Fine dining isn’t that popular in college towns. Students aren’t known for elevated cuisine much beyond Top Ramen paired with Busch Light. Throughout the last decade in Bellingham, Washington — home to Western Washington State University — various fine dining establishments have had their share of openings and closings but Hundred North located next to the Mount Baker Theatre looks to change that stigma. Launched by Bellingham resident Timonthy Shea, the new restaurant offers a frequently changing seasonal menu with a strong emphasis on locally-sourcing ingredients.
Hundred North complements this rotating menu with an extensive cocktail selection, as well as a graciously-sized wine list and four beer on draft. The restaurant occupies a space that used to be operated by Bellingham Pasta Co.’s multi-cuisine restaurant, The Table. Located in an opportune part of the city, Hundred North attracts theater-goers with ease, as well as those having a night out on the town.
If cocktails are your poison, start off with The Vancouver Cocktail: gin, vermouth rouge, Benedictine, angostura bitters and an orange-peel garnish make for a fantastic pre-meal sip. Combine that with the Beets and Mushroom Fricassee appetizer and Hundred North can make a good impression — very quickly.
Chef Nathan Huntington’s focused entrée list covers the surf and turf essentials, like an albacore tuna nicoise salad and a beef sirloin served with puréed potato and black peppercorn jus. Reach for the marlin, a succulent fish, rich in flavor and matched with tonnato, harissa, fennel and puffed jasmine, which adorned the top of it and altogether created a mesmerizing presentation.
To boot, prices for the high quality of the food are excellent, with small plates ranging anywhere from $12 to $17 and entrée plates around the area of $20 to $40.
Although Bellingham is a town known for its plethora of craft breweries and modestly-priced restaurants, after eating at Hundred North it is easy to understand why Shea thinks it will succeed in the city of subdued excitement. Quality cocktails and an ever-changing menu are two things that can be enjoyed and appreciated by all food lovers.