In Good Spirits

The punk spirit is alive and well in Lower Queen Anne, and not just because Tower Records has closed while the indie Easy Street solidly stands. Branching out from a decade as bar manager at downtown's Crocodile, Val Kiossovski—along with business partner and Faith No More bassist Bill Gould—has made a unique imprint on the neighborhood with his Solo bar. The tapas-and-cocktails den features polished wood floors and clusters of comfy seating for parties of two and three (think barstools that feel more like love seats). The vibe is a mishmash, with art (a screening of The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly the night we were there) and music ("Give 'Em the Boot"–style punk) that seems incongruous with the ambience, but Kiossovski's other gig is in the Balkan punk band Kultur Shock, so props to this full-time nonconformist. His menu of specialty drinks—including the yummy namesake Solo, a sippin' shot that tastes like a Good & Plenty—is right on; the tapas include everything from ceviche, gazpacho, and risotto cakes to larger plates, all at a reasonable price. We arrived after the kitchen closed, but Kiossovski crafted a fine plate of hummus and cured meats for us anyway—and the music somehow segued to Bebel Gilberto. In good spirits, Solo is angling for company. RACHEL SHIMP

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