King's Hardware

A pint of beer, a gourmet burger, and a bobcat rug—what more could you want?

My dining companion was convinced he'd been to Ballard's new hot spot King's Hardware before, but the bar only feels like it's been around for decades. Set on Ballard Avenue near the Tractor Tavern, the latest Linda Derchang joint (Linda's Tavern and Viceroy are the other two) is comfy as a worn leather chair, with all the charm of a favorite old ski lodge. Paneled in dark knotty pine, the walls are festooned with taxidermy heads, aged paintings of Mount Rainier, and, if you peek into the tiny kitchen, yellowed QFC flyers. On a recent Monday night, the place was packed, though we didn't have to wait long for our beers (Lagunitas, $3.75/$2.50 happy hour; PBR, $2.50/$2; or Rat City IPA, $3.75/$2.50). Service was friendly and quick, and soon, we were digging into a Caesar salad ($6.95), which my friend, a connoisseur of Caesar salads, was disappointed by. It was not piled high enough. But the Classic burger ($6.95) more than made up for it—it was truly one of the best burgers I've had. The meat was fresh, pink in the middle just the way I like it, juicy, and made with Misty Isle Farms hormone-free beef. A pint of beer, a gourmet burger, and a bobcat rug—what more could you want? ADRIANA GRANT

 
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