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Queen Anne Updates?

Banjara, Gorditos, Pete's are now officially closed...rumor has it that the O Lounge and Q are on their last legs. The nice additions of Sorrentino, Portage and Bricco are now open. Via Tribunali is well on its way. Anyone have other updates for the aforementioned spaces? Banjara is a down to the studs renovation but I haven't read or seen any signs around the site indicating a new tenant. With a couple more key additions, QA could become the next Ballard/Madrona eating scene.

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    1. re: babette feasts

      3rd W. and Galer...yet another pizza place in QA but the best one I've eaten in since Naples 20 years ago...

      1. re: TacoBusHound

        ...and I love your handle..one of my ATF foodie movies. Try Mostly Marta if you haven't seen it yet...

        1. re: TacoBusHound

          just an FYI that it's: Mostly Martha (not Marta) - or to be exact Bella Martha.
          :)

        2. re: TacoBusHound

          Via Tribunali on Queen Anne is officially open as of tonight. It was packed when I drove by and is a rather tiny space, so any hopes of finally getting that fabulous pizza without the silly waits may be dashed...

      2. Hmm. Had heard that Tom Douglas was coming up the hill (bad fit in my opinion) possibly to the Gordito's spot but wondering if it fell through as Gordito's was newly posted (12/29/06) on craigslist/commercial real estate as "restaurant 4 sale". Is Q closed? There was a sign in the window over new year's but didn't read it. Their website, www.qonqa.com doesn't look promising but probably saves on bandwidth!

        1. Julia's has major plans to enter the Queen Anne scene as well.

          1. Ah yes, Julia's. A lot of us are patiently waiting to see Julia's on the hill. Anyone know a tentative opening date? I believe they're going in across from the church (in an old house) on QA Ave.

            4 Replies
            1. re: fooddawg

              You're kidding, right? I've found every Julia's to be seriously wanting in every respect--food, service, atmosphere.

              I will be seriously disappointed if scarce QA real estate is wasted on expanding this empire.

                1. re: not the bad Steve

                  Yes, tongue planted firmly in cheek. There was a time when I enjoyed brunch at Julia's. That was many years ago and it's been downhill ever since. Never been back. Just wondering how they're going to fit into that house? If I recall correctly, there wasn't much room inside when it was a salon (Intermezzo).

                2. re: fooddawg

                  What an amazing restaurant! A new vibe for julias for sure! I could not believe how they transformed that house into a vintage style restaurant obviously sparing no expense, it even has rooms where they have there own names, we dined in the chocolate room which also has its own museum of antiques from the late 1800 century, wow! I have to admit though however: the new queen anne location cannot be compared to any of its other locations! Either its under new owners or new management. Our food was amzing the service was excellent and the servers appearance was uncomparable for the history of julias! We highly recommend the newest edition to queen anne!

                3. I'm most curious about what might go into the Banjara space. Peeking through the windows, it looks like they've not torn out the freezer so I'm hopefull that it's still going to be a restaurant. Someone asked about Q. The sign just indicated they would be closed for two weeks or so around the holidays. They always look empty though and I found their food vile on our one visit.

                  I'm curious about that Via Tribunali space. Are they only going to occupy the eastmost part of that building. The other couple of windows, where there seems to be the most activity, have For Lease signs in them.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: SandraV

                    Yes, Via Trib is going into the eastmost part. It certainly doesn't look very big. I was surprised as I thought the larger corner unit (with all of the windows) was the most desireable for a restaurant. Look for it to open in late Feb/early March. Regarding Banjara, I looked online at the City of Seattle's permit page and it looks like Orrapin filed a permit to expand existing restaurant space?

                  2. A few weeks ago I thought I saw a liquor licence application on the Banjara site that looked like Orripan / O lounge was going to expand into the space....

                    What about the building on galer down from Trader Joes ??? The building looks like it could accomidate a "crow" like spot.....

                    Then again how about the space where the boutique used to be next to Ravenna Gardens ??
                    I think it is a waste of space for a julias to gome to the hill..... we already have the 5 spot and the QA cafe.... ARGGHHH !!!!

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: tilt

                      Which bldg on Galer are you referring to? Same side of the street? Looks like a lot of development is poised to go in on Galer (lots of remodels and condos). What about the house for lease next door to Stuhlberg's on QA Ave? Always happy to see QA get more dining options, parking's difficult though.

                      1. re: tilt

                        Crow is opening up a new space 10-14 block from Crow very soon.

                      2. After going to the barber the other day, I now undersand the Banajara space to be an expansion of the Orrapin empire...anyone hear the same rumors?

