One local roving chef is settling down soon. After building a following with his lauded Pacific Northwest wine and food pop-up Surrell for the past three years (it was named the best pop-up in the city in a 2018 Seattle Magazine poll), Aaron Tekluve is putting the finishing touches on a permanent location of the same name. The intimate, cozy restaurant/catering service/wine bar will take over the space at 23rd Street and E Madison, a more-than-century old historic building formerly occupied by new American restaurant Crush.
On March 25, the wine bar portion of Surrell will open to the public, featuring a long list of bottles from the state (along with the occasional Oregon pinot noir), as well as cheese, charcuterie, pickles, breads and spreads, and seasonal vegetables. There will eventually be more wine flight offerings later this spring, which may come from a single vintner, such as Damsel Cellars, and come paired with food.
But Tekluve — whose long resume includes stints in the kitchens at Lark, Salare, and the venerable Canlis — plans to build things up from there. He tells Eater Seattle that, starting in May, he plans to roll out a 9-10 course chef’s counter experience, which may be more along the lines of what diners are familiar with from Surrell’s pop-ups. The tasting menu will change almost every week, with ingredients sourced from local farms and ranches. Some nights will highlight one specific, seasonal ingredient — an all-tomato course in August and an all-mushroom one in October, for instance.
While these two parts of Surrell are going on, Tekulve plans to run private dining and catering aspects of the business, and offer the upstairs and back patio area for event space rental.