Heat Up the Holidays with Talarico’s Winter Warmers

by Lori Hinton

When the weather outside is frightful, Talarico’s fire is so delightful. More so, are their holiday Winter Warmers! Come in out of the cold to sip house-made Hot Buttered Rum with Kracken Black Spiced Rum and whipped cream. The Wicked Apple is also a crowd fave made with Yukon Jack Wicked Hot Cinnamon, hot apple cider and whip cream. Whiskey lovers will delight in both The Blizzard (made with Jameson Irish Whiskey, Frangelico, Irish Crème with coffee and whip) and The Mountie (Crown Royal Maple Whiskey mixed with Oregon Chai and whip). Want S’more options? Try The Campfire with Three Olives S’mores Vodka, hot chocolate, whipped cream and crumbled graham crackers. Cheers!

Talarico’s Winter Warmers: The Campfire

Shop Local: Holiday Gift Ideas for Adults and Hosts

by Lori Hinton
The holidays are officially here. Time to kick it into high gear. What do you get that special someone this year? Hmm. And for the aunt who has everything? How about a host gift for the party next week? Head to The Junction for gift-giving inspiration.

Fleurt is known for its fashionable floral. Really, who can resist the adorably sweet signature mason jar bouquets? And the chic custom wreaths compliment any holiday display. But this Junction gem also offers a unique array of gifts—from sassy shopping bags by Emily McDowell, recycled leather wallets, cork handbags and Handmade La Conner bath products to cheese and gin making kits, savory sauces and a wall of custom made jewelry. Check out Fleurt’s spotlight in Seattle Met’s Holiday Gift Guide and on Seattle Magazine’s Holiday Cheat Sheet! Shoppers from all over the city are coming to snatch up gifts featured here.

Gin Kit from Fleurt

Got a wine lover on your list? Swing by Bin 41 for an amazing selection of 1200 different labels! Customized holiday gift baskets are also a big hit for host gifts (note: 24 hours notice required).

Speaking of the host(ess) with the mostest, bring a little bling to his or her holiday table with glitzy French Sabre serveware from JF Henry. For a sleek but classic look, try the wooden Kentucky Salad Tongs that fold flat for easy storage. For timeless table art, consider rustic Sparq slate cheeseboards. And check out the slate Alki Lighthouse ornaments, while they last.

Sparq slate cheeseboards and ornaments at JF Henry.

Hop over to Click! Design That Fits to keep checking off the list. This virtual museum of modern art, décor and creative gift ideas enlightens even the most stumped of all holiday shoppers. Take the Five Ply Design species-specific birdhouses, for example. Handmade in Seattle, these modern bird homes are functional eye candy that even non-ornithologists can appreciate. And the paper mache iPhone amplifiers by Westside artist Fritz Rud, are a must-see. The combination of old, found objects and new technology appeals to a multigenerational audience. Colorful coffee presses and etched Italian wine glasses are also great host gifts. And art fans will eat up the vibrant paintings by George Perrou. Bike fanatics are all over the Alchemy Goods recycled bike tube bags, and ask to see Snacktime by Fish’s Eddy for cheeky plates and mugs with hilarious sayings not fit for print.

West Seattle artist Fritz Rud’s iPhone amplifier at Click!

For a gift that’s music to your ears, check out Easy Street Records selection of USB turn tables with software to convert your LPs into MP3s. And while CDs make a great stocking stuffer, splurge for the box set (like Bob Dylan’s Basement Tapes Deluxe Edition) to put under the tree.

Wander into Wild Rose Antiques for once-loved and new treasures, like West Seattle artist Janet Ramble’s snowman oil paintings and coasters.

For the outdoor enthusiasts, Emerald Water Anglers has everything from fly rods, reels, waders and gorgeous Patagonia down jackets (for men and women) to Helio portable hot water showers, waterproof backpacks, Grape Solar portable charging stations, and GoPro adventure cams.

Outdoor everything at Emerald Water Anglers

Still frantic? Don’t panic. As the clock ticks down, holiday shopping is fun and easy when you don’t have to leave “town.” West Seattle town, that is.