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: TacoBusHound

                          Taco...look two replies up...I saw a liquor Licence application confirming what the barber said...I need a haircut...what barber do you go to ?

                          1. re: tilt

                            Thanks Tilt...should be a bit more diligent in reading. The Boston St. Barbershop (across the street from Chinoise and Orrapin). Good cut and conversation for $15.

                        2. So what do you think the Orrapin folks will serve in that space?

                          6 Replies
                          1. re: BruceB

                            Hopefully it is just an expanded Lounge. Makes sense given the undeniable draw of the Paragon. The original Orrapin is cavernous as is and rarely full. On the Tom Douglas possibility, we stopped in to Portage and the bartender said he stopped by for dinner a few weeks ago. Maybe checking out the competition/QA scene. As for space on QA, it looks to have a bright future as the new complex in the former gas station will have retail as well as the proposed QFC complex at the current Metropolitan market. May be a better fit for a larger enterprise due to parking.

                            1. re: TacoBusHound

                              Rumor has it that QFC is no longer looking to move to the current Metropolitan market on top of the hill, as they're going to move to the old Tower Records original space at the bottom of the hill (new construction underway on mercer just before 99). I also believe that Metropolitan market renewed their lease through at least next year.

                              1. re: suppergirl

                                unfortunately, qfc wants both these spaces. follow the queen anne neighbors for responsible growth for updates- hopefully metropolitan will be able to stay.

                                1. re: mcgillfoodie

                                  ahhhh the agony! Thanks for the info!

                                  1. re: suppergirl

                                    I thought that I read that Metro Market was taking over Larry's old space at the bottom of the hill.

                                    1. re: jenniferedie

                                      Already happened. Then new QFC will be opening about 10 blocks away, at Mercer and Taylor Ave.

                          2. what's Portage like guys? citysearch does not have any info up but it's so close to my house i'd love to try it out.

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: chownerd

                              I've just done apps and drinks at the small bar but the space is very cozy and the apps were very creative. My wife loved the pastrami cured tuna. There was a dried cured duck with truffle oil and an ahi with homemade potato chip that we both enjoyed. A recent review in the Seattle Metropolitan magazine praised the kitchen and space but had issues with the service that seemed to derive from the lack of waiting space when the very tiny space is full. If you plan to go, make a reservation on a popular night.

                              1. re: chownerd

                                I've done a few dinners at Portage. This place is deserving of QA's support, IMO his food has just gotten better and better each time I've been there. This guy can fly with the big boys. I'm glad he's here. check it out, chownerd.

                                  1. re: chownerd

                                    TacoBusHound,

                                    You called it. Apparently, Q is up for sale. I think the space is leased so you're buying the biz & "concept". Uh, yeah.

                                  2. I'm not crying any tears over Banjara's demise. For decent Indian I've found the "nearest" place is U-Dist (Jewel of India); Chutney's is blah and Roti can be so salty my mouth has burned afterwards.
                                    Orrapin, the one time I tried it, was awful - the curry was over half "filler" material. Chinoise is better for menu items, though their sushi is ... ummm ... not very good. Speaking of Not Very Good - Julia's on the Hill? No thanks.

                                    1. It's official! Crow is the winner of the Gordito's space. Great article in today's Seattle Times by Nancy Leson that details Crow's plans for the space. The article also gives a rundown on what else is transpiring on upper QA such as the Banjara space which is becoming Opal with "world cuisine" & global wines. Like TacoBusHound said when he started this thread, QA has exciting times ahead with Sorrentino, Portage, Bricco, etc & Via Tribunali, Crow 2, and others on the way.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: fooddawg

                                        Whoa! excellent news, fooddawg! now let's hope my income goes up considerably so I can afford to hang out at these joints on a regular basis ;-)

                                      2. What I wanna know is where is everyone going to park qhile dining at these hot new restos? As a long time QA resident, I find parking, even in the daytime, extremely frustrating. Sorry for the rant. Just had to.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Seattle Rose

                                          Yes, my sister and I lived on Q.A. in the good old days with just the LOLs (little old ladies ... yeah I know ...). Anyway, there were no lattes on Q.A., until finally this Italian restaurant started making them. We used to have to drive down to the market to Starbucks - the ONLY Starbucks - and get a cafe au lait - yes that't what we called them ... LOL!!!

                                        2. Valid point, Rose. I've complained of the same. However many of these new restaurants are replacing existing restaurants. That being said, the city has proposed a residential parking zone for the area between 4th/5th Ave W. & 1st Ave W from Galer northward. This should make parking easier for the residents in this area. Not sure how it'll affect the businesses and parking on QA Avenue itself, though.

