Modern Steep, born Remedy Teas, to close after decade on 15th Ave E

15th Ave E is about to lose a longtime part of its cafe scene. Modern Steep, born a decade ago as Remedy Teas, will close its 15th Ave E cafe and tea chop later this month to focus on its online business.

Changing Capitol Hill demographics, expensive equipment upgrades, and a long building construction project that left many customers wondering if the cafe was open all contributed. But the opportunity to grown the company’s online business is at the core of the decision to leave Capitol Hill, owner Christopher Glenn tells CHS.

“With rising labor costs, we’re not growing fast enough,” Glenn said, “All that said, we have been seeing an increase in traffic on our website. We have grown that side of our business. These are changing times, of course.”

The 15th Ave cafe is slated to wrap up business on August 26th, the company announced:

Thanks again for your love and support. We look forward to seeing and hearing from you as we move forward, albeit in a slightly different fashion. From now through August 26th, our physical shop will be open 11am – 6pm, Monday through Saturday. We hope to see you for a cup of tea, a smile and a hug.

Continue reading

First look inside Redhook’s Capitol Hill Brewlab

Though his vats and filters are squished tightly into a Pike/Pine auto row-era building transformed into a 260-unit apartment building, Nick Crandall tells CHS there are no compromises when it comes to making beer in the new Redhook Brewlab.

“You can definitely smell when I’m brewing,” the project’s brewer said Thursday night as the new small-batch brewery and pub from the big beer brand held parties for media and the Puget Sound beer industry. More parties will follow over the next few days. The Redhook Brewlab opens officially to the public on August 17th. Continue reading

Stumptown E Pine set for closure

(Images: Stumptown)


Last summer, the Big Coffee(tm)-owned indie chain stopped roasting beans on 12th Ave. Later this summer, Stumptown will close its E Pine cafe to focus on its remaining Capitol Hill location.

The coffee industry-focused folks at Sprudge confirmed the news sent to CHS Tuesday morning by employees and customers that August 20th will be the final day for the E Pine cafe that neighbors Rudy’s and the Capitol Loans pawn shop. Sprudge reports that a company spokesperson tells them Stumptown “made the painful, yet considered decision to focus our efforts on our 12th Street cafe and our operations within the Seattle market.”

Stumptown became a wholly owned subsidiary of Peets Coffee and Tea in 2015 after the coffee chain obtained a partial ownership in 2011.

Queer/Bar set to replace Purr in Pike/Pine

Guild Seattle’s Burgess speaks about how the ownership group bucked bad trends during a 2015 release event for a report on wage theft and paid sick law violations (Image: CHS)

How do you replace a Montlake-bound Capitol Hill gay bar? With a Queer/Bar.

Here is the announcement on the new 11th Ave venture from one of the partners behind the Lost Lake family of businesses about the upcoming Pike/Pine hangout:

 In the wake of rumors of LGBTQIA businesses leaving the traditionally gay neighborhood of Seattle, a new-to-the-scene QUEER/BAR announces its plans to open in the coming weeks. QUEER/BAR intends to foster an inclusive gathering space for the LGBTQIA community and strives to have a team, ownership, and clientele reflect the diversity of the city, while retaining Capitol Hill’s foothold of being the premiere arts and queer neighborhood.

Joey Burgess, a partner at nearby Grim’s and part of Guild Seattle, the group behind Lost Lake Cafe, The Comet, and three Big Mario’s locations across Seattle, says he is excited to “finally be executing a project that marries his love for social activism and his passion for running bars and restaurants.”

“He is proud to own and offer a space that will serve his fellow LGBTQIA community,” the announcement of the new bar reads.

Citing a surge in Pike/Pine rent, Purr closed in July after more than 10 years on 11th Ave and has announced it will soon reopen in Montlake.

