Kelly Rotroff, of Auburn, enjoys the first burger as the first customer at the Pick-Quick Drive In No. 2 on March 8, 2011. REPORTER FILE PHOTO

Kelly Rotroff, of Auburn, enjoys the first burger as the first customer at the Pick-Quick Drive In No. 2 on March 8, 2011. REPORTER FILE PHOTO

Pick-Quick Drive In closes in Auburn, ending nearly a 9-year run | UPDATE

City was the first expansion for the family-owned operation since it originally opened for business in Fife in 1949

Pick-Quick Drive In – a family-owned burger, shakes and fries restaurant – has closed its Auburn doors after nearly nine years of operation on the corner of 12th Street Northeast and Auburn Way North.

In a competitive burger town, Pick-Quick struggled to keep pace with fast-food giants.

Gerard Centioli, president and CEO of Icon LLC, part owner of the establishment, said the time had come to pull the plug. The eatery went dark, empty just last week. The 2,450-square-foot restaurant had employed up to 10 people, some of whom will be relocated to work at Pick-Quick’s other restaurants.

“Ten years is a good run,” Centioli said. “After 10 years, it was time to determine what’s going to be done in the go-forward basis. We didn’t think it was best to continue for another 10 years there. It wouldn’t be the right thing.

“We are grateful to the city of Auburn, our neighbors and customers for their support over the past 10 years,” he added. “We certainly enjoyed serving the Auburn community. We welcome the opportunity to continue serving Pick-Quick customers at our Fife and SoDo locations.”

The Auburn restaurant – which officially opened on March 8, 2011 – was the first expansion for the popular, family-owned operation since it originally opened for business in Fife in 1949. Pick-Quick, a Burgi-family-owned burger institution, and Seattle-based Icon LLC, owned by the Centioli family, formed a partnership to bring Pick-Quick Drive In 2 to Auburn.

Pick-Quick opened a third location in SoDo at 2990 Fourth Ave. S, Seattle, in 2016.

Centioli said the Fife and SoDo drive-ins continue to perform well. But the original, 70-year-old eatery in Fife faces an uncertain future. Sound Transit has plans to extend its light rail reach, a route from Angle Lake in Federal Way to Tacoma. In its path are Pick-Quick and other businesses.

Fans of the Fife hamburger hub have launched a petition drive to help save it.

“We certainly hope that will be the case,” Centioli said. “It’s been there since 1949. It’s been an outstanding part of the Fife community, and we want to see that continue.”

Centioli said another Pick-Quick may sprout elsewhere, this time north of Seattle.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@auburn-reporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.auburn-reporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in Business

Robert Toomey, CFA/CFP, is Vice President of Research for S. R. Schill & Associates on Mercer Island.
Is cryptocurrency really an investment? | Guest column

Undoubtedly you have heard about the new form of money known as… Continue reading

Stock photo
Grocery store workers have right to wear Black Lives Matter buttons

National Labor Relations Board ruling against ban by Kroger-owned QFC, Fred Meyer

Carolynn Bernard, owner and operator of Bless Ewe Sheep Company pets one of the sheep on her farm in Enumclaw on Aug. 17, 2021. Photo by Henry Stewart-Wood/Sound Publishing
COVID, droughts put local sheep sanctuary in jeopardy

Owner Carolynn Bernard took to GoFundMe in hopes of raising money to make it through the winter.

A Darigold dairy worker practices picketing as a strike is approved by the union. Photo courtesy of Julia Issa
Puget Sound Darigold workers on verge of strike amid contract negotiations

Workers cite lack of medical leave, outsourcing and bad-faith negotiations as reason for strike.

Best of Auburn 2021 contest seeks nominations today!
Best of Auburn 2021: Nominate your favorites now!

Nominations are underway for your favorite restaurants, businesses, community members and more… Continue reading

Dave and Buster's restaurant and entertainment venue looks to hire 130 people to staff its Bellevue venue, set to open in August. Photo courtesy Dave and Busters.
Dave and Buster’s hiring 130 for August opening in Bellevue

Dave and Buster’s restaurant and entertainment venue opens in downtown Bellevue on… Continue reading

Smuggler’s Deli Sandwiches (courtesy of Smuggler’s Deli Facebook)
Secret sandwich ‘ghost kitchen’ sneaks into downtown Auburn

Smuggler’s Deli started as a way to keep Vinifera Wine Bar & Bistro afloat.

Downtown Auburn. Courtesy photo
Auburn restaurants may get sidewalk permit fees waived

In 2020, the city of Auburn adopted an ordinance to provide a… Continue reading

T
Auburn general contractor helps employees rebuild their lives

Mari Borrero has been a United States Marine, a Kent School District… Continue reading

Images of dishes from Issaquah’s Umi Cafe posted on the SMORS page. (Photo courtesy of Kristen Ho)
Facebook page promotes minority-owned restaurants across Puget Sound region

Miya Nazzaro used to be a member of Facebook pages that were… Continue reading

Downtown Auburn. Courtesy photo
Council approves B&O tax to generate more revenue for Auburn

The Auburn City Council approved the city’s first ever Business and Occupation… Continue reading

The Moe Vegan food truck serves meals at the city of Kent’s annual Community Thanksgiving Dinner on Nov. 21, 2020. Sound Publishing file photo
King County fire marshals offer regulatory relief to food trucks

39 fire authorities have reportedly agreed to standardize fire codes and inspections.