Bars where Pete has had a Drink (5,812 bars; 1,754 bars in Seattle) - Click titles below for Lists:

Bars where Pete has had a drink

Saturday, July 28, 2012

#1751 #S1020 - Restaurant Bea, Seattle - 4/17/2012

Update: Restaurant Bea closed July 12, 2013

This homey Madrona space has hosted a series of highly regarded restaurants, with Cremant, June, and now Bea.  Restaurant Bea is the creation of Tom Black (Barking Frog, 35th St. Bistro) and Kate Perry (no, a different Kate Perry), and specializes in a rotating menu of upscale "comfort food." They have turned the bar around, extending it a bit, and opened up the kitchen -- which make getting their very good cocktails and food seem more direct and intimate.  I had two good cocktails -- The 34th Cocktail (bourbon, punt e mes, habanero, Angostura and celery bitters) and Jalisco Vieux Carre (rye, tequila, sweet vermouth, Bennedictine, Peychauds and Angostura).  The bacon-wrapped meatloaf was good and white bean soup was very tasty.

The vibe seemed a little stiff and self-conscious -- As long as they are embracing a sort of country theme, I'd enjoy it more if I could have both the fine food and cocktails and a little bit more raucous, with patrons louder and interacting with each other. But it's still a pleasant experience, particularly at the bar.

1423 34th Avenue Seattle, WA 98122 - (206) 812-2901
Est. March 30, 2012 - Closed July 12, 2013 - Building constructed: 1904
Previous bars in this location: June
Web site: - facebook
Reviews: seattleweekly - seattleite - seattleweekly - seattleweekly - thrillist - seattletimes - seattlemet - centraldistrictnews - eater - dailycandy - urbanspoon - yelp - thestranger

#1750 - Ski Inn, Enumclaw, WA - 4/14/2012

 This is one of those small-town bars that looks like a tiny dive from the outside, but upon entering your find it is actually pretty large, with hints of a relatively happening weekend evening scene.  The back bar is almost 50' long and "at one time was the longest continuous bar west of the Mississippi."* It is said to have been established in 1916, although I am not sure it was under the same name, and I do not know how soon it resumed as a bar after prohibition.  But it's obviously been around in something like its current form for quite a while, and offers a fairly standard neighborhood bar, in its liquor and beer selection, pull tabs, and Budweiser paraphernalia.

*Watering Holes of the Northwest, Michael Caldwell

1113 Griffin Ave, Enumclaw, WA 98022 - (360) 825-5267
Est. 1916

yelp - patch - insiderpages 

#1749 - Wilkeson Saloon, Wilkeson, WA - 4/14/2012

The Wilkeson Saloon is said to date back to the late 1890s, although the great fire of 1910 makes one question whether the current building dates back that far.  The owner informs me that the space was originally a pool hall and cigar shop, and that it was called the Eagle Tavern when it first became a bar.

In any case, the current incarnation, run by relatively new owners Sunny Bean and her husband Robert, has a bit more modern pub touches than the classic Pick'n'Shovel just up the street, and is a another friendly place to grab some basic bar food and beers.

521 Church St, Wilkeson, WA. 1 - (360) 761-7168 - facebook - bikerfriendlybar

#1748 - Pick'n'Shovel, Wilkeson, WA - 4/14/2012

I've lost a few of my notes, and I hope to get back to this article with an age of the bar and of the building where the Pick'n'Shovel Restaurant and Bar resides, in Wilkeson, Wa.  Wilkeson is another old coal mining community in the Carbon River area.  In its heyday, it housed 3,000 people, but now the number is closer to 400.  It was established in 1870s and incorporated in 1909.  It features the oldest elementary school in the state, built in 1909.  Like so many northwest towns of the period of 1880-1920, Wilkeson suffered a great fire that devastated the core of the town -- in Wilkeson this was in 1910. It also features a welcoming arch over the main road through town, one of the few in the state that span a highway, which was constructed over SR 165 in the early 2000s, after the 2001 Nisqually earthquake seriously damaged the original, which had been constructed in 1925 a few blocks north of the current location.

Around the corner from the downtown area you can still see the a small row of what was once 160 coking ovens, which once cooked impurities out of coal to supply consumers more cleanly burning coal, until they were shut down in 1935 and most sold as salvage by  the Northern Pacific railroad in 1970.  The few that remain lie grown over and virtually hidden, the beer bottles and hints of furtive meetings lying inside.

Despite it's faded sign, you can't miss the Pick'n'Shovel.  You can't really miss anything in a place as small as the commercial part of Wilkeson, but you are aided further by the actual pick and shovel over the door. Inside is a long bar that parallels a long restaurant, and its the former that seems to do most the business.  This is presided over by "Mama" (Tami Macias) who has a tattoo of that name just in case you're not sure who is in charge.  Various rules and aphorism are posted, including the strict ban on arm wrestling ("Every single time it ends up in a fight," Mama explained to us).

