Restaurant News & Reviews

New festival in Fairhaven showcases restaurants and cafes

Magdelena's Creperie, owned by Magdelena Theisen, is one of the participating restaurants in the inaugural Fairhaven Food Festival, Feb. 26 through March 2.
Magdelena's Creperie, owned by Magdelena Theisen, is one of the participating restaurants in the inaugural Fairhaven Food Festival, Feb. 26 through March 2. THE BELLINGHAM HERALD

The first Fairhaven Food Fest runs Feb. 26 through March 2, inviting the public to discover and dine at participating restaurants in Bellingham’s historic Fairhaven District.

Participating restaurants and cafes will give out a Fairhaven Food Fest coaster “passport” at your first dine. With a minimum of three stamps accumulated, diners will be eligible for a drawing (held at the end of the festival) for a $100 gift card to a participating restaurant of their choice.

To entice your palates and exploration of Fairhaven’s fabulous restaurants, each restaurant will offer a special-for-the-event prix fixe dinner or lunch of at least two items, in addition to their regular menus items.

Participating restaurants are The Archer Ale House, Avenue Bread & Deli, The Black Cat, Book Fare Café, Colophon Café, Drizzle Olive Oil and Vinegar Tasting Room, Galloway’s Cocktail Bar, Fairhaven Pizza, FatPie Pizza, The Filling Station, Keenan’s at the Pier, Magdalena’s Creperie, Mambo Italiano, Mount Bakery, On Rice Thai Cuisine, OVN, Rocket Donuts, Rustic Coffee & Wine Bar, Shirlee Bird Café, Skylark’s Hidden Café, Tony’s Coffee & Harris Avenue Café and Zane Burger.

Whatcom Humane Society Wine Social

Whatcom Humane Society hosts an evening of fine wine and beer tasting, buffet dinner and dancing to musical entertainment by The Dagwoods from 6-9 p.m. Friday at Bellingham Cruise Terminal, 355 Harris Ave.

The highlight of the evening will be a drawing, where three lucky attendees will win an instant wine cellar. Your $75 admission ticket entitles you to one raffle entry.

All guests are asked to bring a bottle of fine wine (suggested retail value $25), which will be contributed to the instant wine cellar prizes.

Additional raffle tickets may be purchased at the event. Details and reservations: 360-733-2080 x3014,,

Local breweries provide tours on Beer Open House Day

The Washington Beer Commission invites those 21 and older to visit some of the state’s many innovative, esteemed, and downright friendly craft brewers from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday.

Bellingham venues include Boundary Bay Brewery and Bistro, Chuckanut Brewery and Kitchen, Aslan Brewing, Kulshan Brewery and Kulshan Brewery - K2 Taproom, Stones Throw Brewing and Wander Brewing. For a complete list, go to or call 206-795-5510.

Tips from a top chef

Blaine Wetzel, the multiaward-winning head chef of the Willows Inn on Lummi Island, will share ideas and experiences from his remarkable career at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Island Library, 2144 S. Nugent Road, sponsored by the Friends of the Island Library.

Wetzel began working in kitchens at age 14, and he’s never stopped.

The author of “Sea and Smoke: Flavors from the Untamed Pacific Northwest,” Wetzel was listed by Food & Wine magazine as the best new chef of 2012. In 2014 the James Beard Foundation named him rising star chef of the year and in 2015, he was awarded best chef Northwest.

At the Willows, he creates exquisite meals with a commitment to island and locally sourced ingredients and the traditions of farm-to-table preparation.

Details on the event: 360-758-7145.

Also, the James Beard Foundation recently announced the semifinalists for its 2017 awards, and once again, Wetzel is among them. The best chef Northwest category recognizes chefs from an area stretching from Alaska to Wyoming, and this year’s list includes chefs from Jackson, Wyo., and Red Lodge, Mont. – though winners typically come from Seattle or Portland.

The announcement represents the foundation’s long list. The five official nominees will be announced March 15.

This year’s awards show – often called “the Oscars of food” – will take place at the Lyric Opera of Chicago on May 1. For a complete list, go to

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