Fuel is Closing… Kind Of


Fried Chicken Fridays just might come to an end. Scout Magazine reports that Fuel Restaurant is closing.

Well, kind of. More accurately, Fuel will be refashioning itself into a more affordable yet-unnamed Pacific Northwest restaurant by December. The new restaurant will better suit this economic climate– a move not unlike next-door neighbour Gastropod’s transition into budget-friendly Maenam.

A word from owners Tom Doughty and Robert Belcham:

Our 3 year anniversary is fast approaching and we have truly enjoyed the time we have had taking care of you all.  Our ultimate goal is to see you all more often, and in order to achieve that, we have decided to make a significant change to our landscape here at Fuel.

Sunday November 29th will be our last service as Fuel Restaurant. We will close for two days and re-open for business on December 2nd as a neighborhood restaurant and bar specializing in Casual Northwest Cuisine. Our philosophy towards quality ingredients and impeccable service will remain paramount. We simply want to offer these things to you at a more affordable price.

Have they found a way to serve Sloping Hill’s heritage pork for less than $31.50? If so, they’ll definitely see me a lot more often! I, for one, am interested to see what Doughty and Belcham can come up with in offering affordability while remaining true to their local and seasonal food philosophy.

Last modified: November 11, 2009

6 Responses to " Fuel is Closing… Kind Of "

  1. Bil Barilko says:

    Butchering in the front window put a lot of people off the place I know some who won’t even walk down that side of 4th because it grosses them out.

    As Ye Sow…….

  2. Frances Cabahug says:

    “Butchering in the front window put a lot of people off”

    Are these people who don’t like meat, or people who just don’t like knowing where their food comes from?

  3. Bil Barilko says:

    Knowing where one’s food comes from is one thing, butchering and the sights/smells thereof are another, I speak as someone raised in farm country.

    In any case the place is folding, the original format is unsustainable.

    Of course the anti Foie gras crowd will claim victory and the new restaurant can counter with FG laden Nachos or Poutine.

  4. Frances says:

    @Bil, I love the commentary that you bring to this site, and I’m going to agree with you that the sights and smells of butchering are “gross.” And I’m saying this as someone who spent childhood summers in a hobby farm, slitting the necks of a few chickens, draining blood, and pouring boiling water to make feather-plucking easy. Can’t say I’ve killed pigs or cows, but I’ve watched them slaughtered in front of me.

    Gross? Yes, it is.

    But that’s what eating meat entails. Whether or not the whole hog is in front of you at Fuel or if it’s a chop wrapped in cellophane in Safeway, the means by which the meat ended up before you is very likely “gross”. In Fuel, the pigs arrive already drained of blood, cleaned from dirt, hairs singed off. They don’t even have to do the grosser job of the actual slaughter.

    Of course, humans didn’t always think of it as gross, back when humans actually lived with the everyday reality of food production. Given that food is substance that we incorporate in our bodies, I think it’s interesting how we’ve placed food production on the periphery. Before cities had consistent rails that led to the countryside, live animals were led to city markets and slaughtered, and people didn’t think of it as extraordinarily gruesome then (at least according to http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/carolyn_steel_how_food_shapes_our_cities.html ). Once rails were invented, we shipped most of our food production away where we don’t have to think about them. And that’s why you get gross comments about Fuel–because Fuel brings out attention back to the realities of food production. Suddenly, we see the whole animal, instead of convenient slabs.

    We have raised people who get grossed out by the idea of butchering but are happy to eat hotdogs. 🙂 I’m a meat eater, and I eat meat while calculating the varying levels of “grossness” it took for that rack of lamb to arrive on my plate. I understand vegetarians who get grossed out by meat production. But people who eat meat but don’t accept the fact that meat-production means slaughtering and butchering? People who prefer to think of it as immaculate? That, I find odd.