Pre-Covid we would get excited when a new restaurant sign went up, but in 2020 boyyyyy we can hardly contain ourselves when this level of mystery arrives in our fine city. A new place to pickup food? Count me in! Recognize that font? You bet you do. The old Brix location in Juanita Village will be moving to Woodinville with a forecasted April 2021 opening, while the old spot (same owners) will become Deja Moo, a counter-service version of Tipsy Cow (also same owners). Expect to experience the same great burgers, wine, shakes and flavors of Tipsy Cow, with a new name. They are shooting for a Feb 1, 2021 opening. Moooooooo-re details when I have them. ~j
Hearth at the Heathman Hotel is showcasing its new pop-up "Pie on the Fly" concept with a pizza to-go menu that is hard to resist. You can get the pizzas ready to go or Papa Murphy's style where they are flash heated and then you bake them for another 15 minutes at home so they are hot out of your own oven. These medium-sized pizza pies are available Weds- Sunday 3-8pm by calling 425-284-5900. Our family picked ours up last Thursday (photo of Brady's arms full of 4 pizzas for our family of 5) and our teenagers quickly motored through our new find.
These photos give you a little preview of the pepperoni, Italian and margherita. Steve and I loved the Italian pie with the meat and arugula while the kids preferred fighting over the pepperoni slices. The meatworks deluxe was also really good, but not photo'd because we started eating that one too soon. You'll find the dough is excellent because it is hand-crafted with Cairnspring Mills local organic flour. Our family discovered that we really appreciate doing the take/bake option because it gets the crust perfectly crispy and guarantees the pie is piping hot. Exercising this option also saves you a few bucks over having it baked for you- the cooked pies are $16-23 and the take/bakes are $10-13. Don't forget about this great local pop-up the next time you are going to order up a few pizzas. I was silly to not order one of their $10 cocktails or $6 four-packs of beer to go with it! While we were doing our pickup and parked out front, it was also a good reminder that Hearth has a fantastic outdoor (and heated) patio to enjoy for everyday COVID-friendly dining.
Would you like to help new Kirklanders discover some of your favorite local spots? Why not share the love? BeLocal Kirkland is a new resource that is compiling information about great businesses to help people that have just moved here find their (your) favorite places. It relies on locals' input to create a 'best of the best' list on things like healthcare providers, home services, parks, restaurants, etc. Give your valuable input here before Sept 30th to be entered in a contest to win a basket of local goodies valued at $400.
And speaking of Kirkland faves, our beloved Hector's is having their final day on 9/27 (this Sunday!) after 45 years with us. My favorite meal there is the Protein Power- a burger patty with eggs, spinach and mushrooms on top. So good. Rumor has it they could be re-opening at The Raw Bar's former location sometime in the future, but that is still unconfirmed, so better get in for your last meal and strong drink at this legendary spot while you can. Thanks for all of the good times, Hector's, you will be missed!
Evergreens at Kirkland Urban will be officially opening its doors this Weds at 11am. You'll find them right at the top of the stairs by the new QFC. I went to their practice session today where lunch was free (rumor has it Tues is too. 12-3. #winningtips #yourewelcome) while the employees got to practice their craft of quickly creating crunchy, healthy and delicious salads, wraps and grain bowls. Their other locations typically have a line wrapped out the door so they are preparing for Kirklanders to bombard them with our health-conscious hangry selves.
I had "the Super Bowl," which seemed timely, and was oh-so pretty (photo). "Don't You Forget About Me" was rocking on the speakers and taking me back to my youth while I ate my super fresh lunch in 10 minutes flat. Great quick delish $10ish meals and all of the trays, bowls, utensils and napkins are compostable. It's perfectly fine to grab your lunch on the go, there are only four tables in the space. Menu is here, love the pics. Hours are 11-7 everyday and you can also order online and they cater. I asked an Evergreen staffer what they wanted you to know......"Eat healthy. Live healthy." That's their motto! enjoy.
