Happy New Year! This month, our food and drink recommendations are all about balance:
Planning to detox after the heavy holiday indulgence? We’re longtime fans of Juicebox (and they have 1-, 3-, and 5-day cleanses available), but there’s a new spot with an aggressive expansion plan that plans to make fresh juice more accessible around the city. Pressed, a chain imported from L.A., opened its first Seattle location in the recently redesigned Westlake Center a few weeks ago, and has plans to open three more local spots in the early part of 2017. The seasonal spiced almond milk sounds delicious, and I love a bottled cold brew, but you should probably stick to the greens if you’re planning to detox.
Drink for a cause.
Speed Rack, an all-female national speed-bartending competition, is back and heading to Washington Hall on Jan. 8. See the PNW’s most badass lady bartenders—talented period, not talented for a girl—go head-to-head. Each $25 ticket (21-and-older only) allows sampling of sponsors’ boozy punches and bites from local restaurants; all proceeds go to support breast cancer research. Jason Stratton of MBar will be DJing.
Celebrate Chinese New Year.
Ring in the year of the rooster on Jan. 21 as part of the International District’s annual celebration. The schedule always includes the fun-for-all dragon/lion dance and displays of martial arts and music, but the real treat is the $3 food walk, where you can wander the ‘hood and sample tastes from around Asia for just a few bucks.
My former 22-year-old vegetarian self would have loved Veggie Grill (and the truth is, I still think it’s pretty damn good). The menu at this plant-based chain makes it easy to eat your veggies. And now, they’re the first place in the city you can find a Beyond Meat burger: a vegan patty that bleeds beet juice and is meant to more closely emulate the soul-satisfying taste of a real burger (read the Tasting Table review here). Veggie Grill is serving it on a sesame seed bun with American “cheese”—please note quotation marks—and special sauce, naturally.
And then go try the Mt. Fuji.
Is it too much to have two burgers on one list? Me thinks no, even in the month of restraint. Katsu Burger opened officially in Capitol Hill on Thursday, squeaking in as one of the final openings of the year—Capitol Hill Seattle Blog says it’s the 36th food and drink opening in the ‘hood in 2016, which is just… wow. Katsu Burger specializes in Japanese-inspired burgers topped with shredded cabbage and options like curry mayo, miso honey mustard, etc. The Mt. Fuji is a little bit of everything: panko-crusted beef, pork, and chicken patties, plus American cheese, bacon, pepper jack, cheddar, fried egg, wasabi mayo, spicy mayo, and tonkatsu sauce.