Island Soul Rum Bar & Soul Shack is a Columbia City mainstay, serving Caribbean and southern dishes like gumbo, po’ boys, burgers, and jerk chicken. Yesterday, November 9, the owners of Island Soul announced the opening of a sister restaurant on the Kirkland waterfront called Arleana’s. The Kirkland restaurant will be the first Black-owned Caribbean and southern restaurant in the area. Arleana’s is currently in the permitting process with construction slated to begin next year and a grand opening tentatively planned for June 2022.
Co-owners of Island Soul and Arleana’s Theo and Gaelyn Martin have launched a crowdfunding campaign to help cover the costs of Arleana’s buildout. Island Soul started as Theo’s father’s barbecue restaurant in the Central District in the 1970s, which Theo relocated to Columbia City in 2007. Named after Theo’s mother, Arleana’s will emphasize Caribbean seafood dishes and aspire to carry the state’s largest rum selection.
Mamnoon’s restaurant group establishes a Kirkland location
Island Soul isn’t the only Seattle-area restaurant making inroads into Kirkland. The Mama Restaurant Group — comprised of Mamnoon, Mamnoon Street, Mbar, and Anar — is opening up Hanoon in Kirkland’s Totem Lake in February 2022. Hanoon will feature modern Levantine cuisine representative of other Mama group restaurants and function as a cafe serving baked goods and lunch items during the day and elevated fast-casual dining options in the evening. Hanoon will also have an open-fire oven, a takeout window, a patio, and seating for 120 people.
From gay bar to piano bar: a Capitol Hill destination becomes Keys on Main
The teal, three-story building on the corner of East Pine and Boylston Avenue was formerly home to R Place, a pillar of LGBTQ+ nightlife, from 1996 until it was forced to shutter during the pandemic. (The bar has since secured a new location in SoDo — aptly-named The Comeback — scheduled to open next month.) Yesterday, Capitol Hill Seattle Blog reported piano bar Keys on Main is preparing to relocate to the teal building. The nightclub had a longstanding Queen Anne location that announced its closure about a month ago. Keys on Main’s biggest draws are its dueling piano shows and live sing-alongs.