Everything changes and so did Ballard. A major fishing town to a hipster culture. Now don’t get me wrong this is not a bad thing. Money is flowing in and crime is way less. But you can’t just go to Ballard and re live the old times. These day’s are long past the Ballard bad boys.
Luckily I at least got to see it before it totally changed but on my last visit I must say their were a few things that I missed. First and foremost there is no longer lutefisk on the menu at Hatti’s Hat (possibly could get it with a special request) and Hatti’s hat itself lost some of its dive appeal. If I owned that place lutefisk would be first on the list for if you truly are Ballard’s last stand then you would think that respecting the culture that made the place would be left alone. Put the 12 dollar burgers under the lutefisk and so on and so on. Hell you really only have to keep a few dried out slabs of it around for the few Viking that still remain.
Not that I miss it but I do remember when the wall was higher and smoke hung to the floor, drinks were cheap and strong. A few window was the only light that was let in, yet remained closed most of the time. It’s still nice to see the King crab hang beside the bar though.
Like anywhere in America parking is no longer free but back in the day you could always find a spot in out back. Still change is good and with the change your chances of loosing your wallet on a regular basis has left Ballard too. With crime not so bad street vendors flourish at night. Nothing like being drunk and getting some greasy food on your way out.
All in all Hatti’s Hat is still the same, its just the day’s of back breaking workers drinking themself into the next day has been replaced with brain workers hanging out and having a few. No matter what I will always make a stop here and have a few just to remember the good times. Then make my way to the Smoke Shop, stop at Hazelwood and then eat some Peurto Rican food across the street and of course if the timing is right will catch a show in one of the many venues.
For the record Hatti’s Hat I love you and was just stating my opinion. I also do not miss the smoke that hung to the floor from cigarretts but just stating how it was, even at 6am. And for the record I do love seeing ballard prosper but I hate seeing the fishing boats being replaced by yatchs yet I know it’s the yatchs that keep the money coming in.