Capitol Hill’s king of pot adds the draw of clean cannabis and new E Olive Way shop

Uncle Ike’s Ian Eisenberg (Image: CHS)

Capitol Hill and the Central District’s top provider of pot, Uncle Ike’s has begun randomized pesticide testing on products directly from its shelves in an effort to incentivize vendors to provide clean cannabis and push the state to act.

The program, called Ike’s OK, started in October with five products and will continue testing five more products each month indefinitely as a way of regulating a market that is under very little government supervision. The state only requires potency testing certificates of analysis with each product, but no similar documentation for pesticide testing.

For Tobias Coughlin-Bogue, a journalist who has written extensively on pesticide use in pot, the legalization of recreational marijuana, which came in December 2012, was just the first step toward it becoming a safe consumer good.

“It’s not complicated, it’s not like we did any real wizardry,” said Coughlin-Bogue, who helped develop the program. “It’s just a basic safeguard, but it’s one that we should have had four years ago.”

Uncle Ike’s is one of a handful of companies in the retail pot business but its sales outstrip competitors by a long shot. And soon, even more Capitol Hill pot will come through Uncle Ike’s as the chain prepares to open a new location on E Olive Way. Continue reading

E Olive Way fostering two growing Capitol Hill industries — legal pot… and kids

The International Montessori Academy’s Yimin Chen

E Olive Way has a little something for everyone. For parents in search of a multilingual education for their young children, starting this month, the curving street is now home to a new International Montessori Academy.

Work has completed to transform a new-era but unsuccessful Chinese restaurant and the  Bellevue-based provider of Mandarin Chinese, French, or Spanish language immersion and Montessori education for elementary school-age children is set to fully open this month, school founder Yimin Chen tells CHS.

“The construction delay set us back a little bit,” Chen said. “Some families had to withdraw because of the delay.” But the typical City of Seattle permit issues and contractor scheduling challenges have not dampened demand. There has been a small group of day care kids putting the newly re-built out space through its spaces. Soon, daily classes will begin. Continue reading

The Crescent, under new ownership, ready for another 70 years on Capitol Hill

Capitol Hill’s last great dive bar has new owners but its vow to never, ever change remains the same.

Brothers Joe Martin, Steve Smith, and David Munden are set to step back in to run The Crescent, the bar their father helped create decades ago on E Olive Way.

“As long as I breathe this air, it will never change,” Martin tells CHS. Continue reading

CHS Pics | Amid a jelly’s tentacles, The Reef’s colorful new mural

(Image: CHS)

The Seattle and statewide marijuana retail and edible industries are pushing back on an out of the blue move by the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board that could bring the end of candy-like pot edibles in the state in 2019 because, officials say, the colorful sweets are too appealing to children.

The Stranger reports that the Washington CannaBusiness Association, the Cannabis Alliance, and the Cannabis Organization of Retail Establishments have come out against the planned change in policy that would end the legal production of “hard candy (of any style, shape or size), tarts, fruit chews, colorful chocolates, jellies and any gummy type products.”

Hopefully ocean blues and jellyfish purples don’t appeal too much to children. Continue reading

Carmelo’s Tacos a silver lining of taco goodness inside Capitol Hill’s Hillcrest Market

Carmelo Gaspar is at the center of things on Summit Ave E

Tucked inside the Hillcrest Market is Capitol Hill’s newest culinary delight from south of the border. Serving up fresh salsas, homemade tortillas, tender meat, and succulent cactus leaves, Carmelo’s is bringing the flavors of Mexico City to Seattle, one taco at a time.

This family owned and operated business is staffed by four employees, including the owner Carmelo Gaspar, who was slicing asada when CHS went for a visit. Carmelo’s manager Miguel Cruz says they worked close by and knew the owner of the store. “We saw the teriyaki guy was out, so we started talking to the owner and we got an opportunity to start,” he said. Continue reading

Surprise closure adds to the secrets at Capitol Hill’s By the Pound — UPDATE

Capitol Hill’s By the Pound with its hidden warren of bars behind a deli counter was created with secrets in mind. The biggest one right now after only eight months of business at the E Olive Way food + drink venture is why it suddenly shut down this summer for what ownership says is a temporary closure.

“They aren’t closed permanently, just making some updates to the venue based on feedback from the community of local customers to better serve,” a rep tells CHS about the shutdown. “They are excited to reopen as quickly as possible with some new aspects to the venue.” Continue reading

Replacing The Saint, Dacha Diner bringing ‘Eastern European cuisine with Jewish fare’ to Capitol Hill

It seems the hot pink building on the corner of E Olive Way and Bellevue is destined for a new paint job. What was formerly The Saint, a Mexican-style bar that was painted a shade called “bougainvillea pink,” has changed ownership and will become the Dacha Diner, a family-operated business striving to give Capitol Hill a taste of east European-style cuisine and Jewish fare.

“Italian food and French food has gotten a lot of play around here,” said Joe Heffernan. “The really humble and hardy food of Eastern Europe — We just saw that it wasn’t really being represented here.”

Continue reading

Another Capitol Hill sale means the (happy) end of The Saint on E Olive Way

Everything is for sale. After a decade on E Olive Way, The Saint has shuttered after a sale of the restaurant to new owners.

“I feel really good passing the baton to them,” Saint owner Quentin Ertel tells CHS. “They are good people. They’re local, they’re super cool, I would classify them as solid old school Capitol Hill folk.”

Ertel said he plans to let the new owners tell their own story about what is coming next for the wedge-shaped space along E Olive Way that used to be a Wing Dome before becoming the home for tacos and “tequila salvation.” Continue reading

Changes on Denny Way and Capitol Hill hoped to make the 8 less late

Delayed work — including new parking restrictions and expanded bus stops on Capitol Hill — to make the heavily-used but notoriously behind schedule Metro Route 8 line more dependable is expected to be wrapped up this week.

SDOT announced the construction update Monday on the most significant piece of the street puzzle — lane changes on Denny Way: Continue reading

Perched on Capitol Hill’s western slope, The Reef brings pot to E Olive Way

Bud, oils and pre-rolled joints were everywhere as The Reef, Capitol Hill’s newest cannabis retailer, opened the doors to its new location for a preview Thursday night.

With its first shop opened in Bremerton three years ago, The Reef’s new storefront takes full advantage of its perch on Capitol Hill at a busy intersection where its predecessor pizza joint and its notorious flashing sign served as a de facto western gate to the neighborhood. With generous amounts of light coming in through windows spanning the width of the storefront, the new location will give Capitol Hill residents a convenient option for their cannabis-related needs.

John Ueding, general manager of The Reef’s Capitol Hill location, explained that the company wants to invest in the community and explore options to work with and support local charity organizations.

“The owners are intent on giving back as much as we can,” Ueding said. “Being local Seattle guys, we really want to be involved in the community.” Continue reading