First Street Haven: History, flavors, and our review of this downtown Port Angeles restaurant appreciated by locals and visitors.
The Haven is narrow and deep, with a bar of aged and burnished wood and a scattering of tables in the remaining available space.
Don't let the size of the place throw you: it is tastefully decorated, the ambience is upscale, and the food is wonderful.
And in fact, the First St. Haven in downtown Port Angeles is well-loved by locals and visitors alike.
Address: 107 E First Street, Port Angeles, WA 98362
Hours: Monday - Saturday 7 am - 4 pm; Sunday 8 am - 2 pm
How to get there: The Haven is situated on the north side of First Street, which is a one-way street heading east.
From the WEST:
If you roll into town from the west (Forks), Hwy 101 briefly turns into Lincoln Street heading north. Drive past First Street one block and turn left on Front Street. Circle the block by making two more left turns, placing you on First Street headed east.
Since both of the street's two lanes are one-way and the restaurant is on the left side of the road, stay in the left lane, and immediately find a place to park, either on the street, or in a small parking lot immediately to the east of the restaurant.
From the EAST:
You'll enter downtown Port Angeles on Front Street, which is Highway 101 heading west. Pass Lincoln Street, turn left on Laurel Street, and then left again on First Street. Stay left and find a parking spot as directed above.
Seriously, this is a favorite restaurant. I brought my mother (pictured) with me the other day. After completing our downtown errands, we stopped for a late lunch.
I worked my way through their signature cinnamon roll and the "Small" Greek salad... So good! She ordered a blueberry scone and loaded hashbrowns, and swore she would be back soon.
Ms. Michaela Bowlby was our server. You'd have thought she had nothing to do except to ensure our complete satisfaction. After a little conversation, we learned that Ms. Bowlby is actually a registered nurse who works at the Olympic Medical Center, our local hospital. She had worked at the Haven for years while obtaining her RN, and the owner, Mr. Mike French, is happy to get from her a shift or two every now and again.
Because I asked, Michaela filled me in on some of the history behind the restaurant.
Mr. Mike French, Owner
Turns out that Mr. Mike French used to work for the Chestnut Cottage and the Haven years ago when the two restaurants were owned by the same owner. He was trustworthy and a diligent worker, the only employee trained at every job description.
In due time, he went away to college and obtained a degree in music, returning eventually to Port Angeles. As fate would have it, the owners were interested in retiring, and wished to sell one restaurant and retain ownership of the other. But, they didn't want to sell to just anyone.
Out of the blue, just as Mike returned to Port Angeles, the owners decided to offer the Haven for sale to him.
As he pondered the offer, he thought, "Might not be a bad idea to make a career of being a restaurant owner," and then accepted their offer.
Mike has owned the Haven since 2008, and though small, it is one of the highest rated restaurants in Port Angeles. He is the main chef when he is there, which is 5-6 days per week.
Mr. French embraces a locavore philosophy, which is good for all of us. He sources as many of his ingredients as locally as he can, including fruits and vegetables in season, and meats. The baked goods are all made in-house.
If you get a chance, don't hesitate to dine here!
Cities Near Port Angeles and the First St. Haven: