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Capitol Hill food+drink | Cantinetta duo bringing El Correo to 12th Ave

Current home to several Capitol Hill microhousing residents, future home of El Correo (Image: CHS)

Current home to several Capitol Hill microhousing residents, future home of El Correo (Image: CHS)

Coinciding with its cascading waves of boom-like apartment development, Capitol Hill has also, you’re sure to have noticed, welcomed a continuing surge of new restaurant and bar investment. Many watch for harbingers of a bubble ready to pop. CHS watches other signs — like the long-anticipated arrivals of the city’s food and drink veterans on these hotly contested food+drink shores. While big players dealing into the neighborhood might encourage the bubble poppers, there are still successful Seattle restauranteurs apparently lining up to create their first venture on Capitol Hill.

Two of these partners have taken their route to Capitol Hill with a stop in Madison Valley — just to get acclimated, we’re sure. CHS has learned that Trevor Greenwood and Wade Moller, the duo behind Wallingford-born Cantinetta and the Madison Valley sibling Bar Cantinetta, are climbing onto Capitol Hill with a new project under construction on 12th Ave.

A project being called El Correo is being built in the 12th Ave microhousing development from Melrose Market developer Scott Shapiro under construction above the burial grounds for the old Capitol Hill Market.

Greenwood outside Bar Cantinetta before its summer 2013 opening (Image: Bar Cantinetta via Facebook)

Greenwood outside Bar Cantinetta before its summer 2013 opening (Image: Bar Cantinetta via Facebook)

The project joins coming-soon nano-brewery Outer Planet as food and drink ventures finding homes within 12th Ave microhousing projects. The also coming-soon 12th Ave Arts building will bring new food options to the street. U:Don Fresh Noodle Station will be part of the complex when the building opens this fall.

Details on the around-1,700 square-foot restaurant project are slim. With Bar Cantinetta, Greenwood and Moller created a well-regarded, neighborhood bistro:

It’s easy to heap praise on special-occasion restaurants that pamper and impress us. And we love discovering a place that’s cheap, yet makes craveable food. But the depth and breadth of Seattle’s restaurant scene is best judged by the quality of our everyday bistros, our corner eateries, the places we frequent so often we sometimes don’t give them quite enough thought. The new Bar Cantinetta, which opened in Madison Valley in late August—the small sibling of the Cantinettas in Bellevue and Wallingford—is a perfect example; every dish sounds (and, you later find, tastes) so good on the concise Italian menu, the service is expert and easy to engage, the small, cozy room is comfortable and superbly lit, and the price points are in that sweet spot—not cheap, but not expensive.

We’ll update when we hear back from the partners about their new Capitol Hill project. If you’re looking for clues, El Correo is the name of the “the leading daily newspaper in Bilbao and the Basque Country of northern Spain.”

¡On egin!

Capitol Hill food+drink notes

  • (Image: Oma Bap)

    (Image: Oma Bap)

    Oma Bap, the quick but not fast food Korean joint that fled Bellevue’s high rents for… our high rents, is now open at 12th and Cherry across from Seattle U.

  • The problems around failed E Olive Way nightclub The Social haven’t been completely put to rest, yet. Turns out, the partnership behind the club was sued by its former landlords for unpaid rent. In a $60,000+ default judgement issued earlier this summer, the partners were ordered to pay back the building owners for the unpaid portion of the lease. Legal proceedings continue as the partners sort out who owes what after the club folded in spring 2013.
  • We talked above about veteran ventures moving onto Capitol Hill. How about Hill-born exports? There is now a Cone and Steiner in Pioneer Square8oz. Burger has opened in Ballard.
  • Pike/Pine’s only 24-hour diner now has a sidewalk patio:

  • Cormac Mahoney is no longer with the reborn Canterbury. After bringing bone marrow and oyster stew to the overhauled dive’s fancied-up launch menu, Mahoney has moved on, confirms Canterbury co-owner Mike Meckling. “He’s a good friend and a very talented chef,” Meckling said. “He get our kitchen up and running at Canterbury and now we are working on other projects together.”
  • “When I told my friends I was opening a restaurant on Bainbridge Island, most of them told me that I was crazy. More than one tried to talk me out of the decision. I won’t credit myself with having had the foresight to see how much a community can shift in four years; there was a heavy dose of dumb luck involved. If I had known the street would be torn up and the “downtown” revitalized, I probably would not have signed the lease. All I saw was a storefront in a cool old building with a hood hanging in it, and a failed restaurant business for sale. It cost a lot less than a Capitol Hill storefront, and I was starting to get the feeling that the Hill had jumped the shark.
  • $4,000 from its $15,000 goal, the crowdfunding drive to build a new cafe space at the Nuflours 15th Ave E bakery ends Thursday.
  • Take a tour of E Pike’s Trove — noodles, Korean BBQ, frozen custard, beer — planning to open in the second week of September.

    The frozen custard truck (Image: CHS)

    The frozen custard truck (Image: CHS)

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