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Bars where Pete has had a Drink (3,291 bars; 1,500 bars in Seattle):

Bars where Pete has had a drink

Sunday, December 25, 2016

#2493 #S1232 - Twisted Pasty, Seattle - 4/2/2014

Twisted Pasty closed on Jan 7, 2016

Twisted Pasty opened for what would be a two-year run in Belltown with a menu built around the pasty ("pass-tee"), which originated in Cornish mining communities and spread to the American midwest. While the classic pasty wrapped beef, onion, potato and rutabaga in pie crust sort of wrapper, the "twisted" versions provided by the mother and daughter team here included things like curry chicken, chile verde, Philly steak, and chicken cordon bleu.



If you never went there, you may be envisioning a rustic diner with red and white checked tablecloths and 19th century tools on the walls. But Twisted Pasty was hosted in a dark-wooded, high-ceilinged space that feels like an old school steakhouse, including well-stocked wine racks and craft cocktail bartender Kevin (Vessel, Tavern Law, Knee High, Sun Liquor). E.g. I had a "Burning Redwoods," cedar-infused bourbon, Punt e Mes, maraschino liqueur, and orange bitters.



In short, it was a fine option for having some nice and affordable food you couldn't find anywhere else in the city, and while enjoying a top notch cocktail. In my bar data I gave it a 15% chance of making it three years, but that doesn't mean I personally won't miss it.

2525 4th Ave, Seattle, WA 98121 - (206) 402-3831                     
Est. Feb 26, 2014 - Building constructed: 1990 - Closed Jan 7, 2016
Previous bars in this location: Shallots, Henry and Oscar's
Web site: twistedpasty.com - facebook
Articles ranked: seattletimes - seattleweekly - eater - seattlemag - mybelltown - yelp - tripadvisor

Saturday, December 24, 2016

#2492 #S1231 - Russell's Bar, Seattle - 3/30/2014

I'm not particularly fond of locations on the ground floor of newish condo buildings. But if you're going to do it, this is a good way -- with a neat, rectangular presence that feels like a neighbor's juiced up garage. The eponymous Joe Russell is a friendly, engaging guy, and thankfully he agrees with me that Sunday is the best drinking day of the week. His small bar reflects his amenable personality and provides a neighborhood joint for casual conversation. But it also provides a modern menu of elegant small plates -- and homemade pies -- which almost seems like a relief in this area where most the new joints have been emphatically high brow, and not a place where you'd just hang. They make some pretty good cocktails as well -- I enjoyed Joe's Sidecar.

Russell's, Seattle, WA


4111 Stone Way N, Seattle, WA 98103 - (206) 547-1653                  
Est. March 21, 2014 - Building constructed: 2012
Previous bars in this location: None
Web site: russellsseattle.com - facebook
Reviews: seattlemet - wallyhood - yelp - eater - thrillist - thestranger

#2491 #S1230 - The Rhino Room, Seattle - 3/29/2014

The Rhino Room, Capitol Hill, Seattle, WA
The economic model of the urban dance club is a mystery to me. They always seem to packed with people when I see them, and often with a subset of guests only too eager to drop cash ostentatiously into vacuous perks like VIP sections. They may have limited hours, but when open they pack far more customers per square inch of space than other bars. They can't spend much money on liquor -- the tastes of their customer base tends to run toward things like candy flavored vodka concoctions at craft cocktail prices -- and their staff and fixed costs seem like they should be well understood. And yet they can never seem to stay in business.

The Rhino Room, Capitol Hill, Seattle, WA
You might glibly write off the management of these clubs as prone to the same excesses generally associated with their club scenes, but if the model worked, surely there would be cooler headed capitalists to step in and herd the cash cows back into the black. And yet, with the exception of one or two old school gay clubs, they never seem to outlast the suburban tavern that never has more than five people in it. Do laser lights and fog machines just have untenable maintenance costs?

Despite emulating Studio 54, the Rhino Room may not be strictly comparable to the clubs I have in mind. It's smaller, and it's run by folks with a deep history in upscale restaurants -- Patric Gabre-Kida (Book Bindery, Anchovies and Olives), Jacob and IL Mihoulides (Tavolata, How to Cook a Wolf), Emma Schwartzman and Chris Rice. And I have a fondness for bars named "The Room" especially if the is a random, remarkable artifact (Gabre-Kidan found the rhino on Craigslist).

