Seasoned Hill restaurant veteran La Spiga enters yet another new era — but, first, lunch

Here is one secret to staying alive in the Capitol Hill food and drink economy. Every seven or eight years, overhaul your business.

“This is our home — my kids basically grew up in this restaurant,” Pietro Borghesi tells CHS about the 12th Ave location Osteria La Spiga has filled since moving from Broadway in 2006.


Born eight years prior in 1998, La Spiga has grown along with the restaurant and bar scene around it. But it hasn’t been easy.

“Everything we found had to be financed,” Borghesi said. “This will give some piece of mind and help us innovate without being too strapped.”

After 15 years in the business, Borghesi and his wife, chef and co-owner Sabrina Tinsley, are in the middle of a deal to sell La Spiga to an investor. But this won’t be the end for either of them.

“The sale will not change anything –how things are run or anything. We are going to have more means to move forward,” Borghesi said.

The first move as La Spiga glides into a free-and-clear, post-loan universe is lunch.

“Lunch is always a tough business and not necessarily profitable,” Borghesi said. “Now we feel like we can invest.”

La Spiga is now offering the same lunch menu it used to offer on Broadway — with an important addition. “We love sandwiches!” Borghesi said. The new lunch menu’s panini section is proof. Monday to Friday from 11:30 AM to 2:30 PM, you’ll also find lunch portions of lasagne verdi, gnocchi al pomodoro, tagliatelle al ragu plus soups and salads.

The menu, Borghesi said, was born out of a plan the restaurant considered to be part of the expanded offerings at the new Seattle Center Armory. Opting to focus on the homefront, Borghesi said La Spiga brought its Armory plans, instead, to 12th Ave.

It’s the start of some new directions in this third era of the La Spiga story on Capitol Hill. You can also expect an overhauled mezzanine level built to become more of a lounge and a transformation of the restaurant’s patio into an herb garden in the future. And larger business initiative are afoot — but you’ll be hearing about those later.

For now, Borghesi and Tinsley need to finalize the deal and settle in for another seven or eight years on 12th Ave until the next change.

“Moving from the old place, was a really big jump for me and my wife,” Borghesi said. “Surprises!” Here’s hoping for a few more happy surprises in what comes next for La Spiga.

One thought on “Seasoned Hill restaurant veteran La Spiga enters yet another new era — but, first, lunch

  1. I just had the Piccante and it blew my mind!! Finally a soup, salad, sandwich place around the Pik/Pine Corridor besides Oddfellows!! (And I must say, the space is just as beautiful but the food is even better!!)