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Several Acclaimed Seattle Chefs Will Sling Burgers for Lil Woody’s in February

Plus, state senators introduce bill that hopes to help restaurants recoup insurance money, and Dough Zone may be expanding in Bellevue

A burger topped with harissa red pepper mayo, pickled onions, and whipped goat cheese on a Li’l Woody’s paper placemat
Daisley Gordon of Cafe Campagne will cook a burger topped with harissa red pepper mayo and whipped goat cheese at Li’l Woody’s.
Li’l Woody’s [Official Photo]

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Several Acclaimed Chefs Will Sling Burgers for Li’l Woody’s in February

The pandemic hasn’t stopped one popular burger chain’s annual tradition. As has been the case for the past seven years, Lil Woody’s is rolling out some star-powered specials throughout the month of February, featuring takes from several acclaimed chefs in the city. The 2021 lineup includes Canlis’s Brady Williams of Canlis making a fry sauce-slathered burger with Yubeshi onions on a potato bun (a returning item from 2020); Spice Waala’s Aakanksha and Uttam Mukherjee will follow with a yogurt-marinated chicken variation topped with cilantro chutney; Ricardo Valdes of Raiz is next after with his “Cochiloco Burger” (salsa macha aioli, chorizo patty, with avocado slices on a sesame pub bun); Cafe Campagne’s Daisley Gordon will then make a ground lamb and beef patty with harissa red pepper mayo and whipped goat cheese; and the final stretch will highlight Monica Dimas’s “Neon Torta” creation, with pulled pork, avocado mayo, cabbage cilantro slaw, sauteed onions, and jalapeños on telera. The specials begin January 26 and go until March 1, available for takeout at all locations.

State Senator Introduces Bill to Help Restaurants Recoup Insurance Money

On Monday, two democratic state senators introduced a bill seeking to help restaurants and other small businesses filing insurance claims during the pandemic. The legislation, SB 5351, is sponsored by Sen. David Frockt (representing Seattle) and Sen. T’wina Nobles (Fircrest), and would codify some protections extended recently by Washington court rulings favoring small businesses initially denied claims due to COVID business interruption. It would also give policyholders an additional year to challenge such insurance claims. While those may seem like small changes, they may make a big difference for some restaurants trying to stay afloat. Back in July, Ethan Stowell Restaurants filed a lawsuit against its insurance company for a denied COVID-related claim, since the policy appeared to cover the losses. Similar legal battles have been ongoing for many restaurants around the country, and are expected to continue with millions of dollars and livelihoods at stake.

Dough Zone Opening Another Bellevue Location?

One dumpling chain looks like it’s continuing its Eastside expansion. According to a post on Downtown Bellevue Network, signs are up for a new Dough Zone Dumpling House location “coming soon” at 10360 Main Street in Bellevue, taking over the spot formerly occupied by Swiftwater Cellars. This would be the third Dough Zone location in the neighborhood and ninth overall in the Seattle area (counting the upcoming Kirkland outpost). Each restaurant serves up specialties like xiao long bao, and pan-fried pork buns, plus various noodle dishes, rotating varieties of congee, appetizers like green onion pancakes, and a few desserts like red bean bao. Eater Seattle reached out to Dough Zone for confirmation and will update this post if more info comes in.