TNT Diner

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

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Archives: July 2007


The Bair is closed for roof Rx, and maybe for good

There won’t be lines for sandwiches and ice cream at The Bair
for a few months — and possibly evermore.

TNT reporter Brent Champaco reports that The Bair, the restaurant, catering and ice cream parlor that operates out of Steilacoom’s historic Bair Drug & Hardware building, may not reopen. A weak and sagging roof is at issue.

Martha Lintott, who operates the restaurant with her husband, Ed, said the Steilacoom Historical Museum Association, which owns the 1895 building, hasn’t kept up with structural problems. According to a

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Dine on the truth train

I met two people on The Spirit of Washington Dinner Train. They were nice. I was tired of lying.

“I’m a restaurant critic,” I said, when pressed for details about my work.

(He works for Boeing, she’s a stay-at-home missionary. There wasn’t a waiter in sight when I said it.)

With the couple under the impression that I worked for Haliburton, I had spent the Renton-to-Woodinville half of the trip mostly listening to them talk about disappointing food and views.

(About the food: stale rolls, wilted lettuce, gristly prime rib. About the views: some lovely views of Lake Washington and Chateau Ste. Michelle, but lots of old tires and industrial walls of graffiti.)

It was just before dessert on our return trip. The stop at the Columbia Winery seemed brief, and I regretted not following another couple across the road to the Hollywood Tavern for Redhooks and pull-tabs. Back on board, I could no longer stomach lying to the nice people with whom I had broken stale bread.

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Mmmm, more jerky

I wrote the local story last week. The New York Times wrote the national version yesterday, in two pieces: epicurean jerky and jerky’s renaissance.

Here’s what the Times said about Seattle’s Oberto:

Oberto original-style jerky had “classic truck stop beef jerky nose,” not surprising since it’s a mass-market stalwart. But it had fans, one of whom called it “chewy, smoky and not too sweet or too salty." Detractors commented that it went spongy with extended chewing.

Here’s what I say to Oberto: Thanks for those free bags of

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A cup of coffee, a hero sandwich and Barfield

I’m working on a story about coffeehouses and entertainment (and food) and discovered something cool: You don’t have to leave your house to enjoy the shows.

Every Friday night at The Mocha Moo in Lakewood, singer-songwriters take the stage for an open mic and featured performer series.

The shows are recorded digitally. Later, video clips of some performances are posted on The Mocha Moo’s MySpace and YouTube pages.

Recently, I caught a live show featuring Barfield, my favorite band from Lake Tapps. Later, I caught

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Winfield’s closed

Winfield’s Twisted Cue, the restaurant and billiards parlor in the mansion formerly known as David’s on Broadway, is closed. Signs on the building say it won’t reopen.

(Thanks to Diner regulars who tipped me off in another post.)

UPDATED Building owner Leah Caruthers told the News Tribune:

"We are disappointed in Tacoma’s support. We were hoping for better outcomes."

Some of us were just plain disappointed in Winfield’s.


Sugar plum fairies dance in our beers; plus E9’s 100th birthday


Yes, Virginia, there is Christmas in July this year. I just got my calender confused.

(Sorry about that, The Swiss and Parkway Tavern. I missed your holiday beer bashes last week. By the way: Hotrod-A-Rama happens outside The Swiss Aug. 3-4. Parkway Tavern‘s IPA Fest is Aug. 4, 2 p.m.-2 a.m., with about two dozen hoppy hits planned, plus some cask ales.)

On Wednesday — 153 drinking days until Christmas — Engine House No. 9 and Doyle’s Public House will

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Eyes on openings

Farrelli’s opened today in Parkland, in the shopping plaza at the corner of Pacific Avenue and Garfield Street. It’s the South Sound pizza restaurant chain’s fifth location.

Other opening news:

Giggling Greek opened at 109 S. Meridian in downtown Puyallup on Monday, serving a serious sit-down menu of Greek home-cooking. Lunch and dinner. 253-770-3256.

The electronic sign in front of Bella Vita says the Italian “ultra lounge” and restaurant (kitchen helmed by former Blue Olive chef Roman Aguillon) will open at 4 p.m. July 27 on Sixth Avenue, just west of Pearl. Its previously announced opening

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Scent of a foodie: Ooooo, or ewwww?

There once was a newsroom colleague who liked to smell other people’s food. Not in a get-a-yummy-whiff way, but in the way that she buried her snooty snout in co-workers’ food and uttered pretentious clap-trap about communing with one’s cuisine.

So I wasn’t too annoyed when EJ peered over our cubicle wall and said, “Dude, whatever you’re eating stinks.”

It must have been the pickled radishes on the bahn mi sandwiches I’d brought back to the office. They smelled and tasted a touch funky, but within the limits of edibility and enjoyment.

Self-consciously, I stopped

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