Just over a year ago, Seattle’s E3 restaurant group opened Salt District on Pier 55, one of the city’s premier dining locations, with unmatched views of Puget Sound. E3 operates many other restaurants, including the famed Metropolitan Grill and Elliott’s Oyster House, and Salt District seemed like a natural addition to the company’s roster of tourist-friendly downtown restaurants.
On Saturday, July 8, Salt District’s official Instagram announced that the restaurant would be closing for good, effective fairly immediately: The last day of service will by Tuesday, July 11.
E3 founder Jim Rowe told Eater Seattle via a statement that the “difficult” decision was being made in order to prioritize the health of E3’s other restaurants. “While we did see continued positive sales growth and improved operational outcomes, it became apparent that the long-term economic challenges at Salt District would persist and the large pier renovation approaching quickly would impact the success of the restaurant,” he said. “Additionally, with labor-shortage challenges, re-allocating resources to our other restaurants is best for our company holistically.”
Salt District had received largely positive press and in May hosted a media event touting its brand new patio. This move comes in the middle of All-Star Week, when baseball tourists are thick on the ground and likely looking for waterfront dining options.
This closure also comes at a moment when other restaurant groups, like Ethan Stowell Restaurants and Tom Douglas and Company, seem to be investing in downtown — both Stowell and Douglas have opened or reopened major restaurants in the area in the last three months. At the same time, downtown businesses, including restaurants, have long been complaining about unsafe and unsanitary conditions that are driving away customers and endangering their employees.
Update, Monday, July 10, 5 p.m.: This article has been updated to include comment from Jim Rowe.