Park Lane Public House -Coming Soon!

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Ever wonder what is going on behind the plastic tarps of new construction? Well then just stick your nosy head back there like I do! Helloooo Park Lane Public House. They're looking good over at 115 Park Lane where the  Bottle & Bull owners are getting ready to open their new family friendly gastropub- check out their Facebook page for updates.  So far I'm going to say that the gray brick is a vast improvement over the orange stucco from Mi Mexico. Sounds like they're shooting for a January opening, but that would take some serious hustl.....but you never know! More details after they fill my belly. ~j


The Melody Lynne Vineyard Tasting Room & Wine Bar

 

IMG_4703Instinct tells me to swat the lights away so I can read the words

That's a mouthful!  I like to call it TMLVTRWB for short. :-)

Roll out the welcome mat for the much-anticipated opening of our newest wine-pouring hideaway.  Melody Lynne's at 106 Kirkland Ave is right next to George's and when Steve and I popped in for a glass of wine and some nibbles before dinner, there were a good number of people sitting at the tables and cozied up to the faux fireplace.  One friend told me she sat in one of  those seats and they even had a lap blanket available for her.  Nice touch!   Steve and I ponied up to the bar, and were immediately given some tastings to try. We loved the friendly and open demeanor of the staff that was encouraging us to pour some more or try other samples. Don't have to twist my arm!   There were so many choices it was difficult to decide, so I just went with the first one that sang my name (Cedar River 'Confluence' on that day).  There seems to be a little something for everyone.... chard, riesling, rose, sauv blanc, viognier (oh how I love viogniers), white blend, champagne, cab franc, cab sauv, merlot, petite syrah, pinot noir, red blends.  And the font on the menu is big enough that you can forget your glasses at home and still happily order your favorite vino.  TMLV grows the grapes on their eastern Washington vineyard and then buys back the wine that blossoms from them.   Full circle.

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A secret squirrel told me there's a rooftop deck- but I didn't even notice this option when I was inside. Next summer when the sun re-surfaces, I'll be on the lookout for that.  Melody Lynne's had an opening party on September 12th and they blew it out with a live band up on the roof playing for the streets of Kirkland.  Love them already, right?  There's some outdoor patio seating and the front accordian-style doors have been open to take advantage of that open air connection with downtown Kirkland.  Despite being new, somehow the charming, rustic atmosphere of this gem feels like it's been a part of Kirkland for a while.  Kind of like an old soul if it were human- deep, wise, kind, authentic.  They do serve some light appetizers/snacks (no full kitchen).  We wanted to feel good about ourselves that day so we went for the veggie and hummus plate (photo). 

IMG_4620  IMG_4619 yes, those are chocolates! danger danger!

Most importantly-Happy hour is 3-6! Hours of operation are open Tues-Thurs 3-9, Fri 2-9, Sat 12-9, Sun 2-7 (closed Mon)

Visit their FB page. 425-822-8300. see you at the bar!

 


The Heathman Loosens Its Tie

Heathman2017BenClosson Ben Closson, photo credit: The Heathman Hotel


Trellis
at the Heathman Hotel on Kirkland Ave is shaking it up a little.  Not only is there a new chef, Ben Closson from the Nordstrom flagship in the kitchen, but they are working on a more relaxed and approachable image at the hotel.   In order to achieve this goal, they have re-vamped their menu with new items while still keeping some of the old faves.  Expect to start hearing about live music each month, in case Victor the Ukranian bartender wasn't already entertainment enough with his Absinthe concoctions.  You'll see new dinnerware, silverware, fresh outdoor-themed artwork on each floor and room renovations are also in the works for all 91 rooms.  An improved price point on the happy hour menu is designed to lure the crowd that wants to meet for a burger and a beer to watch the game.  

Heathman2017Chambong    Why yes, I'd love a Chambong. thank you.


