January 2016

24 Reasons We Love Seattle

Secret winter gardens, offbeat museums & other hidden gems.
Plus: What the Teachers' Strike Built

From this Issue

They have the sort of views typically reserved for helicopters, and the sort of location reserved for premium hotels. The luxury condos at the Escala tower—situated on Fourth Avenue, a block from the city’s retail center—are among Seattle’s most desired properties, so much so that billionaire Christian Grey of the 50 Shades of Grey novels lived there.

Whether your idea of a perfect winter activity is getting out to revel in the chill or holing up someplace warm, you’re bound to find something you’ll love in our list of hidden gems and perennial favorites.

Raised in a Nooksack community outside of Bellingham, artist Louie Gong grew up with Native American art as an authentic reflection of his culture’s experiences. These deliberate symbols and stories, Gong says, are now misrepresented in mainstream, native-inspired retail.

Clients who come to designer Brian Paquette’s E Pike Street office for help in creating their dream home may not realize that the genesis for his boldly patterned, brightly colored interiors actually starts at a different address with a very different look.

Los Angeles artist Pae White’s current installation at the Henry Art Gallery, Command-Shift-4, transforms the spacious lower gallery into a dynamic space where visitors are subject to sudden, disorienting perceptual shifts as they slowly wander through it.

Artist Kathleen Warren started volunteering with Urban ArtWorks after spotting some of the local nonprofit’s colorful murals around the city. Six years later, Warren, now the SoDo-based organization’s director, says she’s always been drawn to public art. “I’ve been in institutions like museums and galleries before that feel too sterile. It upsets me that it’s not art for everyone.”

Jerry Traunfeld has always loved Chinese food. The James Beard Award–winning chef first learned Chinese cookery in the 1980s from master chef Ken Hom at the California Culinary Academy. He continued honing his skills at home while he was chef at The Herbfarm and, later, when he opened Capitol Hill’s Poppy, poring over Chinese cookbooks with his longtime partner (now husband), Stephen.

What does winter in Seattle taste like? For some of us, it’s the briny snap of an Olympia oyster lifted from the icy waters of Puget Sound. Washington is the biggest producer of oysters on the Pacific Coast, and right now, the mollusks are at their peak—plump, crisp and bursting with Champagne-loving salinity.

Walk into Salish Sea Organic Liqueurs’ tasting room, located just off Interstate 5 in Lacey, and you’re instantly faced with a very difficult choice. Which, of the many liqueurs it makes, to try first? The popular hibiscus? Classical limoncello? Floral chrysanthemum? Culinary-minded thyme-coriander? The newish nectarine?

“I’m kind of a wood hoarder,” confesses Jesse Doquilo, the designer behind Edmonds-based furniture line Modern Object. “Each piece, each plank, each crop is definitely considered.” Despite his hoarding tendencies, Doquilo’s midcentury-influenced pieces are a study in clean lines and simple, minimalistic shapes.

Opening up in an area of Mount Baker that’s been fairly bereft of restaurant and bar options, Heyday is already pulling in loads of local families and neighbors, thanks to its sunshiny combination of decor (the new building has a comfortable mid-century modern feel, with a teal- and

You’ve heard of the cronut and the cretzel. What about the crumpwich? Not to be confused with the single, open-faced English griddle cake, a crumpwich is a sandwich made of two toasty crumpets stuffed with everything from jerk chicken to turkey and avocado.

Most casual dining chefs work their way up to fine dining, but John Howie’s career follows the opposite trajectory. For years, Howie’s name has been synonymous with fancy steak and cedar-plank salmon.

Think of it as Tinder for pups: The mobile app BarkHappy, which recently launched in Seattle, allows users to set up profiles for their canine best friends, find pup-friendly businesses and connect with other dog lovers nearby to set up playdates.

Coworking spaces—where remote workers can rent a desk and access to business services—have been around for years, but some new venues in Seattle are adding another dimension to the concept: a bar.

Julia Fryett, the director of Aktionsart, moved through the dark, graffiti-covered corridors of an abandoned school on Westlake Avenue in South Lake Union last fall. Wearing a black raincoat and holding a cup of coffee in her hand, she spoke about her current project. It was the last day the nonprofit organization would occupy the building.

"There was something about the gray that resonated with me,” Jordan Carlson says of the accent wall she painted in her Capitol Hill bedroom. “Defining that space made it so cozy and created this sense of calm.” Carlson, a freelance graphic designer and community manager for West Elm, recently moved to the Pacific Northwest after living in New York City.

Seattle startup Glowforge smashed crowdfunding records in the fall of 2015, raising almost $28 million (the original target was $100,000) in 30 days.

While Filson is celebrated for its outdoor heritage, the outfitter’s new flagship store on First Avenue is inviting Seattle shoppers to explore the great indoors.

West Seattle artist Jennifer Ament’s new series of encaustic paintings explores inner peace via outer space. Ament, whose daughter’s middle name is Galaxy, says, “I’ve always been into the vastness and beauty of space,” but after a life-threatening ATV accident in 2014, she resolved to look up more.

The World Health Organization’s recent report linking processed meats to cancer broke many a bacon lover’s heart.

Where: Ellensburg, a small central Washington town filled with old-school architecture, locally owned shops and quaint cafés, located about 100 miles southeast of downtown Seattle.

Although they loved their leafy neighborhood, Allie and Ted Dworkin knew the Capitol Hill house they bought in 2006, when they had three small children, was no longer a good fit. Ruby, now 15, Eliza, 13, and Louis, 9, were growing bigger and busier, but the Dworkins’ attempts at house hunting proved fruitless. Nothing they saw seemed quite right.

Eating right while dining out can be a challenge, especially for those with food allergies or special dietary demands. Blessed be January, when it seems everyone has made a New Year’s resolution. Here are our favorite dishes that regularly serve up superfood nutrition.


Months have passed since teachers in Seattle Public Schools walked the picket lines in the district’s first strike in 30 years.

Students missed six full days of school—the first days of the school year—as the Seattle Education Association (SEA), which represents 5,000 teachers, negotiated over issues that included testing, recess, teacher pay and length of the school day.

For me, intersections can be the coordinates of memory. Because I’ve lived in Seattle for most of my life, those cross streets are sometimes landmarks of my personal and family history. There’s Fourth and Pike, where I was standing when I was given five brass World’s Fair dollars to spend at the Century 21 Exposition.

Salish Sea Cocktail Recipes
With such a variety of liqueur flavors, the cocktail opportunities are nearly endless. Read more about Salish Sea Liqueurs here.

January is a perfect chance for the Northwest forager to hang up boots and basket for a brief spell—and camp out in the kitchen. I like to inaugurate this indoor time with a New Year’s feast, one that commemorates the past 12 months by using some of my favorite ingredients gathered during the year. Bon appetit!

Appetizer: Smoked salmon