Chad and Jessi Waldher (photo), owners of Bottle & Bull on Lake St and Marcy's in Walla Walla, are getting very close to sharing their latest creation with you. Many of you were sending panicked emails when their Park Lane Public House closed its doors, but have no fear, a fabulous french brasserie named Feast will be emerging in mid-February at 115 Park Lane. This is a concept they have been talking about for a while, and all of the pieces and dream team just came together now to make it happen.
I had a chance to sit down with the new Feast crew (photo) and their excitement is palpable. "This new concept just didn't fit in our pub setting," says Jessi, who toured me around the freshly wallpapered walls and walked me through all of their new French-themed decor. This will be a bit closer to fine dining but without the dress code or white linens. And still family friendly, of course. "Casual refined," says Chad with a chuckle. Chef Rich Jimenez, previously of Chateu Des Fleurs, can't stop smiling when he talks about his classic and modern dishes with a PNW flair that will be awaiting us. I, of course, can't spell them! Nor did I know quite what this meant. But then he jumped back into the kitchen and whipped me up a tasting platter and the world made sense again.
Get ready to experience vanilla bean applesauce on top of foie gras torchon, a burger with short rib Beaujolais demi gloss and pork jelly smoked onion aioli, tuna with pickled plum aoli in sesame leaf, roasted carrot with burnt honey brown butter and petit coriander, and a lyonnaise salad. Pair your meal with one of their 30 carefully selected wines by the glass or perhaps an old world bottle of beer. You'll find many new world wines that are still French in style. Expect price points to be $12-18 for the first and second course and $20-40 for mains. Here are some sexy food photos to get you in the mood..
(french onion soup, cod w/polenta, lyonnaise salad, mussels, mushroom risotto, roasted carrots)
The team at Feast is excited to take you on this journey with them. "Kirkland has always been good to us. We want to thank everyone and let them know we are eager to serve them again!" says Jessi. Opening is targeted for the second week in Feb. This establishment will be dinner only from 4-10 pm and they will be closed on Monday. Happy Hour in the bar 4-6pm.
There are some exciting new reasons to stroll a little further east down Park Lane. First, I should tell you that when I went to Asia earlier this year I developed a little bubble tea habit that I've been trying to keep under wraps. So I definitely wasn't sad to hear that Lollicup Fresh was opening at 211 Park Lane. This is a franchise out of California and so far, Kirkland is their only location in WA. Owners Helen and Tri (photo) have been locals for three years and are so friendly and gracious. They offer bubble waffles ($8), ice cream, boba smoothies and fruit teas ($5-6). Our family has tried a milk tea and a matcha tea with boba and also a Hawaiian Dance tea lemonade- all delish and I prefer that you please don't tell me how many calories might be in them. You can customize your treats, of course, to have more or less ice or sugar or boba. What is boba, you ask? It's those chewy black blobs at the bottom of the drink that are really spheres from partially cooked tapioca powder, which is the refined starch of the cassava plant, a starchy root like taro that is indigenous to Latin America but now grown worldwide. The good news is that Lollicup Fresh also offers catering and fundraising help- just email them at email@example.com or call 425-307-1842. Hours are Sun-Thurs 11:30-8pm and Fri/Sat 11:30-10pm.
A skip step from Lollicup Fresh at 205 Park Lane, you'll find Eat Local Remarkable Frozen Meals. And they really are. They opened on 11/8. I wasn't expecting to walk in and feel like I was in a small grocery story with lines of coolers stocked with many many fantastically sorted thoughtfully prepared meals. Kirkland is their 5th location, with others in Queene Anne, Capitol Hill, Burien and Mercer Island. This company has been around for over ten years with the mission of serving convenient food with real ingredients and traditional cooking methods. Everything is created in their Burien kitchen and then blast chilled and frozen to lock in flavor and nutrients until it gets warmed in your oven or microwave. I was amazed at how everything is colored coded for easy selecting: Vegan, Keto, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Mediterranean, Whole 30, etc and best sellers and staff favorites are highlighted to help you narrow your choices. Their nutrition guide explains a lot of the different popular 'diets' and what they mean, and they even offer a free nutrition consultation with one of their Registered Dietitians. These are the same folks that carefully design the recipes to have intentional ingredients and high nutritional value. Yes, they ARE sneaking veggies in there like your mom did.
