Don’t call it a trend, but one of Seattle’s most distinct dessert-makers, Ballard’s Hood Famous Bakeshop, is about to expose a much wider audience to its purple ube cheesecake and other fabulous Filipino-American fusions, as owner Chera Amlag is expanding with Hood Famous Cafe and Bar in the Chinatown-International District in early 2019.
Unlike the tiny Ballard bakery, the new cafe, inside the Publix Hotel at the corner of 5th Ave. S and S King St., will have actual seats as well as coffee, cocktails, and savory treats to accompany even more sweet treats. Some possibilities for the new menu are eggplant quiches, longanisa sausage, and pan de sal buns.
It’s great to see Hood Famous keep growing and demystifying on its own terms these sorts of Filipino, Hawaiian, and fusion flavors. Amlag started the company with her co-owner husband, Geo Quibuyen, as a pop-up and wholesale purveyor spun off from their dinner pop-up, Food and Sh*t. At the new location, Quibuyen is in charge of the bar side of things. He’ll undoubtedly incorporate Filipino flavors into the drinks, from citrusy calamansi and starchy ube to, perhaps, funkier flavors like bagoong, a fermented shrimp paste that was once the subject of a dinner the duo put on.
Hood Famous Cafe and Bar is currently only listed as “coming soon” on Hood Famous Bakeshop’s website, but this is one to watch very closely.