                                          7 Replies
                                          1. re: fooddawg

                                            Jeez, I guess I missed quite a bit the past few days...I had missed the article but just read it and am amazed at the changes here. I guess I missed the O Lounge prediction but hopefully something is going to happen with the Q space...

                                            As I live on 5th/Smith, I'm surprised that there would be residential parking priveleges on 4th/5th as it still is quite a hike 8 out of 12 months a year. I'd like to see them moved up to 1st.

                                            1. re: fooddawg

                                              Fooddawg, I wasn't clear in my post.The difficult parking I was referring to was not in front of my house, but the parking that is impossible to find when you want to shop on upper QA -- the bookstore, the yarn shop, the card shop, the tea shop, and so on.

                                              1. re: Seattle Rose

                                                Rose,

                                                It can be a pain to find parking, but I think as part of the residential zone they're going to put those automated parking kiosks on QA Ave and certain side streets ie Boston. It might help with turnover of those parking spots.

                                                TacobusHound.

                                                If it goes through, you'll get a letter in the mail with reg. info (I think it's $40 for a permit).

                                                1. re: fooddawg

                                                  Paying for parking on QA?! Well there goes the neighborhood....

                                                  1. re: dandelion

                                                    What do you expect? I remember in the early 80s fighting to keep McDonalds out . . . alot of good it did ,..
                                                    progress!

                                                  2. re: fooddawg

                                                    Fooddawg, I already live in an RPZ on the North side of the hill. As for those hateful parking Kiosks, the less said the better. You seem to think paying to park on QA is OK.Those of us who have lived here for any amount of time would disagree. There is already limited parking (1 hour in most places near QA Ave.), so the kiosks won't make much difference in turnover, unless they discourage people altogether.

                                                    1. re: Seattle Rose

                                                      Actually, I've lived up here for 20 years and have seen all of the changes. As much as I despise the kiosks, it may help to cut down on the people who park on the Ave and just come out to wipe the chalk off their tires or move their cars down the street. I believe you just missed the end of the city's comment period for the kiosks. The unfortunate reality is that the density of Upper QA is changing rapidly. Homes are being torn down to make way for multi-family condos and apartment buildings and the city is encouraging it. For us foodies, the changes mean more restaurants to choose from, but the parking problem is not going to go away. A couple of years ago the city was set to require that any new large restaurants on upper QA have valet parking but there were enough legal challenges to put that on hold.

                                              2. ...my bad...I see it will go from 1st to 5th Ave. W. Has other areas of the city gone this route? What is the process for registration?

                                                3 Replies
                                                1. re: TacoBusHound

                                                  kinda off food topic so my reply may not last here, but here's the link to the city's RPZ program (it's a fairly simple process): http://www.seattle.gov/transportation...

                                                  1. re: vicsailgarden

                                                    Tell me about it. Amazing to see the rapid "growth" on QA. Speaking of Magnolia, it's been somewhat protected by it's being an "island" and by a certain person owning a lot of the commercial real estate there. But I do remember when it had the Rexall drugstore and Meredith's Dime Store. I'm a little too young too remember much about the bowling alley and movie theater and certainly the dairy farm!!
                                                    Back to QA, There's been a longstanding permit to develop the bldg(s) on QA Avenue where the hardware store is located. Hate to see the hardware store go, they're great and one of the last remnants of old QA. I suppose that one day soon we'll be guessing what restaurant will be going in there. Speaking of old QA, I discovered that the backbar at Bricco was salvaged from the bldg that Via Tribunali is going into and used to be the wooden store shelves of an old market. Ok, I'm running on here but will quickly mention that Via Tribunali should be opening their doors in less than one month!

                                                    1. re: fooddawg

                                                      I was just in there today. I am new to seatlle and came across their website while doing some food research. They just opened about 2 weeks ago. The store is very attractive and Greg and James were both very helpful with questions. They are sourcing locally, cooking in Seattle and all the food right now is prepared and frozen. They said it was slated for professional people that want to eat well, but do not have a lot of time to cook. They also sell platters a few books and a few goumet condiments. They will have baby food starting next week. I would defintely pop in and at least give it a try.

                                                  2. ...back to Food. Anyone know what the Eat Local place is that replaced Curves? Just noticed it today.

                                                    8 Replies
                                                    1. re: TacoBusHound

                                                      Found this on a blog last updated in November 2006 (below). Could it be? Nice.

                                                      "A small group of Queen Anne residents - community council members, activists, farmers market devotees - are planning a small weekday farmers market at the top of our hill. On Monday night, we met with the folks who organize my favorite market and two of Seattle’s weekday markets. If we can find a suitable location (not necessarily an easy task), and raise a few thousand in start-up capital, we could have a small farmers’ market starting next June....."

