Food News

This Week in Seattle Food News: Bok a Bok Opens in Kirkland, Old School Frozen Custard Closes, and Frelard Tamales Announces a Second Location

August 27, 2021 Edition
August 27, 2021
The local fried chicken chain Bok a Bok, which has been featured on Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, has opened a location in Kirkland. (Bok a Bok)

This week, the fried chicken joint Bok a Bok launches a location in Kirkland, Frelard Tamales announces an upcoming second location, and Old School Frozen Custard, Taradise Cafe, and Tim's Tavern say goodbye. Plus, Ethan Stowell plans to open a new pub called Victor Tavern in September. Read on for all of that and more essential updates, plus events for this weekend, like the Chinatown-International District Food Walk. For additional inspiration, check out our food and drink guide.


Bok a Bok
The popular Guy Fieri-approved, Korean-Southern fried chicken joint Bok a Bok, which has locations in Burien, Capitol Hill, University District, and White Center, has expanded with an outpost at the Village at Totem Lake shopping center in Kirkland. Like Bok a Bok's other locations, the spot offers a menu of double-fried chicken, fried chicken sandwiches, rice bowls, tater tots, kimchi mac and cheese, fries, dipping sauces, and more. The new restaurant is currently open for walk-up orders only but will soon be open for online pickup and delivery. 


Victor Tavern
Local chef and restaurant mogul Ethan Stowell plans to open a new "modern urban tavern" in the former space of Tom Douglas's TanakaSan in the Via6 building near the Amazon Spheres in early September. (Stowell had originally taken over the building's food spaces from Tom Douglas in January 2020, then scratched plans to open new restaurants there when the pandemic hit.) The upcoming pub will feature a menu of bar snacks like wings, pretzels, burgers, sandwiches, and fries, with a cocktail menu devised by Ethan Stowell Restaurants' new executive beverage director Erik Carlson.
Denny Triangle

Bale Breaker and Yonder Taproom
The well-received local cidery Yonder Bar is opening its new taproom in collaboration with Yakima-based Bale Breaker Brewing in the former space of Populuxe Brewing on September 4. The new spot will feature 32 taps and copious outdoor seating. The two businesses are also teaming up to launch a new distillery called Wise Fool Spirits inside the taproom.


Old School Frozen Custard
Seattle just lost one of the few places in town to find frozen custard. The longtime Capitol Hill fixture Old School Frozen Custard shuttered on August 21 after 12 years of business, due to the impact of COVID-19.
Capitol Hill

Taradise Cafe
Following the death of owner Tara Eckman Scott two months ago, this White Center cafe has decided to close permanently. Scott's sister wrote in a Facebook post, "After time to process and determine what is in the best interest of Tara’s sons, we have decided as a family not to reopen Taradise. This was a very difficult decision, as Taradise has been a community Tara worked so hard to build and a place where many loved ones found a safe space to share a warm meal and a drink. However, with so many factors at play and such uncertainty during this pandemic, it is the best decision to keep Taradise closed. Our hearts cannot bear the stress at this time. We have no doubt that the community and legacy Tara built will continue to live on through her boys and all of those she loved." The bar will be hosting a closing sale from 1-5 pm this Sunday.
White Center

Tim's Tavern
The beloved Greenwood dive announced on Facebook this week that it will be closing its current location and canceling all upcoming shows. The post read, "With bands canceling almost daily due to COVID exposures and a member of our staff contracting the virus, it’s simply not worth it to continue hosting live shows at Tim’s Tavern. On top of all of this our landlord has decided to move in a different direction with our current space and will not be renewing our lease which ends in the next couple months. All that being said, it is with very heavy hearts that we are announcing our closure. We will be closing the venue and canceling all shows moving forward. We apologize for the huge bummer and want you to know that this decision was probably one of the hardest things we have ever had to do." However, all is not lost: The bar is searching for a new, more COVID-friendly location with outdoor space.


Frelard Tamales announces upcoming location
The popular restaurant Frelard Tamales, which has earned a loyal following for its hand-crafted tamales and community involvement, announced via Instagram on August 18 that it will be opening a second location. The business hasn't yet revealed where the new spot will be located but hinted in a follow-up teaser post that it will not be in Seattle and that "I-5 goes through this city." Many fans guessed that the upcoming outpost will be in Tacoma. The final reveal will arrive sometime today.


CID Food Walk Series: August
Stroll through Chinatown-International District and enjoy $2-$8 treats and other special deals from 40 beloved businesses from all over the neighborhood, including sari sari compost cookies and "piña co-lattes" from Hood Famous Cafe + Bar, veggie noodles and dumplings from Szechuan Noodle Bowl, iced coffee and pandan waffles from Phin, rock oolong or jasmine green milk tea with boba from Young Tea, mochi donuts from Dochi, and more.
Hing Hay Park, Saturday, 10 am-4 pm

Poverty Bay Brews & Blues Festival 2021
Because beer and blues are perfect bedfellows, spend a day alongside folksy musicians like the CD Woodbury Trio and Stacy Jones Band while you sip offerings from local breweries.
Des Moines Beach Park, Saturday, 12-8 pm

Grayseas Pies Pop-Up at Fast Penny Spirits and Broadcast Coffee
The pop-up Grayseas Pies will sling adorable pocket-sized pies in summer flavors, including peach and strawberry rhubarb, at Fast Penny Spirits and Broadcast Coffee this weekend.
Fast Penny Spirits, Saturday, 12 pm; Broadcast Coffee, Sunday, 10 am-2 pm

Seattle Seltzerland 2021
Guzzle as much spiked seltzer as you want at this festival dedicated to boozy, bubbly H20. The event features over a hundred hard seltzers, snacks, swag, and photo opportunities.
Jefferson Park, Saturday, 12:30-4:40 pm


The James Beard-nominated "whiskey and bitters emporium," which reopened earlier this month, is channeling some serious mad-scientist vibes with its new pale green "Bunsen's Cocktail," which is served in an Erlenmeyer flask and is made with white rum, Riggins rum, honeydew, lime, and a hint of mint and even has a vanilla-Ardbeg Scotch Whisky fog, achieved with liquid nitrogen.
Capitol Hill
Pickup, dine-in

Korochka Tavern
This Russian bar, which Stranger contributor Meg van Huygen praised for its "cozy, unpretentious chill" in 2019, has added new vegan mushroom and potato dumplings to its menu.
Pickup, delivery, dine-in

Top Pot Doughnuts
It's your last chance to try the iconic coffee and doughnut chain's seasonal blueberry cake doughnuts before they're retired after Labor Day.
Various locations
Pickup, delivery, dine-in