As forthcoming Finistère has exceeded its $25,000 Kickstarter goal, unveiled some menu drafts, landed an honorary spot on Eater’s national list of anticipated fall openings, and prepares to open as soon as this month, excitement builds that the restaurant could become a fine-dining destination for Washington’s Olympic Peninsula city of Port Townsend.
The restaurant comes from wife-and-husband team Deborah Taylor and Scott Ross, both of whom bring impressive resumes to the project. Taylor most recently finished a two-year run as executive chef at Ethan Stowell’s excellent Staple and Fancy and has also worked at heavy hitters Canlis, Eleven Madison Park, and Per Se. Ross, who will oversee the front of house, has spent time at respected institutions like Tilth and the Four Seasons.
Finistère — which derives from the Latin term for “end of the earth” and refers also to a part of coastal northwest France that reminded the owners of Port Townsend — will of course feature the bounty of the Olympic Peninsula, like shellfish, cider, and produce from farms in the area. Seafood will be the main focus, and Taylor hopes to plant a culinary garden in the future. Drafts of the menus, seen below, involve dishes like stone fruit and tomato gazpacho; Penn Cove mussels escabeche; fried Washington oysters with saffron-chili aioli and fennel salad; black cod with corn, farro, and tomatoes; agnolotti with eggplant, basil, chevre, and roasted sweet peppers; and olive oil-poached coho salmon with spinach, clams, beans, and savory.
Replacing Sweet Laurette’s at 1025 Lawrence Street, Finistère will serve dinner and brunch, along with a multi-course chef’s tasting menu option — in short, all the makings of a Washington destination restaurant a la The Willows Inn on Lummi Island, Aelder on Orcas Island, and Ursa Minor on Lopez Island, just in time for the full harvest season.
Correction: This article originally placed an acute accent over the “e” in Finistère, rather than the correct grave accent.