                                                      The link:
                                                      http://musicandcats.com/2006/11/wante...

                                                      1. re: fooddawg

                                                        ...wow, this could be a very good thing. Now I don't have to wait for the Sunday Ballard market.

                                                        1. re: fooddawg

                                                          I would LOVE a farmer's market on QA. Maybe we can all take the bus????

                                                          1. re: Seattle Rose

                                                            ...now, now Rose, it only took me 30 minutes to find a spot on Thursday for a quick haircut at my barber on Boston...:) Can't wait until the gas station condos and QFC condos are complete..but then again, their plans clearly outline parking allotments just like the the last one which I have yet to see...

                                                          2. re: fooddawg

                                                            An update on the Queen Anne Farmer's Market - this will start on June 14th, Thursdays from 3p - 7p and will be located at the Queen Anne Community Center - it will wrap around the building along 1st N. and down Howe. The management company is the same as the Ballard Market so the vendors will be similar. The focus is local farmers with a lot of organic. There should be more info soon on the Seattle Market's site - http://www.fremontmarket.com/nonflash...

                                                            1. re: fooddawg

                                                              Update on the Queen Anne Farmer's Market - This will begin on June 14th, running on Thursday's from 3 - 7, around the outside of the Queen Anne Community Center. The McClure school will be used for parking. The same company that manages the Ballard Market will be managing this one - you can get more info soon from their website: http://www.fremontmarket.com/nonflash...

                                                              1. re: QA Girl

                                                                Very nice reporting QA Girl...I can't wait. Looks like Thursday's are now "cook in" evenings. GREAT! Do you happen to know if it going to be Year round or seasonal? I will check out the site.

                                                          3. Doomed...thats all I can say about the "eat local" place across from A & J.... And I say that only from viewing the logo while taking a left on McGraw from QA Ave...the thing looks like a cheap scribble, I cannot believe that someone actually thought that 1)it is attractive, and 2) that it will attract customers.... I bet (sight unseen, with no knowledge of the products nor staff) that at most this place will last 9 months.....

                                                            4 Replies
                                                            1. re: tilt

                                                              wow...so how do you really feel? Given that eventually the QFC will replace the Met, it may work if it has extremely quality local produce/product year round. Right now, from the hill you have to trek to Ballard Market or a PCC for any quality. That sounds so provincial given that it really isn't that far, but if I can get wine, seafood, meat and now produce within 25 yards of eachother, I probably would (except Monday's of course).

                                                              1. re: TacoBusHound

                                                                QFC = Krogers. I saw what they did to my mom's favorite supermarket. No thanks. If/when QFC comes, I will be going off the hill for groceries. Perhaps even on the bus!

                                                                1. re: Seattle Rose

                                                                  Couldn't agree more...hence my thought that it actually may work.

                                                                  1. re: TacoBusHound

                                                                    My point is that I will not shop there no matter how wonderful the store is. They're right up there (down there?) will Wal Mart in my book.

                                                            2. Just don't take Rose's parking space! ;)

                                                              Looks like Sorrentino's may have peaked (about half full lately). Might be a good time for me to go back and give them another chance.

                                                              1. If Sorrentino has peaked, perhaps they need to get their marketing act together. Not only don't they have a website, they don't even have an answering machine. Calls on Sunday and Monday were answered with "The party you have called does not have its voice mailbox set up." But I will try them soon....

                                                                4 Replies
                                                                1. re: BruceB

                                                                  I've been there twice and they don't strike me as the "corporate" restaurant. I enjoy a well balanced marketing plan more than anyone, but they are obviously avoiding it despite their association with a several location chain concept in tact (albeit all of their locations are extremely different). Maybe it's the "'mama' in the kitchen rules all" concept, but I truly hope the kitchen's home spun Italian favorites wins over the large dining room. They surprised us with their simple dishes but left us wanting to travel to Italy soon...not so bad considering our winter.

                                                                  1. re: TacoBusHound

                                                                    I finally tried Sorrentino on Saturday and was impressed with the ambitious, regional Italian menu. The food was delicious and our server (Marina) was knowledgeable and friendly. They were also unusually accommodating to kids -- they don't have a kids' menu but basically said they would make anything within reason, and did. I might go so far as to say this is upper Queen Anne's best destination restaurant (i.e., worth visiting from another neighborhood) since Pirosmani closed 10 years ago.

