While restaurants in Seattle are not closing at the same rate that they were near the beginning of the pandemic, rising food and rent costs, staff shortages, and other issues continue to make it difficult for many restaurants to recover from the financial toll of the last several years. Neighborhoods around the city are also changing, with new developments reshaping the dining landscape.
Here, we track and memorialize notable restaurants and bars the city loses each month, even while exciting new businesses appear.
Know of a spot that should be on this list? Send us a tip by emailing email@example.com.
PIONEER SQUARE — With chef and co-executive director Erin Brindley citing a lack of space and accessibility, Cafe Nordo will close its two Main Street venues, the Culinarium at Nordo and the Knife Room at Nordo, after the Culinarium’s final Christmas Eve performances of the ribald disco mystery Homicide for the Holidays. On the plus side, the company will start planning its next move in earnest come 2023, hoping to find funding and real estate to create a permanent destination for immersive experiences centering local art and food.
PIONEER SQUARE — The London Plane, an Eater Award-winning bakery/cafe/florist/market founded by Matt Dillon in 2013, will close after service December 24 as its 10-year lease ends, according to co-owners Katherine Anderson and Yasuaki Saito. The owners said in a press release that a major reason for shuttering is that the financial picture isn’t tenable thanks to crises like the pandemic. The owners would love for a new operator to keep the business going or start something new but haven’t found that person yet; they also told Seattle Met that they’re mulling other ways of carrying on the London Plane in the future.
PHINNEY RIDGE — You have less than two weeks remaining to say farewell to Martino’s, the home of the famed Santa Maria tri-tip sandwich, as the shop plans to close again December 3 due to “the harsh reality of opening during a pandemic combined with inflation and fluctuations in cost of goods, a tight labor market, plus the struggles all small businesses face with having enough business to balance those issues.” Martino’s co-owners Chris Martino, Chris Gerke, and Chris Navarra first opened the sandwich shop in 2013, closed it in 2016, and reopened it in 2021 with expanded offerings like rib dinners.
SEWARD PARK — After less than a year, kosher gem Muriel’s All Day Eats closed last week, citing “circumstances beyond our control.” In January, Muriel’s owner Josh Grunig, who still runs excellent Pinehurst Jewish deli and bakery Zylberschtein’s, took over the former home of Raconteur inside the Seward Park location of Third Place Books along with an expansion of Chuck’s Hop Shop, which is still here.
CAPITOL HILL — Kedai Makan, a restaurant that's become an institution in Capitol Hill for serving what’s probably the best Malaysian food in Seattle, permanently closes October 29. Owners Kevin Burzell and Alysson Wilson are choosing to close the restaurant to focus on other things.
CAPITOL HILL — Joe Bar, a beloved neighborhood cafe, is closing its doors after 25 years on October 25. The space was a neighborhood gathering spot and a center for art in the community.
BURIEN — King Wha, a restaurant that’s been serving Chinese food to Burien for nearly half a century, closed on October 3 as owners Lien and Lin Yu retire.
C-ID — Viet Wah Supermarket, which has been serving Seattle’s Southeast Asian communities for 41 years, closed its flagship store in the Chinatown-International District on September 30. While the property is being sold to an apartment developer, the owners say they may reopen in the area if they find the right space.
ROOSEVELT — Wayward Vegan Cafe, a Roosevelt neighborhood destination for vegan versions of American comfort food dishes, is permanently closed, after being open since 2004.
EASTLAKE — Eastlake Bar and Grill, a neighborhood gathering spot, is now an event space and will permanently close to make way for apartment buildings at the end of the year.
U DISTRICT — The original location of the local burger chain Kidd Valley in the U District, which has been open since 1976, is now closed. The other locations around the Seattle area remain open.
BALLARD — Ballard Brothers Seafood, a neighborhood institution that was once mentioned in the New York Times, has permanently closed its doors after 35 years.
BALLARD — The Ballard location of plant-based Mexican food restaurant El Borracho has permanently closed. The Pike Place Market and Tacoma Locations remain open.
BALLARD — Filipino restaurant Bunsoy, which impressed the Seattle dining community with Filipino dishes made with farmers market ingredients and fine-dining techniques when it opened in February, closed after just seven months of service. Details are still being released about what led to the closure, while former chef Rhabbie Coquia pursues his own projects and owner Tommy Patrick plans a new, more European-leaning restaurant to take Bunsoy’s place.
BALLARD — Ballard Station, a popular neighborhood bar on Northwest Market Street, poured its last shot this month. It’s being replaced by 238-unit apartment building.
BALLARD — Ballard Hockey Bar, which which is owned by Ballard Station owner Jesse Young and just opened in March of this year, is also being forced out by the apartment building project. Young told My Ballard that he’s hoping to relocate both bars but hasn’t been able to find a spot yet.
BALLARD — Neighborhood Chinese restaurant Golden City closed at the end of August after 34 years of business. The owners told My Ballard that the landlords weren’t willing to sign another five-year-lease with the restaurant, speculating that they plan to sell the property in the near future.