Queer/Bar is expected to open by “fall” and is lining up to be a busy place:

QUEER/BAR will make its mark by bringing together local artists, performers, and non-profits to create a community space for all things queer. The calendar of events will cover the spectrum from day and night. The space plans to launch a Queer/Chef series that focuses on the culinary talents of LGBTQIA chefs and Queer/Hall which will serve as venue for queer-focused issues in politics, activism, and community driven forums.  Additionally, Queer/Bingo, Queer/Dance nights, and local Queer/Art performances, including drag shows, are on the docket. Of course, Queer/Bar will fit right into its neighborhood nightlife by offering a full bar, plenty of music, dinner, and brunch.  The space will be designed by Burgess’ husband and partner, Murf Hall, a local designer at a large retailer that is home-based in Seattle, WA. Burgess says, “It’s been 12 years of planning, scrapping, and conceptualizing amongst friends and colleagues.  I’m over the moon to launch in a neighborhood that has felt like home for years.”

Burgess, described as an “LGBTQIA advocate” in the Queer/Bar news release, serves on the boards of Three Dollar Bill Cinema and Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce.

Capitol Hill gay bar Purr’s new home? Montlake

Capitol Hill is down one gay bar. Purr’s July “going away” party included an announcement of its surprising new home neighborhood…

Montlake.

Seattle Gay Scene has the scoop:

After nearly a 12 year run on Capitol Hill’s 11th Avenue between Pike and Pine Streets, Purr Cocktail Lounge will be packing up the video screens and vodka bottles for a new location in…Seattle’s Montlake neighborhood. That was the surprise announcement at Wednesday night’s “Purr Going Away Party” where owner Barbie Roberts thanked her regulars and staff for a great run at the 11th Avenue location but then made the announcement that everyone had been waiting to hear…where was Purr moving to? While most expected that the new location would be either on Capitol Hill, Seattle’s primary LGBTQ neighborhood or at least adjacent to the ‘hood, no one expected to hear “Montlake” as the new location.

Owner Barbie Roberts has said the move is an economic one with the more-than-a-decade-old lounge escaping soaring Pike/Pine rents. A former employee of Manray and The Wildrose, Roberts opened Purr in 2006 in the former home of the Bad JuJu lounge. In 2011, CHS talked with her about the features of a successful gay bar and surviving the changes of growth in Pike/Pine.

While Purr’s adventure off the Hill will bring more affordable rent and more than a few interesting rides on the 43, we’re sure, its new home will also come with some economic challenges. The Montlake Pub closed in the space after a rocky year of business — it closed so abruptly, CHS never had the opportunity to run a post on the new restaurant last spring. Before the pub, the Traveler family of neighborhood grills gave 24th Ave E a run after taking over for longtime favorite the Montlake Pub in 2014. 24th Ave and Montlake, meanwhile, are set for major changes with a new 520 lid and bridge work slated to completely overhaul the road network at the key interchange. Meanwhile, the approach from the north to the area is also planned for major changes in future stages of the 23rd Ave corridor “road diet.”

No opening date for Montlake Purr has been announced.

You can keep track of things on Purr’s Facebook page.

 

Capitol Hill Community Post | Redhook Brewlab to Open in Capitol Hill August 17

From Redhook Brewlab

(Image: Redhook)

Redhook Brewery is opening the doors of its new brewery and pub, called Redhook Brewlab, in the Pike Motorworks Building at 714 E. Pike Street in Capitol Hill on August 17, 2017.

A Grand Opening Party with Redhook’s radio partner KEXP will take place on August 17 from 3:00 to 10:00 p.m., with live music and a one-of-a-kind taplist featuring 16 collaboration beers brewed with some of Redhook’s friends in the industry.

The Beer

Redhook Brewlab will feature 16 taps of rotating small-batch beers, brewed on site by Redhook Head Brewer Nick Crandall, an eight-year brewing veteran who has spent his time at Redhook focused on innovation and new beer development, including two pub-favorite IPAs in Redhook’s line-up, the reformulated Big Ballard Imperial IPA and the hazy Bicoastal IPA.  Continue reading

With new location in works, Purr plans 11th Ave ‘Going Away Party’

The rumors have become fact — or, at least, a going away party.

