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After Six Years, Capitol Hill’s Izakaya Favorite Suika Is Closing

But some of its food will still be available at sibling Rondo, and co-owner Makoto Kimoto hopes to open the bar somewhere else down the line

The round sign outside Suika in Seattle, with Japanese letter (and Suika’s name in English) against a backdrop of leafy green trees
Suika opened in 2014, an offshoot of a Vancouver, BC-based restaurant.
Suika Seattle/Instagram

Last call for Toki highballs and watermelon mojitos at one popular Capitol Hill spot. After six years, Japanese bar Suika — known for bubbly, creative cocktails, excellent noodle dishes, and snacks such as battera — will be closing this week. Co-owner Makoto Kimoto tells Eater Seattle that his lease was up at the end of the month and he couldn’t get an extension from the landlord.

Suika Seattle was an offshoot of a well-regarded Vancouver, BC-based izakaya restaurant when it arrived in 2014, and drew fans for years with a range of well-crafted Japanese pub fare and drinks. Even though it tried to adjust to COVID-19 measures with a series of takeout-driven pop-ups over the summer, the bar’s business never fully recovered, and the leasing issue proved to be the last straw. Kimoto will now focus his energy on sibling spots Tamari Bar and the newer Rondo, the latter of which will feature some holdovers from the Suika menu, including a selection of curry dishes. He also hopes to open Suika up again sometime down the line, when the timing is right.

The Stranger first reported the closure news, and mentioned that Suika will be selling off some of its eclectic paraphernalia at a “flea market” inside the space October 5 and 6. Items for sale should include glasses, tables, and some artwork, but not the eye-popping sake chandelier, unfortunately (it appears that may be saved for the potential revival).

The original Vancouver restaurant remains open, and Suika’s spirit should still be present at its other Seattle siblings, particularly Rondo, which features bento boxes, udon, geeky decor, and Toki highballs made by a special machine that’s part refrigerator and part carbonation tap.

Still, losing such a reliable nightlife destination still hurts, and is yet one more ominous sign for Seattle’s once-vibrant restaurant and bar scene. Given the slate of closures that have occurred over the past several months, especially on Capitol Hill, diners should expect similar announcements to come, unless more is done to address rent relief and other economic impacts from the pandemic.

SUIKA Seattle

611 East Pine Street, , WA 98122 (206) 747-9595 Visit Website

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