School has never been this fun before. As promised, the newest addition to the McMenamins empire opens tomorrow in Bothell, and it sure is a beauty. The basics for McMenamins Anderson School remain the same as Eater previously reported, but here's a quick review with a few new details, plus some food and drink recs to hit the grounds running.
Again, once an actual school, McMenamins Anderson School is now a 5-acre-wide, 78,000-square-foot constellation of bars, restaurants, event spaces, and lodging (converted from classrooms). There's even a movie theater and heated saltwater pool that's free to overnight guests and available for a fee to others.
Chef Mike Davis, formerly of 26brix and the Salish Lodge, oversees the three restaurants. The Tavern on the Square offers upscale, rustic pub food in a casual fine dining atmosphere. Try the Yeti Toes—brioche donuts dusted with powdered sugar—for breakfast, or Lamb Rogan Josh with curry-roasted spaghetti squash and caramelized coconut for dinner. A full bar offers signature cocktails like the Café Smash (strawberries, aged balsamic vinegars) and Burnt Bulleit (Bulleit Rye, carmelized simple syrup, angostura bitters).
Check out the opening Tavern dinner menu here:
And the restaurant's beverage book:
Davis also operates The Woodshop, McMenamins version of a sports bar (including pizza, burgers, shuffleboard, and pinball) and The North Shore Lagoon. The latter serves spicy-sweet bites like Seoul City Steak Bites and the Dragon Boat peppery meatball, and has a tiki-themed bar upstairs that's the work of Bar Manager Adam Kurth. Drink-wise, go for the sweet, smoky Jungle Bird, or the Zombie.
Along with the three eating establishments, there are two standalone bars. The cabin-like, fireplace-equipped Shed offers whiskey, classic cocktails, and draft selections of McMenamins' many craft brews. Sample the Woodshop IPA, a brand-new recipe designed exclusively for Anderson School by General Manager of Brewing Rob Vallance. It's one of twelve beers that the on-site brewing facility will produce specifically for the Anderson complex. The quaint Principal's Office (which, of course, used to be the real thing), is the smaller second bar, which also serves coffee in the mornings, located right in the hotel.
Hayne's Hall, located in the old gymnasium, is the largest of three event spaces, and will be used for concerts, weddings and other large-scale occasions. And finally, on your way out, don't forget to stop in at the Anderson School Market, the property's gift shop, where you can sample a nitro cold brew coffee, grab a T-shirt or fill up your growler.
Whew! McMenamins Anderson School opens tomorrow, Thursday, October 15, at 7 a.m. Get there.