As Block Party rages on this weekend, some big changes are quietly happening on 12th Ave. While Dixon’s Used Furniture prepares for its last two weeks on the street, the lease is already being signed to convert the space into a sizable Austrian themed beer hall.
The operational team at Poquitos is behind the new hall, and are preparing to renovate the 10,000 square-foot warehouse space at 912 12th Avenue with a new mezzanine, kitchen, and outdoor dining additions.
“We are all really excited about it,” Dustin Watson of Poquitos said. “The idea is to make it really causal, turn it into a community spot in the neighborhood.”
People can expect 24 beers on tap, 8 bocce ball
tables courts (6 inside, 2 outside), and in-house Austrian sausage, which the pub will make on its own. Construction budget is listed as nearly $400,000 with plans for a mezzanine and outdoor dining and with Strata Architects listed as the lead on the project. The Poquitos team is keeping quiet on details for now as they are in the first week of signing the lease — but they were able to say that the new pub will hopefully be open by the end of the year.
The 1930 masonry building is owned by real estate investor Chi Tsung Pong who purchased the property in 2005 for $2.8 million, according to county records.
Beyond the opportunity presented by the new restaurant venture, slow business is behind Dixon’s exit from the street. “The store was never as busy as it needed to be,” said manager Shawn Mason. “Nobody’s coming in anymore. It’s been hard in this economy.” Dixon’s other location on 1915 Rainier Ave South will remain open in wake of the 12th closure so those looking for used furniture still have that option. The furniture store is having a large sale in the meantime to try to move stock before the closure.
The location has also been home to hookah bar Majles Cafe. CHS has not confirmed the status of the cafe but if it is also a goner, the Capitol Hill area hookah bar population is taking a significant hit this summer. Last week, CHS reported that the Cobra Lounge would be closing to make way for a long-awaited demolition in advance of a new apartment project at the site of the old Undre Arms apartments.
CHS first reported on the first venture by the food and drink team including Watson, Deming Maclise, James Weimann, and Rich Fox as they kicked the tires on being part of Melrose Market. Maclise and Weimann had successfully launched Bastille in Ballard and were looking for a home for a new concept to capture inspiration from travels in Mexico. CHS soon learned Poquitos was destined for E Pike where it has settled in nicely offering mid to upscale Mexican food and craft-focused cocktails. Poquitos is also a long-time CHS advertiser.
The addition of the project — we can’t share the name yet — will further transform 12th Ave’s food and drink offerings south of Madison. Cafe Presse has established itself as a longterm neighborhood presence while Lark has focused and made space for the ascension of Canon to the top of Seattle’s craft cocktail heap. Down the street, Ba Bar is extending the stretch into the Central District. Meanwhile, The Chieftain happily serves the needs of the thirsty Seattle University population.
The Capitol Hill beer hall trend, started in the 15th century, was given a solid kick in the ass with the emergence of the Pine Box earlier this year in the old Chapel space. It’s a good concept for a community that seems to enjoy a frothy crowd of people having a good time and plays solidly into some of the values of connoisseurship the Hill apparently holds dear.