The Botanicale (with an emphasis on “ale”) is a new beer tasting room and plant store just below Fremont boutique the Uncommon Cottage, and it’s certainly more than just the sum of its parts. Partners and co-founders Jo Huang and Scott Bianchi designedthe Botanicale as part rain forest and part thoughtfully-curated speakeasy. While sipping exceptional offerings from small batch brewers in the Pacific Northwest like Atwood Farm, Kings & Daughters, Lowercase Brewing, and Good Society, visitors can also admire — and shop for — birds of paradise, calatheas, whale fins, and other tropical plants.
The Botanicale is a perfect melding of Huang and Bianchi’s interests. Over the pandemic, “Jo started a plant business and really fell in love with plants,” said Bianchi. “I’ve been involved with the beer and craft beer industry for eight years as a consumer. I know a lot about that world and her vision was to combine our passions.”
The Botanicale also offers an atmosphere of experimentation and discovery. Bianchi pointed out that in addition to beer, the tasting room also carries beverages from Artivem Mead Co., Timber City Ginger Beer, and Greenwood Cider Co.
“Have you ever heard someone say something like, ‘I don’t eat onions, or I don’t like IPAs, or I don’t like peaches?’” Huang asked. “We all know someone like that. My mission was to reach that person ... [I want] our visitors to be open minded enough to try everything at least once.”
Since mid-May, the Botanicale has hosted soft openings from Thursday through Sunday. Its grand opening will take place on June 3, and booking for tasting experiences open on June 16. Huang and Bianchi also plan on hosting special tastings and events in the adjacent outdoor space. Stay up-to-date on the Botanicale via Instagram.
U District Street Fair returns after a two-year hiatus
The U District Street Fair is back, featuring hundreds of vendors, artists, food trucks, small businesses, live music and more on May 21 and 22. Originally founded in 1970, the annual street fair took a two-year break during the pandemic. Now in its 51st year, the fair’s 10-block pedestrian marketplace on University Way will include beer gardens and street food like Ghanaian kebabs at Blackstar Kebabs, Himalayan dumplings from Kathmandu MoMoCha, Frelard Tamales, and more.
Top Chef’s Shota Nakajima will appear on Netflix show Somebody Feed Phil
Shota Nakajima will chat with Phil Rosenthal about enjoying fresh oysters and other Pacific Northwest dishes on the Netflix show Somebody Feed Phil debuting May 25. In the show Rosenthal, creator of Everybody Loves Raymond, meets with Nakajima on the Oregon coast. Nakajima recently opened Banzai Teriyaki in Cle Elum.