When it comes to Seattle’s hometown successes, you could describe Tom Douglas as the Amazon of fine dining. Over the last ten years, this serial restaurateur has rolled out a dozen competition-crushing eateries spanning cuisines from Greece to Tibet. If his spectacular Serious Pie micro-chain in particular grows any larger, expect media hang-wringing over the demise of the independent pizza joint.
But the connection between Douglas and Amazon goes deeper than that, as I discovered when I sat down with him at his HQ above the Palace Kitchen. Douglas cites the online retailer as a key reason behind his choice of Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood for his first restaurants outside the downtown tourist area.
“All those business travelers coming to Amazon have to eat somewhere,” he says. “And they were moving thousands of workers over from Chinatown.”
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