Cafe Kanape makes Broadway exit following building sale

With changes looming from the $20.25 million sale of the building it has called home for a year and a half, Cafe Kanape is closing on Broadway and preparing for a move to a new Capitol Hill home, owner Sabine Ruthensteiner tells CHS.


Ruthensteiner and husband Chris opened Kanape in the 700 Broadway building in February 2011 in a space formerly home to a take and bake pizza shop. The former owners of 1st Ave’s Contour shaped Kanape into a Euro-style cafe and lounge serving, of course, small-bite canapes, soups and crepes.

Breakfast at Kanape (Images: Cafe Kanape)

Sabine tells CHS that higher rent lead to the decision to close the Broadway location and that Kanape will reopen on the Hill again soon.

We haven’t yet heard what will follow Kanape in the 700 Broadway building. In July, we reported on the $20.25 million sale of the mixed-use development.

18 thoughts on “Cafe Kanape makes Broadway exit following building sale

  1. But at least they’ll be reopening elsewhere. Kanape’s one of my favorite places.

    Re: replacement, I heard a bank is moving in. I suppose a business like that has a chance, but businesses have struggled along there for a while. Kanape was the exception.

  2. Likely a bank is going in because only a bank or a national chain can afford the rents that Security Properties is likely jacking the rents up to. It will then make the retail tenants in the building 100% national chains – Starbucks, FedEx, and a bank – all the kind of tenants that will pay top dollar, squeezing out local independent businesses, and making that corner completely indistinguishable from Anywhere, USA.

    This is your future Capitol Hill. Have fun.

  3. With all due fairness, FedEx has been on Broadway for 25 years now. It started out as a small Kinkos at Broadway and Denny (where Peets is now located) before moving to Broadway and Roy as the first tentant in that building. Kinkos was later bought out by FedEx.

  4. I’m glad they’re staying in the neighborhood, but I really liked this location. Their set up was fun and unique. I’ll definitely follow Cafe Kanape to their new digs!

  5. We are still open pending the sale which may take another month or so. Once the sale is final we will be opening a new location, somewhere on the hill. Come down and support your local café.

  6. Glad to hear it & that you will be reopening! I almost had a heart attack thinking that my favorite restaurant was closed. P.S. If you reopen up on 15th, I may just move in permanently. ;-)

  7. I love this place, Sabine is the most gracious host. I’ll definitely miss them while they’re gone. But I look forward to them popping up at a new location soon!

  8. When does it stop? Is it any wonder the most fearless protesters of our day throw bricks through the financial institutions windows? Not saying I condone violence. Just saying, is it any wonder so many of us are so pissed at the rich and their game of filth and community-destroying (all for Wall St-style profiteering for those who have too much already). These property development and “investment” companies are destroying Seattle, one business at a time. When will City Council and our droopy, mopey Mayor do ANYTHING to curb this shite? Sigh. Argh.

  9. I was worried too when I read the headline. Love your cafe! I’ll keep visiting until that location closes. Please keep us updated on plans for the re-opening.

  10. New owner will likely increase residential rents as well. I know the Joule just down the street has been increasing its rents. Someone moved into my building because she was priced out of the Joule – and the rent she’s paying in my building is signficantly higher in turn than what I signed a lease for a little over 6 months ago. There’s going to be a massive amount of turnover in Capitol Hill over the next 12-24 months as all these new luxury buildings come on-line and the wave of gentrification continues as landlords squeeze out families and working people, replacing them with 20-something Amazon and Microsoft code monkeys.

  11. There is a retail space in the Braeburn complex on Pine @ 15th that just became available. It has a nice SW facing patio overlooking the courtyard and fountain and great street frontage. A new apartment building is going up across the street and the Bullit Center is a block away providing alot of potential lunch and dinner customers.

  12. I agree with you. It would be nice, for a change, if the new owners of an apartment or commercial building would NOT immediately raise the rent, especially for small, local businesses who obviously cannot afford higher rent. I’m sure the owners could make a decent profit without having to force such businesses as Kanape to move.

  13. Hello!

    To paraphrase Mark Twain: Reports of Cafe Kanape (possibly) closing are greatly exaggerated.

    As Cafe Kanape’s blog writer (www.cafekanape.tumblr.com) I can assure you, they’re NOT closed and there is NO definite date as to if or when this might happen.

    So please, please, please, if you’ve been staying away thinking this report was true, look first at Cafe Kanape’s website or at the blog to see what’s going on, we’ll be sure to let you know.

    Better yet, stop by! Have a drink, something to eat, kick back and relax. We’d love to see you. The menu’s the same (with little surprises along the way) and the staff is looking forward to seeing you.

    Sable