Spotlight On Eltana
Eltana recently opened its fourth location, and it looks like demand for wood-fired bagels will only increase as it starts feeding the Amazonian masses from its new South Lake Union spot. Choose from sweet or savory shmears, from fava bean basil to fig apricot compote, harissa hummus, and lox. Salads, sandwiches, and soups round out a menu that dances around the eastern Mediterranean.
Eltana might be a made-up name meant to evoke something warm, mysterious, and Middle Eastern, but the café is rooted in the stories of its two founders. Stephen Brown grew up in Toronto and spent his college years enjoying Montreal bagels, while Daniel Levin was raised in Ravenna and interned at St.-Viateur Bagel. Refreshingly chewy from hand-rolling, and flavorful from honey-sweetened water, these bagels are indeed “deliciously different.”
Eltana has locations on Capitol Hill, South Lake Union, Seattle Center, and Fremont.
Spotlight on Berger’s Breads
What started as a request to bake 20 challahs for a friend for Sukkot has turned into a small business: providing Seward Park families with freshly baked challah every Shabbat.
Rena Berger is the busy mother of three and the director of operations at Torah Day School. “The last thing I needed was my own business,” Berger says. Berger’s Breads bakes at least 18 challahs for pickup every Friday. The number increases to more than 200 for Rosh Hashanah. Flavors range from herb and caramelized onion to cookies and cream.
She has even baked challahs in the shape of the number 12 for game-day celebrations. In addition, Berger, a member of the Seattle Chesed Committee, coordinates meals for people in need and serves as chairperson of the mikvah committee at BCMH.
Spotlight on Homegrown
An ever-changing menu shows Homegrown Sustainable Sandwich Shop’s conscience commitment to sourcing, and its self-proclaimed “sandwich environmentalism” went as far as establishing its own certified organic farm in Woodinville, known as Sprouting Farms. Started in 2009 by Mercer Island natives Ben Friedman and Brad Gillis — who have been friends since kindergarten — the fast-growing brand just opened its tenth location in the greater Seattle area. Menu regulars include smoked pastrami and dynamite breakfast sandwiches, but seasonal finds like the Mt. Townsend Creamery Grilled Cheese or the summer collaboration with Tom Douglas highlight Homegrown’s commitment to local, organic, and sustainable ingredients.