One thing that makes Chace’s Pancake Corral very unique is that it is the only restaurant anywhere close to its south Bellevue neighborhood. Something else that makes it very unusual is that it has been around for 48 years. That means that they have been doing something right – good food at good prices, with friendly, neighborly service.
Bill “Harry” Chase opened the Pancake Corral in 1958, after co-founding and eventually selling the Coffee Corral restaurants in Seattle. Over the years, many of Chase’s family members and people from surrounding neighborhoods have worked at Pancake Corral, serving many neighbors, regular diners and visitors who have heard about Chace’s from their friends who let them in on the “secret”. The truth is that Pancake Corral is a very popular destination for people from all over the Eastside and beyond. Many times, especially on the weekends, there will be a line to get into the place and it is more than apparent that visitors know the food is worth waiting for.
The menu contains a lot of options from bacon and eggs, to many different choices of pancakes and waffles including buttermilk, sourdough, buckwheat, blueberry, strawberry and potato pancakes, sour cream, strawberry, blueberry, original waffles and of course a favorite of the kids: the chocolate waffle, complete with whipped cream and chocolate syrup.
Bill Chase was a very popular figure, and loved the game of golf. He held regular Bill Chace golf tournaments both in Hawaii and Sequim before he passed away in 2001 at the of age 91. Bill’s daughter Jane Zakskorn, who has had an active role in the restaurant for many years, keeps Chace’s going with the support of a very friendly staff. We hope that Chace’s will be around to serve the neighborhood for at least another 48 years.
Chace's Pancake Corral, 1606 Bellevue Way S.E., Bellevue; 425-454-8888. Open 5:45 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Monday-Friday, 6 am-3 pm Saturday, 6:30 am-3pm Sunday.
Author’s Note: Bill and Jane were both good friends of my late grandfather, Don Kennedy who was a regular at Chace’s for many years. As a kid, my parents visited The Pancake Corral often – sometimes more than once a day. While attending Bellevue High, I put in many hours as a dishwasher at Chace’s and had a number of friends that also worked there. I enjoyed those days, but definitely like eating at Chace’s more than I liked washing dishes.
This article first appeared in Eastside Business Monthly and at EastsideBusiness.com.