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CHS Community Post | New Details from Renee Erickson and Partners About Their Capitol Hill Restaurants

In January 2015, Renee Erickson and partners, Sea Creatures, confirmed reports of plans to open 2 new restaurants on Capitol Hill at 11th Avenue and East Union Street.

Sea Creatures also made mention of something unexpected. In addition to the restaurants, Renee and partners will be opening a doughnut shop!

Each project will be independent and unique, with its own staff, kitchen, dining room, bathrooms, entrance, look, feel, and personality.

At the heart of these 3 projects is “La Ferme des Anes,” Sea Creatures’ 30-acre farm on Whidbey Island. Eggs, beef, vegetables, fruit, and herbs from this property will be served with pride.

“We are hoping to be in the spaces by mid-September, and open in early-October. Fingers crossed,” says Erickson.

Bar Melusine

Named for the mythical French water spirit, Bar Melusine will be focused on the flavors of Normandy and Brittany. “Melusine will be Walrus’s French Atlantic cousin,” explains Erickson. Anticipate Grignotage des Bords de Mer (snacks from the sea)–raw, cooked, pickled and smoked fish and shellfish–and other classics from Brittany and Normandy. “We are really excited to prepare our own brined and smoked versions of pré-salé lamb…and of course, savory, buckwheat crêpes.” Bar Melusine, built out in shades of green and gold against a background of white, will be a fun and lively neighborhood restaurant.

Additional Details:

Located at the corner of 11th and Union
50 seats inside its dining room–14 at bar stools and 36 at tables
15 seats on its seasonal sidewalk patio
Chef d’ Cuisine: Jay Guerrero, from Boat Street Café and Prune in New York City General Manager: Yuriko Say, from The Walrus and the Carpenter
Bar Manager: Jermaine Whitehead from The Whale Wins
Walk-ins only


In-house butchered and dry aged beef, grass fed and long finished from Sea Creatures’ La Ferme des Anes, will anchor Bateau.

“We are excited to be working with whole animals and steering the entire process – breed, care, feed, finishing, butchery, and aging,” notes Erickson. The goal: to prepare and serve the best beef anywhere.

Steaks, sold by weight and cooked on a flat top in cast iron skillets with tallow and butter, will be served alongside modern starters, inventive sides, handmade frites, and Boat Street Café favorites–like the pork chop and the amaretto bread pudding.

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The dining room is to be intimate and well appointed. Coupled with smart, capable service, and an ambitious wine list, Bateau will be a warmly refined restaurant.

Additional Details:

Located mid-block on Union
45 seats inside its dining room–5 at bar stools and 40 at tables
Chef d’ Cuisine: Taylor Thornhill, from The Walrus and the Carpenter, as well as Aragona and Harvest Vine
General Manager: Ryan McFadden, from The Whale Wins, as well as Rovers, Tilth and Agrodulce
Reservations encouraged

General Porpoise Doughnuts and Coffee

“Years ago I had a delicious filled doughnut at St. JOHN in London and I’ve since been obsessed,” exclaims Erickson.

Doughnuts will be made with fresh eggs from La Ferme des Anes chickens and will be filled with seasonal jams, jellies, curds, and custards. Expect classic flavors like dark chocolate or vanilla custard; as well as new favorites like tomato and tarragon jam, roasted lemon curd, nectarine and bay leaf jelly, huckleberry and long pepper jam, and more.

In addition to doughnuts, General Porpoise will serve top quality coffees from multiple, rotating roasters. Espresso, pour over, drip, and draft cold brew will all be available.

Radish pink and white, General Porpoise will be an exciting place to enjoy unique doughnuts and remarkable coffees.

Additional Details:

Located mid-block on Union, next to “Soi”
24 seats inside
General Manager: Jeff Butler from Milstead and Co. To go doughnuts available

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