Tag Archives: Queen Anne Restaurant Spotlight

Queen Anne Restaurant Spotlight: LloydMartin

With daily-changing menus, regular press in the foodie networks throughout the city, and a hold-no-punches, straight-up, intentional approach to good food, LloydMartin’s Queen Anne restaurant is the place to be to try something refreshing, tasteful, and creative with food.

Once Bricco, a wine and charcuterie/cheese bar, Chef Sam Crannell and his LloydMartin restaurant took over the space in October 2011 and turned it into a dinner restaurant and bar that locals and in-towners really must visit. He and his chefs work wonders from a teeny-tiny kitchen (can it really be called a kitchen?).

The menu features small appetizer plates to share, and heartier main dishes, plus unique desserts and sweet dishes to finish off your meal. It’s updated daily, and changes in large part based on the ingredients that Sam is able to access that very day. Wild mushrooms of different varietals make an appearance year-round, from various truffles to morels.

Some classic LloydMartin dishes over the past years of operation have included a flavorful white bean mousse appetizer, and delicious pork roasts. There’s almost always some kind of foie gras. On the ‘plates’ menu, LloydMartin is known for handmade pastas.

For an additional boost of freshness, LloydMartin hosts prix-fixe Farmers Market Dinners on Thursdays throughout the Queen Anne Farmers Market Season (June through October). The meal is a select offering of dishes made completely from ingredients gathered at that day’s market.

This summer, Chef Sam began offering a fixed-price three-course chef’s menu for $45/person. According to a feature in the Puget Sound Business Journal, the idea has been a smashing success!

To compliment their offerings from the kitchen(-ette), the Queen Anne restaurant has a pretty notable wine list, including sparkling wines, whites, rosés, and reds (both imported and domestic). Several bottles are offered by the glass, with a much bigger offering by the bottle and from LloydMartin’s cellar.

If you love Canlis for special occasions, you’ll feel right at home at LloydMartin for your more regular weeknights out. LloydMartin is open Tuesdays through Thursdays from 5 p.m. until 10 p.m., and Fridays and Saturdays from 5 p.m. until close. Social hour is from 5 – 6 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, weekly, with small plates for under $10 each, $4 draft beer, $2 off wines by the glass, and $8 specialty cocktails.

Later this month, LloydMartin’s Chef Sam will be participating in the Cooking with Class benefit at Salty’s on Alki on September 9th. In addition, LloydMartin will host a Lamb Battle cook-off and later, a fall pop-up beer dinner with NW Peaks, featuring beer and pub food. Visit the restaurant’s events page for more details.

Queen Anne Restaurant Spotlight: Five Hooks Fish Grill

Back in the spring, I had the opportunity to sit down with Paul Saito, the owner and chef of Five Hooks Fish Grill. The Queen Anne restaurant had just celebrated their 2-year anniversary.

When the grill opened on February 29th, 2012, it inherited a space that had seen a lot of restaurant struggles and eventual closure in recent years. Before Five Hooks, the most recent restaurant tenant was Tenoch Mexican Grill, which closed a couple of months before in January 2012.

But notwithstanding the economic hardship that Queen Anne restaurants had seen, and despite the fact that Five Hooks Fish Grill is Saito’s first venture as a restaurateur, the place is doing pretty well.

“I saw an opportunity for fresh seafood – I think it’s very under delivered [here on Queen Anne],” he said. “I wanted to offer quality seafood that was reasonably priced, and I think the secret was delivering what the community was looking for.”

Saito came from a retail and grocery background, having worked for Ralph’s in California for nearly 35 years before being recruited to Seattle’s Uwajimaya Asian Grocery. He opened Five Hooks after leaving Uwajimaya, since he saw the opportunity to follow a dream of opening a family-owned neighborhood restaurant.

“I wanted to make a place where everybody can feel comfortable. The seafood is really fresh, and the tourists are coming… Last year we had a nice review in the Seattle Times, talking about how we offer casual, nice dinner,” Saito said.

Seafood is the specialty at Five Hooks Fish Grill: “You’ll always have fresh fish – our goal is to deliver good food that is hot, with the best servers there are!”

While Chef Paul Saito uses his experience in Asian ingredients and preparation, he’s not afraid to try new and different things to please his customers. “So much of our menu has changed because of customer feedback,” he said.

Nowadays, the base menu is pretty consistent, while the specials and appetizers change every few weeks with the seasons. Five Hooks’ Signature Salmon (farm-raised) is one of the Queen Anne restaurant’s most popularly ordered items, as are the Signature Giant Prawns and the Seared Alaskan Cod. Each is served with brown rice.

There is much to be said as well for Five Hooks’ Fish and Chips, made with fresh cold water Alaskan true Cod (or salmon) that is lightly battered and crispy – not your typical greasy fish ‘n chips; but much better! On Fridays, the restaurant’s Fish and Chips are also offered ‘bottomless’ for just a couple dollars more. And as for chips – don’t miss out on a try of their renowned sweet potato fries!

For gluten-free diners, Five Hooks has a special offering of salads, soups, specialties and entrées – including their famous Fish and Chips, made without flour! In fact, 80 percent of the menu is already gluten-free. “We want to provide a more accessible experience for our guests to enjoy seafood,” Saito said.

