Portland-based Salt and Straw, renowned for its inventive ice cream flavor combinations, will open its two Seattle ice cream shops in the coming days. The first will start scooping in Ballard (5420 Ballard Avenue NW) on Friday, February 9, followed by the Capitol Hill location (714 E Pike Street) on Friday, February 16. Both shops will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Eager fans can actually sample the goods before the shops’ openings, though: Starting today, Salt and Straw’s ice cream will be available for delivery through Postmates. And on Thursday, February 8, the Ballard shop will have a pop-up outside the store with $1 scoops from 6 to 8 p.m. Proceeds will benefit Farestart, the nonprofit that offers food service job training to people struggling with poverty, addiction, homelessness, or a criminal record.
Both Salt and Straw shops will feature a monthly changing menu of 17 flavors, ranging from mainstays like honey lavender and sea salt with caramel ribbons to Seattle originals with local ingredients like Elm Coffee, Westland Whiskey, Beecher’s Cheese, Ellenos Yogurt, and Rachel’s Ginger Beer. The opening menu will feature a series of chocolate flavors with ingredients from Theo Chocolate, Fran’s, and more. Ice cream is available in scoops served in cups, waffle cones, and sundaes, as well as by the pint.
Both locales were designed by Portland-based Andee Hess, who creates an interior unique to each location but representative of the Salt and Straw brand. Design touches include terrazzo tile, custom pattern oak parquet, and a waffle cone wall graphic, seen here at the Ballard shop.
Like the Portland originals, both Seattle locations will partner with local schools and nonprofit organizations. The company also emphasizes employee advancement with its management training program and offers a competitive benefits package with health care, family leave, and paid time off for both full and part time workers.
Salt and Straw also has a grab-and-go freezer in the works for Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, in the new Marche Food Hall. That outpost is one of a slew of exciting new dining options anticipated for the airport. The company also has outposts in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego.
Salt and Straw co-founder Tyler Malek grew up in Snohomish, so the northward expansion from Portland seems like a natural evolution. Co-founder Kim Malek also has ties to the area.
“For me, opening in Seattle is like a homecoming; it’s very exciting,” Kim says. “I spent many years living and working in Seattle and now I get to spend time back in the city that I love with so many people that I know. Salt and Straw was built on the idea that to be a strong business you need to be an integral part of the community, we look forward to being that partner in Seattle.”