Now that the summer-like weather is here, Alki is stirring to life — and it’s about to welcome a buzzy new restaurant just steps from the beach. Tomorrow, the Pacific Room opens to the public at 2808 Alki Avenue SW, bringing an upscale but easy-going supper club sensibility to the area, with locally sourced seafood dishes, inventive cocktails, and live jazz.
General manager Kurt Niemeyer conceived of the project, which has been in the works ever since the divey sports bar Hawks Nest closed down in the space earlier this year. This is Niemeyer’s first restaurant (he has a background in marine biology), but there’s plenty of polish to the interior, which features electric fireplaces, white walls, nautical decor, a small stage, and a slick, marble bar. The kitchen also got a major revamp. Hawaiian-born chef Warren Akana prepares simple, but elegant dishes, with an emphasis on Alaskan sockeye salmon (served both as sashimi and pan seared), locally sourced rockfish, and halibut. On the red meatier side, the menu has a filet mignon and a kalbi short rib dish served with eggs, fried rice, and a house-made Teriyaki sauce.
In keeping with the season, the cocktail list currently skews toward the lighter side. There’s a mellow Mai Tai made with rum, pistachio orgeat, and orange curacao, a gimlet with golden gooseberries, and a mezcal fizz with rose liqueur and hibiscus syrup. The Pacific Room hopes those all pair well with the series of live events planned for the venue, starting with jazz guitarist Keith Wright on opening night.