Wait a minute...did somebody say "happy hour?" Ding-ding-ding-ding-ding-ding-dingggggg!  It's 2-6p and 9-close and YES I was there. Don't be ridiculous I wouldn't miss that. Try the Smokey Duck Manahattan- it's an award winner and although I wouldn't typically intuitively order a drink with duck fat in it, it is a deliciously robust liquid meal all in itself.  Don't be scared- do it.   If you're still feeling summery, I really enjoyed the Pear/Thyme martini because it was super refreshing and not too sweet.  And then there is the Chambong (photo)- great for a date or a unique way to start or finish your evening off with some bubbles, in a much-classier than a beer bong but same sort of concept kind of way. $5 wines, $4 well drinks. Infused liquors and great beers abound along with some fancy brewed organic Rishi teas in case you're the driver.

Heathman2017snappeas  Heathman2017salmon pea vines, salmon poke

The happy hour menu had some great food options, especially for the price-point.  There's a delicious green pile of pea vines for $5 (yes, martinis AND greens in one sitting- dreams do come true), lamb meatballs for $9, salmon poke (yum!!) for $9.  And I didn't try the 'fried squeaky cheese' (Beecher's cheddar, tomato fondue) but I have heard this treat alone is worth coming for. Their menu changes seasonally too so be ready for new surprises at any moment.  Feel free to stay in your shorts and flip flops and roll on down to Trellis at the Heathman on any random day to get check out their new vibe.

 

 

 


Kirkland 4th of July Needs You

First, because I am a nosy nelly and love this kind of stuff. Did you see this article in the Seattle Time Pacific NW Magazine? Stuart McLeod, Kirkland local and owner of Hector's and Milagro Cantina, has a home that many of us check out and admire while on Lake WA Blvd while sitting in traffic or jogging down the boulevard.  I love that he shared a sneak peek inside for this article.

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Celebrate Kirkland 4th of July 2017 needs our help. They're still $14K away from being able to pay the bills for this year's event. And who doesn't love a good party in honor of 'Merica?  Every bit counts, please send what you can to support this great Kirkland tradition: www.celebratekirkland.org or you can mail to Celebrate Kirkland/KDA at 440 Central Way, Kirkland, WA 98033 or drop off a check at The Grape Choice or Hallmark Realty. 

MelodyLynneVineyard  <-- I spy wine on Kirkland Ave. Melody Lynne Vineyard Tasting Room & Wine Bar opening soon.

 


Lee's Brickhouse Pub Embraces Kirkland

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Have you been to LBH yet?  The smell of bacon will make you instantly salivate when you walk in the door.  This new pub opened in December on Juanita Drive and is on its way to becoming a local favorite.  Lee Dumas, an IT guy, always dreamed of owning a bar and asked his motorcycle riding buddy, Athina Mangouras to come consult for him.  Yes, THE Athina- the florist, the broker, the daughter of George from George's on Kirkland Ave and previous owner of pubs and cafes.  She knows how to make you feel welcome and feed you good food.  Their vision is to give people a good value, great atmosphere, and be part of this community for a very long time.

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Lee's Brickhouse Pub space is 3000 sf and has been completely gutted and cleverly decorated with re-purposed materials.  When the concrete workers left their form boards behind,  they used those to make a wall.  Wood from palates is on another wall along with sentiments from retired local spots such as items from The Keg and old tables from Lucia.  The charm of rustic iron and wood, helmet light fixtures, and other local finds make this feel like an HGTV remodel success story. Sit yourself at a stool and it might remind you  "Cheers" where everybody knew your name (or at least Ted Danson did). The pub's mission is intended to be a comfortable place where locals will be able to enjoy sports games, live bands, trivia nights, movie nights in the family section and find great food selections from a menu that is being constantly innovated so you can experience something different with each visit.  They love your feedback and employees are encouraged to get to know their customers.  

