Fat’s Fried Chicken and Waffles to ‘keep the soul’ at MLK and Cherry

The next man to inherit the corner has mad respect for the legacy of soul at MLK and Cherry.

“I ate at Catfish Corner all the time,” Marcus Lalario tells CHS. “To be able to get that spot means more to me than anything else about the new venture.”

Later this year, Lalario will open Fat’s Fried Chicken and Waffles in the space left empty after the much-loved soul food joint suddenly closed last summer following 30 years of fried goodness and a black-owned business at the corner.

(Image: Catfish Corner)

(Image: Catfish Corner)

“With all my spaces, I try to keep a little bit of the past in there,” Lalario said. Expect plenty of Old Seattle nostalgia when Fat’s opens this summer.

You will also find “straightup Southern” with “fried thighs and drumsticks” and, yes, waffles and biscuits from Patrick Dours, “a New Orleans native who has cooked at the Doe Bay and Rosario resorts on Orcas Island,” Seattle Met reports as it broke the news on the new project. Lalario, known for his entrepreneurial nightlife and food and drink investments, said he’s not sure, yet, on whether he’ll pursue a liquor license for Fat’s. By August, Lalario expects Fat’s to be open for dinner hours from around 4 to 9 PM with brunch and then breakfast hours (and “breakfast all the time” options) following. Continue reading

Capitol Hill food+drink | Nate’s Wings and Waffles coming to 12th and Jefferson


(Images: Nate’s via Facebook)

Yes, the former Kingfish Cafe will soon reopen as a Pike/Pine-powered Italian joint, the Catfish Corner is no more, and Philly Fevre has moved aside, but there’s hope for Seattle’s inner city soul food, yet. Ms. Helen is coming back to 23rd and Union.

And Nate’s Wings and Waffles is coming to 12th and Jefferson.

“The new shop — it’s a lot bigger,” owner Darren McGill tells CHS of the former Ethiopian restaurant at 1224 E Jefferson being ripped apart in anticipation of a fall opening of the new chicken and waffle joint. “We’ll have an extended menu and a full bar.” Continue reading

‘The Starbucks of health care’ working to upend the industry at 23rd and Jackson

Maxine Frazier loves her new doctor. The Central District resident started going to Iora Primary Care a few months ago, and it’s safe to say she wouldn’t go back to a traditional doctor’s office.

“This is the best thing I ever heard of,” she said.

Iora is a local branch of a growing national health provider. The fast-growing company has 12 offices across the country, with plans to open another 10 or 11 within a year, according to Kathleen Haley, senior director of marketing and communications for the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based company.

Locally, there’s an office in Shoreline, and another at 23rd and Jackson in the Central District.

Iora is looking to upend the typical fee-for-service health care model, and instead partners with companies or health insurers to offer services based on a more regular schedule. In general, the insurer pays Iora a monthly fee for each member, which allows the patient to visit the office as much, or as little as they need. Visits end up lasting longer than a usual doctor’s visit, with one-hour blocks of time set aside for each patient. The New York Times just called it “a kind of Starbucks for health care.”

“We’re just restoring humanity to health care. That’s it,” quipped Dr. Jay Mathur, a Central District Iora physician CHS spoke with. Continue reading

Seattle looks to ‘improve community dialogue on design review’ — Meanwhile, MLK/Union 4-story faces the board

(Image: The Madrona Company)

(Images: The Madrona Company)

Screen Shot 2015-04-07 at 3.11.53 PMCHS has covered quite a few design reviews. Which means we’ve seen quite a lot of frustrated citizenry. The relationship between the design review board volunteers and the community members who come out to speak up on a neighborhood project was, perhaps, summed up best by this quote from a 2010 review of the Broadway building that is today known as The Lyric.

“You’re complaining in the wrong format.”

The City of Seattle’s Department of Planning and Development is seeking to change that relationship with an effort to change the review program.

The overhaul has three stated goals:

  • Identify options to make the design review process more efficient and accessible
  • Improve community dialogue on design review
  • Identify new and emerging technologies for more effective community engagement

We imagine any of you who have attended a review might have a bit to say about those. Unsurprisingly, there’s a survey. More on the design review improvements, below.

First, you can check out the design review process as it stands today with a session Wednesday night that could be the final step for a project to change the empty lot used as a community garden at MLK and Union into a “a 4-story structure containing 41 apartment units above 6,091 sq. ft. of commercial space.” Continue reading

Ms. Helen, Africatown, and Black Wall Street: Visions for the future of 23rd and Union

(Images: Jeremy Hurd-McKenney for CHS)

With major elements like a Public Development Authority or a land trust still on the drawing board, community members met with Africatown Seattle and the Union Street Business Association Saturday to talk about the future of 23rd and Union and landowner Tom Bangasser’s still-for-sale Midtown Center block. There was one solid announcement about the future of the property, however.

Bangasser introduced longtime community members Helen Coleman and her daughter, Jesdarnel “Squirt” Henton. The ladies were there to provide lunch and context for the changes at 23rd and Union and to announce that a lease for Ms. Helen’s Soul Food Bistro had been finalized with Bangasser.

Ms. Helen said the legacy of the Central District is “all about community and how you define home. I’m glad to have this privilege to come out of retirement to get what we need back in this community.” Ms. Helen and Henton spoke of the four generations of family the business would be representing. “Not only does it benefit my family, but it benefits my family,” Henton said, gesturing to the audience. “Ya’ll understand me, right?” Continue reading

In 701 Coffee, 23rd Ave gets new, community oriented coffee house

A good coffee shop can grow to be a big part of a community.The Central District has a new coffee house at the corner of 23rd and Cherry. And its owners and longtime Central District residents, Sara and Rachel Brereton, have community-building hopes for 701 Coffee.