Stay tuned for next week’s feature on stocking stuffers and last-minute gift ideas!

Holiday Art Walk in The Junction

Don’t miss out on this West Seattle Holiday Art Walk, on Thursday, December 11th from 6-9pm. Participating merchants will be displaying the work of amazing artists at their store. Enjoy with some sips and nibbles as you shop for gifts as well as art.

A few highlights at the Artwalk:

Stop by Click! Design That Fits and see George Perrou’s work.


Inspired by mid-century animation, George Perrou’s ‘Mod-Culture’ art gives nods to Miro, Kandinsky and Calder. Channeling the the Hanna-Barbera and Warner Bros. cartoons of his youth, Perrou’s is a style all his own, painting colorful abstractions of reality onto the canvas using retro and modern colors in acrylic.

Kate Endle + Chris Ballew’s works are fabulously displayed at CAPERS. Seattle Distillery will be on site serving their award winning liqueur & King Caramel serving their fabulous caramels.  And that’s not all, Washington State Faeries will be pouring the liqueur samples and singing crazy jingles too.  It’s going to be an entertaining night!



Twilight Gallery & Boutique will be taking the Art Walk to another level by hosting a group show.

Tkemba.opiostudy1_1his is a group show featuring wearable art, painting and photography.
Kim Merritt (Seattle)
Rebecca Rose (Florida)
Neva Balnikova (Bulgaria)
Stasia Burrington (Seattle)
Caitlin Brookins (Seattle)
Jason Foster (Seattle)
Stone Crow Designs (Seattle)
Adia Bobo (Seattle)
Flannery Good (Kansas CIty)
Rosary Solimanto (New York)
Shannon Koszyk (Seattle)
Seb Barnett (Seattle)
Chris Sheridan (Seattle)
Kemba Opio (Seattle)
Kwanchai Moriya (Los Angeles)
Rhodora Jacob (Seattle)
Elizabeth Hull (Texas)
Daniel Ogden (Sammamish)
Zel Margaretes (Seattle)
Chloe Allred (Seattle)
Joana Stillwell (Silverdale)
Raven Kwinn (Arkansas)

There will also be a trunk show by Stone Crow Designs, as well as, Seattle based choreographer Maya Soto to perform an excerpt of her piece Gathering Bones at 7:30 and 8:30pm

For more info on the West Seattle Art Walk and participating merchants, visit the website.

Discover Buche de Noël at Bakery Nouveau

by Lori Hinton


Looking for a special treat this holiday? Head to Bakery Nouveau for Buche de Noël—a chocolate Yule log sure to bring cheer. In Nouveau’s version of this French Christmas dessert tradition, the buche (or branch) is made from sponge cake with coffee syrup and frosted with Vanilla Crème Madame, chocolate and raspberry mousse. Then it’s rolled to form the log shape and frosted again with coffee butter cream. The log is finished with chocolate bark, chocolate mushrooms, and a light sprinkling of powdered sugar to appear as if it were dusted with freshly fallen snow.


Legend has it in days of yore, Europeans would close out the year at Winter Solstice and begin anew by burning logs that were garnished with holly, pine cones, ivy and mushrooms (which the Buche de Noël resembles today). Ashes were kept as a good luck charm for the year ahead. But don’t worry; no one expects any leftover “ashes” when it comes to Nouveau’s log. So savor every last chocolate bark chip!


For more season’s treatings, check out the bakery’s Santa S’mores, Santa’s Belt and Bigfoot for a taste of peanut butter and chocolate bliss.

Shop Local: Holiday Gift Ideas for Kids

by Lori Hinton

There’s no doubt, West Seattle loves its kiddos. Stroll The Junction and you’ll be delighted to see a few dedicated kids shops. Dig a little deeper and you’ll find that almost every store has a soft spot for the wee ones too. So holiday shoppers, do not fear, there’s no shortage of great gift ideas for kids this year—right here!

