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First look: Sur 16’s ‘New World’ flavors join the scene on 15th Ave E

IMG_8579IMG_8403For Capitol Hill restauranteurs Javier Dalzell and Mariana Martos, it is finally time to put the struggles of a first-time buildout aside and enjoy the creation. Sur 16 is open — finally! — on 15th Ave E.

“All of the neighbors have stopped in,” Martos said of Sur 16’s quiet opening over the weekend. “It’s an amazing feeling. Some have come in for a drink, then had another, and ended up staying for dinner.”

After nine months of a sometimes overwhelmingly frustrating buildout challenged by the expenses and administrative overhead of the local permitting process required to create a restaurant in the big city, Martos and Dalzell’s vision of a restaurant flavored by the Mestizo “conflict and resulting clashes and harmonies between the Old World and the New World” is now a reality in the former home of the old Bagel Deli.

More simply, Sur 16 is a new, big Mexican restaurant that has taken the old deli and filled the enormous space once dedicated to wholesale bagel freezers and filled it in with a bar, an open kitchen, and a full dining room.

Sur 16’s menu includes takes on standards like chicken enchiladas with mole sauce and house-smoked steak tacos or a pulled pork torta with guajillo sauce for lunch. Martos says the menu will deepen further as the kitchen rounds into shape. For a taste of what comes next, try the ostiones — oysters on the half shell topped with huitlacoche corn fungus and cheese. Drinks, meanwhile, include margaritas and mezale-based cocktails.

Martos says she is looking forward to watching word spread about the new place to eat on 15th.

“People bringing friends. That’s how it starts,” she said.

Sur 16 is located at 340 15th Ave E. Final hours are being worked out but you can currently stop by daily starting at 11 AM for lunch through late for dinner and drinks, 10 AM on the weekends. You can learn more at

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6 thoughts on “First look: Sur 16’s ‘New World’ flavors join the scene on 15th Ave E” -- All CHS Comments are held for moderation before publishing

  1. Good food. I stopped in here the other day. I would break up the space a little bit as it is a little large and cavernous. I like the atmosphere by the bar…do more of that. Also, stay open late. Seattle needs a cool lounge…comfy seating and all.

    One of the waitresses did not know anything about the menu and seemed a little out of place; but she was nice. Try to have somebody that plays to the vibe of the restaurant though. There is no hope being something ordinary in this spot. You really need to break out of the mold if you want to stay around long….all comments in kindness of course.

    I look forward to my next visit.

  2. The food looks good but the ambiance doesn’t. The back is so lit up it looks like they’re awaiting Liza to walk out on stage.

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  4. I stopped in last week during the soft opening. I had an amazing ceviche, fish tacos, and mole enchiladas. All were very tasty! My waitress was a little goofy and could barely pronounce some of the items on the menu, but the food was so great it didn’t really matter. Very excited to have this in the neighborhood!

  5. I stopped in last night, after reading this article, to discover that they are still in the very soft opening phase. Servers are very green and don’t know the menu. I wish I could speak to the food, but 45 minutes after ordering all we had been served was a handful of chips, and we decided to leave.

    I don’t want to rip on a place while it’s clearly figuring things out. Fingers crossed it will do well!

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