We are saddened to hear this week's announcement that one of our favorite Ballard haunts, Thaiku and its bar Fu Kun Wu, are both to see their final night on December 23rd. Located just across the street from Blackbird, Thaiku/Fun Kun Wu has always been an easy go-to bar and restaurant for delicious Thai food, live jazz, and their signature yohimbe-infused cocktails. Many of our (and much of the neighborhood's) events have spilled into the cozy back bar and it has been one of our first recommendations to people visiting the neighborhood. Fu Kun Wu will end with an all-night happy hour party from 5PM on December 23rd. Join us in mourning with one final yohito (the refreshing signature yohimbe-infused mohito).

We pray that both soon resurface with a new location.

The official press release (courtesy of The Stranger/Slog) is as follows..
Ballard's Thaiku and Fu Kun Wu to close on December 23 due to property dispute

Seattle, WA, December 12, 2011- Ballard's beloved Thaiku and its bar Fu Kun Wu will be closing after ten years due to ongoing dispute with the property owner causing the establishment to be displaced. Thaiku and Fu Kun Wu’s last full day of operation is Friday, December 23, 2011.

A small business venture, Thaiku offers regional, home-style Thai cuisine like no other. "I don't think you'll find a better pad Thai anywhere in Seattle," says the Zagat 2011 Review. Thaiku's bar Fu Kun Wu— famed for its herb-infused cocktails (voted one of the "Best Bars in America" by Esquire Magazine and billed as "one of the best kept secrets of the Seattle jazz scene")— has been a haven for jazz musicians and jazz lovers alike.

Thaiku celebrated its 10th year anniversary on September 13, riding out ten years of the economy's highs and lows. Since 2001, the Thai restaurant at 5410 Ballard Avenue has been one of the fixtures in the Ballard neighborhood: Thaiku opened its doors when Ballard Avenue was still a quiet street, and it thrived as the area flourished. Families have gathered there to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries and special occasions. Thaiku has loyal patrons who dine there daily. The weekly jazz nights at Fu Kun Wu have brought the jazz community together.

Closing Thaiku will idle about 25 employees— cooks, wait staff, bartenders and dishwashers— some of whom have been with the restaurant since it opened.

"We are extremely grateful to our employees and customers for their loyalty the last ten years," says the management. "We encourage everyone to stop by and join us until we close our doors."

Thaiku will serve lunch and dinner until Friday, December 23. Its bar Fu Kun Wu will be open from 5pm-midnight until its final night and will offer happy hour daily from 5-7pm, with an all-night happy hour party on December 23 from 5pm-close. The live jazz on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday from 8:30-11pm will also take place as scheduled.

Know that this is not the end for Thaiku. In 2001, proprietor and jazz musician Jon Alberts was forced to move the popular Fremont Noodle House, which was reincarnated shortly after as Thaiku with Fu Kun Wu in Ballard. The owners are confident that Thaiku and Fu Kun Wu will once again reincarnate in another form. In the meantime, the weekly jazz nights will relocate to its sister venue, Copper Gate (6301 24th Avenue NW in Ballard), beginning Thursday, January 5, 2012 with the Fu Kun Wu Trio (Jon Alberts, Jeff Johnson and Tad Britton) headlining the evening. "We urge everyone to support Fu Kun Wu's jazz musicians and join them at Copper Gate," the management says.

"We are actively looking for a new space and we are hopeful to reopen within a year," the management adds. "For now, we will pack our elixirs and go. The Oolong-tinis will live elsewhere."

Stay tuned.