527 Church St, Wilkeson, WA 98396 - (360) 829-6574
Website: facebook 
Reviews: yelp

Monday, July 23, 2012

#1747 - Yella Beak Saloon, Enumclaw, WA - 4/14/2012

Large bar in "the Claw" that caters to bikers

23525 SE 436th St Enumclaw, WA 98022 - 360-825-5500
Est. June 1, 2001

Web site: - facebook
Reviews: bikerfriendlybar - yelp - patch

#1746 - Carbonado Saloon, Carbonado, WA - 4/14/2012

Carbonado (n) - an inferior dark diamond used in industry for drilling and polishing

It's difficult to know how old the Carbonado Saloon really is. But relying on the verbal history from some locals and a bit of deduction, it is believed that the building was constructed in 1878 and moved to its current location in 1889. The building has housed the town's post office, a barber shop, and a dentist's office.  It is believed to have been a bar since shortly after prohibition.  It was originally known as the "Canteen," then became the Carbonado Tavern and later Carbonado Saloon.

The town of Carbonado (say "car-bon-AIE-doh" not "car-bon-AH-doe"), is an old company town, just two miles past the old coke ovens of Wilkeson. The town is almost entirely residential now -- the saloon is the only business as far as I could tell, on a quite street among the 200 or so households and 600 residents, about 1,000 feet from the Carbon River. For half a century it was a thriving coal town, but with the Great Depression, the demand for low grade coal fell, the railroad closed, and the mining company sold houses, property, and buildings, eventually closing for good in 1974.

Jon and Amber, the current owners, been fixing up the place while honoring its history (Jon, at least, has lived in Carbonado all his life). There are a lot of large photos lining the walls, and shelves of various collectibles and dive bar knickknacks. They serve some good bar burgers, have a fairly standard offering of beers and liquor, and a large sunny back patio. They're gracious hosts and happy to talk about the place. For anyone who loves old bars it is well worth a trip (including stops in Wilkeson).

101 Pershing St, Carbonado, WA 98323 - (360) 829-4347
Est. 1930s - Building constructed: 1878 - Current location: 1889
Previous bars in this location:  The Canteen
Web site: facebook
Other links: - - yelp

Thursday, July 19, 2012

#1745 - Blue Martini, Bellevue, WA - 4/11/2012

Blue Martini is a national chain with locations in places like Vegas and Ft. Lauderdale.  This one is in "The Bravern," a classic Bellevue complex of upscale shops and tony apartments, which is generally about as busy as a church on a Monday night. But BM pulls in a pretty reasonably sized crowd, and while it may go ridiculously  unmentioned among the attractions listed in some reviews, the star is obvious as soon as your server arrives. Hence when judging the food and drinks here it is only fair to bear in mind that these products are secondary -- everything at Blue Martini is secondary -- to the cleavage.  With that in mind, you might be a bit more patient with over-priced, over-sweet cocktails, which seem designed for 16-year-old girls.

If one diligently applies oneself, you *can* find a cocktail fit for non-teenagers (e.g. consider the Cucumber Martini), and if you arrive during happy hour you can get both food and drinks for an average club price, minus the considerable bosom tax that leaves mediocre drinks in the $15 range. The food is actually pretty good.  The cleavage is served in ample portions and in various appetizing presentations.  The place is fairly packed and lively with the after-work crowd, with live music starting most nights at 7:30.
House specialty of Blue Martini (photo from Blue Martini web site)

House specialty of Blue Martini (photo from Blue Martini web site)

700 110th Avenue Northeast #295 Bellevue, WA 98004 - (425) 451-2583
Est. year - Building constructed: year
Previous bars in this location:
Web site:
Reviews: link - thebellevuescene - link

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

#1744 #S1019 - Elliot Bay Pub, Seattle - 4/9/2012

Elliot Bay Public House is a big, new, family-oriented beer joint from the brew pub folks already established in West Seattle (1997) and Burien (2007).  They have 30 taps, brew some quite good beers of their own on premises, and their menu offers a mix of pub food standbys and several more adventurous items (e.g. elk burger, sweet potato waffle fries with cherry ketchup, kimchi lamb burger, "strawbeery" pie).

12537 Lake City Way NE, Seattle, WA - (206) 365-2337
Est. 2012 - Building constructed: 1949 (substantially remodeled)
Previous bars in this location: None known
Web site: - facebook
Reviews: - lakecitylive - wine-beer-wa - yelp - urbanspoon 

Monday, July 16, 2012

#1743 - Tokyo Steakhouse, Bellevue, WA - 4/9/2012

This very large (9000 square feet, 378 seat) restaurant appears to be a fine choice if you're in the mood to spend a bit of a premium for a Teppanyaki tableside grilling show and some fairly mediocre steaks, seafood, sushi or sashimi.  But of course this blog is focused on bars.

For the bar-lover, they have a medium-sized and fairly good selection of beers, sake, and wine.  For the cocktail fan, they have a cocktail list with literally one hundred choices, virtually all them awful. But for people who have been drinking less than six months and desire cloyingly sweet, fruity concoctions that will eventually get you buzzed without that annoying taste of the spirits, you have found nirvana.

