting room is fun and friendly place (with a French ski lodge theme) to taste wine or kick back with a glass on the patio. We also throw great parties and events.
Welcome Road Winery‘s tasting room is for fun-loving wine drinkers who want to taste fabulous wine or enjoy a glass and bite of cheese in a laid-back, friendly, and fun environment. People come back because they love the wine, but also because they have a great time in our tasting room. Typically there is a lot of laughing with friendly people and our room is relaxed and unpretentious.
Our award-winning wines are made in the French winemaking tradition, but with Pacific Northwest spirit. They are elegant and bold, but play nicely with all types of food – from BBQ to holiday dinners to grilled seafood. We are known in particular for our Bordeaux-style blends featuring Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah.
Welcome Road is the epitome of a boutique, urban winery – making just 700 cases of wine per year. Winemaker Leigh is a graduate of the WSU Enology program and works in marketing during the day, while co-owner Kristen practices law. We were inspired to start a winery after visits to wine country throughout France and eastern Washington. We are honored to work with some of the best grape growers from the renowned Yakima Valley, including the great folks at Dineen Vineyards and Two Mountain. These guys have years of experience and consistently produce great fruit. Yakima Valley‘s arid climate, rocky landscape, and ample sunshine make for fantastic grape-growing conditions. We are proud to make wine from this outstanding fruit.
Welcome Road Winery is a member of Seattle Urban Wineries and supports WestSide Baby and Genesee Hill Elementary School. See the Welcome Road wine list here. The Welcome Road Winery tasting room at 3804 California SW is open Fridays 5 to 8 pm and Saturdays 1 to 7 pm.
We thank Welcome Road Winery for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.
Back in October, we brought you first word of the plan for The NOOK at 2206 California SW in The Admiral District. Today, proprietors Jimmy and Johnny send word they’re planning to open on Tuesday (February 7th). Now that they’re almost open, here’s how they’re describing what The NOOK will be:
We are a 21-and-over lounge with beer/wine/spirits; local brews, old World wines, classic and contemporary cocktails, and an open bar for pretty much anything, really!
Guests can come in and have anything from a shot n’ a can of Olympia to a classic Old Fashioned or a nice glass of local and old World wine. The NOOK is all about having a good time with great drinks of whatever your preference while enjoying a cozy, neighborhood atmosphere.
We are shooting to open this Tuesday. Our hours will start out at 4 pm-10 pm Tuesdays-Thursdays and Sundays, 4 pm-12 am Friday & Saturdays; closed Mondays.
We will have bar snacks but primarily our focus is on cold beverages and good times, so come thirsty!
It’s a cozy space, but there’s also a loft on the second floor (photo added above).
Today, we’re welcoming a new WSB sponsor! Here’s what The Westy Sports & Spirits would like you to know:
If you travel up and down 35th Avenue SW on a regular basis, there is a good chance you may have passed us without even knowing it. We are The Westy Sports & Spirits. Open now just over two years, The Westy is owned and operated by West Seattle residents JP Vidican & Paul Ritums.
Once you discover The Westy, you find it isn’t your typical sports bar. Yes, you will most likely find the sports you seek showing on one of the 18 TVs, as we have been recognized as a “go-to” viewing destination for your local teams and more by the Seattle Times, Seattle Weekly, & Eater.
You’ll discover The Westy is deceptively larger than it appears from the outside. Once inside, you will discover a comfortable, neighborhood hangout where friends gather to enjoy good food, drinks, and games.
The Westy has a seasonal menu that is home to more than just deep-fried pub food, like the burger with Ghost Pepper cheese, award-winning chili (2016 Junction Harvest Festival), and one of the most popular items on the menu, our Broccoli. On the beverage side, you will find 13 monthly rotating draft beers/ciders/sours, over 120 different whiskies, 2 cocktails on tap, and much more. For your entertainment, you of course have the TVs, but also classic Skee-Ball, retro arcade game classics, and Golden Tee.
The Westy is open Monday – Friday, 11:00 am until 2:00 am; Saturday/Sunday, 9:00 am until 2:00 am, with breakfast served until 2:00 pm.
Special $5 Late-Night Bites 7 nights a week, from 11:00 pm – 1:00 am
Happy Hour Monday thru Friday, 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm
And introducing our new ‘Hangover Happy Hour,’ Sat/Sun 9:00 am – 11:00 am
We are thankful for the West Seattle community and our neighbors for an unbelievable first two years, and we look forward to serving you for many more. The Westy is at 7908 35th SW; 206-937-8977.
We thank The Westy Sports & Spirits for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.
