The Fremont Fair- Keeping Summer Solstice Splendidly Strange Since 1971

“Delibertas Quirkas” may well be the best (and likely most succinct) way to describe our favorite neighbor, the delightfully different Fremont neighborhood.

For those of you who weren’t Latin majors (probably all of you) “Delibertas Quirkas” means “freedom to be peculiar” and Fremont certainly embraces this motto readily, but never quite as much as at the annual and highly anticipated Fremont Fair and Solstice Parade.

The Fremont Fair and Solstice Parade are a traditional kick off to Summer around these parts, and are guaranteed to have something for everyone. With nearly 400 artists, craft vendors, food booths and more, you’re bound to find something beautiful, delicious or at least interesting around the city’s most well-loved street festival.

Worried there’s only booths to peruse? Fear not! The Fremont Fair is as diverse an event as Fremont is itself and the Crown Jewel and most famous part of the whole shebang is the Solstice Parade. If you’ve never attended, its sure to be unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. People powered floats, stilt walkers, giant puppets, dancers, musicians and the world-famous nude bicyclists all gallivant through the neighborhood from the intersection of 3rd and Leary Way to Gas Works Park in a display of color, joy and body paint unique to this event.

The parade takes place on Saturday at 1 PM and its canine counterpart will be on Sunday at 2:30 PM. That’s right, the festivities would not be complete without the Dog Parade! Led by Seattle’s beloved Blue Thunder, hordes of pretty pooches, dressed in their finest (accompanied by their people, of course) will strut along 34th avenue in what might be the cutest and cuddliest parade you’ve ever seen.

After that, check out the Art Cars, an incredibly unique display of over 75 pieces of art on wheels. You’ve never seen cars ‘tricked out’ quite like his before!

If that’s not enough excitement for you, be sure to bring your dancing shoes, as the fair features two all-free stages of musical groups and DJs scheduled throughout the weekend, including a mix of well-known and up and coming local acts.

And of course, there will be plenty of delectable food to feast on, including plenty of local favorites and a wonderful beverage garden featuring libations from this year’s event sponsors, Casa Noble Tequila and Corona.

The Fremont Fair is fun for the whole family and a Seattle-centric event you won’t want to miss.

Fremont Fair and Solstice Parade 2017 Hours-
Saturday June 17th:
Craft Market- 10 am-8 pm
Music- 11 am- 9 pm
Solstice Parade- 1 pm

Sunday June 18th:
Craft Market- 11 am-6 pm
Music- 11 am- 5:30 pm
Dog Parade- 2:30 pm

 

For more information about this colorful celebration including anticipated musical performers and food vendors, click here!

An Evening at the Beach

If you need a nice reprieve from winter’s dreariness, the No Bones Beach Club is one possible place to hang out.  Tucked into a narrow space one half block south of Mighty-O Donuts off Market St. in Ballard, No Bones serves vegan food in a relaxed tiki bar environment. Subdued lighting, palm fronds, colorful hanging lanterns, surf boards, and tiki god masks create a Polynesian, or coastal feel. A place to confide in a friend or friends over snacks or a drink, or even meet a date (as witnessed by the sharp-dressed couple occupying one corner).

Cauliflower Wings, No Bones Beach Club

On weekends, one can choose something off their brunch menu, or in the late afternoons and evenings most days, there are snacks, sandwiches, salad, fried avocado tacos, as well as other grub and cocktails (both alcoholic & non-alcoholic) to choose from. On the snack menu, the Cauliflower Wings have a nice crunch and come in two tasty varieties: coconut buffalo flavor with a spicy kick to dip in ranch sauce, or ginger sauce which has a sweeter taste. Another snack that appeals even to this confirmed meat & cheese lover is the Northwest Nachos, which are smothered in fresh ingredients, drizzled with a delicious mild cashew & smoked poblano queso, then topped with abundant cilantro.

Guava Margarita and Northwest Nachos

The relaxed ambiance seemed to extend to our server as well. She was friendly and helpful, and didn’t give the feeling one had to rush to leave, even on a busy Saturday night.

Each month, No Bones Beach Club contributes part of what they earn to different animal rescues. So you can feel good about taking a break at the beach on a chilly winter’s evening.

No Bones Beach Club
5410 17th Ave NW
Seattle, WA 98107

HOURS
Closed Mondays
T-TH 4pm–9:30pm
F-SA 11am–10pm
SUN  11am–9pm

Baking Up Something Sweet! Hood Famous Bakeshop Puts Down Roots In Ballard

 

Well known and loved pop-up Hood Famous Bakeshop is laying down roots at last, right in the heart of Ballard!

You may remember Hood Famous first gaining local fame and somewhat of a cult following after appearing with the Food & Sh*t pop-up series (which was co-founded by HFB’s owner Chera Amlag) with a routinely stunning rotating dessert course.

Hood Famous made a fabulous impression with it’s delicious and inventive desserts, drawing heavy inspiration from Filipino, Hawaiian and Asian flavors.

