Why Seattle’s Restaurant Boom is Making Local Chefs Nervous

Why Seattle’s Restaurant Boom is Making Local Chefs Nervous

Seattle isn’t only the home of some of the best coffee shops in the country, but now more chefs are flocking to the city. 

In a month and a half in the summer, 40 new restaurants opened. In the first quarter of 2017, Seattle had 2,696 restaurants, which is a 25% increase from a decade ago, according to the Department of Revenue.

Not to mention, the majority of the restaurants stick it out their first year. 87% of restaurants survive in the city within the first year. 

But that doesn’t mean that even the most renowned chefs don’t struggle in the city and aren't nervous about what the future holds for Seattle's culinary landscape. 

James Beard Award-winning chef Maria Hines’ Ballard restaurant, Golden Beetle. It served all-organic, adventurous takes on Mediterranean food, but the neighborhood balked at paying more for a gyro. “My heart aches,” she said upon changing the place to a family-friendly, conceptually easy-to-swallow gastropub earlier this year. But she still couldn’t get out from under the debt. Hines closed Golden Beetle this spring to concentrate on her other two restaurants, Tilth and Agrodolce,” writes "The Seattle Times."

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Small Kingdoms: James Beard Award Winning Chef Maria Hines on her Culinary Empire

Small Kingdoms: James Beard Award Winning Chef Maria Hines on her Culinary Empire

By Kerri Adams, Editor-at-Large

Our top 100 Social Chef list features an array of culinary masterminds, many of which that have been awarded other prestigious awards. The list is not editorially selected, but rather it has been curated from social data. 

Since our list demonstrates that men are still the majority heading up restaurant kitchens, there are just over 15 out of the 100 chefs that are women, we are featuring the leading ladies on the list who are conquering this male-dominated realm. 

“High-end kitchens have long been regarded as a male domain, with culinary students worshiping brutal but allegedly brilliant men, best exemplified by the “bad boy” chef Marco Pierre White and made popular by the ludicrous character portrayed by Gordon Ramsay,” writes Jen Agg for “The New York Times.”

Fortunately, there are badass ladies obliterating this male chef stereotype. 

One of these chefs is Maria Hines, a 2009 James Beard Award winning chef whose renowned skills in the kitchen have led her to start a culinary empire. 

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Two of Seattle's Top Female Chefs Share Secrets to Success

Two of Seattle's Top Female Chefs Share Secrets to Success

By L.M. Archer, Foodable Contributor

Does Seattle’s culinary industry prevent women cooks from scaling its echelon of empire elites? Hardly. Here, Foodable TV shares two top female chefs’ recipes for successfully summiting Seattle’s towering restaurateur scene.

Chef Maria Hines | Maria Hines Restaurants

A rock climber outside the kitchen, Chef Maria Hines ascends many a career peak as well, including earning a James Beard Best Chef Northwest 2009 award, and garnering appearances on Food Network Iron Chef America, The Martha Stewart Show, and Bravo TV’s Top Chef Masters | Kitchen Tour. Maria also owns Maria Hines Restaurants, which includes Tilth, Agrodolce, and Golden Beetle. Hines credits Fay Nakanishi, former Executive Chef at Croce’s in San Diego, for sparking her interest in a culinary career.

”The the bar was really high,” recounts Hines of that first restaurant job. “Fay was a really great mentor.”

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