Food News

This Week in Seattle Food News: The Jerk Shack Expands to the Central District, The Comfort Zone Opens a Mount Baker Location, and Layers Sandwich Co., Plans a Restaurant

June 2, 2023 Edition
June 2, 2023
Dig into a deep-fried soft shell crab sandwich at Jerk Shack's new Central District location. (Jerk Shack)
This week, the Belltown favorite Jerk Shack opens a new location in the Central District, the soul food destination The Comfort Zone expands to Mount Baker, and the locally inspired Alder & Ash opens downtown. Plus, the truck Layers Sandwich Co. plans a brick-and-mortar. Read on for all of that and more of the latest culinary updates. For more ideas, check out our food and drink guide.


Alder & Ash List
According to a press release, the hospitality group Apicii (which is also responsible for the Mariners' Hatback Bar & Grille List and Steelheads Alley List in SoDo) debuted this flagship "Pacific Northwest brasserie" in downtown Seattle on Monday, with an interior designed by the firm Wilson Ishihara and dishes such as ash-smoked rockfish dip and foraged mushroom tagliatelle. Beverage director Chakkra Rath has curated a menu of cocktails and mocktails.
Pickup, dine-in

The Comfort Zone List
This beloved soul food restaurant owned by mother-daughter team Talya Miller and LaShon Lewis soft opened a second location in Mount Baker yesterday. Meanwhile, its original location in the Royal Esquire Club is undergoing a renovation.
Mount Baker
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Jerk Shack List
Trey Lamont's celebrated Caribbean restaurant soft opened a second outpost in the Central District's Midtown Square on Monday. Lamont is born and raised in the Central District, so his return to the neighborhood is especially fitting. The new location serves lunch and dinner, with Jerk Shack favorites like jerk smoke ribs, Cuban pork belly, deep-fried soft shell crab sandwiches, and plantains.
Central District
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Yu Sushi & Katsu List
This sushi joint opened on the Ave in late May, offering rolls, katsu dishes, and udon.
University District
Pickup, dine-in


Layers List
Married couple Ashley and Avery Hardin, co-owners of the elevated sandwich food truck Layers Sandwich Co. List , plan to open their flagship brick-and-mortar shop in Green Lake this summer.
Green Lake


HoneyHole employees accuse owners of creating a toxic workplace
Capitol Hill's endearingly weird watering hole/sandwich shop HoneyHole List was taken over by new owners Kristin and Patrick Rye in January 2021, and employees claim the new management has fostered a toxic work atmosphere. On Sunday, May 21, a HoneyHole worker sent a scathing email to the restaurant's mailing list, accusing the company of selling moldy and expired food and of treating employees as disposable. The Stranger's Vivian McCall talked to 17 past and current employees and says that "all but one claimed co-owner Kristin Rye has made HoneyHole a HoneyHell," writing, "Current and former workers accused Rye of yelling at and mocking employees in front of other staff, cutting hours for employees who called out sick, and ignoring and dodging employees who called about missing wages, including those who filed complaints to the Washington Department of Labor and Industries. Queer employees say the restaurant enabled a former manager to repeatedly misgender and disrespect them."

Community remembers late Heyday and Geraldine’s Counter owner Gary Snyder 
Gary Snyder, the owner of the iconic diner Geraldine's Counter List and the modern burger joint Heyday List , died of lymphoma on May 21 at the age of 57. Members of the community recall Snyder, who was affectionately dubbed the "unofficial mayor" of Columbia City, as a warm, gregarious, and caring individual with a knack for hospitality. A celebration of his life will be held at Geraldine's on July 6.

Redmond Starbucks employees announce plans to unionize
Workers at the Starbucks on 170th Avenue Northeast in Redmond announced on Tuesday that they have filed a petition to unionize with the National Labor Relations Board in the hopes of addressing scheduling and mismanagement issues, following in the footsteps of hundreds of Starbucks locations across the nation that have voted to unionize.



White Center Pride & Future Primitive Queer Beer Release Party Past Event List
As former Stranger digital editor Chase Burns wrote in 2019, "After successfully gentrifying Capitol Hill and turning it into a bedroom community for Amazon elites, the gays have set their sights on White Center." In celebration of the beginning of the neighborhood's pride festivities, Future Primitive Brewing will release its annual Pride IPA, along with special limited-edition merch. The evening will feature DJ tunes and a lineup of singers and drag queens to kick off the month in fabulous style.
Future Primitive Brewing, 7-11 pm


Karen's Diner on Tour - Seattle/Bellevue
Past Event List With their swoopy Kate Gosselin-like haircuts and entitled attitudes, "Karens" have decidedly complained their way into the cultural zeitgeist, as any unlucky service industry worker who's ever found themselves on the receiving end of these middle-aged white women's wrath can attest. Not for the faint of heart, this wacky viral pop-up restaurant originating in Sydney, Australia flips the script—the staff are not just allowed to be rude to the customers, but actually instructed to do so. Where else can you eat classic American diner food (burgers, fries, milkshakes, etc.) while an apron-clad server roasts you? Just don't ask to speak to the manager.