I dropped by on a lazy Spring Saturday afternoon when I was one of two customers in the place. I had a nice cocktail, but not having stood in line for an hour to get in on a throbbing Saturday night, I'm really in no position to assess the place. Then again, even if I was, I'd have no idea if it will still be here tomorrow.



















1535 11th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122                                        
Est. March 7, 2014 - Building constructed: 1906
Previous bars in this location: None known
Web site: therhinoroom.comfacebook
Reviews: seattletimes - seattlemet - capitolhillblogcapitolhillblog - yelp - thestranger

#2490 #S1229 - La Cocina Oaxaqueña, Seattle - 3/29/2014

There were 19 Mexican restaurants on Capitol Hill in the last count I saw, and this is definitely one of the best. La Cocina Oaxaqueña is run by an Oaxacan native who was once a manager in the family of restaurants that started with Ballard's Carta la Oaxaca and also includes Mezcaleria Oaxaca just three blocks up Pine Street. That family is widely regarded as Seattle's favorite Mexican, and I wouldn't know how to judge between that at La Cocina, as they are both very nice southern Mexican restaurants and my favorite would vary from dish to dish. Like the larger group, the bar is not the primary focus, but that doesn't mean they don't have some quite nice cocktail options with interesting infusions, and you can also order a magarita without fear of the awful sticky sweet mix so common in bars that don't much care.

1216 Pine St, Seattle, WA 98101 - (206) 623-8226                   
Est. April 25, 2013 - Building constructed: 1967
Previous bars in this location: None known
Web site:  lacocinaoaxaquena.com - facebook
Articles ranked: capitolhillseattle - seattlediningeatinseattle - shescharming - afar - yelp - tripadvisor - seattlemag - thestranger

#2489 #S1228 - Hecho, Seattle - 3/27/2014

Hecho, Seattle, WA
Hecho is the creation of an interesting combination of resident Phinney neighborhood industry folks: Shannon Wilkinson (Little Water Cantina), Chris Navarra (Prost!, Feierabend, Die Bierstube), and Chris Gerke (Nickerson Street, The Ridge). The restaurant in the former Carmelita space features better than average "Mexican street food," along with a nice selection of cocktails with fresh juices.

Hecho, Seattle, WA
Hecho, Seattle, WA
7314 Greenwood Ave N, Seattle, Washington 98103 - (206) 588-1919
Est. March 25, 2014 - Building constructed: 1927
Previous bars in this location: Carmelita
Web site: hechoinseattle.com - facebook
Reviews: seattletimes - yelp - tripadvisor - thestranger

Monday, December 19, 2016

#2814 - Simcoe Tavern, Goldendale, WA - 7/10/2015

I wish I could tell you how long the Simcoe Cafe -- and the Desert Room bar in back -- have been here in Goldendale, Washington. The best I could do was from a 72-yo patron named Lee, who says it's been here as long as he can remember -- and he can remember when he was a kid walking along the then wooden sidewalks. The earliest date I've found evidence for is 1946. The sign appears to date back to 1958 (Goldendale Sentinel, March 27). I have an email into the Klickitat County Historical Society.

It's a small place -- one of the smaller business-to-sign size ratios in the state I'd have to venture. The divey bar is filled with old guys in baseball caps, who sit under octagonal bins that hold dollar bills once pinned to the ceiling. The food is old school bar food, the drinks are cheap and stiff, and the most common phrase in the bar appears to be "No shit."


123 W Main St, Goldendale, WA 98620 - (509) 773-9970                  
Web site: facebook
Reviews: yelp - tripadvisor

Saturday, December 17, 2016

#2813 - The Pastime, Selah, WA - 7/10/2015

I have a particular interest in bars called the "Pastime," since it is the most common name for bars in Washington state (so far I've identified 57 cities and towns in the state that have had at least one Pastime), and because it is much more rare today than half a century ago. But if the name evokes images of an intimate, nolstalgic drinking spot, that is definitely not what you will find in Selah's version.

