Local 360 is Best During the Day

The goal of regional sourcing is eminently admirable, the food only occasionally so
By: Allison Austin Scheff | Posted May 16, 2011
Some hits, some misses at Belltown’s Local 360

We’ve all eaten at a hole-in-the-wall where, if it weren’t for food so good we crave it in our dreams, we wouldn’t set foot in the place. Local 360 is the opposite. Open all day, the combination restaurant and local goods market debuted in January in the old Flying Fish space, which owner Marcus Charles has handsomely redone in a rough-hewn manner.

Inside the double-tall space, long wooden tables sit heavily on bare cement floors, booths are clad in recycled wood paneling, and western-facing garage doors open to fill the space with light. The space, in fact, is as much a draw as anything coming out of chef Mikey Robertshaw’s kitchen.

I like it best during the day, when a hand-pulled chicken salad arrives on a soft wheat roll, dewy with tarragon-flecked mayonnaise; I just wish there hadn’t been three pieces of gristle to interrupt my happy chewing. At dinnertime it’s the same story, with dishes that are half-good, half-disappointing. For example: underseasoned, grainy Bratwurst on terrific sweet-sour braised cabbage; tiny “corned beef reuben bites” with delicious meat and sauerkraut, but in the place of rye bread we get rye “dust” (fine rye bread crumbs). Why?

The mission of both the restaurant and the store is to use locally grown ingredients (as the name suggests, sourced from within 360 miles, whenever possible). Starting with the best local ingredients is a admirable. But with unnecessary fussing or underseasoning, the mission is subverted by execution.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Belltown, 2234 First Ave.; 206.441.9360; local360.org. $$

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