GIRIN to Open in Pioneer Square, Seattle’s Most Imaginative Bartender, and More Food News

1. A new Korean restaurant is on its way to Pioneer Square in early to mid 2015. GIRIN, a project of Steven Han & Co., the men behind Momiji, Umi Sake House and Kushibar, “will bring the tradition, innovation and dynamic flavor profiles of Korean cuisine to Pioneer Square while simultaneously incorporating a rich variety of local, Pacific Northwest ingredients,” according to a press release. Chef Brandon Kirksey will be at the helm with seasonal bibimbap, nose-to-tail proteins butchered and cured in house, local fish and shellfish, and a few vegetarian options, too.

2. Seth Sempere of Spur Gastropub will represent Seattle as he competes in the nationwide finale of Bombay Sapphire’s Most Imaginative Bartender Competition. Sempere’s “Time Has Its Revenges” was selected for top honors based on appearance, aroma, imagination, and taste. The finals will be held in Las Vegas in September.

3. A workers’ rights group has called for a boycott against 22 shops and stores (many of which are bars and restaurants) for opposing the city’s $15-an-hour minimum wage, reports KOMO News. Restaurants have been among the most vocal opponents of a higher minimum wage, citing already-low profit margins.

4. Deschutes has released its Black Butte XXVI, a barrel-aged imperial porter with Theo Chocolate’s cacao nibs, cranberries and pomegranate molasses. Seattle Beer News says the beer is being sold on draft and in bottles at the brewery’s Bend and Portland locations, and you should be able to find it on shelves in Seattle soon.

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