January 18

Hit The Deck

Burgers, salads, and fresh-squeezed juices attract crowds at the South Lake Union’s newest dining spot.

The Deck, an indoor-outdoor food court located at Thomas and Boren, is home to three very different fast-casual food options, and this of course is perfect for the ever-growing, lunch-crazy South Lake Union crowd. Find stellar burgers at Li’l Woody’s (which stays open until 8pm if you want to grab a bite on the way home from the office), filling salads at Evergreens, and fresh-squeezed juices and a fine café menu at Jujubeet.

Li’l Woody’s

The Deck marks Li’l Woody’s third location. Diners can expect much of the same meaty goodness as the Ballard and Capitol Hill sister shops. Owner Marcus Lalario touts Li’l Woody’s dedication to great ingredients—Painted Hills beef, Tillamook cheese, Full Tilt ice cream for its shakes, and other elements from Northwest partners.

“We are a classic burger joint, but done well. We cut our own fries, make our own sauces, and source locally whenever possible,” he said.

Burger creations include The Fig and the Pig (1/3-pound grass-fed Painted Hills beef burger, a scoop of house-pickled figs, Hills bacon, and crumbled blue cheese); Good Mornin’ Woody (two fried eggs, Hills bacon, Tillamook cheddar, tomato slices, and rooster mayo); and the Veggie Veggie (house-made black bean veggie burger, diced pickles, chopped onions, tomato slices, lettuce, and ketchup, with an optional cheese add-on). Exclusive to The Deck (each Li’l Woody’s has a signature burger) is the SLU Turkey Burger (house-made spiced turkey burger with harissa yogurt sauce, cucumber, lettuce, and tomato slices), which Lalario said is a big hit here.

Li’l Woody’s at The Deck offers beer and wine, and Lalario hopes to start a happy hour in the near future. This spring, he plans to introduce a full bar program, so look forward to washing your juicy burger down with some adult beverages. Li’l Woody’s is open Monday through Friday, 11am to 8pm.

Evergreens

If you’re looking for a more healthful option, Evergreens might fit the bill. The Deck houses Evergreens fifth location, and second in SLU (The Regrade). Diners can choose from numerous signature salads like the El Sombrero (romaine lettuce, avocado, grape tomatoes, sweet corn, Beecher’s Flagship Cheese, organic tortilla chips,  jalapeños, organic black beans with a cilantro-lime vinaigrette); Doon’t Stop Be Vegan (kale, organic quinoa, edamame, organic carrots, red bell peppers, and almonds with herbed-mint vinaigrette); or the Cobb Your Enthusiasm (romaine lettuce, grilled chicken, avocado, house-pickled red onions, bacon crumbles, hard-boiled egg, gorgonzola, and red wine vinaigrette. You also can build your own salad, wrap, or grain bowl.

Evergreens co-owner Hunter Brooks used to live in New York and found it was easy to find a fast, healthy meal on just about any corner in the city. He became hooked on eating healthy food, and he and his business partner quit their New York City jobs and moved back home to Seattle to start Evergreens.

“We set out to change the way people eat—starting specifically in Seattle and the Greater Puget Sound area. We’ve stayed true to our mantra of only serving food that is 100 percent natural. No preservatives, no nitrates, no artificial coloring, etc. No exceptions,” he said.

Evergreens at The Deck is open Monday through Friday, 11am to 6pm.

Jujubeet

Artisan juice company Jujubeet started wowing customers at its first spot in Bellevue three years ago, and has since opened five locations in Seattle, Bellevue, and Redmond. Offerings include cold-pressed juices made from fresh, organic produce like the Nuthin But Greens (chard, kale, spinach, celery, lemon, and cucumber) or the Just Beet It (beet, carrot, green apple, and lemon). Umbria coffee, waffles, and acai bowls round out morning offerings, and the lunch crowd lines up for warm bowls and smoothies. Store manager Carly Knox said the most popular order so far seems to be for the Acai Protein Bowl, made with acai, bananas, strawberries, almond milk, Warrior Blend vanilla protein powder, and a scoop of either peanut butter or almond butter. This smoothie bowl holds a silky, frozen-yogurt-like texture and is topped with house-made Paleo granola and fresh fruit.

Knox added that business at The Deck has been rapidly improving since opening in November, citing a void of healthy, fast lunch options. “Jujubeet incorporates the freshest ingredients and makes healthy eating on the go possible. We are a ‘grab and go’ type cafe, and we love to help others meet their health goals. We are a good fit for The Deck, as we offer fresh food, made in just a few minutes, that will help busy professionals stay healthy even during their longest days,” she said.

Starting this week, the store will give out $1-off coffee coupons for those who purchase a smoothie the evening before. Jujubeet is open Monday through Friday, 7am to 6pm.

Story by Ethan Chung, Photos by Daniel Berman

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