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Tag Archives: Ballard

Best Happy Hour Tacos and Margaritas In Seattle

El Borracho in Ballard Delivers $1 Tacos

Tacos at El Borracho are just a $1 each during happy hour. Photo by Christine Willmsen

Tacos at El Borracho are just a $1 each during happy hour. Photo by Christine Willmsen

When you need a break from a dreary work day, El Borracho Taqueria is the Hot Spot I recommend that is a great place to grab some cheat eats and drinks for a 4-7 p.m. happy hour Monday through Friday. With the design of the room and the large rectangular bar at 5465 Leary Way, it’s simple to spark up conversations with others sipping their margaritas.

It's easy to have a couple margaritas when they are only $4 each. Photo by Christine Willmsen

It’s easy to have a couple margaritas when they are only $4 each. Photo by Christine Willmsen

There is a vibrating energy in the room, with tables packed with people laughing and chatting. It’s easy to embrace its motto “El Take it Easy,” after ordering a homemade margarita aptly named El Cheapo for just $4.  But the crowd pleaser at El Borracho is the $1 taco. I recommend the cochinitas pibil tacos made of orange achiote pork with pickled red onion and the carnitas tacos, both packed with flavor. If you’re downtown, El Borracho has another Hot Spot, located at 1521 1st Ave., between Pike and Pine streets.


El Borracho Taqueria y Cantina on Urbanspoon

Tapas bar in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood is a hit for singles

Ocho – a Hot Solo Spot

This deviled egg delight combines salmon roe, pickled onion, tomato dust and dill.

Turn to Ocho in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood, if you want a restaurant that has small bites, made just for one person with an artistic impression.  As The Solo Cook, I look for places that single people can enjoy, whether it’s the vibe of the place or the menu that is eclectic and perfect for one. I’ll share my secret hot solo spots with you and I’ll also discover new places along the way.

At Ocho they throw great cocktails behind the bar and create bite-size menu items that are loaded with flavors from Spain.

This small tapas bar at 2325 NW Market St. is hopping, but there’s usually an empty seat at the bar. I also like to people-watch so I sit in the outdoor area, just in front, where I’m entertained by the foot, bike and car traffic, zooming by the table.

The Solo Cook enjoys the San Miguel cocktail at Ocho, a tapas bar in Seattle.

What’s fantastic about Ocho and other tapas bars is that you get to try several menu items, without getting full like you would if you ordered a large entrée.

Visually, these tapas tempt the eyes. I craved deviled eggs as a child, so when I saw Ocho’s grown-up version, I couldn’t wait to sink my teeth into the creamy egg. Their Huevo del Diablo for just $2.50 is an explosion of flavors in the mouth with salmon roe, dill, fried capers, pickled onion and tomato dust.

Another great menu item at $1.75 is the Banderilla de Boqueron, which combines skewered anchovy, red pepper, deep-fried artichoke and aioli.

“I wanted to convince people to try anchovies because in Spain they’re eaten like candy,” said Ocho owner and manager Zach Harjo.

While chatting with Harjo, I discovered his inspiration for the restaurant.

This tapas dish at Ocho will make you an anchovy and artichoke lover.

After graduating with several art degrees from University of Washington in 2003, Harjo backpacked through several regions of Spain. He discovered a vibrant nightlife with people standing at bars, nibbling food and having cocktails.

“I wanted to bring the bar nightlife of Spain to here,” he said about opening Ocho in 2008.  “The two or three dollar items inspired me in Spain and I love the flavors.”

To quench your thirst, I recommend you sip on the herbaceous and refreshing San Miguel drink with gin, St. Germain, rhubarb bitters and a touch of lemon.

Another gin drink called El Picador, changes colors as you imbibe. Because the speared beet bleeds into the drink, it turns red much like a Spanish bull bleeding in the ring, Harjo said. Drinks cost $8 and tapas about $2-9.



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Ocho on Urbanspoon