Don’t miss Curious Kidstuff—an absolute mecca for cool kids toys for 16 years running. Some specialty toy picks for this season include the Keva and YOXO Play from Scratch building kits, Think Fun’s Robot Turtles Game for little programmers, and the popular GoldieBlox kits designed to introduce girls to engineering. Your little lass can learn to build everything from merry-go-rounds to zip lines and parade floats. The Kid O walking toys are great for toddlers, and the California Creations windup morphing toys are a hoot for all ages, “It’s a truck, no it’s a dog, no it’s a truck!” And be sure to take a trip down memory lane to see the Fisher Price classics like the xylophone, movie viewer, rotary phone, record player and more.


Speaking of classics, Northwest Art & Frame is the source for Shrinky Dinks! Remember those? And what kid doesn’t want to know how to make a Pom Pom Puppy? Klutz Kits activity books are all the rage with materials and directions cleverly included in the packaging.

Got a silly goose to shop for? Check out Zamboanga for animal alarm clocks, lucky cat figurines, goofy teeth and whoopee cushions—stocking stuffers sure to summon laughs and smiles.

Want something for the wee one? Wander up to CAPERS for precious little baby gifts like Pebble fair trade crocheted rattles, stacking blocks and locally made SwaddleDesigns swaddle blankets. You will also find a little holiday magic in the hand knit cardigans by Phyllis Cameron, who, in her 90s, still rides the bus all the way from Ballard to deliver her wash and dry kids’ sweaters to West Seattle.


For more adorable kids’ clothing, scurry over to City Mouse Store. Known for its fashion brands like Tea Collection and See Kai Run, City Mouse is more than a clothing store. It’s also a photo studio specializing in children’s photography (a photo session gift certificate perhaps?), and it has great gifts too. Check out Lap Desks for doodling, Finger Monsters, tutus, fun umbrellas and Janod wooden push mowers.

And for a traditional gift that never gets old, opt for a bright, shiny new kids bike from West Seattle Cyclery. The Marin kids bikes offer frames that transition up a size easily so you can get more mileage in between growth spurts. For tiny riders in training, consider the colorful Kazam balance bikes or the new 100% recycled Wishbone 3-in-1 scoot-style bike that converts from a trike to a little and big bike. Balance bikes (aka scoot bikes) teach kids to balance on two wheels as they scoot along and eventually ride without needing training wheels! And don’t forget a helmet! Make sure your kids’ noggins have not outgrown their current helmets. If so, it’s a great excuse to get one of the fun Little Nutty designs from Nutcase helmets. Looking for stocking stuffers? Grab a pair of colorful streamers, fun bike bells, and reflective lights. Ask to see the spoke light that makes circles when you ride!



Is your under the tree real estate completely full yet? Save some space because that’s just the beginning! Duck into your favorite Junction stores for even more great kid-finds right here in your own backyard.

Cupcake Royale Turns 11

CELEBRATE IN ROYALE FASHION ON DECEMBER 11                                          

Free Babycakes, Merch Deals, and Dance Party at Capitol Hill Café!


Join the continuing coronation of Cupcake Royale’s sweetness as Seattle’s original Cupcakery turns 11 this month with a party fit for a Queen! Join the jubilation at all six Cupcake Royale locations on Thursday, December 11 throughout the day.  Here’s what’s happening:

  • Receive a FREE Babycake with any purchase.

  • 25% off of ANY Cupcake Royale Merchandise including brand new line wares of God Save the Cupcakes, Legalize Frostitution and Does a Booty Good.  Shop Local, Save Money, Look Good.

  • Of coursewhat’s an anniversary celebration without a Dance Party? Come one, come all to Capitol Hill (1111 East Pike) from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. to shake your booty to DJ Damaged Goods and do the happy dance.  There will be prizes from Cupcake Royale, Stumptown Coffee and bubbles to share.

Cupcake Royale is located in the West Seattle Junction at 4556 California Ave SW.

