April 3

Maple Leaf Grill to close May 23rd

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The Maple Leaf Grill – a neighborhood institution with Mrs. Peel on the north wall and a huge reclining nude on the south – this morning announced it will close May 23.

From the Leaf’s Facebook page:

It is with great sadness that I must officially announce the impending closure of the Maple Leaf Grill. After 25 years of serving the Maple Leaf community, our last day of service with be May 23rd. I don’t know what else to say except that is has been my pleasure to serve you for nearly 1/2 of those years and I will miss seeing all of your beautiful faces.

You still have about seven weeks to come get your grub on, enjoy the best burger in the city with a pint of your favorite local brew, scarf down a plate of stroganoff or carbonara, or sup lightly on Pat’s pan-seared trout. I do hope you’ll all stop in to say goodbye.

This leaves Maple Leaf with one fewer local restaurant – neighbors will remember LC’s Kitchen closing in the spring of 2011.

From The Stranger:

The kind of bar everyone wishes his or her neighborhood had, the Maple Leaf Grill is a cozy, worn-in den, perfect for folks in the area to walk to and grab a burger and a beer—with their kids or without. A giant horseshoe-shaped bar dominates the main room, making a good spot for solo diners who want some people-watching with their dinner.

From the Leaf’s own webpage:

The Maple Leaf Grill has been a neighborhood favorite since it opened its doors in the charming Maple Leaf area of Seattle in 1989. In 1999, the Grill relocated up the street to the light grey house that sits on the corner of 90th and Roosevelt Way NE. The house was built in the 1920’s and is on the highest point in north Seattle, with views of Mount Rainier and the Olympic mountains. In January 2004, Pat Paull, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, bought the Maple Leaf Grill becoming the executive chef/owner. Pat Paull promised the loyal neighborhood that he would “bring the Grill back,” which is what he’s done.

From the Leaf’s Facebook page.

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Sara W

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  1. The Roosevelt Ale House killed the MLG. Also, why did MLG stop selling hard liquor a couple years back? All the cool younger staff seem to quit overnight. Seemed like the writing was on the wall. They were too $$ anyway. The Roosevelt Ale House has a great happy hour, plenty of space including patio in the summer months. The food is great and so are the drink choices. The staff is personable and remember their “regulars” down to all the little things we ask for. RAH has the formula down. Turn the MLG space into a Top Pot or an annex for Judy Fu’s.

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  2. I never understood the idea of buying the right to occupy a rented space. Essentially the money is for the equipment and decor, right?

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  3. OKAY!!!

    Can you guys believe somebody would spend part of a non-rainy Sunday afternoon in Maple Leaf impersonating long-dead historical figures who are often quoted but usually because of a few simplified opinions about capitalism from more than 200 years ago?

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  4. Ha!!! I knew you knew!

    Anyhow, I was thinking. Do you ever think that a more rational (right!?) response to a post about a local restaurant closing might be something like, ‘Bummer, they had a good burger. Hope they end up on their feet.’ I mean, free market and all, but sometimes (and I’m on your side!) it sounds like you don’t really have anything to add to the comments section of a small blog in a relatively homogenous neighborhood in kinda liberal north Seattle, except maybe to try to get a little attention for your (our!) potentially unpopular-in-the-general-sense opinions?

    Write me back.

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  5. “…Going back to a time when I know everything was straighter
    Everything’s great now but back then it was greater…”

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  6. No? Urban dweller, just like you. Grew up poor, pulled himself up by the bootstraps. Never cared for organized religion. Doing pretty well for himself now. You’d like him!

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  7. Hey, I’m with ya! You, me, and roughly 12% of the American population! Our voices should be heard, over and over and over on this neighborhood blog. It’s not like friends/family/coworkers want to hear it anymore, ha!

    This is the best way to make people understand.

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  8. “Thomas Paine // Apr 3, 2014 at 12:05 pm

    I’m really really really sorry to hear this. I know three restaurants closing because of the minimum wage increase that is coming – I wonder if they are the 4th?”

    Samsies! Also closing imminently:

    Cloud City – price of coffee beans may increase in 2016.

    Wild Root – shampoo shortage, coming 2018.

    Ace Hardware – potential rise in the wholesale costs of padlocks and tomato cages, 2022.

    Small businesses are getting out in front of these and doing the right thing. Giving up.

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  9. I saw for sale ads for the ML Grill on craigslist as well. I thought the price was low until I realized it was not for the building. I bet the monthly rent and triple net are pretty high which make it a much less attractive purchase.

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  10. Great find, ML! Five months and we never knew. That price seems like a bargain for the location.

    We’ll make sure to go a time or two while we still can. Sweet potato fries and garlic aioli, here we come!

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  11. ecdosit…I fully understand your frustration… I also hope the new location will be a new and inviting local café or the like, Unfortunately, I think that Starbucks or the like paid Maple Leaf Bar and Grill a very pretty penny t0 buy into the neighborhood…

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  12. Sad news. I hope we can get back to Seattle for one more visit. Might be tough, but we’ll try to work something out. I lived in Maple Leaf from 1990 – 2001 and loved that place. My wife and I visit it often when we come back. We would just walk up from 88th/5th. What a bummer.

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  13. This is too bad! I have spent many hours sitting at the bar enjoying a Manny’s and great conversation with Gwen and Jess. I hope that something similar opens in it’s place. The last thing we need is some holistic doctors office or half empty art studio.

    The Jones Bistro was slow until it re-invented itself at the Roosevelt Ale House. Hopefully something similar can happen to the Maple Leaf Grill.

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  14. I’m really really really sorry to hear this. I know three restaurants closing because of the minimum wage increase that is coming – I wonder if they are the 4th?

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  15. I’m really sad to read this. MLG is absolutely our favorite place in the neighborhood.

    We always talk about going someplace new further afield from Maple Leaf, but then we conclude, “let’s just walk over to the Grill.”

    Guess we’ll be walking over a little more often the next month and a half.

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  16. We’ve been a couple of times and found their happy hour menu too expensive. $6 for 1/2 sandwich? We go down the street for a $6 cheeseburger with fries. We hope it reopens with better deals.

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  17. NOOOO! We were there last night too, and didn’t hear. We’ve been in the neighborhood for 2 years, and are totally hooked on the amazing happy hour and all around great food. Say it ain’t so!!! How can we convince you to keep it going?!?! 😉

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  18. I had dinner there last night and heard the sad news. I can’t imagine life without the Maple Leaf Grill and Mars Oyster Stew.

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