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Saturday, December 07, 2013

#2110 #S1121 - Relish, Seattle - 3/20/2013

The Benjamin Franklin Hotel, which was here before the expansion to a first and then second cylindrical tower of rooms as it became the Washington Plaza and then the Westin, once hosted the second Trader Vic's in the country. The Trader Vic's was called "The Outrigger" when it was first established in this building in 1948, then renamed in 1960 to "Trader Vic's" like the original in Oakland, and finally closed in 1991. The hotels in this location have hosted multiple restaurants and bars on both the main floor and also on the lower level that opens to Stewart Street and Westlake Avenue, with this newest entry focused on giant hamburgers. This is apparently a growing brand within the Starwood Hotels chain, but it strikes me as an odd choice for a very large, downtown hotel that bills itself as an international location (even if it had never been the location of the elegant Palm Court).

This blog is primarily about bars, and despite a menu of pretty average quality cocktail concoctions, you wouldn't really expect a hamburger focused hotel bar to be particularly inviting for drinking -- and this one is not. The upscale burgers are better than average -- and certainly taller -- but neither they nor the various creative spins on side dishes struck me with any can't miss deliciousness that I would recommend to upscale burger loving friends (as I might, say, for the burgers at Spur, or Von's).

As a lover of hotel bars, I can't help but hope that the Westin eventually replaces this with something much more traditional and romantic.

1900 Fifth Avenue, Seattle, WA - 206-256-7600                          
Est. March 1, 2013 - Building constructed: 1929
Previous bars in this location:  The Outrigger, Trader Vic's, Fitzgerald's on Fifth, Roy's in the Westin, Coldwater Bar and Grill
Web site: relishbistroseattle.com - facebook
Reviews: cornichon - gastrolust - meplusfood - yelp

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