                                                                    1. re: BruceB

                                                                      I had one meal at Sorrentino about 2 months ago, a bow tie pasta with not much more on it than a lot of breadcrumbs, a few bits of diced tomato and parmesan. It was served at room temperature. I can't comment on the rest of the menu, but this was the worst pasta dish I've ever had in a restaurant. It may be "regional Italian" but that doesn't mean that this bland dish can be excused.

                                                                  2. Tried the new little joint at the bottom of 3rd Ave W last night.... "Snells" ? (I'm forgetting the name already). Sign says "Burgers and More..." They've also got some greek items on the list. Sampled the cheeseburger & fries to get a baseline. It was OK, I wouldn't go out of my way for it, however they've only been open about 4 weeks and I like greek food enough that I'll be back to sample more items eventually. Cute little place.

                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                    1. re: malarkey

                                                                      Thanks for the report. I've been going by as they've been gearing up to open. I'll have to check it out.

                                                                      1. re: malarkey

                                                                        I love greek and just discovered the brightly lit greek place in Magnolia right off of McGraw. Very good food and inexpensive. Haven't been to Panos in a while at the bottom of the hill but the last time wasn't memorable despite a very cool ambience. I'll have to give this new one a shot.

                                                                        Any rumors on the Q space anyone?

                                                                      2. Update on Eat Local..... I was at A & J yesterday, and walked across the street, there was a letter in the window,...the concept is pre made, take away meals, using local/organic/sustainable ingredients. It sounds as if the product will be made in a commissary in West Seattle, with the QA location only a distribution point....In my opinion, the logo still looks ugly !

                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                        1. re: tilt

                                                                          ...very disappointing. Okay, I'm officially on the wagon on the logo. Premade meals? Not exactly what we on this board are here for...

                                                                          1. re: TacoBusHound

                                                                            I just got an e-mail that says Eat Local is open... I don't know, it doesn't sound that bad. We all have days where we're in rush, or unexpected guests drop by.

                                                                            http://www.eatlocalonline.com/

                                                                          2. re: tilt

                                                                            I see no point in condemning a place because of their logo. Try the food first. The logo is immaterial, IMO.

                                                                            1. re: Seattle Rose

                                                                              Ok can I condem the place now ? I went in on a Friday after work, My plan was to buy some steaks at A&J, A bottle of wine and Mcarthy/Shearing, and then get some sides at Eat Local, all for consumption about an hour after acquisition.

                                                                              I walk into the place, very clean and bright...The "help" was attempting to help a customer, who wanted to know where the Bartells at the bottom of the hill. I say attempting, because the "help" didn't know QA at all, I had to jump in and get the woman to where her perscription was....

                                                                              Now it was my turn, I told the "help" what my plan was, she looked at me rather dumbfounded, and suggested the smashed root vegitables, or israelli cous cous. I went and picked up the FROZEN BRICKS, and looked at the prices, 8.99 and 9.99 Huh ? seemed very pricy. I then said...hmm these seem frozen, how do I prepare them ? she said - you leave them to thaw overnight...I said, I want dinner in an hour, I don't have overnight...she said "hmmm, I guess you could microwave them."

                                                                              I left, went to A& J, Mcarthy & Shearing, and the Kens and got a very nice salad and Vegatibles combined for about 7 buck, and even picked up a couple of nanimo bars for dessert......

                                                                              If you like the eat local concept, great, I do as well...but the execution is terrible.

                                                                              A while back the Liquor control Board was looking at the "eat Local" space for a QA store...I wish that would have gone through.

                                                                              Counting the days until the QA farmers market....

                                                                              Tilt

                                                                              1. re: tilt

                                                                                I agree wholeheartedly. Went there attempting to do the same thing (pick something up for dinner) and was a bit put-off that everything was frozen solid. Not what I was expecting so I just picked up a dessert that I could let thaw and then went down the street to Pasta & Co. for takeout. Probably won't be back.

                                                                          3. but the kinda thing that busy execs love! <gag>

                                                                            you know, actually, the food could be good, but we'll see...

                                                                            6 Replies
                                                                            1. re: sprints

                                                                              Tonight I tried the duck and the pommes anna. Not bad at all. The pommes anna aren't really true to the dish, they are more like a gratin, but really quite nice. the duck is nice too, but I overcooked it :-( so that was my bad. Reheat that one carefully if you like your duck medium rare. Didn't stop me from eating it though.

                                                                              I liked it enough to try their other stuff... so I'll be back.

                                                                              1. re: malarkey

                                                                                Had the two pot pies for friday supper. Beef and Pork. They were both good, I preferred the pork one, and the men preferred the beef one. (Don't men prefer beef everytime?!)