“There’s a lot of action going on around here, but there’s not really a lot of places for people to go,” Sara tells CHS.

701 Coffee opened in late March with a two-year lease following a string of businesses ranging from corner stores to a Metro PCS that have cycled in and out of the space at 23rd and Cherry over the years. Despite the space being at a heavily trafficked intersection and close to major neighborhood institutions such as Garfield High School and the community center, nothing’s lasted for long.

“I think it [the shop] will turn a dead corner into a thriving corner,” said Sara. Continue reading

CHS Pics | Second annual Jackson Street Jazz Walk

Alex Dugdale at Casa Latina (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Alex Dugdale at Casa Latina (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

For such an out-of-the-way place, Seattle has had a remarkable jazz history. The action began as early as 1918, when Lillian Smith’s jazz band played at Washington Hall. It kept going strong all through Prohibition, as an authentic black jazz scene developed around the hub of Jackson Street and Twelfth Avenue. Even Jelly Roll Morton stopped off to play in the district, in 1920; he later wrote a rag, “Seattle Hunch,” to commemorate his visit. – Jackson Street After Hours: The Roots of Jazz in Seattle by Paul de Barros

Outside Pratt Fine Arts Center

Outside Pratt Fine Arts Center

Saturday, the second annual Jackson Street Jazz Walk honored the street’s legacy and filled spaces up and down this edge of the Central District with music and performance.

Organized by the Jackson Commons community group, the free event is still fighting for attention at the citywide (CHS told you about it here) level but neighbors got excellent seats for acts like Industrial Revelation, Tubaluba, Congress, Syrinx Effect, Cornish Jazz, and Gail Pettis performing in a mix of community venues including Casa Latina, Wonder Cafe, Cheeky Cafe, and the Pratt Fine Arts Center.

You can learn more about this year’s performers and how to get involved in the event at jazzwalk.org.

Judges, officials vow to reduce county’s youth detentions


The current youth detention center from above.

King County judges will lock up fewer youths for minor offenses and elected officials are promising to bolster diversion programs as part of a plan announced Tuesday to address inherent racism in the county’s juvenile justice system.

King County Executive Dow Constantine joined King County Judge Susan Craighead to announce the plan as the county faces ongoing efforts by activists and community groups to stop the replacement of the aging youth detention center at 12th and Alder.

“Racial disparity has no place in our justice system here in King County, especially not in systems responsible for the well-being of our youth,” Constantine said.

Under the new initiative, judges would avoid ordering detention for low-level “status” offenses, like skipping school. County judges have also pledged to cut in half the number of youths detained for violating terms of their probation and to reduce detention times. Last year, there were 467 admissions to youth detention for probation violations — 42% of those were for black youths.

In order to divert those youths away from detention, County Council members plan to invest $4.3 million in job programs and expanded options for diversion.

Constantine also announced the county would cut 32 beds from the planned Children and Family Justice Center. The current 12th and Alder facility has 212 beds. The new voter-approved center was supposed to have 144 beds, which has now been reduced to 112. Officials said the true maximum capacity will be closer to 80. Continue reading

CHS Pics | A-Maze Balls — inside Smash Putt 23rd and Union

(Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

(Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Put your ball in the start point and turn the maze to guide your ball and achieve your score.

Like so many great games, this is a game of finesse.

Those are the “special rules” for A-maze Balls, hole #8 at the 2015 season of Smash Putt mini-golf at 23 and Union.

They are also words to live by.

CHS told you last week about the opening tee-off at the pop-up of the “MEGA Miniature Golf Apocalypse” in the old post office space at 23rd and Union. Here’s a look inside.

Tickets for the coming Friday and Saturday night are mostly sold out but you’ll find plenty of tee times on Sunday. Or, if you like, you can just hang out in the clubhouse sipping your Arnold Palmer.

Smash Putt is a CHS advertiser and is 21+ only. You can learn more at smashputt.com. More pictures, below.IMG_7927 Continue reading

CHS Pics | Standard Brewing celebrates two years of award-winning beer at 25th and Jackson

Justin Gerardy, center holding the mash paddle, with Darren Archer, left, and  Dustin Scott, right (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Justin Gerardy, center holding the mash paddle, with Darren Archer, left, and Dustin Scott, right (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Coffee isn’t the only manufacturing industry left in Central Seattle. We also make fantastic beer. The Central District’s Standard Brewing celebrated its second anniversary at 25th and Jackson last Friday. Sorry, but its batch of 2nd Anniversary Ale is long gone.

In 2013, we talked with founder and CD resident Justin Gerardy as he made the big leap from homebrew to pro in a small-batch brewery. It’s been a busy time since:

It’s been 24 months since quietly opening the door at 25th and Jackson St with 8 taps and about 80 square feet of service area. Since then, we’ve expanded to 13 taps, doubled the space for folks to sit and drink, won a few awards, brewed over 60 different recipes, and shared a lot of good times with the neighborhood.

It’s an orbit newly opened 12th Ave brewery Outer Planet and coming soon E Union project Optimism Brewing would be happy to achieve. Hopefully, Anheuser-Busch InBev doesn’t notice.

In the meantime, watch for Standard beer night dinners at Capitol Hill’s Cafe Barjot.

Standard Brewing is located at 2504 S Jackson. Learn more at standardbrew.com.