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Bars where Pete has had a Drink (3,399 bars; 1,525 bars in Seattle) - Click Titles for Lists:


Bars where Pete has had a drink

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

#2257 #S1163 - Percy's, Seattle - 8/20/2013

While the horse is well out of this barn, some of my age group would still have us despair of the gentrification and hipification of north Seattle's old Scandinavian shake mill and fishing community of Ballard.  But while I prefer dive bars filled with crusty old blue collar workers over faceless condo buildings as much as anyone, bars as good as Percy's simply leave one no option but to capitulate.

Percy's & Co. Apothecary Bar and Restaurant is in an old bar location -- built in 1898 according to the owners and in 1893 according to the Ballard Historical Society -- which first housed Percy Sankey's "Ballard Bar." It has hosted various bars and types of bars since then, including, according to rumor, throughout the years of prohibition.

Seattle hipster hotspot owners Wade Weigel (Ace Hotel, Rudy's Barber Shops) and Jeff Ofelt (Bimbo's, Cha Cha, King's Hardware) upgraded the food considerably and made what had been a fairly attractive bar substantially more elegant, as well as increasing the nods to the history of the location and neighborhood. They host classic movies on the patio and live music from blue grass to garage rock. More to the point, they induced craft cocktailers Kyle Taylor  and Joe Petersen of New York's "Apotheke" to join them, and to create delicious and creative drinks with an antique herbal pharmacist spin.

Even with the old Smoke Shop and Hattie's Hat still serving the dive crowd, it is increasingly rare to run into someone like the old fisherman I met in a joint up the street, who used to trade salmon for drinks, and proudly told me that in all his years of walking back to his boat from the bars, he'd only fallen in the water once. And the space that is now Percy's is a world away from the seedy old Silver Spot Beer Parlor, which took over after prohibition. But while the condo buildings rise relentlessly around it, this old avenue has preserved its century-old buildings, even while it has become awash in great places to eat and drink -- unmatched in Seattle outside of Capitol Hill. And damned if Percy's isn't one of the best of them.




5233 Ballard Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107 - (206) 420-3750
Est. Aug 19, 2013 - Building constructed: 1893 1898?
Previous bars in this location:  Old Town Alehouse, Enger's Fish Knot Inn, Silver Spot, Ballard Bar
Web site: percysseattle.com - facebook
Reviews: thestranger - seattlemeteater (photos) -  myballard - yelp

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