Tag Archives: restaurants

Best Pizza on Mercer Island

The tip came from a Bellevue friend a few months ago. “Oh you’re in Mercer Island? I’m so jealous! My favorite pizza place just moved there!” It’s Tuscan Stone Pizza, the one that used to be on the corner of Bellevue way and NE 4th St. Now it’s parked at 2885 78th Ave SE, just west of the QFC in North Island.

Since moving to the Island, my husband and I have lamented the absence of a few things on Mercer Island: Trader Joe’s. An Indian restaurant. Great pizza. for me, this ranks up there with the opening of Freshy’s, and almost as high as the farmers’ market.

My criteria? Just the pizza. It’s good. Not to knock Moe’s or Sahara, but their pizza is good post-game pizza, perfect when volume is required. Zaw is nice, but you still gotta cook it. Tuscan Stone is the best. Call ’em from work, pick it up and eat when you get home.

It’s also fun to go into the pizza tent. The folks are quite nice, and it’s warm.

Stop by and check it out. We got the cheese and a veggie pesto. Mmmmmmm…. might see you there tomorrow.

What Could Be Better Than a Food Truck Calendar? Nothing.

That’s right, nothing could be better than a food truck calendar. And that’s why I direct you to the Mercer Island Food Trucks Site.

Food trucks

Food Trucks are the answer to the limited restaurant choices on Mercer Island. They bring delicious and creative options. They make us feel like a hipper neighborhood than we really are. All of that is wonderful.

We have two people to thank for this delightful turn of events: Nancy Meade, owner of the new downtown shop Terra Bella, and Bill Kratz for letting me know.

This Friday, for Mercer Island homecoming, there will be 4 food trucks starting with My Chef Lynn at 11am, then at 3pm with Buns, Chopstix and Seattle Biscuit. Trucks will be on site until approximately 8pm.

Zaw Pizza Coming to Tabit Square

Zaw Pizza, the fancy take-and-bake pizza chain, is coming to Mercer Island. Have never tried it myself, though I’ve heard it’s good– and Sahara Pizza could use some competition.

Here’s their planned location at Tabit Square:

Thanks to hot tipper Bill, who always has the scoop on downtown.

Stopsky’s Goes All the Way

… to dinner. That’s right, the new deli on the Island is now open for dinner and has been for about a week. They announced this a few weeks back:

I stopped in (not at dinnertime) to see how it was going. The hostess said they’ve had pretty good traffic, and they also have their liquor license now so they have a wine list. The dinner menu looks good, if fully priced:

Stopsky’s also joins Bennett’s, Cellar 46, and the Roanoke as a good place to be found between 4 and 6 pm. At Stopsky’s, that Nosh Hour:

If you’ve been by for dinner, leave a comment and let us know how it is. I’m sure we’ll make it there sooner or later.

Stopsky’s Closed til Friday

UPDATE: According to their Facebook page, Stopsky’s is now closed until Monday.

Stopsky’s opening has been quite an event. The new deli ran out of food on its opening weekend, then recovered only to face an electrical fire last weekend which has it closed until Friday at 7 am.

Stopsky’s: Now open for business, but not always accepting customers.

The reviews on Yelp suggest some opening glitches like slow food and shortages of rye bread… I suspect the pro crew at Stopsky’s will get these worked out. The couple of Yelpers who focused on the food had great things to say.

They’ve also gotten some good reviews. We’ve been in for bagels so far, which were excellent but also delivered a more slowly than we would have expected. But hey, Noah’s has been in business for years and they’re even slower. Stopsky’s at least has a shot at a decent learning curve.

Construction Contines Apace at New Deli

The website said the deli will open in the spring, so we’ve got less than two months to wait for (hopefully) tasty bagels while we browse Island Books.

Fish and Chips Coming to Freshy’s

Another hot tip on downtown businesses from Bill: Freshy’s finished their fish & chips take out counter.

I stopped in to Freshy’s to get more info and they confirmed that they intend to sell fried, delicious goodness for carry-out. They’re hoping to open at the beginning of May.

Finally, Some Competition for Noah’s Bagels: Stopsky’s Deli Opening

Noah’s Bagels, which serves as a local deli and the employer of what seems to be half of MIHS, has some competition coming.

