Queer/Bar, the new Capitol Hill venue intending to foster an inclusive space for the LGBTQIA community, opened this weekend at 1518 11th Ave. The new bar and lounge has big goals that include helping Capitol Hill keep its title as the epicenter of Seattle’s gay scene. Queer/Bar replaces Purr Lounge, which reopened in Montlake last week.
Queer/Bar comes “in the wake of rumors of LGBTQIA businesses leaving the traditionally gay neighborhood of Seattle,” a press release said. Purr, which cited rising rents as the reason behind its relocation, may be the latest example.
The new lounge plans to host a wide variety of events day and night: a chef series showcasing the talent of LGBTQIA chefs; a discussion series for queer-focused issues in politics, activism, and community-driven forums; bingo; dance nights; art performances like drag shows; a nightclub; and a restaurant serving dinner and brunch. Chef Mac Jarvis, who paid a quick visit to Seattle from a post in Jackson Hole, kicked off the chef series. Jarvis was previously chef at Corvis and Co. and before that, Ernest Loves Agnes.
Owner Joey Burgess is a partner at Grim’s Provisions and Spirits and director of operations for Guild Seattle (Lost Lake Café, The Comet Tavern, Big Mario’s). He’s also an LGBTQIA advocate, serves on the board of the Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce, and was one of Puget Sound Business Journal’s 40-under-40 in 2016. In a release, he said he’s been planning this venture for 12 years, and is excited to finally be executing a project that marries his love for social activism and his passion for running bars and restaurants. Burgess’s husband, designer Murf Hall, was responsible for shaping the space.
Queer/Bar is open daily from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.