Purr has announced a July 19th celebration to say goodbye to its longtime 11th Ave home… and ownership says details on a new location for the Pike/Pine gay bar could be coming soon.

And the Party is just beginning…… Please join us for our “Going Away Party” on Wednesday July 19th. as we say goodbye to our “current” location. We’ve been proud to serve you here on 11th Ave for 12 strong years, and will continue to do so in our “new location”. Stay tuned for additional news as we work on solidifying details of our new home. Hope to see you all there!

Owner Barbie Roberts tells Seattle Gay Scene the move is simple economics:

Barbie also stressed to us that she’s not leaving the current location out of any bad feelings or due to the building being torn down. It’s simply the end of her current lease and she decided not to continue at that location due to the rent hike she would face under a new lease. It’s Economics 101, folks…gentrification leads to property values going up, followed by a big jump in rents which is something that effects both individuals in apartments as well as small business owners in commercial locations.

The Purr exit will leave a new space along 11th Ave without a tenant just as another moves in. In May, CHS reported that the Rain City Fit gym would soon neighbor Purr in the location left empty when kink retailer The Crypt shuttered in 2015.

A former employee of Manray and The Wildrose, Roberts opened Purr in 2006 in the former home of the Bad JuJu lounge. In 2011, CHS talked with her about the features of a successful gay bar and surviving the changes of growth in Pike/Pine.

As for where Purr, one of the Hill’s last remaining dedicated gay bars, lands next, stay tuned.

 

The busiest 80 square feet on Broadway makes room for expansive Kosmic Koffee

(Image: Kosmic Koffee)

The busiest 80 square feet of cafe space on Broadway is back in action. And entrepreneur Anthony Davis has plans to cram even more into the little coffee shack in the midst of the hustle and bustle on Capitol Hill’s main drag.

Kosmic Koffee debuted for a sneak peek over Pride weekend marking yet another incarnation for the coffee shack at the corner of Broadway and Harrison. Regular hours are coming soon.

“We were driving down Broadway and saw the stand. It was a two hour decision process after I saw the sign,” Davis tells CHS about the “go go” nature of his latest venture. Davis also is part of Anslinger Capital, an “emerging market fund, focused on the legal cannabis market,” and venture capital concern Monition Partners. With those kinds of entrepreneurial roots, you can expect more from Kosmic than cups of coffee.

“I have a farm with chickens so I’m also selling farm fresh eggs,” Davis said. He’s already got a brand for the eggs thought up: Just Got Laid.

More unusual menu items are to come. Continue reading

Here’s what’s next for the old Charlie’s on Broadway space

The old Charlie’s (Image: CHS)

Connecting the dots on our report from April that yet another minute clinic-style health care business was coming to Broadway, the restaurant space CityMD will be moving into and turning into an outpatient facility on Capitol Hill’s main drag is none other than the longtime home of Charlie’s.

Company officials have yet to confirm the project but people familiar with the plans say the CHI Franciscan Health-backed venture will open the new office after an overhaul of the old restaurant.

CHS reported in April that CityMD was planning a project for the property that includes the Broadway Alley retail mall.

Charlie’s on Broadway closed — again — in January some 40 years after its birth.

Capitol Coffee Works debuts on E Pike

The “caffeine revolutionaries” have arrived. Capitol Coffee Works, the newest expansion in the Seattle Coffee Works family, is ready to open on E Pike.

Designed by Atelier Drome architects, co-founder Pipo Bui told CHS the small 20-foot by 40-foot space will be about “serious coffee” and a place to drink and talk about the brews. “This is not going to be like a sandwich place,” she said. “It’s going to require a level of sophistication from Coffee Works to make it happen.”

The space was previously the condo sales office for First Hill’s Luma project.

You can learn more at facebook.com/CapitolCoffeeWorks.