October 21

Game Day In SLU

From Customized Sound To Cheddar Mini Pretzels

As the quarterback leans back to pass, football fans roar and pound the coppertop tables. Nearby, kids squeal as a skee ball rockets up the ramp and pops into the 30-point ring. It’s game day at Art Marble 21, a new take on the old 750-seat World Sports Grille space.

Bar hoppers enjoy period-appropriate cocktails that are in tune with Art Marble 21’s Roaring Twenties roots. This South Lake Union hotspot also keeps the beer pitchers flowing during the NFL season. Mike Kenney, who owns the space with his father Jerry, says, “We’re the home for the Cleveland Browns here, but we can accommodate section reservations and customized surround-sound for groups of 10 to 100 people.”

Periodic liquor promotions have waitstaff slinging appletini shots and other thirst-quenching creations to football fans. Better yet, Art Marble 21 honors its daily happy hours during games (4–6pm and 9pm to close). But specials aside, families like to watch sports here since the game room remains open to all ages. The kiddos can play pool, bocce, and giant Jenga, while adults compete vicariously through the big screens displaying their favorite athletic heroes.

Next door, Cask And Trotter serves up sports in addition to brisket poutine, pulled pork sandwiches, and dry-rubbed baby back ribs. A game-day favorite remains the St. Louis-style smoked chicken wings, however, for both NFL and Pac 12 (read “University of Washington Huskies”) fans alike. In good weather, the restaurant slides open its front windows, spilling in gorgeous, sweeping views of Lake Union.

Meat lovers have also discovered The Wurst Place, where folk art and artfully singed beams soar over Polish kielbasa, mac-and-cheese brats, and smoked-elk sausages. Pair those with 22 beers on tap—from Oregon’s Fort George Vortex IPA to local Sound Brewery’s Belgian-style Triple Entendre—and your favorite team on the telly.

For a more iconic South Lake Union sports experience, head to the Brave Horse Tavern. Seattle’s most famous celebrity chef, Tom Douglas, masterminded this beer-hall nook upstairs from his Trattoria Cuoco. Fans should arrive early to stake out prime spots at this high-energy eatery, famed for its hand-dipped corn dogs and brick-oven baked mini pretzels served with dips ranging from pimento-cheddar to peanut butter and bacon. When the action on the flat screen lags, other entertainment options include darts and shuffleboard. Beer buffs on a budget may prefer pitchers over pints, however—or just branch out with Jell-O shots in grape creamsicle or Moscow mule flavors.

For those who would rather play sports than watch a game on TV, don’t miss another SLU flagship store: the world headquarters of REI, which includes a 65-foot climbing wall. Between this—and the equipment-upcycler Play It Again Sports—Seattle’s top tech neighborhood keeps people moving.

Story and Photos by Amanda Castleman

At The Center

SLU is the geographical center of Seattle