As The Market Street comes up on a 5 year anniversary, they are getting ready to shut their doors for good at the end of July, since the property has been purchased (more condos perhaps?). This local comfort food/watering hole, formerly the Asian Wok(at 1720 Market St.) , is akin to "Cheers" for many surrounding Market Street neighbors. I was telling owner Megan McBurney (photo), who was a bartender there for 7 years before purchasing the place, a story from this past winter when we were in the midst of Snowmageddon. I went out for a walk with a few neighbors since we all had cabin fever. We picked up a few more friends along the way and ended up congregating back at The Market Street. The snow was really coming down and some warmth, food and a drink sounded great. A few texts later, and our crowd of nearby neighbor friends had grown to about 25 people, most wandering in on foot to join in the 'snow day' fun. It was an awesomely fun impromptu evening and the waitstaff at The Market St just went with it as we all stood around and laughed and drank and marveled at the white stuff out the window. We couldn't have planned that if we tried.
That's Megan's favorite thing about her job. "I love seeing people being neighborly," she says. There are so many small world connections in the bar, where the usual 'Seattle Freeze' doesn't seem to apply and people actually talk to each other. When she first opened she knew the neighborhood needed a casual place for families with an approachable menu. Friends and family helped tile and put down the floor and make the infamous "Market" sign on the wall. There's no marketing budget, everything has been word of mouth. Megan loves to eat and loves to cook and explains, "cooking for someone is like giving them a hug." But it's a tough business that has taken its toll, so first she will rest/relax a bit before hopping back into action at another local bar/restaurant.
The last day for food and full menu will be Sunday June 30th. They are closed 7/1 and 7/4 but otherwise will be challenging us to a "Drink Me Dry July" through 7/22 when they will also offer a simple menu and of course the opportunity to buy anything and everything (lights, fridges, you name it- all must go!). All of the employees are local Kirkland folks, so if you go and 'like' The Market St on Facebook , Megan will let you know where everyone ends up so you don't lose touch with some of your favorite local staffers. When I asked what she'd like to say to you all she said, "Thank them for making this such a great community restaurant. Our regulars always kept us afloat. Some were crying when we told them the news. We have watched families grow and feel invested in this community." Thanks for the good years Megan + crew. xo