Stopsky’s Deli says it “will celebrate and serve Jewish dishes from around the world.” It’s not pulling any punches, with a head chef from Crave in Capitol Hill and a bakery master Chef from the Columbia City bakery. It just got noted in Seattle Weekly, which doesn’t happen all that often for MI businesses.

Looks like they’ll be right by Island Books. The combination bookstore-deli could be a downtown powerhouse. With the park and farmer’s market nearby this could finally give downtown a much-needed nexus.

The website says it’s opening Spring 2011– that’s now! They’ve already been active around town, donating at the most recent Giving from the Heart breakfast to benefit Mercer Island Youth & Family Services. And the Facebook page has 226 likes— that’s more friends than I have, and I already exist. There’s also a lively discussion ongoing, mostly on the subject of delicious bread.

What they have to say for themselves:
A strong creative team has come together to reinvent Jewish delicatessen in the Pacific Northwest. Overseeing the kitchen and front-of-house is Robin Leventhal. Robin was the owner/chef of the acclaimed Crave Restaurant on Capitol Hill, and was a cheftestant on Season 6-Las Vegas of Top Chef as well as a chef instructor at New England Culinary Institute. Andrew Meltzer, aka “the bread maven,” will oversee the bakery. Andrew co-founded the Columbia City Bakery where he cemented his reputation as a master of a variety of breads and other baked items. He taught at the Culinary Institute of America and is a master at braiding challah.

Owners Jeff and Lara Sanderson decided to open Stopsky’s Delicatessen to celebrate family, heritage and community through food. In a return to his roots, Jeff named the restaurant in honor of his grandfather and great uncles. In 1905, Gilbert Stopsky and his three brothers arrived in America from a Jewish village outside Kiev, Ukraine. Wanting to assimilate to pursue the “American Dream,” they changed their name to Sanderson. Stopsky’s Delicatessen celebrates the Stopsky family’s journey in America and reclaims the name with pride in this history and traditions behind it.

Another interesting fact: it’s backed by Sanderson Ventures, a new venture that looks for return in business that benefit their community and are good place to work. The founders are Jeff and Lara Sanderson, and Jeff’s an ex-Microsoftie.

Finally, Mercer Island gets its badly-needed bakery. Can’t wait to try it.

Mo’s Pizza Coming to Downtown Mercer Island

This weekend I noticed a new sign on one of the new retail places on SE 27th at 77th Ave. Mo’s Pizza is coming:

If you can’t read the sign, they’re offering “Sicilian style pizza, fresh organic salads, premium Italian deli sandwiches…” and beer and wine. There’s a nice spot right by the space for patio seating, don’t know if they’re planning to use it but I hope so.

From the Mailbox, and VOTE

Some interesting news from the mail. First, a Halloween update:


There were pumpkins. Photo: Armadilo60 on Flickr.

New MISD Blog

Don’t know how new this is, but it’s new to me: MISD has a blog called Spotlight on MISD. Nice blog, and a great way get to know district teachers and staff.

New Japanese Place in North Island

Thanks to Dave for this tip: “A new restaurant just opened up where the “Lil Tokyo” used to be, next to Alpenland. The new place is also Japanese, but higher class than the teriyaki joint that was there before. It’s either incredibly brave or crazy to open a restaurant in this economy. Since islanders universally ask for more restaurants, it would be nice to support this new addition to our community. We stumbled upon it Monday, the day it opened, and our dinners were great!

Island Kids Onstage with the Nutcracker

The Pacific Northwest Ballet writes to say that six Island kids are performing in the Nutcracker this year. Congratulations to Jessica Li, Devon Munoz, Ana Ko Glass, Elisabeth Malanga, Jenna Permut, and Stevie Reiff. The show runs from November 27 to December 30– see the schedule for times & tickets.

Pacific Northwest Ballet School students and Company dancers in the Kent Stowell/Maurice Sendak Nutcracker. Photo © Angela Sterling.

Don’t Forget to Vote

According to King County, about 26% of Mercer Island has voted already. For the other 74%, here’s a reminder to mail your ballots today or tomorrow. If you need a cheat sheet on local races, check out

And there are two important initiatives on the ballot:

  1. Crazy Time Eyman’s “let’s make Washington broker than California” Initiative 1033, which most sane people are voting against, and
  2. R-71, which entitles same-sex couple to the same benefits (but not the actual institution of “marriage”) as married heterosexual couples, which most feeling people are voting for.