With a new menu and a new name, former Red Onion Burgers owner Seaun Richards celebrated on Friday the first of his two-day grand-reopening of his latest restaurant, 44th Street Sliders.
After Richards’ Red Onion Cafe and Seafood Bar did not achieve the level of success he had envisioned, he decided it was time to return to selling burgers — albeit smaller ones.
Richards is introducing 44th Street Sliders and a menu that offers sliders and sub sandwiches. The menu also includes new salads and some Red Onion burgers for die-hard fans.
According to Richards, the new business is a hit with customers and he’s seen an upturn in business since his return from seafood.
“I decided to (return to burgers) and people are liking it,” he said.
Last summer, Richards made the decision to rebrand his popular Red Onion Burger restaurant into a seafood bar that maintained the Red Onion name. The decision — he said in July 2019 — was to maintain name recognition.
This time, Richards said it was “time for a complete, new change.”
Before changing his menu again, Richards said he wanted to consider what he wanted to feature on his new menu and — after some research — discovered more restaurants were selling sliders.
44th Street Sliders offers food delivery through GrubHub, DoorDash and UberEats. Additionally, Richards said the new restaurant has lower prices.
“It’s definitely less expensive than Red Onion,” he said.
The grand reopening is a two-day event that will continue Saturday, March 5. from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. The location is the former Red Onion Burgers at 21005 44th Ave. W., Mountlake Terrace.
Activities include all-day food specials, free giveaways, entertainment, bouncy house rides, face painting, food challenges and celebrity volunteers.
At the new restaurant, Richards said he will continue with his Dining 4 Dollar$ community fundraisers, which have raised more than $300,000 for local organizations. Participating organizations receive 20% of sales, 50% of credit card tips and 100% of cash tips during sponsored events. If you book a Dining 4 Dollar$ event during the grand opening, 44th Street Sliders will add 5% of total sales to your check.
In addition, Richards — a former Mountlake Terrace City Councilmember who chose after two terms not to run again — will continue his sponsorship of community events through his Cheeseburger Babies Foundation. These include the annual MLT Easter Egg Hunt, 3rd of July Family Fireworks Show, and the Shop with a Cop Christmas Program.
You can see the menu at www.44thstreetsliders.com.
— Story and photos by Cody Sexton