The Woodlands - formerly The Boardroom Cafe - opened a few weeks ago in our neighborhood, specifically on east side of Aurora between 83rd and 84th streets (it’s still knows as The Boardroom Cafe to Google):
We went to the Boardroom for coffee and breakfast sandwiches a few times. It was always good, but crossing Aurora was enough of a barrier that we’d head to Neptune on Greenwood instead. A huge Starbucks opened directly across the street from Boardroom last year, so the pivot to pizza and beer was a good idea. We’re on a pizza kick lately, so we loaded June in the stroller and set out on the 5-7 minute walk to give it a shot.
The sandwich board out front got me excited with a list of solid Pacific Northwest beers, including two Seattle favorites Reuben’s and Stoup. We had the Reuben’s Summer IPA, a nice, citrusy drink for a hot day.
They had high chairs, a place to put the stroller, and even mentioned that they can do off-menu things for little ones like avocado and blueberries. Nice! We felt totally welcome with June.
Really Good Pizza
They’ve got a cool wood-fired oven, and hand-make the pies in plain view. I saw an employee bringing wood from the back fairly regularly to keep the oven going. It was a tad slow - about 35-40 minutes from order to eating - but all the tables were filled and I’m sure they’re working out kinks. I bet that will get worked out. But what really matters is the taste. I ventured out and got a barbeque chicken pizza, while Elli went with the vegetarian option:
I didn’t try Elli’s pie because I was obsessed with mine. The bacon was thick and generous, the chicken could stand alone in a sandwich (moist and great bbq flavor), and the crust was perfect. The cliantro, jalapeno, and onion were added after the pizza was cooked, giving it a fresh taste.
Service was also quick and friendly. They’re not quite finished designing the inside, so it looks a little rough on one side of the restaurant, but I expect they’ll get that done in the next month or two.
This is a different pie and dining experience than Delancy (I wrote about them a few weeks ago). The crust isn’t thick, but it’s not Delancy-thin; the toppings and available configurations are more traditional than Delancy, but Delancy focuses on simplicity and local ingredients. Delancy has a killer wine and cocktail selection, and Woodlands nails beer. The price point is similar ($10-15/pie, same size). There’s room in our world for both of these places.
Check it Out!
If you’re in North Seattle, I’d recommend a cold beer and pizza from The Woodlands. This is an especially great location for folks in northwest Greenlake: super easy walk for delicious food.