Annabelle Richardson pours a latte at Langley Kitchen. (Kira Erickson / Whidbey News-Times)

Annabelle Richardson pours a latte at Langley Kitchen. (Kira Erickson / Whidbey News-Times)

New cafe on Whidbey Island is adapted to the COVID era

Langley Kitchen has a long list of to-go options, a pickup window and an outdoor patio.

LANGLEY — Opening a restaurant during a pandemic is less than ideal.

But with the knowledge that most of his menu would be entirely portable, it’s what one business owner decided to do.

Owner Jim Goodall opened Langley Kitchen on Second Street in November. The new cafe is modeled after Goodall’s first restaurant in Seattle’s Madison Park neighborhood, called Madison Kitchen. About 60% of orders in Seattle were take-out, so Goodall decided to make the leap to Langley with a similar business plan.

“I spent the last year poring over tax letters, knocking on doors, writing letters, asking people on the street about a space,” he said.

Though bakery offerings picked up in Langley recently, Goodall said he was surprised in years past that he couldn’t find a baked good as simple as a cookie to eat while in town.

“I love baking, I love eating cookies,” Goodall said with a laugh. “That’s probably the impetus of some of this.”

For several years now, he contemplated opening a restaurant in Langley. Why not during Phase 3 in Island County?

“I was poised and ready to jump when things changed, mid-June,” Goodall said.

In his remodel of the 840-square-foot building — which was previously occupied by Anthes Ferments — Goodall has left no surface untouched. From new floors to appliances to wiring, the newly designed space has it all.

Jim Goodall, owner of Langley Kitchen, prepares some Brussel sprouts for a “Brussel Wilson” salad. (Kira Erickson / Whidbey News-Times)

Jim Goodall, owner of Langley Kitchen, prepares some Brussel sprouts for a “Brussel Wilson” salad. (Kira Erickson / Whidbey News-Times)

Goodall, who sold Madison Kitchen when he moved to Whidbey Island, refers to himself as a “working owner” and a “one-entity operator.” Which means you can find him working alongside his employees at Langley Kitchen.

He said he isn’t deterred by the pandemic, although there are things he feels nostalgic for.

“I do miss making a cappuccino in a beautiful porcelain cup,” Goodall said.

The new restaurant is equipped with to-go cups, boxes and utensils, with nary a plate nor bowl in sight.

“When we make food, we’re always thinking about how portable it is,” he said. “We don’t start by visualizing how something is going to look on a plate.”

Pandemic or otherwise, the menu won’t change much.

Langley Kitchen offers a range of salads, not just of the green and leafy variety — although there is plenty of that, too. On the menu are salads with potatoes, roasted beets, broccoli, curry chicken and more.

And as promised, there is no shortage of baked goods. Salmon cakes, quiches and sandwiches made with potato focaccia bread are just some of the savory delights available. On the other end of the spectrum, there are sweet treats such as cranberry croustades, cookies of every type and cinnamon rolls, the most popular dessert.

After placing an order, customers are directed to step outdoors onto the patio, where there is a pick-up window. That way, you don’t have to reenter the building.

Patricia Ackerman, a longtime employee of Madison Kitchen, has joined Goodall at the new restaurant.

“We’ve been talking about this place for a long time and how it would be different,” she said. “We wanted to create a place that felt like it had a geographical importance.”

Ackerman helped with the branding of Langley Kitchen, which includes the restaurant’s logo of an owl with a quiver that holds not arrows, but a fork and spoon.

“I wanted it to be slick, I wanted it to be something that represented here,” she said.

Both Ackerman and Goodall have been adjusting to island life on Whidbey. Ackerman said she has noticed a lot of tea drinkers.

Goodall said Langley Kitchen will have online ordering soon. For now, customers can call in orders at 360-321-1971 and peruse photos of the goodies on the cafe’s website at

“We’re thrilled to be here,” he said.

If you go

Langley Kitchen, 138 Second Street, Langley, is open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Call 360-321-1971 or go to

Talk to us

More in Life

Matt and Jill Wurst opened Audacity Brewing in December 2020 and are now managing to stay open, with the COVID-19 restrictions on businesses, at their brewery on 10th Street on Monday, Jan. 11, 2020 in Snohomish, Washington.  (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
It took some Audacity to open this new Snohomish brewery

The COVID-19 pandemic hit just as Matt and Jill Wurst were getting the business off the ground.

Carissa Hudson pulls a beer at Engel's Pub in Edmonds. At 86 years old, Engel's is one of the oldest bars in Snohomish County.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
When it’s finally safe, these dive bars are worth checking out

David Blend called the watering holes “an essential part of the American experience” in an ode to the haunts.

Enjoy stuffed mini bell peppers on Game Day. (Tulalip Resort Casino)
Make Tulalip chef’s stuffed mini bell peppers for game day

These one-bite treats can be prepped the night before, then popped into the oven for 10 minutes on Super Sunday.

Meatballs go hand-in-hand with spaghetti, but they also can add a wonderful flavor and texture to soup. Pair them with cheese tortellini and youêve got an amped-up version of Italian wedding soup. (Gretchen McKay/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette/MCT)
Not just for spaghetti: Add meatballs to your winter soup

Make an amped-up version of Italian wedding soup with turkey meatballs and cheese tortellini.

The Infiniti QX50 luxury compact SUV is updated with additional standard features for 2021. (Manufacturer photo)
2021 Infiniti QX50 is updated with additional standard features

All versions of the luxury compact SUV now come with a Wi-Fi hotspot and rear seat side-impact airbags.

This pantry makeover was inspired by moths. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Careful organization turns small cabinets into a pantry

A moth infestation inspired her to break out the Tupperware and label maker for a well-sorted kitchen.

Dr. Paul on how to cope with disappointment and frustration

It’s important to greet these negative emotions by name and acknowledge that’s what you’re feeling.

Córdoba’s back streets are a delight to explore.
Rick Steves on strolling Cordoba’s back streets

The patios of Andalucia are mini paradises, and the homeowners have no problem sharing them.

Can I get a refund for my canceled hotel stay in Mexico?

Most hotels offered a refund after the “do not travel” advisory, but some tried to keep their customers’ money.

Most Read