A Raft of Openings

Cocktail consultant Ryan Magarian of Liquid Kitchen excitedly called my cell phone the other day. "We are opening a speakeasy in downtown Seattle." A place by the name of Suite 410, where as the drinks consultant, he planned to use "only fresh juices, market-fresh herbs, and a hand-selected spirits list that offers everything from the expected to the highly obscure." He went on to say that he hoped the drinks list would be thought provoking, challenging, and fun. (Wow, all at the same time!) So when are we all invited over to fete the opening? Managing partner Max Borthwick is shooting for mid-August. Quite a few new joints will open their doors for business in our fine town this summer. Veil, a self-styled "progressive American restaurant" is slated to open this fall in lower Queen Anne. The cocktail menu "is trying to get off the beaten path of cosmos and martinis," says Erik Lindstrom, an owner. Infusions, fresh fruit juices and Champagne-based mixes will figure in the seven house cocktails (approximately $7 to $10). Down on the long-neglected stretch of First Avenue near Denny in Belltown, Black Bottle—co-owner Chris Linker calls a "gastro-tavern"—is slated to open this week. Linker promises a focus on value, value, value—a place where "pricing is set to be happy hour all the time." Riding a wave of casual pub dining out of the U.K. via New York City, Black Bottle aims to use fresh ingredients and apply "that same 'slow food' mentality to drinks," according to Linker. Downtown isn't home to all the action. A new Japanese restaurant called Kaede opened the week of July 18 in Bellevue. Owner Yasuko Akamine promises regional food from her home of Okinawa paired with drinks based on soju, a white distilled spirit. A Kaede cosmo ($5.50) will be made with Takara soju, cranberry juice, and either Absolut vodka or Gordon's gin. Tiki haven Luau in the Green Lake area will reopen under its original ownership during the first week of August. According to Thomas Price, an owner, the Polynesian-themed restaurant will offer fruity drinks like the Kaha Mai Tai ($6.50), made with Castillo Gold and Bacardi rums and fresh juices. Finally, Union Square Grill will be showing off a remodel, scheduled to be done by Wednesday, Aug. 10. The remodel will make the bar area 30 percent bigger—big enough to handle the house cocktail list, which will quadruple from 10 to 40, says bar manager Zach Shelton.

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