Renee Erickson is on a roll! After opening The Whale Wins to wide acclaim and launching her oyster truck, The Narwhal, earlier this summer, in August she’ll debut Barnacle (Ballard, 4743 Ballard Ave. NW), a wine and aperitivi bar next door to her eminently popular seafood hideaway, The Walrus and the Carpenter. There will be house-made charcuterie, tartines (toasts with toppings) and European-style cocktails, too, and the place will be open all afternoon (from 3 p.m. on; the Walrus opens at 4 p.m.) for your rosé-sipping pleasure come late summer. With seating for 25 at a long bar, Barnacle will surely be a great place to stop for a midafternoon repast or to wait for seats to open up at Walrus.
Yes, indeed, it feels right to find the second outpost of the sweet, tasty Skillet Diner in Ballard (2034 NW 56th St.; 206.512.2000; skilletstreetfood.com). With a menu similar to the Capitol Hill original (poutine, hefty breakfasts such as pork belly on cornmeal waffles, and that legendary burger slathered in bacon jam), the Ballard diner will seat about 120, with room for more on a patio outside, in its new home at the base of the Greenfire condos on 56th Street and 20th Avenue NW. At press time, the opening was set for late July or August.