At long last, chef Kristi Brown of That Brown Girl Cooks and her son and business partner Damon Bomar have opened their much-anticipated "Seattle soul food" restaurant Communion in the Central District. The fact that the restaurant and bar is located in the former site of Liberty Bank lends even more meaning to the opening of a Black-owned business in a heavily gentrified neighborhood: The building was home to the region's first Black-owned bank, opened in 1968 to offer financial support to African-American homeowners and counteract racist housing segregation practices. Brown derived inspiration for the menu from her food memories of the Central District as well as Chinatown-International District. Offerings include barbecue shrimp and grits, chicken wings, berbere grilled chicken, po' mis (a combination of a po' boy and a banh mi) with fried oyster mushrooms and catfish, and fried catfish "hood sushi." There's also a retail area with jarred cocktails and Brown's beloved black-eyed pea hummus for sale. Bomar will run the bar program and will add brunch once dine-in is possible.
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