909 112th Avenue Northeast Bellevue, WA 98004 - (425) 449-8567
Est. Dec. 9, 2011

Web site: (org?)
Reviews: seattleweekly - thebellevuescene - eatbellevue - goluckyduck - yelp -

Sunday, July 15, 2012

#1742 #S1018 - Pine Box, Seattle - 4/2/2012

For infidels like me, one of the greatest contributions of human religions is that it led people to create these beautiful buildings -- buildings we would never create today -- which can eventually be put to the more productive use of dispensing liquor.

(Photo: Joe Mabel, Wikimedia Commons)
In 1892, Edgar Ray Butterworth moved his funeral business from Centerville, WA (now Centralia) to Seattle.  He'd been a mayor, state legislator, and a furniture maker when a black diphtheria epidemic led him into the coffin and burial business. He built the Butterworth building on 1st Avenue, which later hosted Cafe Sophie and a number of other bars and bistros, and is currently being remodeled into a new location for Kell's Irish Pub. In 1923 the business moved to a building on the corner of Melrose and Pine. By the time his heirs sold the business in 1998, it was one of the longest running family owned business in Seattle history.

In Oct. 2003 the old chapel portion of the mortuary hosted "The Chapel," a bar where the typical nightclub clamor seemed to be amplified by the marble and high ceilings, and which had a liveliness that made the business's demise take me by surprise. It was not my crowd, but it was a fun place on the right nights, and I loved the setting.

Thankfully, the space has been taken over by some beer lovers, led by Ian Roberts, who founded Seattle Beer Week and previously managed the Fremont beer mecca "Brouwer's." Indeed, the space is more stately now, notwithstanding the plasma screens listing the fast rotating selections on their 33 taps. And while I did not try this myself, they include a "Randall tap," which infuses the beer with flavors from ingredients like smoked wood chips, hops, etc. And if you don't happen to be in the mood for beer, as I and my friends attending this night were not, after attending a lecture by Daniel Okrent on his fine book on prohibition, their are spirits available and capable bartenders, including Erik H. from Tavern Law.  They also have some food -- pizza, steaks, salads -- but these are ancillary.

The new place is called "Pine Box," in a nod to both the history of the building and the location on Pine Street.  The bar and various furniture items are made from old cabinets used to store funeral urns and the booths are made of old pews. It is can't-miss for beer-lovers, and a high recommendation for anyone who likes interesting bars. Roberts' described the change from the previous occupants to Seattle Beer News in a way that seems spot on to me:

“If you’ve ever been into the old Chapel space you’ve been to the closest thing to a German disco this side of the Rhine. We’re purging that feeling as we rid the space of lasers, bubble machines, and giant white pleather couches. We want to bring the original charm of the historic 1920′s building back, while adding a bunch of kick-ass beer in the process.” (seattlebeernews

1600 Melrose Avenue Seattle, WA 98122 - (206) 588-0375
Est. March 26, 2012 - Building constructed: 1923
Previous bars in this location: The Chapel
Web site: - facebook
Reviews: seattlebeernews - seattletimes - seattlemet - capitolhillseattle - thirstyinseattle - mynorthwest - seattleweekly - thestranger - ratebeer - yelp

#1741 #S1017 - Tulio Ristorante, Seattle - 4/2/2012

One of the better Italian restaurants in the city, with a small, classic bar.

1100 5th Ave, Seattle, WA 98101 - (206) 624-5500
Est. 1992 - Building constructed: 1922
Previous bars in this location: None known
Web site:
Best Reviews: seattlepi - seattletimes - urbanspoon - thestranger - yelp

Sunday, July 08, 2012

#1740 #S1016 - Naos Lounge, Seattle - 4/1/2012

Naos closed July 3, 2012.

The short-lived Naos was a hippy sort of cafe and juice bar, barely qualifying as a (booze) bar, with an accent on sustainable, local ingredients, southern food, and vegan/vegetarian choices. They had unique spins on many familiar menu items and the food was quite good, as were the limited cocktail choices, esp. featuring fresh juices. It seemed like a perfect fit for Fremont, and I'll miss having it as a brunch option. This blurb from their facebook site does a good job of communicating the vibe of the place.

 "SuP Sea~Town~!!~ There are some things we feel Seattle has been missing... A live Juice/smoothie/wheatgrass bar in Fremont, David Lynch signature espresso..yes 'the' David Lynch! A Place for Ramon Shiloh to create and serve his amazing edibles!, Exclusively serving local beer and well as WA farm produce and meats...Live music for happy hour from Sea~Town's finest! In house 1200's with vinyl by the hundreds for the community to spin~, an amazing swanky and funky vibe and oh yes.... The 'Sunday Funk Brunch'!!! Watch for us in mid March, in the heart of Fremont at 3420 Fremont AV N."

3420 Fremont Ave N, Seattle, WA 98103 - (206) 397-4321        
Est. March 12, 2012 - Closed July 3, 2012 - Building constructed: 1909
Previous bars in this location: None known
Web site:  facebook - google+ 
Reviews: seattleweekly - fremontuniverse - yelp - thestranger