When we stopped by and chatted with the store manager, Lily (photo), she was warming up some samples of "Keto Creamy Chicken with Bacon & Chives" which my son decided we HAD to get for home. He practically licked his container clean and is still talking about it. I have to say it was pretty darn delicious, and Russell Wilson, their Brand Ambassador agrees with me. We also bought some chicken tikka-masala for my girls (who were impressed!) and a few others to stash in the freezer for another day. Of course, the more we bought the more we saved. Most items come in both a single or double-sized serving and range from $8.99- 10.49 per serving, depending on ingredients. For dessert they offer locally branded treats such as Acme Ice Cream, Pure Pies and Seattle Pops. Hours are 9am-8pm daily. They also have wine and you can dine in if you would like them to warm your food up for you. I like that they are making us healthy fast and convenient food that we can peruse and talk about and then take home. But if you prefer, you can also order online and they deliver (free on orders over $98 and also do Uber Eats and DoorDash. Let me know your faves! We will definitely be back.
Locally owned Coastline Burgers is celebrating their first anniversary in Kirkland and is thanking the community by offering $1 single patty burgers all day on Thursday Nov 21st. My son has put this in his calendar and has already snap-chatted all of his friends. I suggest you do the same. Don't worry, I'm sure there won't be a line??! Kudos to you, Coastline, we are glad you are here! Congrats on your success that comes with accolades such as a 4.7 star average review on Google and Facebook. Owner Aaron Shepherd said, "The warm reception of the Kirkland neighborhood has exceeded all expectations. I am so glad we decided to make the Kirkland community home to our second store as we continue to grow into the future."
I cannot understand it. My son has never walked away from an opportunity to down a burger in his life. I was running some errands and called him right after school let out to see if he wanted me to pick him up and go to Shake Shack together (300 Peter Kirk Lane). He was excited, not to see me, but because I have money to buy food, but I was still pretty proud of myself for scoring some cool mom points.
There were only one or two people in line ahead of us for the kiosks where you order for yourself. We were relieved not to encounter a huge line. There are usually 5 kiosk stations but only 3 of them were functioning on that day. Great simple screens and menu to order up and pay electronically. I got a Shack Burger ($5.79) since that sounded like a classic that I was supposed to order having never been there before. I ordered up a strawberry shake and B got a chocolate one ($5.29) and some crinkle fries to share. Then he ordered Chick'n Bites-- What the what? I was so surprised I just said nothing to my usual burger monster and paid for our $26 lunch. When you order, you enter your cell phone and they text you when it's ready. There were lots of employees behind the counter and our food took less than 10 minutes to be ready to go. I was surprised how much seating was inside that little free-standing building at Kirkland Urban, but even so we opted to take our food home.
Logically, the crinkle fries were half gone by the time we got out of the parking garage. They were perfectly browned and had a nice little flavor to them. My strawberry shake was delish- tasted just like real strawberry ice cream and Brady's chocolate shake was just 'alright' he said. But this is how teenagers answer every question. B then opens his 6 pieces of chicken box and laughs out loud, "Mom! They're the size of my thumbnail!" He was definitely second-guessing his decision, so I shared my burger which was good and fresh albeit a bit salty to me, but B was very pleased with. A rule of thumb for going to a burger place is ordering a burger.