Celebrate the Holidays at Home

by Lori Hinton

‘Tis the season for Santa, shopping, eggnog sipping, and a myriad of merriment. This year, don’t let the stress of city traffic, big crowds, pricy parking, long lines and mall mentality get you down…

Celebrate the holidays at home—right here in The Junction!

West Seattle has everything you could wish for, and more.


Sing carols with your family at the Tree Lighting Event, join the first annual Junction Holiday Party (a progressive party hosted by your favorite shops), meet Santa and snap some pics, Shop Late Thursdays to get in happy hour AND check off your gift list, share a hot toddy with your next door neighbor, nibble cookies and find unique gifts at the Holiday Art Walk, take a Belgian Draft Mule-drawn carriage ride, and sip cider at the Holiday Farmer’s Market with friends from school—all without leaving West Seattle.

Because whether you celebrate Christmas in your community, Hanukkah in your hamlet, or Kwanzaa in the confines of our little “island,” there’s nothing more personal than coming together in your very own neighborhood to share the true spirit of the season with loving family, caring neighbors and cherished friends.

Start your own Hometown Holiday tradition this year—see you in The Junction!

What’s Brewing in The Junction this Holiday?

…Enjoy these Festive Holiday Drink Picks!

holidayaleLooking for a festive brew to sip or serve this season? Try Noäle (as in no-ale) Holiday Ale at Elliott Bay Brewing Co. This deep, rich, unfiltered, organic dunkelweizen (think hefeweizen, only darker) has a smooth malt flavor with a slight roasted taste from dark malts and hop spiciness. Noäle is made with several malt varieties from Organic Pale, Organic Wheat and Munich to Organic Chocolate, Organic Roast and Caramel blend. Add Golding and Chinook Hops and you have a very hoppy holiday brew. Cheers!

(Note: No time to stop and sip? Noäle Holiday Ale is also available in growlers to go!)

Other Tasty Tidbits

If hops ain’t hoppinin’ for you this season, venture over to Beer Junction to lose yourself in over 300 hard ciders!

Do you love wine and bubbly? Bin 41 Junction Wine Shop has you covered.  Swing by the Grower’s Champagne Tasting on Saturday, December 6th from 3-5pm and stock up for New Years. And if you enjoy dessert wines, don’t forget to come to the “Ports for the Holidays” tasting on Friday, December 12th from 6-7:30pm!

Junction Holiday Party


Once December rolls around, we make sure that every weekend is filled with something fun at The Junction. This time, we are kicking it off with the Holiday Party + Junction Tree Lighting. It can’t get any better than that. So families and friends, head on over to The Junction on Saturday, December 6th for some holiday fun!

Read below for a few highlights at the Junction Holiday Party!

  • At Bin 41, they will be hosting a special Grower’s Champage tasting. With a $10 tasting fee and it is refundable with a bottle purchase of the featured Champagnes. There will be a wine bottle ring toss in the hallway. Customers get a chance to receive various promotional discounts for shop purchases that day.
  • CAPERS will be offering fun, food & possibly Santa!  There will be specials during the night and a goody bag for the first couple of guests.
  • untitledClick! Design That Fits likes to celebrate the Holiday Party with a Trunk Show and Sample Sale with Sarah Loertscher. From 11am – 8pm, customers get the chance to meet local jewelry designer Sarah Loertscher! Enjoy a special first-time-in-Seattle showing of her latest work and a rare opportunity to purchase studio samples not usually available at Click! or anywhere else.


