Capitol Hill food+drink | First look: Harry’s Fine Foods reborn at Bellevue and Mercer

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Hagood (Images: CHS)

A new life for an old bodega has begun at one of Capitol Hill’s quintessential corners, Bellevue and Mercer.

Harry’s Fine Foods, sharing the name of the corner market that stood there for years, opened over the weekend in a full rebuild of the old store. Plenty of the past remains.

Inside the new Harry’s — owner Julian Hagood calls the new project “bistro-esque” and “comfortable in the daytime but also sexy at night” — you’ll still find the old Harry’s cooler. The plan from Hagood and Alexa Dallas is for Harry’s Fine Foods to provide the neighborhood with a daytime cafe combined with a cornershop eventually stocking those day-to-day essentials like cigarettes and toilet paper.

The menu will be driven by what’s fresh. “We make up everything,” Hagood said. “It’s casual, produce-driven. We’re not reinventing anything. It’s delicious really well-made food.” What’s that mean? Great fries, for one. Hagood has built Harry’s on the back of his booming Lucullan Repast catering business along with a crowdsourced final boost. The catering venture will also now put the new kitchen at Harry’s to work.

The new project joins Cafe Barjot and the Lookout adding food and drink options to this particular elevation of I-5 Shores.

CHS first reported on the intriguing Harry’s Fine Foods project in late 2015 when Seattle super agent Laura Miller acquired the property. We caught up with Hagood on his project this summer as the contractors at Metis were digging into the 1910-built building. The plan is to open with a breakfast, brunch, and lunch focus before eventually expanding into the dinner and nighttime bar business. With menus honed by the duo’s catering business, Harry’s will feature cafe offerings with vegetarian influences and a light, nutritious approach. A patio has been built behind the old store and new windows are designed to be opened wide to transform the rebuilt space into an open, airy cafe. Harry’s old refrigerator case will be filled with meals to-go and prepared items like parfaits for neighbors to grab and go, and, soon, beer and wine.

For now, enjoy the early days of the “comfortable” daytime Harry’s. Day drinking is encouraged.

Harry’s Fine Foods is located at 601 Bellevue Ave E.  It is open Monday to Wednesday from 8:00 AM to 2 PM, Thursday and Friday, 8:00 AM to 6:30 PM, and Saturday and Sunday 9:30 AM to 4:30 PM. You can learn more at harrysfinefoods.com.

Capitol Hill food+drink notes

  • Also newly opened: new Broadway poke concern Wanderfish.
  • Bon Appetit’s “The 5 Best Bars We Drank at This Year” includes a Seattle entry…. we challenge you to guess without clicking:
    If this bar served nothing but Midorgaritas (Midori-spiked margaritas, a recent special) it would still be one of our favorite new places to hang out, merely for the hammed-up old-man-bar aesthetic and trippy red glow of the lights. Fortunately, this homage to corner taverns of yore also serves way-better-than-bar-average pizzas.
  • New breakfast option in the CD:

  • Wild Ginger, now (kinda) on First Hill.
  • Some shifting in the kitchen at Mamnoon
  • Finally, we gained 10 pounds just posting this from Crumble and Flake:
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3 thoughts on “Capitol Hill food+drink | First look: Harry’s Fine Foods reborn at Bellevue and Mercer

  1. At the risk of being that annoying reader who only ever comments when there’s an issue with the article and not when it’s interesting and insightful: there’s a pretty major typo in the headline. Yes, you spelled Hill with three l’s. Makes me think of the poem by Ogden Nash:

    http://compendium.vuduc.org/poem94.html

  2. My Grandfather owned this building, lived in the apartment upstairs and ran a neighborhood grocery store and meat market on the main floor from the 1930’s and throughout the 1940’s. This is really enjoyable to see it having a new life. Nice job and I hope the best for your future.