Shake Shack is an east coast chain and Kirkland this is their second location in the Seattle area. They are featuring some local exclusives such as "Pie oh My Concrete" vanilla custard with pieces of A la Mode Pie's seasonal pie. 5% of sales from this product go to YouthCare. Hours are 11am-10pm Sun-Thurs and 11am-11pm Fri- Sat. Great new addition, especially with the park right next door and a cult following. 425-250-8318
Ivar's at 5910 Lake Washington Blvd is open just in time to enjoy a casual bite on the patio while summer is still here. Previously Kidd Valley (which is owned by Ivar's), the layout is reminiscent of its former self, with a clean new interior and extra outdoor seating. I was pleasantly surprised, for a fast-food fish spot the kids working in there went out of their way to be helpful and accommodating and the food was all really good. I'm pretty sure nothing on the menu was over $12. We all especially loved the salmon chowder and my kids were over-the-moon that the cornbread muffin that came with the salmon tasted just like a cupcake. Here are a few snapshots of our food:
I also love that Ivar's has their own parking because you know it's not always easy in Kirkland, especially when the weather is nice. There were plenty of spots when we rolled in at 8:45pm. Hours there are 10:30am to 10pm. The views were amazing, and what a nice way to spend under $60 for our family's dinner that was delish ready in less than 10 minutes. I asked my new friend, Rachel, to write up her review for me, since she's already a regular at this new location.
Here's her summary (thanks Rachel!):
My family has always been HUGE fans of Ivars restaurants. So when we heard a new Ivars Seafood Bar was coming to Kirkland we couldn’t wait to check it out. We all ordered something different including, Ivars famous fish ‘n chips and mouth-watering clam chowder, Caesar salad with a hefty serving of Dungeness crab, fish tacos and a side of corn bread! It was all very delicious. The restaurant was packed with smiling faces – not to mention very clean, the staff was friendly and our food was brought out relatively quickly considering we were there opening weekend. We opted to take our food to go and picnic across the street at the very convenient Houghton Beach Park. However, they have plenty of indoor and outdoor seating and soon to come beer and wine. We will definitely be return customers.
About a month ago, Sam Choy's Poke to the Max (adjacent to WowWow Lemonade) opened at Marina Plaza. I finally had the chance to stroll in with my teenage girls on a warm sunny evening. It has a totally casual Hawaiian vibe- doors flung open to an outdoor patio area and a comfortable minimalist set-up inside. Locals with flip flops and tee shirts abound. For me, something was intuitively strange about walking into a poke restaurant that was about 80 degrees inside. But I'm sure their refrigerators work great!
<-pretty! <--getting saucy
The format is completely different from the build-your- own process you may be accustomed to at Just Poke up the street. Step 1 at Sam Choy's is choosing your dish: rice plate, salad, wrap or tacos. Then you select your poke from their list of 6 or so options. I went for the customer favorite of 'Mo'Betta Shoyu' (photo, on a salad) which is ahi tuna or salmon, shoyu, sesame oil, unago sauce and wasabi aioli. I don't know what shoyu or unago sauce are, so I was rolling the dice and trusting the public's fave. My daughter also selected a salmon dish w/rice. Both of us with the salmon felt like the fresh light nature of the poke got smothered in sauce, turning a summer meal into a gooey rich encounter. We couldn't come near finishing our plates we were so full. But it didn't matter because sitting on the patio there was a great perch for Kirkland prime-time people watching and summer rays.
Sam Choy also has handcrafted sandwiches and some island favorite plates such as garlic fried chicken that was pretty darn yummy (photo, $11.99), firecracker shrimp, short ribs or a beef patty. My 16 year old daughter that still eats like a 4 year old went for the least risky beige foods- garlic fried chicken with rice and macaroni salad. She was happy with that. Friends that went recently said they LOVED the fried chicken sandwich which came with light slaw and cilantro and a side of hand-cut fries (but had the same poke feedback w/the tuna)
The service was great. Helpful local teens can talk you through the menu and the food comes out pretty quickly and all on compostable materials which makes me happy. Bonus- the Kirkland location serves to Halal standards too. And there's a food truck and catering available.
Hours are Monday 11-3, Tues- Sat 11-9 and Sun 11-7.