Kukai Ramen and Izakaya Capitol Hill, the third of the Japanese-born restaurants to open in the Pacific Northwest and part of what the company’s founders hope will be many more in North America, debuted over the weekend and is continuing reservation-only service through the rest of the week leading up to a full-on opening Thursday.
Jessmin Lau, a co-owner of the company leading Kukai’s North American expansion, tells CHS what you’ll want to experience at the ramen bar are the noodles, of course — but especially with the Kukai broth made of roasted bones for a fuller, richer meaty flavor.
The Kukai space is part of the new construction in the Three20 Apartments building at 320 E Pine. Wood staves evoking Japanese Temples — or maybe chopsticks — fill the walls while large murals of Japanese deities watch over the slurping in front of the open kitchen.
CHS reported on the Seattle plans for Kookai (as the chain of 20+ restaurants is known in Japan) last September. Kukai Capitol Hill joins Canadian-born Suika which opened up E Pine in December as dedicated izakaya providers in the neighborhood. Meanwhile, ramen offerings also include Broadway’s Samurai Noodle and Kaisho — the Boom Noodle replacement at 12th and Pike. Meanwhile, Trove’s “fourplex” of concepts also includes a noodle bar.
Kukai Ramen and Izakaya is open by reservation only up to Thursday’s opening. You can find it at 320 E Pine. Hours will be 11 AM to 2:30 PM and 5 to 9:30 PM Monday through Thursday, and 11 AM to 10 PM Friday through Sunday. Learn more at kukai-ramen.com.
Capitol Hill food+drink notes
- We’ve been teased by crowdfunding concepts before with plans to “open on Capitol Hill.” But this one based on “Delicious Pastries, Cute Fashion and Nerd Culture” is worth hyping:
At Please Maid Cafe we will strive to create a community space for otaku culture to thrive in Seattle. We plan to host a variety of events focused on creating this inclusive community, among which will be manga swaps, anime screenings, gaming tournaments and cosplay discussion and fabrication events.
The project is still on a hunt for a location but, yup, is looking “in the Capitol Hill and International District neighborhoods.” You can support the Please Maid Cafe cause here via Indiegogo.
- Speaking of crowdfunding teases, Capitol Hill won’t be getting a cat cafe.
- But the area is, indeed, getting chicken and waffles. Capitol Hill will soon be surrounded. First, CHS broke the news that Nate’s Wings and Waffles will open a new, larger, full bar-sporting location near 12th and Jefferson. Then came word that the former Catfish Corner is being reawakened by Pike/Pine entrepreneur Marcus Lalario for his Fat’s Fried Chicken and Waffles project.
— Nate Robinson (@nate_robinson) April 23, 2015
- Rachel’s Ginger Beer Capitol Hill will open soon… June 1st, Eater says. CHS wrote here about Rachel’s homecoming to Capitol Hill inside the 12th Ave Arts project.
- That “hip Pike/Pine-style makeover” at The Sorrento and The Hunt Room CHS reported on last year? It’s ready.
- “12 Under 12: Best Food On A Dime For Seattle U Students”
- Cone and Steiner’s 19th Ave E location has ditched some of the sundries in favor of more seating.
- Happy two years, Capitol Hill Bakery Nouveau.
- Mark your calendar: Thursdays is the 2015 Dining Out for Life benefitting Lifelong.
- “This is one of the (I’d probably say the) most anticipated bar openings in Seattle this year. How excited are you for Good Citizen to be open?”
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