One of Ballard’s oldest dive bars has been given a new lease on life: Ballard Smoke Shop reopened today with a new owner.
Owner Max Genereaux bought the Smoke Shop when it went up for sale last year and has been making some updates and renovations ever since. Genereaux, also known as “The Reviver,” also owns Hattie’s Hat and the Sunset Tavern.
“Since the day I bought Sunset Tavern, I’ve been sending people to the Smoke Shop,” Genereaux told My Ballard. “I just loved that bar, and old Ballard bars in general. I want to keep them in existence with their original names and looking as much like they have in the past as possible.”
Genereaux made a few updates to the Smoke Shop, including revamping the dining room and turning it into an arcade. The bar area has been maintained, and looks almost the same as it has since the Smoke Shop opened in 1971.
Many of the same staff will also be back now that it’s reopened, including the doorman, a few bartenders, and dining room servers.
The menu has been changed completely, Genereaux said. The primary offering will be fried chicken with potatoes, gravy, greens, and a biscuit, but they’ll also have hamburgers; “Like a small Dick’s burger but done better,” Genereaux said.
The Smoke Shop is open now seven days a week from 11 a.m. till late. The arcade/dining room is open to all ages until 8 p.m., when it becomes 21+.