COLUMBIA CITY — Hawaiian favorite Super Six closed its Columbia City location at the end of August. Owners Kamala Saxton and Roz Edison are planning on replacing it with another location of their mini-chain Marination, which will serve lunch and turn the spot back into an all-day restaurant.
FREMONT — Stoneway cocktail and pie bar Bar Charlie recently closed, with ownership moving to former Westward chef Will Gordon’s stoner food bar, Tio Baby’s. Good news: the new bar still has hot dogs.
MAPLE LEAF — Flying Squirrel Pizza Co. has closed its Maple Leaf location. You can still get the same pizza and sandwiches at the Georgetown location, which remains open.
CAPITOL HILL — After 35 years of business, beloved Capitol Hill diner Glo’s closed after a fire caused extensive damage to the building. It’s moving to a new location at the Capitol Hill light rail station.
MOUNT BAKER — Sichuan restaurant Little Chengdu recently closed, being replaced by Taiwanese restaurant Uncle Lu.
BALLARD — Jewish deli Shmaltzy’s closed up shop for the last time on July 3 after nearly three years of business. In an Instagram post, the deli’s owners said the economics of the business were no longer working with the current cost of labor and other expenses. The deli will be missed by those who loved it for its East-Coast-style sandwiches loaded with smoked meats and its Jewish pastries.
C-ID — Tsukushinbo, Japantown’s favorite unmarked restaurant, is closing this summer after nearly 30 years of business to make way for a new sushi counter and an onigiri-focused restaurant called Onibaba. The restaurant’s legacy will be carried on at the new restaurants by Sho and Marin Caccam, the third-generation owners of Tsukushinbo, according to Seattle Met.
WHITE CENTER — Zippy’s Giant Burgers, one of the Seattle area’s standout burger restaurants, closed in early July after 14 years of business. A Facebook post cited “staffing, inflation, and an unreasonable landlord” as the reasons for the closure.
RAINIER VALLEY — Beach Bakery, a popular spot for pastries and community gatherings in the South End, closed in June after seven years of business. The neighborhood used the space for work meetings and family gatherings, according to South Seattle Emerald.
WEST SEATTLE — Ma’ono, one of Seattle’s favorite fried chicken restaurants, permanently closed near the end of June as the restaurant’s chef, Mark Fuller, reopens the pirate-themed Admiral Benbow Room bar, according to Seattle Met.
Capitol Hill — Popular Capitol Hill diner Glo’s is closed indefinitely after a fire damaged the exterior and walls of the building on Olive Way, according to Capitol Hill Seattle. The owner, Julie Reisman, told the publication the new space for the restaurant (on Broadway) won’t be ready until fall at the earliest.
BALLARD — The Ballard location of brunch spot Biscuit and Bean closed last month. according to My Ballard, the business is maintaining its Lake Stevens location and plans on opening a spot in Los Angeles soon. A yet-to-be named business is taking over the spot, and will keep serving Biscuit and Bean biscuits.
BALLARD — Mt Bagel, a pop-up turned Ballard shop that was one of the pioneers in Seattle’s now-booming bagel scene, permanently closed last month. The owner, Roan Hartzog, is moving to Bend, Oregon, and plans to keep making bagels there.
BALLARD — Peddler Brewing, an important gathering place for Ballard residents, closed after nine years of business this spring. The owners, Haley and Dave Keller, are moving to Arizona with their. It’s now been replaced by a second location of Renton-based brewery Bickerson’s Brewhouse, that’s keeping many of Peddler Brewing’s events and traditions alive.
RAINIER VALLEY — Rainier Avenue’s Beach Bakery closed after seven years of baking pastries and serving as a community gathering spot for South Seattle, as reported by South Seattle Emerald.
C-ID — Seven Stars Pepper Szechwan Restaurant in Little Saigon closed after 20 years of business. The Seattle Times reported that multiple break-ins and a black market operating in the parking lot made the owners, Michael Creel and Yong Hong Wang, feel too unsafe to keep working in the area.
CAPITOL HILL — After 46 years, Capitol Hill’s neighborhood Arthurian tavern, The Canterbury, closed its doors for the last time. Now, it’s turning into Meliora, a modern European restaurant from the owners of Fremont’s Rasai Indian restaurant, according to Capitol Hill Seattle.
CAPITOL HILL — Eastern European and Jewish restaurant Dacha Diner closed in late March as co-owner Joe Heffernan leaves for a tech job while chef Tom Siegel deals with some health concerns, according to the restaurant’s Instagram.
BELLTOWN — CJ’s Eatery, known for its chicken gravy and Swedish pancakes, closed after 27 years, not able to recover from the pandemic, according to The Seattle Times.
QUEEN ANNE — Paragon, an Upper Queen Anne staple, closed after 28 years because the owner couldn't reach a lease agreement with the landlord, according to The Seattle Times.
FREMONT — Hales Ales, one of the pioneers of the craft beer movement in Seattle, closed after nearly 39 years of business, with owner Mike Hale going into retirement.
Correction: November 23, 2022, 2:18 p.m. This article was corrected to show that Chinese restaurant King Wha closed after nearly half a century, not half a decade.