When we first opened Cactus in Madison Park over twenty years ago, it was just us cooking Spanish tapas on beer crates using some old camping equipment and stuff we could find in our garage. Obviously, a lot has changed since then. But honestly, we never really set out to expand our business in an overly aggressive manner, so in the twenty years we’ve been open, we have kept things at a very manageable three locations: Madison Park, Kirkland and Alki Beach.
But then, South Lake Union began to take shape, and we saw an opportunity to open a fourth location and do something quite different in turn. We never set out to become a “chain” restaurant, and aside from the fact that we keep a consistent menu across our various locations, we very much want them to all to have unique personalities. South Lake Union seemed like the right step in a different direction.
The South Lake Union neighborhood is young. It’s fun. It’s vibrant. We wanted to start fresh. So we hired a new architect, Phillip Christofides of Arrelleno ( Chirstofides Architects. He brought something new to our vision, but allowed us ample input on both form and function along the way. This is a much more modern space than our previous efforts—but it still has that Cactus character. The warmth. The neighborhood feel. It’s all there, but it’s also something new for us. And we like where we’ve ended up.
Wilcox Construction did the build-out and we should also mention that the people at Vulcan have been great to work with throughout the entire process of creating this restaurant. We really like what they are doing to help take Seattle itself to the next chapter.
So, come visit us in South Lake Union! We have a bit more bar space than usual to accommodate the after work crowd, and we also have a private dining space for your next party. And of course, what made us known in Seattle from our very humble beginnings: the food. It’s as good as ever.