TNT Diner

Good eats and drinks around Tacoma, Pierce County and South Puget Sound

NOTICE: TNT Diner has moved.

With the launch of our new website, we've moved TNT Diner.
Visit the new section.

Archives: March 2007


Scene from Saturday’s snack


Raw cow and goat cheeses from Estrella Family Creamery, Montesano.

Bread from Bill’s Bread, Vashon Island; the Bread Peddler, Olympia; The Tall Grass Bakery, Ballard.

Gordon Double IPA, Lyons, Colo.; Caledonian Golden Promise, certified organic/vegan friendly, Edinburgh, Scotland; Anchor Bock, San Francisco.


First Bite: Taqueria El Antojo

I learned new words while researching my review of Masa. I quote the waitress phonetically: “Oh-ha-can.”

Flashing back to a bygone brick burrito bistro in San Francisco named WAH-HA-KAH, after Oaxaca, the southwest Mexican state of that pronunciation, helped me understand: She was referring to Oaxacan cheese.

My Mexican buddy Gil fed me another new word while dining at Masa: gringotine, combining Masa’s yanqui fusion fumbles with the Argentine accents that Masa’s owners carry off much better across Sixth Avenue at Asado.

Meanwhile, across cultural and economic borders in Tacoma’s McKinley neighborhood — where the

Read more »


I want what Jack’s got: Artisan bread

I’m working on a story about artisan bread. Since no such bakery exists in Tacoma, I bought lovely loaves in Olympia.

Gorgeous, they were: Dusty brown crusts like edible armor. Tender crumbs like cumulous cloud blankets. Amazing, the things bakers do with flour, water, salt and yeast.

I took some leftover slices into the newsroom yesterday. You’d think free and delicious bread would be enough. No. One boss wanted a tub of butter. Two editors wanted balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Some clown thought I was going to make PBJs.

Which popped a simmering

Read more »


Mark your calendars

Thursday: If you work in an office, you’ve surely encountered United Way campaigns. This United Way fund-raiser sounds fun: A seasonal beer tasting at The Harmon, 5 p.m. It’s sponsored by the 20- and 30somethings at Project:U. It costs 10 bucks. Every dollar you drink will go to the United Way.

Saturday: Saint Martin’s Alumni Association’s 18th annual Capital Food and Wine Festival happens from noon-10 p.m. There’ll be restaurant food, wine, microbrews and entertainment. 12 bucks at the door, or check the Web site for advance sales locations.


Read more »


New owner for Stanley & Seafort’s

Restaurants Unlimited Incorporated, the Seattle company that owns Tacoma’s Stanley & Seafort’s — and where, in the words of former RUI chef alum John Howie, “it became more important to make money than to take care of the guests” — has a new owner, the buyout firm Sun Capital Partners. The Seattle Times reports that no terms were disclosed.

The Times notes that RUI’s CEO said Sun Capital would provide RUI with the financial resources and operating experience to strengthen and expand its branded restaurants, including its latest concept, Pizzeria Fondi, which opened a

Read more »


What’s in your wine?

Mega Purple, a concentrated coloring? Grape juice concentrate? Oak gall nuts? Bentonite? Ammonium phosphate?

The Los Angeles Times reports that federal regulators are considering revamping the rules governing wine labels. If changes are made, the Times says, the information revealed may end some people’s romance with wine:

Additives that supplement what nature failed to provide in an individual wine — tricks of the trade that winemakers rarely talk about — could soon be listed in detail on the labels.

The wine industry, through the Wine Institute, the industry’s chief lobbying arm, is opposing the regulatory

Read more »


Om, what a food feeling

Scanning Puget Sound restaurant job ads on (aka restaurant critic porn), I found out that Olympia does not currrently have an eco-friendly restaurant. But it will soon:

Opening in April 2007, Vitals Café is Olympia’s first eco-friendly, natural food restaurant. We take our ingredients seriously at Vitals Café. You will find no hormones, trans-fats, or hydrogenated oils. Just plenty of what nature intended: great taste. Vitals Café and our co-located sister company, Daily Dose Spa, are dedicated to helping people regain balance in their lives by offering sustenance, relaxation, fitness, and indulgence. We are located across

Read more »