  • For the consignment shopping lovers, visit Funky Jane’s. There will be a candy bar full of purple and white candies!
  • Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices NW Real Estate will be doing “Santa Paws” at Jefferson Square. Bring your pet, smiles and your camera!
  • Enjoy some hot cider, hot cocoa, cookies and a free bag of goodies for dogs or cats at Next-to-Nature.
  • For purchases of $100 or more, Fleurt will be handing over a free air plant. Also, customers can enter the raffle to win a Fleurt gift bag filled with goodies.
  • The search for toys and kids apparel just got extra fun because City Mouse Store will be offering sips and nibbles and door prizes.
  • While you’re browsing for great books at great prices Pegasus Book Exchange they will have some delicious cookies! There will also be gluten free ones of course.
  • At Jan’s Beauty Supply, customers will have a chance to win a $300 gift basket! There will also be wine and cheese as you shop for the next best beauty product.
  • For the ones wanting their Christmas gifts to be extra special, stop by Menashe & Sons for a blue topaz stone that they will be giving away to customers during the Holiday Party.  They are also offering some warm beverages and snacks on the side.
  • If you’re on the look-out for a gift that is magical, Terjung’s Studio of gifts will be a good place to find that. They will be offering some yummy jam sampling on the side too!
  • Carmilia’s, our favorite place to get holiday dresses, will be offering up some champagne and chocolates, as well as secret deals store wide.
  • West Seattle Computers will surprise us with a special live performance at their store.
  • Get your antique shopping on at Wild Rose’s and cozy up with some refreshments. There’s always a great holiday find at Wild Rose’s.
  • Emerald Water Anglers will be hosting their holiday party with drinks, nibbles, AND play Yahtzee to win your discount at the register.
  • Vain will be offering some great deals for their holiday party! There will be a free gift with any purchase over $10. Free flash tattoo with any retail purchase over $20 (these are so much fun- jewelry-inspired temporary tattoos that they can barely keep them in stock!). PLUS 10% off retail purchases. One can’t pass up all these good freebies!
  • If you’re a big traveler and have been eying one of those Scottevests, stop by AAA West Seattle as they host their holiday party with a chance to win a Scottevest.

Below are a few more Junction businesses hosting their own holiday parties, stop by and visit them to see what they have in store for you!

Easy Street Records
Great Harvest Bread Co.
JF Henry Kitchen & Tableware
Merryweather Books
West Seattle Cyclery

Holiday Shopping just got extra fun in The Junction! Happy shopping and Happy Holidays!

Santa is in The Junction

Someone is coming to town and it’s going to make all the kids and furry friends excited! There will be Santa sightings and photo ops at different Junction establishments, so we have put together the list that you have been waiting for.



  • Santa will be sitting in his new chair at CAPERS from 12pm-3pm on Saturday and Sundays, starting Nov 29 through Dec 21.  Donation to the West Seattle Foodbank in lieu of sitting fee.  This is a DIY opportunity.  Bring your phones, cameras, and your friends.
  • Stop by Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices NW Real Estate with your furry pets for a chance to bark or meow their Christmas wishes to Santa. On Saturday, December 6th from 12pm – 4pm, make sure you bring your camera for and snap that memorable photo of your pets with Santa.Click on Link for more info.
  • Santa will be at City Mouse Store on Sunday, December 7th from 10am – 2pm. Drop in for a hug and a smile.  Bring your camera and capture your own special moment Santa.
  • West Seattle Art Walk/Shop Late Thursday – On Thursday, December 11th from 5- 9pm, Santa will be walking around The Junction, find him and see if you can get a quick snap with him.
  • Homestreet Bank West Seattle is almost one and they want to celebrate with you! On Friday, December 12th from 3-6pm, families get a chance to have free professional photos with Santa courtesy of Gail Ann Photography, a hot cocoa bar, warm apple cider, holiday treats and more! Please bring a food item to donate to the West Seattle Food Bank. Click for more info.
  • Visit JF Henry for a Santa photo op on Saturday, December 13th from 10am – 1pm. Free photos with you own camera.  Also available on site photographer for $5.
  • It’s Santa Paws at Windermere West Seattle, this is a great chance for your furry friends to get a photo with Santa onSunday, December 14th from 11 – 1pm.
  • On December 20th from 10am-2pm Santa will be at Emerald Water Anglers for a DIY photography. All donations will go directly to the Wild Steelhead Coalition.
  • Kid’s get a chance to hang out with Santa at Santa’s House on Sunday, December 21st.  Santa’s House will be stationed at Key Bank which is located at 4701 California Ave SW.