3:04 PM: One of West Seattle’s newest coffee shops, QED Coffee (6032 California SW), just sent word they’re joining the nationwide Friday-Sunday coffee-shop fundraiser for the ACLU. The coffee-industry publication Sprudge organized the benefit, as explained here, where you’ll also find the list of 400+ cafés participating nationwide so far. Sprudge’s announcement explains, “Today (the ACLU is) defending innocent refugee and immigrant families impacted by the recent executive orders — tomorrow they could be defending you, because they are committed to defending all of us.” Matt from QED tells WSB, “A portion of sales, as well as any extra monies that people want to give, we will be donating” after the weekend. (If any other West Seattle/White Center coffee shops join, please let us know.)
4:19 PM: Sound and Fog Coffee/Wine Bar (4735 40th SW) just sent word they’re in, too, Friday-Sunday.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
First thing this morning, two hours before dawn and six degrees below freezing, Jenni Watkins officially opened Dutchboy Coffee at 16th SW and SW Holden.
She has big dreams for her little coffee shop at Highland Park’s busiest intersection.
And it has a big namesake – Dutch, the 8-year-old Newfoundland who belongs to Jenni and husband Todd Watkins. Or maybe, they belong to him. He won’t be a fixture at the stand that carries his name and likeness – but they wanted him to be there for our photo op and interview on this grand-opening morning.
“He’s brought us a lot of friends,” laughed Jenni. “We didn’t know half our neighbors” before that.
Things have changed. This morning, she says, almost everyone on their block came by to be part of Dutchboy Coffee’s opening day.
“We just love our neighborhood,” Jenni smiles. A neighbor, in fact, did the design work for their signage and menu.
Dutchboy Coffee is the first business for Jenni and Todd, who also helped build the stand – while you might recall that other coffee stands (JoJo’s and Jenny’s) used to be in that spot, this is a brand-new structure, with custom features added to a modular building.
Jenni and Todd have lived in Highland Park since 2004 and “decided we’d like to work with the community.” Dutchboy is starting simple, with coffee (Fonté) and pastries (Little Rae’s), and planning to build on that – Jenni is working toward baking for herself within six months or so (that requires a whole different level of permit), and hoping to add sandwiches someday.
When warmer weather arrives, tables and chairs will appear in the space between the Dutchboy stand and the commercial building that shares the site on the southeast corner of 16th/Holden.
For starters, Dutchboy’s hours are 6 am-2 pm Mondays-Fridays. That could change; Jenni will be listening to customers’ suggestions and requests. And in the meantime, their main message is on a board by the stand’s front window: “Welcome to Your Dutchboy!”
The final games are just under way as the National Wheelchair Basketball Association‘s Seattle Jam 2016 wraps up in the West Seattle High School gym. We caught part of the two games just before lunch break, Seattle Sonics vs. Albuquerque Kings, above, and San Diego Wolfpack vs. Rogue Valley Scorpions, below:
Those four teams are among the six Division 1 wheelchair-basketball teams from around the West who are participating in Seattle Jam this weekend, along with seven Junior Division teams.
Sponsors include Seattle Adaptive Sports, always looking for volunteers to help with events like this.
Thanks to everyone who has asked about/pointed out the closure of Alki Huddle (formerly Bamboo). We’ve been trying for about a week to find out what’s happening there, and today, we finally succeeded.
It’s been bought by the ownership of the Hawks Nest Bar and Grill in SODO, and they’re remodeling it to become the Hawks Nest West – “a place to watch the game,” and more. It will be all-ages until 9 pm.
Their goal is to get it open in time for at least the “second round” of playoffs for the Seahawks. And you’ll find some new touches, like a fire pit in the outdoor seating area, and a new menu.
The new owners took it over at the start of the month but it took a few weeks before they were ready to temporarily close it for the remodel. The changeover isn’t a complete surprise – The Huddle had been listed for sale for a while, and the former owner had told WSB that when his new restaurant (Sopranos Antico in Admiral) opens, that would be his only restaurant.
The sign says remodeling – but there’s a lot more to what’s going on inside the Tap Station, which opened in the 35th/Kenyon mini-business district three years ago as a beverage store. When it reopens this Friday, it’ll include “a full, all-ages, family-friendly restaurant” – something in short supply south of Morgan Junction.
Tap Station general manager Jeremy Martin tells WSB, “We’ll have a sandwich-based menu with about a dozen selections, a sandwich for every taste, we hope. We’ll have room for 36 with several tables and two standing rails up front and bench seating in the back room.” That’s what you see, work in progress, in the photo above; we also snapped a preview photo of the menu.