​Bite of Greece Seattle 2023 Past Event List
Longing for a Mamma Mia!-esque escape to Greece? Head to this free festival to stuff yourself with gyros, slow-roasted lamb sandwiches, grilled souvlaki, Greek salad, spanakopita, and other authentic Mediterranean delights prepared by the community of the Greek Orthodox Church of the Assumption. You'll get to peruse a marketplace with pastries, crafts, imported deli items, and more. Plus, brush up on your fancy footwork with Greek dancing lessons and traditional live music.
Greek Orthodox Church of the Assumption

Outer Planet Brewing Sour Fest 2023 Past Event List
Pucker up for this three-day celebration of refreshing sour beers. The taps will be dominated by tart brews, including Outer Planet's new release One Small Step For Mango and guest beers from Optimism and Urban Family. Other festivities include live music, raffles, flights, free stickers, and merch raffles.
Outer Planet Craft Brewing


Rosé Reunion: Calexico, Violet Chachki, and More Past Event List
House of Smith Jet City Winery, a winery owned by Charles Smith and housed in a remodeled Dr. Pepper bottling plant in Georgetown, will host a killer lineup, featuring Grammy-nominated Tex-Mex rockers Calexico, RuPaul's Drag Race winner and fashionista Violet Chachki (who just got booked for an upcoming Cardi B video), garage rock trio Naked Giants, and saucy burlesque performances from the Atomic Bombshells. While you enjoy the entertainment, take advantage of food truck nosh, a beer garden with Georgetown Brewing beverages, a selection of award-winning wines by the glass, and over 100 wines by the bottle. You'll also be greeted with a glass of rosé, included in the price of your ticket.
Charles Smith Wines Jet City, 4-9 pm

Bagel Trot Past Event List
Getting your daily steps in is a snap when you know that delicious bagels and coffee await you at various checkpoints. This leisurely self-guided walking tour will take you from Recovery Cafe to Zylberschtein's Delicatessen & Cafe, with stops at Grand Central Cafe & Bakery, Victrola Coffee, Hubuh House, Westman's Bagels, Ten Thousand Villages, Broadcast Coffee, and Local Yokels along the seven-mile route. (If you're ambitious, you're also welcome to choose your own adventure by adding your own destinations.) At the start, you'll be greeted with Rubinstein bagels, Frank's Quality Produce fruit, and Caffe Vita coffee to fuel your journey. Along the way, you'll enjoy samples or discounts at participating businesses, hear music from a New Orleans-style brass band, and receive a Bagel Trot T-shirt designed by a Recovery Café member. Proceeds benefit Recovery Café, a refuge for those impacted by homelessness, addiction, and other mental health challenges.
Belltown, 9 am-4 pm


Washington Mead Festival at Skål Beer Hall Past Event List
Channel your inner Viking and sip the nectar of Valhalla at this celebration of Washington mead. Eight local meaderies, including Artivem, Hierophant, Contrivance, Oppegaard, Sky River, Æsir, Odin's Alchemy, and Thunderland, will pour some early summer offerings at Skål's covered outdoor street cafe. You'll receive six tokens to be redeemed for two-ounce samples and can also purchase pølse, pretzels, and other foods for snacking. Chat with the producers and purchase bottles to take home with you if you find a favorite.
Skål Beer Hall, 12-5 pm


Sumayya Usmani: Andaza Past Event List
Pakistani-born author, writer, and food educator Sumayya Usmani, who resides in Scotland today, will take a trip to Book Larder to discuss her new book, Andaza: A Memoir of Food, Flavour and Freedom in the Pakistani Kitchen. "Andaza," which loosely translates to "estimate," refers to the spirit of intuitive cooking, i.e. measuring "with your heart" rather than following a precise list of measured ingredients to the letter. Similarly, Sumayya found a steadfast belief in herself as she learned to trust her instincts in the kitchen. Along the way, she shares her beloved childhood recipes for dishes like saffron black cardamom fudge and chicken odesa. She'll chat with local cooking instructor Nadia Tommalieh, who shares her passion for Arabic cooking with over 30,000 followers on Instagram.
Book Larder, 6:30-8 pm


Theo Chocolate x Fremont Mischief Distillery: Chocolate & Whiskey Pairing Past Event List
Sometimes, more really is more. Theo Chocolate and Fremont Mischief Distillery are located just a stone's throw from each other in Fremont, so it only makes sense that they'd combine their ambrosial products for a special chocolate and whiskey pairing that's greater than the sum of its parts. At this multi-course event, you'll get to savor the scents, flavors, and textures of Fremont Mischief's locally sourced Pacific Northwest whiskey and Theo's Congolese-sourced organic chocolate, resulting in a divine combination that might cause you to ascend to a higher plane.
Theo Chocolate, 7-9 pm


Arc List
Named in tribute to the iconic Sanrio frog character, this Latin-Korean fusion restaurant's new nonalcoholic cocktail "Keroppi Jr. Jr." drops on Saturday and features matcha, strawberry, and rice milk for a stunning layered effect.
Phinney Ridge
Pickup, delivery, dine-in

Doce Donut Co. List
In celebration of National Doughnut Day List , this newcomer to the Seattle doughnut scene will introduce a new alfajor-inspired flavor with dulce de leche glaze and alfajor cookie crumbles. Other flavors include passionfruit, hibiscus, and mango crème brûlée.


SLAB Sandwiches + Pie List
Through the end of this week, this Capitol Hill lunch counter is serving a crispy fried oyster sandwich heaped with crunchy slaw, marinated spring onions, harissa, and lemon aioli.
Capitol Hill
Pickup, dine-in

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