The Queen Anne restaurant is open for lunch as well, with a selection of sandwiches, wraps, and tacos. Happy Hour is from 2-6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, with $5 house wines, $3.50 draft beer, $5 margaritas, specialty cocktails, and a special happy hour food menu. Five Hooks has a full service bar offering.

In addition to being a fantastic family dining spot, with a special kids menu, Five Hooks is also very dog-friendly – more than just placing a water bowl out for all general canine companions. Your dog will get his/her own water dish, and if your pet is hungry too, your server or Chef Paul himself will bring your pooch a cooked egg to enjoy while you munch on your meal.

Five Hooks Fish Grill is open in Queen Anne from noon until 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and until 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

Queen Anne Restaurant Spotlight: Macrina Bakery

Nestled over on McGraw and 6th Avenue West, Macrina Bakery’s Queen Anne restaurant location is a perfect mix of rustic cuisine and fresh, open neighborhood café. The Macrina location in Belltown opened first in the 90s, and grew from eight different types of bread to a full bakery. They opened their Queen Anne location in 2001, in a space that was previously a different bakery.

According to Manager Crystal Kitchin, the owner, Leslie Mackie, “has always been inspired by bread, and wanted to share that with her customers … It’s what people do with friends and loved ones – break bread together – and she wanted to make good products to do that.”

The bakery has over 32 different breads on the menu, of which five are their core loaves: brioche, rustic potato, guiseppe, Macrina baguette and Macrina “Casera” (house). Seasonal breads are also offered throughout the year.

Leslie opened the SODO Macrina Bakery in 2008, which is now the flagship store, where Macrina bread and pastries are baked fresh 24 hours per day. All of the pastries and cakes are made in-house at each café, while the bread and sandwiches are made in SODO and delivered to the Queen Anne location twice each day.

Crystal manages all three of the Macrina cafés, and finds that each one is special. “We cater each café to the neighborhood,” she says. “The customers really make each one special.”

One of the signature pastries at Macrina Bakery in Queen Anne is the Morning Roll – a golden brown, swirled croissant with vanilla sugar. Another is the Lemon Tart, which is Macrina’s version of a traditional lemon chess pie, decorated with seasonal fruit and white chocolate curls. There are also some gluten-free options for those with dietary restrictions.

Seasonal and holiday menus (for instance, for Easter, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day recently) feature delicious breads and pastries perfect for enjoying at the café, or ordering to cater your home celebration or office party. There’s always a special loaf, brioche, tartlet, cake, cup pastry, pie, roll, and mousse cake.

In addition to bread and sweet treats at Macrina, guests can enjoy delicious homemade soups, sandwiches and salads. The coffee at Macrina is from Caffe Umbria.

“Everything is natural, with no artificial ingredients,” Crystal said. “We also have a lot of organic ingredients, and try to be as conscious as we can, offering things that are the best for our customers.”

 

Queen Anne Restaurant Spotlight: Bustle

Bustle Caffe opened their Queen Anne restaurant in 2009, after about a year of build-out construction and permitting (since it had not previously been permitted for food service). It was owner Patrick McNerthney’s first venture into the restaurant business as an owner – he had worked in marketing and sales in his early career, before taking a break and working for Uptown Espresso.

It was while working at Uptown that he was inspired to go out on his own with a café. “I liked it more than I anticipated … I really got into the entertainment side of barista-ing, versus the art of coffee drinking,” he said. “That’s the biggest thing for us; it’s all about the personality.”

Of course, Bustle offers hot and iced coffee drinks and other café beverages, in addition to a small selection of beer and wines. The beer and wines are constantly rotating, but there’s usually a nice selection of beer and at least two red and two white wine choices at all times.

For a café like Bustle, coffee is where everything begins. This Queen Anne café sources theirs straight from Italy, from Attibassi. Why? Because Patrick visited Italy and Attibassi’s espresso was the best he’d ever had. When he tasted it again at a local Italian restaurant, he just had to have Attibassi at his café. The roaster does their work in Bologna, Italy. “It’s nice that it’s different. Everyone has Lighthouse or Caffe Vita or Fonté around here, and those are all nice, but it’s fun to introduce something you really believe in,” McNerthney said. He does admit that Seattle coffee roasters make a better decaf than Attibassi, but that’s because less than three percent of Italians drink decaf, so the Italian roasters don’t care about making a highly-crafted one.

On the food side of things, Bustle Caffe has pastries and lunch sandwiches brought in fresh from a local vendor, but they make their breakfast sandwiches fresh in-house. The pastries are also 100 percent nut-free!

“Our vendors do a good job … It’s always as fresh as I can get it,” McNerthney said. Patrick and Jimmy (Patrick’s main man) are planning to make some changes before this summer, both to the design and kitchen space available in the café and to offer some expansion to the menu.

 

The café’s location has an interesting history. The building is rumored to have been part of the original Love Family compound, the early headquarters for a local communal religious movement. It’s also been a grocery store, then a children’s clothing store. Next, it was a wedding dress shop where Melinda Gates was rumored to have purchased the gown for her wedding to Bill, but that’s unsubstantiated as far as we know.  Finally – before Bustle’s owners signed the lease for the shop in 2008, it was a nail salon.