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Expect upper end barfood or 'urban grub' as Athina fondly calls it, created by Chef Cortland Stevens (previously at Google).  The menu can be found on their Facebook Page but so far the early favorites are the 'sidewinders' ($7) which are long chunky twisted fries and the "Chicken & Waffles" which is bacon stuffed waffles, homemade chicken fried chicken, chili infused maple syrup and country gravy ($14.50).  It's kind of cool that they  also just started using a 700 degree stone grill that you get table-side for your 9 oz cut of kobe beef that is sourced from Select Gourmet (the butcher on Juanita Drive, love the local tie-in).  There IS a kids' menu and LBH is family-friendly everyday until 8pm.    Of course there is also a full bar, homemade drink specials and three rotating handles of beer. If you're feeling a bit awesome, there are shots on tap too. Hours are Mon-Fri 11am-2am, Sat-Sun 8am-2am (yes- bfast on the weekends!).  Happy hour is 4-6pm Mon-Fri.  No reservations, just walk on in. " Like"  Lee's Brickhouse Pub Facebook page so you can stay up to date with their menu and events. 425-890-1156. Once our torturous stretch of self-imposed insanity (no alcohol/stricter paleo) is lifted in mid Feb, I'll be taking Steve in to LBH to experience some of this LBH deliciousness for ourselves.


Go Tee It Up at Flatstick Pub

FlatstickPub (3)   FlatstickPub (5) <--brothers Sam & Andy (mom would be proud)

If you like playing golf and drinking local beers, which encompasses an estimated 87% of the male population, Flatstick Pub is going to be your new go-to hot-spot in Kirkland.  Brothers Sam and Andy Largent opened this new craft beer bar and indoor mini golf course on June 1st at 15 Lake St. S (inbetween Vovina and The Grape Choice).  Sam has wanted to open a beer bar for a while, and liked the idea of offering something to do as well.  After a little research, Flatstick Pub was born (he didn't have to twist his brother's arm to join him!). From the looks of this place on a Friday night, I think they nailed it.  

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After wiggling past gaggles of people half my age, the first thing I noticed was the bright display of the 'Digital Pour' Menu over the commanding line-up of 24 taps of Washington beers.  The electronic menu tells you the name and type of beer, where it's from, % of alcohol, the price (most are $5.50), and how full the keg is.  The red color indicates that a keg is almost tapped out, and the person who gets the last pour on that one gets to pick what will come up next.  You can also look on their website to see what they are pouring right now-whoa... real-time beer monitoring! And just for fun, they also have their twitter feed up on the menu board.  Can't find a babysitter for your pooch?  No problem, bring 'em along, dogs are welcome in the pub area.  If you and your dog and your drafts get hungry, they carry local packaged sandwiches, salads and wraps from Molly's and many local restaurants deliver to this location.  Patio seating will be coming soon.

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Flatstick
, which is another name for putter, is a sprawling 3,000 square feet. The entire back half is a custom-made 9-hole mini golf course that Andy designed and his neighbor built.  Let me tell ya, these holes are NOT easy.  Even after a few beers, navigating through water features, mazes and going under kegs is no small challenge.   I love the custom mural on the back wall of the old Kirkland ferry that gives you the illusion of golfing on the Lake Washington.  The course is $6/per person and you can usually get around two times in an hour.  Other fun things to expect from these guys?  Trivia night, brewer's night, random drawings for Seahawks tickets, and of course....corporate events.  This would be a great spot to rent out for a birthday party or team building event.  They are even working on changing their licensing so that they can host children's parties soon too.  Like them on Facebook to stay in the know.  

Hours at Flatstick Pub are weekdays noon to midnight, and Saturday noon to 1:30am.  Fun, casual, good young  energy abounds in this clever new concept. Look for them at Kirkland Uncorked (THIS WEEKEND!!) and as a sponsor for Kirkland Summerfest (Aug 8-10) this year. 425-242-1618, flatstickpub@gmail.com . ~j 


Attention SEAHAWKS fans !!!!

Seahawks

Let's do this!!!!!  Kirkland is ready to show our team the love.

