JuneBaby Plans to Reopen Its Dining Room June 16 for the First Time in Over a Year

Junebaby’s catfish and grits | Bill Addison

The acclaimed restaurant will merge its space with neighboring Lucinda Grain Bar to create a little more room

After more than a year, one of Seattle’s most celebrated restaurants is ready to open its dining room once again. Ravenna’s JuneBaby announced on Instagram that it would be back for indoor service beginning June 16 for the first time since the pandemic first impacted the Seattle region in spring 2020.

There will be a few changes, though. For one, the next-door sibling operation, Lucinda Grain Bar, will essentially be an extension of JuneBaby, with a door connecting the two spaces and an area that can be reserved for private parties. Hours will be Wednesday through Sunday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., with seating available for walk-ins only (and still only a half capacity, due to current state restrictions). Chef-owner Edouardo Jordan tells Eater Seattle that when restaurants and bars reopen at 100 percent capacity in July, Lucinda will also be a late-night option for drinks and snacks, plus “maybe a grain bowl or two.”

As for JuneBaby, diners should find a lot of old favorites back, with barbecue dinners on Saturdays, the restaurant’s famed fried chicken on Sundays, and even possibly the return of Jordan’s much-coveted fried turkey leg specials on Wednesdays.

But even with the adjustment back to dine-in, takeout isn’t going away. Jordan’s Food with Roots box subscription — with a selection of packaged items for home cooks from JuneBaby, Lucinda, and sibling restaurant Salare down the street — plans on continuing, and there will still be individual items available to go from JuneBaby. Salare will also continue its takeout menu, holding off on reopening its dining room for now.

“Takeout will continue to be apart of the program moving forward,” Jordan says. “There will still be a large number of people wanting takeout until they are comfortable with dining in.”

Throughout much of the past year, Jordan has been among the more cautious chefs when it came to indoor dining. He implemented robust takeout programs at both JuneBaby and Salare early on in 2020 and stuck with them, even when restaurant dining rooms began to reopen in limited capacity last summer throughout more than a year of constantly shifting regulations. Last May, when plans to lift Washington’s first stay-at-home order came into focus, the chef had said he would only reopen if all of his staff felt comfortable coming back and the expense of having only partial seating capacity made sense.

More than a year later, the COVID outlook is much different. In King County, nearly 70 percent of people are fully vaccinated, and Washington will aim to fully reopen the economy by June 30, including no capacity restrictions on restaurants.

“We are excited to get back open,” Jordan says. “It’s been a long 15-16 months, my staff are fully vaccinated and they are stocked to get back to action.”

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