By the end of July, Makini Howell will have taken eating vegan in Seattle in yet another new direction: to the sweet shop.
“It will show that there is a lot to being vegan,” Howell said in a chat with CHS following her weekend of red, white, and blue vegan BBQ, an annual tradition at her 15th Ave E cafe that didn’t get put aside despite a busy schedule and construction to prepare for the opening of Sugar Plum planned for the end of the month. “It will be a sweet little sweet shop.” And, yup, it will be vegan.
CHS first told you about Howell’s plans to transform her 15th Ave E cafe into a vegan sweet shop last fall. She utilized community financing and her strong reputation to push a brand new concept forward and reinvent her part of the 15th Ave E food and drink scene.
“People like us. They know we offer a quality product. We’ve been vegan an in Seattle for so long,” Howell told CHS this week.
When it opens in, Howell said to expect “that old school feel of a candy shop” with gluten free, vegan, and dietarily sensitive wonders. “I want it to be an exciting spot to come have a treat. Imagine amazing, big chocolate chip cookies,” Howell told us last fall. You’ll find the aforementioned cookies, bars, brownies, donuts, sweets, soft-serve and more.
As she prepare to open, Howell said she also is looking to help 15th Ave capture some more of the energy that her Plum restaurant on 12th Ave has been part of in Pike/Pine. “The Pike/Pine corridor exploded,” she said. “It will be good to have more of that come up here.”
Howell said she has been approached with offers to “do more in Pike/Pine” but that she’s sensitive to diluting her creations that have won her all-star vegan status. “I don’t want to saturate the market,” she said.
But Howell did say she believes Sugar Plum will be a test case that shows that the market for vegan food and drink has matured and that concepts like a sweet shop will thrive. She also said there are clearly more new directions for her to take.
Sugar Plum is slated to open in two to three weeks at 324 15th Ave E. Check out plumbistro.com for more information.
- There’s a big opening this week as Chop Shop, the centerpiece of the Chophouse Row development from Ericka Burke of Volunteer Park Cafe, debuts on 11th Ave.
- The days leading up to the 4th of July were unusually busy with food+drink announcements:
- Kedai Makan is taking over the old La Bete space.
- Little Uncle will open Big Uncle on its home block of E Madison.
- Mighty-O Donuts will open at 12th and Madison as High 5 Pie is moving.
- Ernest Loves Agnes will be the name of the new joint taking over the old Kingfish Cafe space.
- CHS got abnormally excited when we saw a filing with DPD indicating plans to “change use of existing commercial building from retail to restaurant” at beer-soaked Chuck’s CD. Owner Chuck Shin told us to settle down. The permit is only about achieving zoning requirements to increase the legal capacity of the always packed beer hall.
- A new Seattle “Passport Program” promotion has come to the city offering “drink specials at 42 of Seattle’s favorite bars, distilleries, restaurants and breweries” in the form of a “locally curated, pocket-sized passport.” The passport costs $20 and is good through Labor Day. Hill participating venues include Stout, Poquitos, Quinn’s, Barrio, Barca, Omega Ouzeri, Nue, and Saint John’s.
- Across from the Paramount, chefrepreneur Tom Douglas has opened his Carlile Room, the 854th restaurant in the T-Doug Empire. CHS reported here on Douglas’s pledge not to open another restaurant on Capitol Hill… ever.
- We don’t typically read it for the articles but Playboy’s “top craft breweries in Seattle” includes the Central District’s Standard Brewing. CHS wrote about Standard’s expansion on Jackson here.
- Food and Wine’s list of “best gluten-free brunches in Seattle” includes a lot of Capitol Hill destinations including Juice Box, Oddfellows, Tallulah’s, Ba Bar, and Cafe Presse.
- The Seattle Times on Cafe Pettirosso: “$2 Rainier and $5 bubbly are what you should be drinking anyway”
- Seattle Met on Gnocchi Bar: “Cheap, Terrific, Perfectly Sauced.” Just like your mom.
- Quinn’s owner and Seattle burger concept creator Scott Staples has opened a burger joint in Redmond.
- The Seattle Eagle turns 35.
- Liquor permit paperwork indicates The Cuff is back fully in the hands of the Fields family after new partners were being lined up earlier this year.
- Congratulations to the always colorful Ali Ghambari of Cherry Street Coffee:
|This week’s CHS food+drink advertiser directory|