Transforming Jade West into Meander’s: ‘Everything…from scratch’


Story and photos by Keri DeTore
Reporting for West Seattle Blog

Miranda Krone likes to think of her new restaurant as the next chapter in the longrunning story of a small dining spot. She has rented the former Jade West Café (6032 California SW) from owners Salina and Wah Wong and plans to open Meander’s, a breakfast and lunch café, in late January.

One month ago — nearly a year after a drunk driver hit and seriously injured her husband and sonSalina Wong had told WSB that the family was “looking for a chef capable of carrying on the legacy of Wah’s café,” a homey one-person operation. Looks like they found her.

As Miranda pulls up a short stool to sit on and props her feet onto one of the orange vinyl barstools, it’s clear she already feels at home in this cozy space. “It’s awesome about the kitchen (being a part of the dining area). I can interact with the customers while making food!” This, she says, is perfectly suited to her “tendency to mother people.”

With her 13-year-old daughter Chloe looking on, Miranda explains that this space was a perfect solution in many ways, “I’m in my neighborhood” — she lives four blocks away — “I can do what I love, take care of my daughter, and be with people I like.”

Community connections are important to Miranda, and she wants to carry on the Wongs’ legacy of caring for people in the neighborhood.

Miranda’s passion for food began at age 16 when she started working in restaurants. Since then, she’s owned a restaurant in Olympia, been a pastry chef in Pennsylvania, an Alaskan-bush tent chef, and Executive Chef for the former Susan’s 5100 Bistro in Columbia City.

Her enthusiasm for food extends to TV-watching, and she and Chloe enjoy watching Iron Chef: “We root for it like it’s a hockey game,” says Miranda.

Chloe interjects: “This is Seattle, Mom, we root for it like it’s a soccer game.”

She is planning a menu featuring homemade-style fare featuring fresh ingredients. “Everything will be made from scratch, including the ketchup.” Offerings include what a former co-worker described as “the best biscuits and gravy ever!” She adds, “I have mended broken hearts with these biscuits and gravy.” She will also feature specialty pies and vegetarian options. Coffee will be sourced from Lighthouse Roasters.

The name “Meander’s” is inspired by a longtime family friend who passed away the same day she received confirmation of occupancy. The man, a friend of Miranda’s father, gave her the nickname “Meander” based on her tendency to slowly wander during hikes around Lake Chelan, where she grew up.

“I’m still known by this nickname among friends,” she says, smiling.

While no structural changes will be made to the space, Miranda and Chloe will be spending the next few weeks cleaning, painting, and finding a way to display the various toys they found there (photo above). Local artists will be able to feature their work on the walls, and Miranda plans to find a way to bring the Jade West sign indoors, to preserve that chapter of this restaurant’s story.

POSTSCRIPT, 7:15 PM: After reading this story, Tamsen Spengler shared a bit of the café’s history – a photo from its original incarnation as Nate and Kate’s. She says Nate and Kate were her husband’s aunt and uncle – they’re in the background of the photo:

29 Replies to "Transforming Jade West into Meander's: 'Everything...from scratch' "

  • CMT December 30, 2010 (4:08 pm)

    How wonderful!

  • LR December 30, 2010 (4:13 pm)

    Just want to
    wish you luck
    in opening

  • RJB December 30, 2010 (4:18 pm)

    Can’t wait… the name!!

  • Ben December 30, 2010 (4:23 pm)

    as longtime jade west fans who also value quality food made from scratch (plus local, organic, all that), our family looks forward to welcoming you!

  • Hungry in WS December 30, 2010 (4:48 pm)

    Glad to hear there will be such a wonderful tenant for the space. I’m looking forward to meandering in for breakfast when they open.

    Good luck on a very successful business Miranda!

  • lenguamor December 30, 2010 (4:59 pm)

    The very best of luck to you. I look forward to sampling those biscuits and gravy! Mmm…

  • moxilot December 30, 2010 (5:03 pm)

    Thanks for being so willing to embrace the history and memories that Jade West brought to the community. You have a lot of folks rooting for you…. great luck!

  • I. Ponder December 30, 2010 (5:31 pm)

    Can’t wait. That space has good feng shui!

  • CB December 30, 2010 (6:09 pm)

    Will definitely pay a visit… all the best.

  • GenHillOne December 30, 2010 (6:38 pm)

    What a great story – good luck!

  • morcaffeineplease December 30, 2010 (6:59 pm)

    Hey! You found my Wee Willy toy! You pull his pants down and he goes wee-wee.
    …must have left him on the counter when I was having lunch there a while back. You can keep him. He brings good luck. Srsly.

