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Iron Rabbit in Olympia Cooks Up Gourmet Fun Food for Your Whole Family

Christian Skillings reminisces about the opening of the Iron Rabbit in 2005. “Back then, there weren’t a ton of eating-out options for quality food for a family,” he remembers. At that moment in time, he was single. Sixteen years later, you can still get a remarkable burger—or other delicious option—at this Olympia restaurant in a casual and welcoming setting. Christian now has a family of his own, including his wife and daughter. Many things change over time and yet, some things remain consistently familiar and satisfying, like eating at the Iron Rabbit.

Cynara Restaurant & Lounge
Cynara Restaurant & Lounge

Cynara Restaurant & Lounge opens this weekend with creative riffs on Mediterranean and Pacific Rim cuisine

Christian Skillings, the owner of west Olympia’s Iron Rabbit Restaurant & Bar, has opened a new eatery called Cynara Restaurant & Lounge, located at 500 Columbia Street NW in downtown Olympia’s growing Market District.

Cynara (sih-nara) is the Greek word for artichoke. The restaurant will serve sophisticated Mediterranean and Pacific Rim cuisine in a casual yet refined setting. The menu features regionally sourced seafood, produce and spirits—including the Athena’s Chalice cocktail with limoncello and indulgent dishes of lamb stew and chicken veronique.

“Cynara will be a place for locals and guests to gather, to be treated well, and to enjoy a surprise or two on the menu that they can’t find other places,” says Skillings.

Proudly, Olympia

Cynara has been a longtime dream for Skillings who grew up near Olympia. He used to enjoy lunch with his grandmother on the property when it was a five-and-dime store. Some of the construction workers who built Cynara’s interior earlier this year also recalled the old lunch counter from their youth.

Cynara also takes inspiration from ancient Greece and its classical ideals. Among these are harmony of the mind, body and spirit; reciprocity among people; beauty of the body and soul; and of course, great food and wine.

Visit Cynara

Visit cynaraolympia.com to view the full menu, hours, and information about reservations and pickup orders.


Christian Skillings owns and operates the Iron Rabbit Restaurant & Bar and Cynara Restaurant & Lounge. The Iron Rabbit is a family restaurant that has served Olympia’s community since 2005, with inspired twists on classic favorites. Sister restaurant Cynara offers sophisticated flavors in Olympia’s vibrant, downtown Market District beginning September 2020.

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