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Seattle Times food writer Nancy Leson serves up the best info and tips on Northwest food, cooking, dining and restaurants.

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May 1, 2008 12:24 PM

Et tu, Tewfik?

Posted by Nancy Leson

Being the journalistic mensch that he is, Tacoma News Tribune restaurant critic Ed Murrieta offered up a delicous handful of Seattle-centric morsels along with his Tacoma restaurant recommendations.

He gave a shout-out to Tom Douglas's sister, Michele, co-owner of Tacoma's Tempest Lounge. And chronicled the swift movement of one of my favorite front-of-the-housemen, Tewfik Boulenouar (whose charming ministrations I gave the vigorous nod to in my early review of Coupage). Tewfik, late of week-old Maxwell's Speakeasy + Lounge, just ceded his managerial duties there to Rich Troiani, whose name you might be familiar with from a certain mid-town Seattle restaurant. Keeping up with these two guys is like playing "Where's Waldo?"

My curiosity piqued, I rang up Rich to ask, "What gives?" Last I'd heard, Rich was GM at Six Seven at the Edgewater, and had recently been hired in a management capacity at Via Tribunali. "I was at the Edgewater for a year," he told me, and at Via Tribunali for only two months, "Then this came up." This being an opportunity to work with his longtime pal Troy Christian at Maxwell's. Meanwhile, he's commuting to Tacoma from West Seattle (hate to see his gas bills!). So, between what Ed has to say about Maxwell's and knowing Rich is on the job, I'm betting that anyone else looking to eat in T-town won't go wrong adding it to their gotta-try-it list.

After talking to Rich, I tried, but failed, to get ahold of Tewfik, who wasn't answering his cell. So I'm asking: Tewfik! What's this Ed's saying about you opening a restaurant of your own here in Seattle? (Yeah, yeah, I know: there's a lot of places on the market, and there's no reason why you shouldn't own one of them.) Anyway, pal: Operators are standing by for the 411 on that. And if anybody else out there wants to dish the dirt, I'm waiting here with a bucket, OK?

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