There’s good news and there’s not-so-good news on the restaurant front as we round the corner past Halloween and into the holiday season.
Nothing lasts forever, but three icons have closed in recent days. We mourn most the closing of Bisato, an icon of Italian purity maintained through the fanatical dedication of its owners, Scott Carsberg and Hyun Joo Paek. After 20 years, they’ve decided to take a break.
Another casualty of the times: Emmer & Rye, atop Queen Anne. This was Seth Caswell’s shrine to locally sourced and sustainably produced food. It was an ambitious project, but the house (which had been Julia’s) was just too big.
The third is Gaspare’s, on Phinney Ridge, a victim to nothing more unstoppable than the march of time itself. Dianne and Gaspare Trani, who opened the spot in 2005, had previously operated Il Gambero in Belltown.
No one is immune. The entire Tully’s chain has declared bankruptcy and will close three dozen stores around Seattle.
But for every spot that closes, it seems that two or three open. To wit:
In Magnolia, Tanglewood Supreme has opened on Webster Street with a seafood menu.
In Belltown, Green Leaf is opening an outlet inside Tia Lou’s lounge on First Avenue. Meantime, Fish Cake Factory has opened in the old Zeitoon space on Fourth.
In University Village, Elemental Wood-Fired Pizza.
In Fremont, Maria Hines is opening an Italian spot, Agrodolce. There’s a new location for Joule in the Fremont Collective.
In South Lake Union, there’s a new coffee shop, Cafe Torino. New from food maven Danielle Custer: a grilled-cheese food truck called Monte Cristo.
In Madrona, Molly Moon’s summer storefront will now be open year-round.
New from Ethan Stowell: a “Roman” restaurant on Capitol Hill called Rione XIII, and new in the adjacent space, from Volunteer Park Café’s Heather Earnhart, is Wandering Goose. Coastal Kitchen has reopened with a new oyster bar.
Speaking of oysters, new from Walrus and Carpenter’s Renee Erickson: the Whale Wins.
New at Sea-Tac: a Beecher’s Handmade Cheese store.
New in Greenwood: the Angry Beaver.
New in West Seattle: Copper Coin.
New for breakfast: Ba Bar on Capitol Hill.
New in Ballard: Pestle Rock.
Oh, and Tom Douglas, that lazy guy, is planning four new spots in the Denny Triangle. More about that in a future column.
Speaking of T-Doug, his Dahlia Bakery has a new cookbook out, just in time for the holidays. So does Leslie Mackie: “More from Macrina.” They’re both worthy, both fascinating, both illustrated with mouthwatering photography.
The secret, Mackie says, is Shepherd’s Grain flour. Dahlia’s guru, Shelley Lance, swears by King Arthur flour.
Everybody’s friend and favorite bartender, Murray Stenson, is suffering from a heart ailment and needs corrective surgery, but he has no medical coverage. His friends are stunned but not surprised; very few folks in the hospitality industry, except for owners and managers, have health insurance.
So they’re raising money at a series of events at ZigZag Cafe (where Murray used to work) and Canon (where he was working until he got sick).
It’s fair to say that anyone who’s had a cocktail in Seattle in the last decade has been touched in some way by Murray.
The complete calendar is on-line at www.murrayaid.org.
Two dinner shows for November. Teatro ZinZanni’s latest extravaganza is called “Return to Paradise”; it’s a rollicking homage to the World’s Fair and the music of the 1960s.
The kitchen sends out a five-course meal, while Christine Deaver impersonates Gracie Hansen, Big Mike Geier
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