                                                                                1. re: malarkey

                                                                                  I see that they're expanding their menu and have applied for a beer/wine license as well.

                                                                                  1. re: fooddawg

                                                                                    The granola they make is really good!!--Expensive, but really tasty

                                                                                2. re: malarkey

                                                                                  So, here's my dilemma. I live really close to this place, have a moderate income, and believe in their mission. The problem is that I'm not sure how much money it's worth to buy food (and I like the food) using this model. I like the re-usable glass, low environmental footprint and the food is good. I don't like the fact that the storeclerk said I have to "thaw the glass" for an hour and half before I can bake it. I'm on the fence about the price and I was hoping to see what others think. It's $9-10 for a 2 person (IMHO, maybe 1.5 person) serving of mac & cheese, the ravioli lasagna (my favorite) and the pork ribs. I'm more than willing to play a premium for local, organic food, but I'm toying with how much more? EatLocal feels really expensive to me, more expensive than I would expect for local, organic food, but I don't think I have any realistic comparison, so am I just being cheap?

                                                                                  1. re: skyla

                                                                                    Skyla - you are not cheap...you are spot on with the problem !

                                                                                    I too am willing to pay a small upcharge for local/sustainable/FRESH things, as well for local merchants (why I go to A & J, wild salmon, etc etc) but not for the model that they are presenting.. and most certainly not for the price that I currently see.

                                                                                    You should feel no guilt !

                                                                              2. Went to Opal last night for some appetizers, wine and ambiance. There was plenty of all and a pretty hefty bill for a small portions -- so be enticed or forwarned. Of all the appetizers, the fois gras and scallops were quite good (but I thought Portage's to be better). Am considering going back there for the entrees but they are on average about 30.00 each so with an appetizer, wine and dessert, this is definitely a 60-70 dollar per person meal so I'm waiting until the spirit truly moves me.

                                                                                1. Anyone been to Calva Cafe (was Pat's) for sushi, bubbletea or Chinese food? I'm mostly curious about the Chinese food. I haven't had a chance to go, and they don't have a website. I do walk past it and it seems very empty but perhaps they just haven't got the marketing/word-of-mouth wheels turning yet. I seem to remember that they keep late hours so a casual sushi bar visit at 10pm would be nice to have as an option.

                                                                                  1. The Queen Anne Farmer's Market will open soon. The opening date is Thursday, June 28, 3-7 p.m., in the McClure Middle School parking lot. A good turnout for the first couple of market days will reassure the farmers that they can make money at this new market. Please show up and buy!

                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                    1. re: KonQA

                                                                                      Thanks for the update. It's on my calendar -- I'll be there.

                                                                                    2. Anyone have any thoughts on 5 Spot? I tried their new Hawaiian menu recently. Two different "tropical" drinks tasted as though they'd been made with (slightly varied) Kool Aid mix, and the main dish was mediocre. Overall, I've never really been able to get a handle on what's the deal with the joint. I really wanna like it, but they never seem to be able to close the deal with me.
                                                                                      Thanks

                                                                                      8 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: JacknSea

                                                                                        I've always found the 5 Spot's food to be decent but then my expectations aren't too high when I dine there. To me, it's just a neighborhood joint where I know I can get decent breakfasts, brunches or lunches.

                                                                                        btw I've been to Betty a couple times now. The first time was much better than the second, with the second being just okay and the staff indifferent. I think they may have just hired a new chef? I'll go one more time before I write a full review. The food on the first trip was generally pretty good but there is not much on the menu to choose from. Has anyone else tried it?

                                                                                        1. re: fooddawg

                                                                                          I mentioned in another blog that we went there twice too--the first time was much better than the second--

                                                                                          The second time, last Friday was not good--the steak had to be sent back because it was raw, we had to ask the hostess to find our waitress-who just disppeared-the plates were cold, as was our steaks, and the waitress, just plopped the wine on our table and disappeared.not even opening the bottle and doing a single pour--as I said noone is watching the store. We might try it once more, but it won't be for a while,, and if the next time is bad--that's the end of the place for us.

                                                                                          1. re: sammick

                                                                                            I stopped by there once, but left right away; attitude in evidence.

                                                                                            1. re: JacknSea

                                                                                              I had dinner at Betty on Saturday. The service was good, the food was good, but in the future I'll stick with Crow. I think the interior design at Betty is a lot more corporate feeling (plain walls, small art, simple fixtures). Crow just seems a lot more interesting, and the layout is better. They need to add some lighting by Betty's front door -- we couldn't figure out where to come in, and the ramp to the hostess station is completely dark.

