Maria Luisa Empanadas to open in former Schmaltzy’s Delicatessen 

There’s a new empanada restaurant coming to Ballard: Maria Luisa Empanada will soon open at 928 Leary way NW.

Maria Luisa Empanadas, which also has a location in SoDo, will be taking over the former Schmaltzy’s Delicatessen location, which closed in July 2022.

Owner Rodrigo Cappagli tells My Ballard that he was looking for a new location and Ballard, Fremont, and Queen Anne were all options. “I love those communities,” Cappagli said about his choice to open in Ballard. He says he’ll likely close the SoDo location.

Cappagli said the restaurant will be open Tuesdays to Sundays (closed Mondays) from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. He plans on adding new items to the menu and espresso.

Cappagli is Argentinian; on his website, he says his inspiration for the empanaderia came from watching his grandmother Maria Luisa make “hundreds of empanadas” for their family gatherings.

“The sound of Tango music playing in her Buenos Aires apartment and the delicious smell seeping from her kitchen are memories that live on through each batch of empanadas I make and share with the world,” Cappagli said.

Maria Luisa Empanada will be open at the end of February or early March, Cappagli said.