Monday, May 26, 2008

Seabreeze Blows Out

Seabreeze is shut down and a new restaurant appears to be opening up there. We were sad to realize the family that ran Seabreeze/Il Forno/La Romantico closed up shop but hopefully they'll keep cooking in another location. It's the same Italian family who had the Italian restaurant where Matador is located now.

The signs are already up for Hamburger Harry's and they've applied for a liquor license. It looks like they're also trying to figure out menus or pricing since an array of area burger restaurant menus were under study on a table in the front. We're interested in seeing what they do with this place. My only advice is that they should apply now for patio seating and create some storefront interest. And we hope they serve strong drinks!

Update from the comments: Good call John, we're not really lacking in the burger department.

"Let's see. Zesto's, Lunchbox Laboratory, Scooters, King's, Gordo's, Zak's. And, on the borders, Red Mill and Dick's. That's not counting the fast food spots, or places which just have a darn good burger (Bad Albert's, Jolly Roger, Mike's, Ballard Brothers). It's a classic business plan 'Look at all the burger restaurants! Burger's must be incredibly popular, so lets open our own!' "

In our humble opinion, the scariest menu on the table was one from Red Robin. We hope they're not planning "all you can eat crappy steak fries" as a hook. I'm also really curious about the concept based on their graphics - casual dining with tuxedo-level burgers. Oh, wait, I've been there. It's Hubert Keller's Burger Bar. Will they offer a $90 Kobe burger with foie gras and truffles, too?

Just a thought here - but no one in Ballard has yet to nail a good seafood burger - sorry Ballard Bros. A good halibut burger or a fish cake style burger would be a nice twist.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Denny's To Be Demolished - Final Answer

It's lights out for the Denny's Building and a blow to historic architecture. The development company that bought the company ended up winning this fight by proving they couldn't make a return on their $12.5 million investment if they had to incorporate the old wooden structure.

The Times had a nice quote from Ballard resident Eugenia Woo who said, "All the money Benaroya has spent to fight the landmark designation could have gone toward restoring the restaurant and that by now 'we all could be drinking martinis at a swank bar.' " Now that's an opinion we could get behind.

We at BGG would just like to say that we think this building should have been saved! For God's Sake How Many Times Do You Have To Tell Someone To Turn Left At The Ballard Denny's Before It Becomes A Neighborhood Landmark?! In addition to that, we are Scandinavian and love Mid-Century Modern. We were firmly in the court that this building fit the bill for historic preservation.

However, before we start weeping gently in our Eames chair prone with arms grasping our Herman Miller coffee table for support, we would first like to remind voters that this building was sold in the first place because of the already-started Monorail project. It was only subsequently sold to the Benaroya development company when the Monorail project failed a fourth vote AFTER the city had started buying neighborhood property. Not to kick a dead horse here, but if we had just voted down the monorail the first time or had actually built the frickin' thing, we would not be in this position. The city would have torn down the Denny's and replaced it with a modern - albeit probably ugly- monorail train station and ushered our hood into the 21st century. Would anyone have put up a fight at that point? I don't really think so but we may have just been fighting the city to save the old Denny's in that case. I can only guess that the battle would have lasted much longer and wasted more of our tax dollars. Bah! Next time, let's not plod along like we're reliving the stupid sub-plot from the movie Singles.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Syttende Mai Alert Alert Alert!

Important Parade Announcement!
The time for the Syttende Mai Parade on Saturday has been changed. It's now starting at 4 p.m. This should give you plenty of time to get in line on 24th or Market Street to watch. Get there early and find a place with a good view. It will be a battle of the bar patios. Where will the Nordic crowd hang out? Olsen's? Hazlewood? Boobie Obsessed Copper Gate? Matador?!

Calling All Scandi-gay-vians!

Ballard's biggest day of the year is this Saturday - the Norwegian Constitution Day Parade Extravaganza also known as Syttende Mai. The parade is on a Saturday this year - exotic - and will be earlier than normal at 3 p.m. It's one of the biggest and best parades in the world. Really.

We were TOTALLY SURPRISED to see there's an event at BalMar incorporating our local gay scene and the Nords! They came up with the BEST party names ever. Syttende Gay. So good.

We've been watching the Ballard parade for years and have yet to see they type of marchers that you might see in the Pride Parade. You know, gyrating Divas, cross dressing nuns, mustachioed guys in ass-less chaps. Although now that we think of it, the motorcycle cops who ride in formation at the beginning of the parade sport some of the best mustaches we have ever seen. Full bushy Magnum P.I. triumphs. Hmmm. Maybe we'll see some new floats or marchers in the parade this year.

Read all about Syttende Gay on their site. They'll also be celebrating at Purr on Capital Hill if that happens to be your hood.

Monday, May 12, 2008

What Do Hezzlewood and Hazlewood Have In Common?

Well, one is a speedo-wearing civil rights defender and the other is a bar in Ballard. Okay, they really do not have much in common, but this story about a Florida guy who is suing over his right to wear a speedo is hilarious. And his name is Bob Hezzlewood. The sherrif recently ticketed Mr. Hezzlewood for trespass and kicked him off the beach. Obviously, he was too sexy for that beach.

You can watch the story online here.

Perhaps Hazlewood should hold a speedo party to support Mr. Hezzlewood's right to sport that sexy banana hammock. I'd get behind that party!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

The Fuzz at Ballard Mandarin

Last night when we were driving home from work, there were no less than 5 cop cars outside of the Ballard Mandarin (too many to even capture with my camera phone). We snapped a picture out of curiosity but as we went by we are now guessing that it may have been some sort of domestic violence dispute as they were interviewing a man and a woman separately. However, we can't recall seeing this many cars at an incident that wasn't bigger news.

Is something strange going on at this place or was it just a case of wrong place/wrong time? We'll let you know if we find out.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

KEXP Loves Ballard

Those hotties at KEXP are coming to Ballard on Friday. Evidently, more people who live in Ballard pledged money for the station in their last pledge drive. Memebers will get discounts that day as well.

You can see John in the Morning broadcasting live from Verite and then catch Cheryl Waters and Kevin Cole at Sonic Boom later in the day. KEXP DJs will be broadcasting from a bunch of bars that night as well. Check out their site for the specifics.

We know we will be out and about checking out the festivities.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Sorry Kids, We Left Town

We couldn't take the snow any more, so we used our March Madness winnings to get the hell out of dodge. We'll be back later this week and catch you up on all the stuff you need to know. For the latest in non-neighborhood related sassiness, check Fark.