                                                                                        2. re: JacknSea

                                                                                          Try the 5 Spot for breakfast or brunch. I think that's where they really get it right.

                                                                                          1. re: dandelion

                                                                                            We go to the 5 Spot whenever we need a late dinner mid-week and don't feel like cooking. I agree the specials are very hit or miss. But they have a full bar and serve until midnight. I like that there is something new to try if I am in the mood, and the regular items are always decent.

                                                                                            1. re: cocktailhour

                                                                                              I do love the fried chicken from there...

                                                                                              1. re: eternalX

                                                                                                ...and the fried green tomato's. When my wife was pregnant, she had to have the cheeseburger sandwich and fries regularly. Although the food is consistently mediocre, it's good to have in the 'hood.

                                                                                        3. ...looks like another bites the dust on QA...the Thai place in the Pirosmani, Hare, etc, location that seems like it would be an ideal restaurant space, has posted for sale by owner with rather tacky signs.

                                                                                          1. Queen Anne update! Ethan Stowell is going to be opening a restaurant on Queen Anne, in the old Orrapin soup location across from Lladro & Portage.

                                                                                            Still haven't been to the Via Trib yet. They are only open 4 nights a week :-/

                                                                                            Been to Betty once. Not bad, nice alternative to the 5-spot, which has had more misses than hits for me in the past few months. Good steak frites.

                                                                                            Going to Opal next saturday...

                                                                                            13 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: malarkey

                                                                                              Oh my, that would be brilliant! Although with the tininess of the space, I can't imagine I'd ever get a table. Would be nice to have a "name" chef on Queen Anne to draw more people up the hill to keep places like Portage and Opal alive...

                                                                                              1. re: qalaur

                                                                                                Very exciting news, malarkey.

                                                                                                I just tried Opal this week and loved it. I was especially impressed with how many dishes on the menu enticed me (and the ones I ordered were delicious). Surprisingly, the dessert menu didn't interest me as much, although the desserts may well be fine.

                                                                                                Speaking of Opal: the other corners at that intersection are currently Starbucks, Tully's, and Ravenna Gardens. (And Cafe Lladro is a few doors down.) I just heard that Ravenna Gardens is about to be replaced by... Peet's Coffee!

                                                                                                Maybe the old Pirosmani space (rumored to be opening up again, though Thai Kitchen still appears to be open) should be filled by a sleep disorder clinic.

                                                                                                1. re: BruceB

                                                                                                  Ravenna Gardens replaced by Peet's Coffee?! That's BAD news, BruceB. Why the fuh do we need ANOTHER coffee place on that corner?!

                                                                                                  1. re: malarkey

                                                                                                    Didn't there used to be a Seattle's Best on that corner too, next to Ravenna in what is now the game store?

                                                                                                    1. re: jaydeflix

                                                                                                      Nope... it was the original QA Starbucks location

                                                                                                      1. re: tilt

                                                                                                        hmmm. there was a sbc up there, wasn't there?

                                                                                                        1. re: jaydeflix

                                                                                                          I've lived on QA a long time and do not recall SBC being on the hill. Of course, I could be wrong . . . .

                                                                                                          1. re: Seattle Rose

                                                                                                            I could be wrong too. I could have sworn the triumvirate were on that corner once upon a time =) What used to be in the current game store, north of Ravenna Gardens?

                                                                                                            1. re: jaydeflix

                                                                                                              a clothing store with a salon/spa in the back.

                                                                                                              There's a Tully's, a Starbucks, and a Caffe Lladro all within close proximity to that corner.

                                                                                                              1. re: malarkey

                                                                                                                Hmm. Maybe I'm swapping my Lladro for a SBC. Wouldn't be the first time.

                                                                                                    2. re: malarkey

                                                                                                      the corner of coffee shops up on QA is changing again, Tully's has closed, and TeaCup is moving to take over the bigger space. Not sure what's going in TeaCup's old spot.

                                                                                                2. re: malarkey

                                                                                                  According to the local paper, Stowell's place will be called "How To Cook A Wolf" and will have 20 seats. Italian/small plates....

                                                                                                  1. re: fooddawg

                                                                                                    he told me the name, but I wasn't sure it was going to stick. Seems to be a....mouthful ;-) ok, bad pun. Can't wait till it opens though.

                                                                                                3. Saturday morning walk revealed the following -

                                                                                                  Betty is no longer serving lunch

                                                                                                  Sullys has an interesting looking "lamb slider" on their menu

                                                                                                  Opal has "changed menus" and has tinkered with hours (something about now being open on Monday, but closed Tuesday...I didn't pay much attention)

                                                                                                  Portage looked great

                                                                                                  If you are going to have a wonderful spot (Betty/Opal) why do you put up signs that looked like they came off a deskjet printer, held up by one piece of scotch tape ? That are folded and mangled ?