  • Richard December 30, 2010 (7:06 pm)

    I will visit.

  • Rick C December 30, 2010 (7:49 pm)

    Outstanding! Good luck to “Meander” and Chloe, and thank you for preserving some West Seattle history in the process. I can’t wait to try the biscuits & gravy!!

  • bridge to somewhere December 30, 2010 (8:02 pm)

    I’ll check it out!

  • coffee December 30, 2010 (8:42 pm)

    If you can make it feel and taste like a small town diner you have my business! And please, please, please a good butter based brown sugar loaded cinnamon roll. I have my mother-in-laws receipe if you like. She NEVER gave it out but I could be swayed…..
    And the classic photo, that is wonderful!

  • thankful December 30, 2010 (9:32 pm)

    Yay! A breakfast place within walking distance! I can’t wait! Morgan junction has been in need of this! See you soon.

  • olympia December 30, 2010 (9:49 pm)

    Miranda’s biscuits and gravy mend a broken heart?
    I’ve seen first hand.

    Best of luck to you Miranda!

  • Helen December 30, 2010 (9:50 pm)

    I live across the street and I would be DELIGHTED to have Meander’s as my new neighbor!

  • Brontosaurus December 30, 2010 (10:16 pm)

    Looking forward to having breakfast at Meanders. Welcome to the neighborhood!

  • Sherry December 30, 2010 (10:35 pm)

    Miranda-see I told you you would be a hit before you open!!!!!! I am so excited for you. Probably see you tomorrow at C & P

  • ad December 30, 2010 (10:47 pm)


  • Dave G December 30, 2010 (11:31 pm)

    Congrats, Miranda. Sounds like Mr. Wah found the perfect person to carry on the legacy. might have to learn his two most heartfelt phrases “What the H#$@”, and “Terrible..don’t know how you can eat”..which Wah would proudly proclaim upon serving something extra special that he concocted on the spur-of-the-moment :)

    mmm..biscuits and gravy…mmmmm

  • Dave G December 30, 2010 (11:32 pm)

    Love the photo!! I think that clock is till on the wall…’s a loving tribute video to Wah that we recorded a few years back. We wish him all the best and love and healthy healing!!!

  • dawsonct December 31, 2010 (8:54 am)

    Congrats Miranda! Looked at the place myself, with very similar culinary ideas for the place, just wasn’t able to swing it this time.
    Success to you, and I am looking forward to dining at your counter!

  • onceachef December 31, 2010 (12:16 pm)

    good luck Miranda…like the name Meander’s!

  • meander January 1, 2011 (9:00 am)

    Wow…this is why I’m so excited to open here; I couldn’t ask for a better neighborhood, both for this cafe & to raise my daughter in. I’m relatively new to West Seattle, but folks have been incredibly warm and welcoming. It’s like living in a small town, and I haven’t felt this at home in years.
    I love that picture from back when it was still Nate & Kate’s, and if Tamsen were willing, I would love to put a copy of it up in the restaurant!
    The video of Wah is awesome…thank you for posting. He’s an incredibly sweet man, and Salina is deeply kind. They have both expressed a great deal of concern for what direction the cafe will go & how it will fit in the neighborhood, and I feel privileged that they have decided to lease the space to me.
    Cinnamon rolls- heck, yeah! But I would love to check out your Mom’s recipe!
    Wee Willy- thank you…he’s already provided much amusement!
    Sherry- You were right, and I’m sure I’ll see you at C&P shortly (like, later on today).

    I’m looking forward to spending my days serving you crispy hashbrowns, home made soup & chatting while you sip on your coffee. Also, pie. There will be plenty of pie. ; ) Thanks!

  • Dave G January 1, 2011 (11:18 pm)


    ..and..hint hint….maybe cut a deal with The Swinery for Bacon Goodness.

    Can’t wait!

  • Doug January 2, 2011 (4:19 am)

    We live in Sunrise heights. Although I only went to Jade West once, I wish I had experienced it’s charm more and perhaps got to know the owner! We hope the best for your new place, it’s nice to know that the Wong’s still own the building.

  • Jill P. January 4, 2011 (6:51 pm)

    Hi Miranda,
    Just wondering…would you consider offering a baking lesson for a baking birthday party at your new location, for a small group of 11 year olds. My daugher, turning 11, just loves cake boss and wants to have some kind of baking b-day party in a “professional type kitchen”. We are looking at a 5pm gathering on January 22. My daughter wants to own her own restaurant when she “grows up”.

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