They’ll continue with the “same amount of retail,” just adding the food-and-drink service, and weekly events such as “wine night” on Mondays, “member night” for their beer-club members on Tuesdays, movie nights on Wednesdays, and more. (Here’s their December calendar.) Hours will be 3-10 pm Mondays-Thursdays, 3 pm-11 pm Fridays, noon-11 pm Saturdays, noon-8 pm Sundays.
Congratulations to Kim Sharpe Jones and Kendall Jones of the Beer Church for rolling up another big score at one of the holiday season’s first big fun(draisers), last Saturday night’s Turkey Bowl. Their 18th annual sold-out bowling benefit at West Seattle Bowl brought in 1,600 pounds of food and $5,000 for the West Seattle Food Bank, which had a team there too:
Other teams included Furry Faces Foundation:
More than half the participating groups were from breweries or pubs – and many donated fundraising items too:
As mentioned here last week, the event also was the launch party for the Beer Church IPA, raising money for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America‘s Northwest Chapter. Here’s where to look for it in the days/weeks ahead!
A new coffee option is about to open north of Morgan Junction, sharing space with Harry’s Chicken Joint.
What had been Harry’s Coffee Joint (until last May) on the south side of the space at 6032 California SW will become a new location of QED Coffee.
QED’s Matt Greenfield tells WSB, “I was a barista at Caffe Fiore in the Admiral District from 2011-2014, and absolutely love serving the folks of West Seattle. I had started QED in my friend’s garage as a wholesale roaster, and we were able to open our first cafe in the Mt. Baker neighborhood in 2015. Having a place in WS to share our coffees has been a long-term goal, and we are so happy to have an opportunity to share the space with Bruce. We now roast in SoDo.”
Opening day is next Wednesday (November 16th). Hours will be 6 am-2 pm Mondays-Fridays, 7 am-3 pm Saturdays-Sundays. Along with the coffee, you’ll find Macrina Bakery pastries, Bread & Bone breakfast sandwiches, Nuflours‘ gluten-free items, organic juices from Columbia Gorge, and, on the weekends, Mighty-O Donuts.
This Saturday, you can be among the first to drink limited-release, philanthropic Beer Church IPA, according to the announcement of its release party during the 18th annual Beer Church Turkey Bowl in West Seattle:
On Saturday, November 12th, Georgetown Brewing releases Beer Church India Pale Ale, a beer brewed in collaboration with three other Seattle-area breweries. Proceeds from the sale of the beer benefit the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America, Northwest Chapter.
Beer Church IPA was brewed by Georgetown Brewing Company in collaboration with Airways Brewing, Big Al Brewing, Two Beers Brewing, and Beer Church, a Seattle-based organization that finds easy ways for beer drinkers to contribute to worthwhile causes. This is the sixth year that Beer Church has organized and promoted this annual project.
The beer will be released at Beer Church Turkey Bowl, an annual fundraiser now celebrating its 18th anniversary. The sold out bowling party takes place at West Seattle Bowl on Saturday, November 12 at 6:00 P.M. The public is welcome to attend the event, participate in the silent auction and raffle, and enjoy the beer.
Following the official release, Beer Church India Pale Ale will be available at each of the participating breweries’ taprooms, as well as select local restaurants and pubs. Keep an eye on beerchurch.com for a list of locations that will tap this draft-only beer. … Ingredients for Beer Church India Pale Ale were donated by Great Western Malting Company of Vancouver, Washington and YCH Hops of Yakima, Washington. Georgetown Brewing donated its facilities and other resources, while the collaborating breweries helped develop the recipe and contributed to the brewing of the beer.
“This is just another example of the generosity of the local beer and brewing industry,” said Kendall Jones, the President and Founder of Beer Church. “The breweries were happy and excited to support the effort, but beyond that, without the support of YCH Hops and Great Western Malting, none of this would be possible. Their contributions are, literally, the backbone of the beer. Their involvement plays a key role in the fundraising component of the project.”
Beer Church India Pale Ale uses three different hop varieties to create its unabashedly hop-forward character. Along with Ekuanot™ hops, the recipe includes two newly developed, experimental hop varieties that have yet to be named (currently designated as HBC 344 and HBC 522). All of the beer’s hop flavors are supported and balanced by the use of 2-Row Malted Barley and White Wheat Malt. Beer Church IPA clocks in at 6.3 percent Alcohol by Volume (ABV) with the hops providing pine-citrus, tropical, and herbal flavors. It is a bright golden beer with a dry body and light mouthfeel.
West Seattle Bowl is at 39th SW and SW Oregon on the east edge of The Junction.