                                                                                                  7 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: tilt

                                                                                                        Just drove by tonight as I have been travelling and it looks great as a drinking place...something I thought would have happened to Vincenzos before Q...looks fun.

                                                                                                        1. re: TacoBusHound

                                                                                                          According to the workers inside, the Top Pot Donuts on Galer Street will open in a month. Looks like they will compete with Cafe Fiore across the street. Anyone remember what donuts Fiore serves? Mighty-O?

                                                                                                          1. re: fooddawg

                                                                                                            I think you may be right about the Mighty-O. Jeez, they might as well use them as hockey pucks once TP opens.

                                                                                                            1. re: fooddawg

                                                                                                              Where are they opening? Is it the corner spot near the tailors? Or is the new building up the street to the west?

                                                                                                              1. re: sammick

                                                                                                                They (Top Pot Donuts) are opening in the corner spot which I think is 325 Galer (corner of 4th Ave W & Galer). That bldg you mention is destined to be a salon/spa (Intermezzo) relocating from the Marqueen Hotel.

                                                                                                    1. Do people really like Sorrentino's? We went about a year ago, and it was AWFUL. They were very nice, and great with our kids, but we waited an HOUR after ordering for our food, with no explanation or apology. When the food came, it was mediocre at best. My fish had clearly been sitting under a heat lamp for a while. we haven't been back since, but with good recommendations, would try again.

                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: bluedog67

                                                                                                        I've only been once but I thought it was very good albeit a bit expensive. It is extremely authentic tasting if that means anything. The osso buco was very good.

                                                                                                        1. re: bluedog67

                                                                                                          I had brunch there a few weeks ago. There was hardly anyone else there, but the food was great. I had the frittata with truffle oil and cheese. My fiance had another frittata with potatoes and spinach and cheese, and it was also delicious. Obviously we didn't have to wait long because there were few people there. Overall it's a great alternative to other conventional brunch options.

                                                                                                        2. I have had two more great meals at Betty. I really love sitting at the food counter and watching them prep. The food is straighforward, with some interesting contrasts and flourishes. Good cocktails.

                                                                                                          1. Anyone know when Ethan Stowell's "How to Cook a Wolf" will be opening? Whats the space looking like?

                                                                                                            8 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: aaustin

                                                                                                              I think within days. Rumor has it he was traveling and is back and that his dad (Kent Stowell) of Pacific NW Ballet fame will be working the front of the house. Um, not sure if that's a good thing! Such a tiny space...

                                                                                                              1. re: fooddawg

                                                                                                                Where exactly is it? I haven't been up top of Queen Anne in a while (used to live there and miss it, actually) but I can't think of which space he's moving in to.

                                                                                                                1. re: aaustin

                                                                                                                  In the old O loung e space. QA Avenue and Boston Street.

                                                                                                                  1. re: fooddawg

                                                                                                                    ...and if you missed O Lounge it was the noodle soup restaurant prior..the place looks very empty and very little activity lately. Does anyone know if any other restaurants are going in at the new condoplex that used to be the gas station and Pete's Calzone?

                                                                                                                    1. re: TacoBusHound

                                                                                                                      I don't think any restaurants are scheduled to go in there, just a Bartell's.

                                                                                                                2. re: fooddawg

                                                                                                                  More than a few days at least :). I poked my head in there last week and there is still quite a way to go on the walls, floors and ceiling. Plus the outfitting of tables chairs and soft coverings, kitchen equipment etc. I could see that taking most of this month at least (if everything goes well).

                                                                                                                  I have to say though that I was disappointed that they did not participate in the spectacle that is Halloween on QA Ave. I remember the folks at the old Barbacoa out there sampling chili or something to get the neighborhood excited about their coming opening and I thought wow, that is someone who made an effort to get to know the neighborhood...

                                                                                                                  1. re: cburnsi

                                                                                                                    John, one of the owners of Barbacoa, lived on 9th W. I do miss them.

                                                                                                                    1. re: cocktailhour

                                                                                                                      I find I easily confuse myself, so please bear with me. Did Barbacoa have an earlt incarnation at 85th and 3rd NW? Whoever that was had a confusing tripical theme and maybe iffy service, but man that was fine meat. Was it skirt steak, or brisket? As I say, I confuse myself, but my memory for flavor is in excellent condition, thank you, and that was a great dish. If this is the person who did that, I sure want to know what's next. Thank you.