Selah, with a population around 7,000, is located in the center of Washington state, just north of the city of Yakima and above the confluence of the Naches and Yakima rivers, where the churning water made for particularly good fishing. The name of the city is said to be the Yakima tribe's word "still or smooth water." It has always been small -- citizens marshalled itinerant fruit orchard workers to have the required population to incorporate in 1919. It is now populated largely by apple orchards and juice companies.

I don't know how long there has been a Pastime bar here, but there appears to have been a smaller version since at least the middle of the 20th century just one parcel east on East Naches Blvd from the current location. By the year 2000 city guides list it having moved from the 133 address to the current 125. Whatever it may have been like in the past, the current "Pastime Burgers, Brews & Spirits" is now a large, partying venue, with live country music, hip-hop DJs, security staff, and a steady stream of themed events that can attract hundreds of people. During the daytime it is much more placid, with a handful of older folks, seeming all the more bereft in the large and plain interior, having a Budweiser and a burger, or perhaps some prime rib.

If anyone has any details on the history of the Selah Pastime(s), I would love to hear it.


125 E Naches Ave, Selah, WA 98942 - (509) 697-8303
Web site: thepastimeselah.com - facebook
Reviews: yelp - tripadvisor 

#2812 - Savage Moose, Kenmore, WA - 7/9/2015

So here's the scuttlebutt I'm hearing on the Savage Moose, and the Lakepointe Bar & Grill which preceded it: The previous owner of 12 years "screwed over lots of people." So the bartender he was supposed to sell the palce to puchased another joint in Kenmore and took most the customers with her.  Under the current owners, I am informed, customers are coming back.  (All scuttlebutt completely unverified and probably unfair, but that's how scuttlebutt goes.)

Kenmore contretemps aside, the pub remains a prototypical suburban sports bar, with pull tabs, deep fried food, TVs, karaoke, trivia, etc. But even if you don't have a bar hobby, how can you not check out a place named Savage Moose?

18018 61st Ave NE, Kenmore, WA 98028 - (425) 486-8021
Est. April 2015 - Building constructed: 1966
Previous bars in this location: Lake Forest Inn, Lakepointe Bar & Grill
Reviews: yelp

#2811 #S1357 - Greenlake Ale House, Seattle - 7/3/2015

Greenlake Ale House, Seattle
Before new signage to replace BluWater
Foodie friends may mock me for missing the Outback Steakhouse in my neighborhood, but to me this just illustrates their failure to grasp the gravity of Seattle's Mid-Priced Steak Crisis. Of course you can get a lovely steak at The Met, El Gaucho, Ruth's Chris, etc. etc., but at prices you don't want to pay every day. Steaks at everyday meal prices generally taste like crap, and there are slim pickings in between. Many small western Washington cities have it all over Seattle in this mid-price category -- although one of the lessons we've learned repeatedly on our roadtrips across the state is: Don't order the steak at a place that doesn't specialize in steak.

Jak's in Seattle comes pretty close to filling that gap.  It doesn't have quite as affordable options as the small town steakhouses (or the Outback chain), but there are a couple nice corn-fed Nebraska steak options in the twenty-some dollar range. Greenlake Ale House (not to be confused with the bar of the same name on Aurora Avenue in the 90s) is a new place from the Jak's folks across the street from popular Seattle lake and park, and a tad more casual than Jak's. The bar here is pretty boring, but in addition to the steaks they have several better than average samples of modern American pub food. The hummus, steak salad, and blackened salmon sandwich we had all nicely fit just the mid-range comfort food sort of options we were hoping for.

And I'm still hoping for more options like this. We must not allow a steak gap!

7900 E Green Lake Dr N, Ste 10, Seattle, WA 98103 - (206) 294-5753
Est. 2015 - Building constructed: 1996
Previous bars in this location: Six Degrees, Bluwater Bistro
Web site: greenlakealehouse.com - facebook
Reviews: yelp - tripadvisor - greenlaker - greenlaker - untappd

#2810 #S1356 - Burdick Brewery Taproom, Seattle - 7/3/2015

With some nice beers still available around the city, Burdick closed its South Park taproom in 2015 due to some expensive upgrades required by the city.


8103 8th Ave S #105, Seattle, WA 98108 - (206) 397-3839
Est. Nov 1, 2013 - Building constructed: 2003
Previous bars in this location: None known
Web site: burdickbrewery.com - facebook 
Reviews: yelp - beeradvocate - taphunter - untappd - bartrove