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While they have built their reputation on their not-of-this-world fabulous Ube cheesecake (just try and walk past that glorious purple color and not NEED a piece), they have expanded their menu to include even more exotic combinations like Coconut Pandan, Mango Calamansi, and White Chocolate Guava, much to the delight of patrons.

Amlag’s ability to blend the distinctive flavors of East and West so delicately and precisely is a testament not only to her skill and talent but also illustrates an obvious passion for food and culture.

Their new Ballard home will be a to-go only spot, with no seating space offered. However, in addition to grab-and-go goodies, Hood Famous will still be making items to order, taking catering orders and crafting luscious treats for selected retailers and restaurants in the greater Seattle area and Bellevue.

Hood Famous offers something truly unique and spectacular if you’re in the market for something sweet or just want to try something new.

Be sure to check them out when they have their grand opening this Saturday, October 8th, and see what all the buzz is about!

Hood Famous' violet hued Ube Cheesecake at Kraken Congee

Hood Famous Bakeshop 2325½ NW Market St,
(206) 486-6429
www.hoodfamousbakeshop.com

Open Thursday-Friday 12 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

New Gastropub Graces Ballard This October

Ethan Stowell is opening a new gastropub in Ballard come October. Named Bramling Cross the venture will unsurprisingly feature upscale beer with gourmet food. We say unsurprisingly because the restaurant is named after a type of hop, so beer, and fancy beer at that, will be the focus here.

The gastropub will feature 8 taps of local beer and a large variety bottles and cans. Stowell feels that with so many well respected microbreweries in Fremont and Ballard, beer is becoming an upscale thing; might as well pair some upscale food with it.

According to Eater, Michael Giffrod, chef from Stowell’s How to Cook a Wolf will be “serving up Stowell-caliber fried oysters, hot wings, foie gras, Wagyu culotte steak, grilled chicken, house-made sausages, and more in shared plates.”

Bramling Cross will at 5205 Ballard Ave, taking over the old Portalis space (which moved to 6754 15th Ave NW)

Where To Watch The World Cup In Ballard

South Africa Brazil 2014 Soccer WCup Emblem

While any bar with a television will most likely be showing a World Cup game or two, some establishments may be a little more committed to the morning and mid-day live broadcast times than others. Here is a (surprisingly long) list of bars in the Ballard area that will be going the extra mile to show live games. Many of them will also be offering World Cup food and drink specials (info from Seattle Met):

Kangaroo & Kiwi – This Australian-owned pub will be open at 8:00 a.m. every day for the duration of the World Cup (June 12 – July 13) and will be showing every game on its eight indoor TV screens and specially installed TVs in two outdoor beer gardens. Beer and breakfast sandwich specials will be on the menu.

The Market Arms – The World Cup schedule on The Market Arms’ website warns “NO BIRTHS, WEDDINGS OR WORK” between June 12 and July 13. That is how seriously they’re taking their WC viewing. They’ll be showing all games live and replaying select games later in the evening for those of you who can’t skip out on work to go to a bar at 9:00 in the morning (probably most of you). Check their website for the complete schedule.

The George & Dragon – The self-proclaimed “Home of Football” (or in this case, “Futebol”) will predictably be showing all of the games and replays of quite a few, as well. This is always a popular spot, so be prepared for big crowds.

Other bars that will be open for all games: Ballard Loft, The Leary Traveler, Molly Maguires, Bad Albert’s Tap and Grill, La Isla, The Dray, and the Phinney Neighborhood Association. Click the links for all the details!

Ballard Breweries Well Represented At Seattle Beer Week

Ballard breweries represent a large slice of the Seattle-made beer pie, and with Seattle Beer Week starting today and running through May 18, you’ll have another reason to go out and explore some of the neighborhood’s (and city’s, for that matter) best local brews. To begin your beer journey, head up to Chuck’s Hop Shop on NW 85th all day today and tomorrow to sample rare sour beers from Almanac, The Bruery, Cascade, Black Raven, Deschutes and more. Here’s a rundown of the other SBW events happening in Ballard this weekend:

beer

Thursday, 5/8

Friday 5/9

  • The Bruery Draft Takeover at Bitterroot BBQ. A selection of 10 beers including Autumn Maple, Saison de Lente, and Tart of Darkness. 3:00-11:00 p.m.
  • Porkchop & Co. will be serving bread made from spent grains used by Reuben’s Brews and Fremont Brewing alongside meats, cheeses, mustards and sweets (and Reuben’s and Fremont beers, of course). 3:00-7:00 p.m.
  • Willamette Valley’s Block 15 night at The Noble Fir. 4:00-10:00 p.m.
  • Friday Night Trivia with HUB at Ballard Station. 6:00-8:00 p.m.
  • Chrome Satan finally in cans! Release party at Hilliard’s from 7:00-11:00 p.m.