There will be fans, flames, and 12th Man flag rally at Kirkland’s Marina Park, Sat. January 18, 3:30-5:30 p.m.
People formation to shape the number 12; Best dressed fan contest

 “True-blue” (and even fair-weather) Seahawk fans are invited to Kirkland’s Marina Park on Saturday, January 18, 2014, 3:30 to 5:30 p.m., for a “12th Man Fan Fair.” The fan fair is in honor of the Seattle Seahawks advancing into the NFC championship game against the San Francisco 49ers to be held on Sunday, January 19, 2014.  Beginning at 3:30 p.m., Kirkland Mayor Amy Walen and fellow city council members will raise a “12th Man” flag to a drum roll by the Seahawks Blue Thunder.  The event will begin at the Plaza of Champions, located at Marina Park, 25 Lakeshore Plaza Drive.  Following the raising of the flag, fans are to form the number 12 on the beach for a photograph and video to be shared with media.  Fans can take their picture with Blitz, the official team mascot and with inflatable Seahawks players (a few beers and this could get interesting ;-).  The City will host a bon fire on the beach.  Come dressed in your best Seahawks fan costume to be judged by local officials.  Activities and promotional materials will be provided by Sea Hawkers Booster Club the at the Marina Park pavilion throughout the event.

Kirkland fans are encouraged to share their cheers, fan “selfies,” and pictures of where their “12th Man” flags are displayed on the City’s Explore Kirkland Facebook site: www.facebook.com/explorekirkland.

Kirkland restaurants will be offering food and beverage game-day specials and airing the game on January 19 which starts at 3:30 p.m. (PST). 

Event goers are encouraged to plan for their parking in advance.  For public parking, including the Kirkland Municipal Garage, go to www.kirklandwa.gov/parking.


X Factor's Phillip Lomax: Last summer performance at Lucia on Aug 21st

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Let's rally a monster crowd of fans for local star, Phillip Lomax, this Weds Aug 21st from 9:30-midnight at Lucia in Kirkland Park Place.  Phillip was a finalist on X Factor 2011 and made his mark as a young crooner wearing a fedora and singing Sinatra's "Fly Me to the Moon" for his audition.  I didn't watch the show, but I checked the videos and can tell he's a charmer with a contagious smile and serenading voice that you won't want to miss for his last summer performance. Joining Phillip will be Eric Robert on the keyboard and Maurice Bailey on drums. There's no cover charge, but tips are welcome. Always great food and drink at Lucia- make a night of it!

The Lodge Arrives in Kirkland

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People are packing into The Lodge Sports Grille at 105 Lake St since it opened last week.  With lots of timbers, barrels, flat screen TV's, beer on tap and patrons buzzing, you can't help but to be drawn in to take a seat.  That is if you can find one, which we did-- right at the bar.  Steeeeeeeeeeeeve and I were there for date night on Thursday (I'm almost done teasing him about the eeeeee post, but not quite yet).  Joe, our super friendly bartender, looked us in the eye and asked our names and introduced himself with a handshake.  Love that.  Then he introduced us to Ryan and Nick, the men sitting beside us that became great buds to chatter with also.  We got to taste a few samples of the many beers on tap, and decided to go with a Tieton Cider, which is local and we really enjoyed- not too sweet. This place is probably a beer-drinkers dream- feel free to chime in beer drinkers....

Rabuchins always arrive hungry so we started with the steamed clams which were decent- the broth was really good -not oily or buttery. A bunch of the clamshells were empty, but maybe they escaped to the bottom of the bowl.   Little celery and pepper pieces were a nice touch in there.  I ordered the meatloaf with double veg which was pretty darn good, I would order it again.  The vegetables were super yummy- al dente green beans with some red peppers that had some sort of buttery salty deliciousness on them.  Steve had the ribs which are to be avoided- BUT here's the part I appreciate... Joe asked how they were and Steve said "they are ok."  Instead of saying "ok, great," Joe asked more questions and made sure to address Steve's slight hesitation about his (tough) ribs.  Ryan Zawisza, the General Manager, arrives within minutes with his big smile and shares his own concerns about the ribs.  Apparently it's a menu item they are considering removing from their offerings because, they agree, they just can't seem to get it right.  And he insists that they take them off our bill. 

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In a nutshell- we really liked the friendly pub-like feel of The Lodge.  You can tell they know how close-knit we are in Kirkland because they are getting to know everyone and making it a priorty make us feel welcome.    These guys are doing all the right things, you should definitely go check it out if you haven't already.   Many friends have told me, "this is just what Kirkland needed."  Their hours are: M/T 11a-12a, W-F 11a-2a, Sat 8a-2a, Sun 8a-12a. 425-202-7763