SPICEUP SZECHUAN CUISINE—There's an awning up but little more information available about this upcoming spot. A source says it's owned by David Leong, who used to run Acquabar at the same location. At one point, Seven Stars Pepper was supposed to expand here from the International District, but that deal seems to have fallen through.
CHILI AND SESAME KOREAN KITCHEN—A tipster reports that this Belltown restaurant is taking over neighboring Branzino, which clearly never recovered from its mysterious "emergency closure." A help wanted sign posted to Branzino's former home links Chili and Sesame to the new project, and an employee confirmed the news, though a manager was not immediately available to provide further details.
PINTXO—This seafood-focused Spanish tapas eatery has a new kitchen team as of May, and a new summer menu as of this month. David Haight, chef de cuisine, actually comes from a French culinary background, developing a passion for tapas and Basque food while living in San Francisco, according to a press release. He has worked at Le Crocodile in Vancouver, Angèle in Napa, and Willows Lodge in Woodinville. He's joined by sous chef Emelio Sansone, who has worked at Portland, Ore.'s Olympia Provisions and Castagna.