Saturday, 5/10

  • Chuck’s 85th will be pouring 30 IPA’s all day Saturday and Sunday.
  • Rye Beer Fest at Reuben’s Brews with 16 rye beers on tap! Noon-6:00 p.m.
  • All Saison, all the time! Saison Fest at Urban Family Public House, featuring Jolly Pumpkin, Prairie Artisan Ales, Lost Abbey and more. Noon-6:00 p.m.
  • Block party at 418 Public House with beer from Hood River, Oregon’s Double Mountain and California’s Black Market Brewing. Outdoor beer garden, local bands, BBQ and more! 2:00-9:00 p.m. rain or shine.
  • Hilliard’s beer tasting at BevMo! Ballard. Fill up a growler before you leave! 4:00-7:00 p.m.
  • 2nd Annual Bluegrass & Beer Festival at Hale’s Ales has paired up breweries and will feature the resultant beers from collaborations between Diamond Knot & Skagit River, 7 Seas & Port Townsend Brewing, and many more! 5:00-10:00 p.m. Tickets here.

Sunday, 5/11 (Don’t forget your mom while you’re out drinking beer)

  • New Belgium Mother’s Day Dinner at The Leary Traveler. This ticketed event will benefit Seattle charity The Benevolent Guild and features a four-course meal along with five beer tastings from New Belgium. 6:00-9:00 p.m. Tickets here.

Click here to see a full list of Seattle Beer Week events happening all over the city!

Easter Brunch In the Ballard(ish) Area

brunch

Besides the Easter bunny and eating your weight in chocolate, Easter means one thing: brunch! If you’re not preparing a meal at home while the little ones hunt for eggs this Sunday, you could choose to let someone else do the cooking for you at one of these Ballard (and surrounding area) restaurants, all offering delicious spring-inspired menus.

All three of chef Maria Hines’ restaurants will be offering special three-course menus for Easter. Albacore tuna benedict, blueberry apricot scones and omelets will be on offer at Fremont’s Sicilian-inspired Agrodolce. Oh, and most importantly: bottomless mimosas. $25 per diner. At Hines’ Ballard outpost, the Mediterranean-influenced Golden Beetle, diners can sample housemade yogurt, pork shank hash and rosewater baklava, among other offerings on the menu. $25 per diner. A little further up the hill in Wallingford, Tilth will offer a three-course menu for $30, or $40 including a mimosa and coffee.

Hot Cakes Molten Chocolate Cakery on Ballard Avenue will be serving baked-to-order frittatas and Easter treats such as creme yvette and lemon curd milkshakes, along with a “brunch punch.” Sounds delicious!

Vif Wine and Coffee in Fremont will host a three-course brunch featuring a sweet and savory pastry board with house-made jam, polenta with spring vegetables, poached egg and ham, and buttermilk panna cotta with rhubarb compote and pistachio shortbread. If that doesn’t get you in the mood for spring, we don’t know what will! $25 per diner.

 

Fremont Oktoberfest Starts Today

The annual Fremont Oktoberfest starts today as thousands of people will hit the streets of Fremont to celebrate for the 17th time, this annual tradition. It has been previously featured as a “Top ten place to celebrate in the world”.  With over 100 beers of tap for individuals to try, this all weekend event is sure to have a brew that suits you. Oktoberfest will feature both a kid friendly section as well as an over 21 beer garden. 5044573757_1fd66a6873

The tasting garden will be open as follows with last call a half hour prior to the listed closing time.

  • Friday, September 20 — 5:00pm-12:00midnight*
  • Saturday, September 21 — 11:00am-12:00midnight*
  • Sunday, September 22 — 11:00am-6:00pm**

Sunday morning is the 11th annual 5k run with the finish line in the middle of the Oktoberfest Village. While some may choose a more healthy hydration (boring), others may opt to hydrate themselves with a seasonal beer which is included in your $25 registration for the race.

Oktoberfest runs all weekend long but for more information please visit their website here.

5 Guys Coming to Ballard

Thanks to this tip from MyBallard.com it looks like the popular and delicious 5 Guys Burger chain will be expanding into Ballard. While some details have yet to be released it appears that they will move into the retail space of one of the new apartment buildings being built at 15th Ave NW and Market St.

5 Guys offers a limited menu with few burger options but they offset that with what feels like unlimited toppings that you can add as well as large portions of hand cut fries. Ballard already has its fair share of burger restaurants most notably Red Mill, so we will have to watch how 5 Guys fits in. As you drive by the new construction on Market St. keep your eyes open for the grand opening!

 

Happy Hour & Brewery Tour in Ballard Tonight

According to MyBallard.com, Hale’s Ales Brewery (4301 Leary Way NW) is throwing a happy hour and brewery tour tonight in partnership with Net Impact – Seattle to help promote sustainability and corporate social responsibility. The tour will begin at 6:15 pm with the event concluding at 8:30 pm. 

For more information on this event as well as to RSVP for it, please visit their Facebook event here. Hale’s has been promoting sustainability in their processes and has obtained their ingredients from local companies for more than 25 years. If you would like to see how a brewery can promote sustainability or would just like to enjoy a fresh cold beer after work, stop on by Hale’s tonight!