TNT Diner

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

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Archives: Aug. 2007


More hot dogs and another One Heart

A hot dog bar opened on Tacoma’s Sixth Avenue last week. I’ve been in twice but haven’t blogged about it until now because I’m lukewarm on The Red Hot.

The concept is certainly welcomed: A beer bar that serves hot dogs. The prices are right: $3-$3.75 for franks, brats and Polish dressed with kraut, chili, slaw and other toppings.

I liked the poppyseed buns on three dogs I ordered. The dogs, however, had as much bite as a toothless terrier. Mealy was more like it.

The kitchen closes a couple of hours

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Give that burger joint a cookie

Mary’s Burger bistro opened today at 2301 Pacific Ave. in downtown Tacoma. The restaurant and diners celebrated with cookies. Maybe “celebrated” is the wrong word.

Service was slow at high-noon today. The grill guys looked harried. When I arrived, there were five people in the place, two of them waiting for their orders. Shortly after I ordered my burger, Mary’s filled up. Within 15 minutes, 36 people were in line or waiting for burgers.

One of the fast-thinking owners started passing out peanut butter and chocolate-chip cookies.

No one in the room — not even

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Close calls at ‘closing’ time

One night this month, I arrived at a restaurant in Milton at 8:55 p.m. I was told the restaurant closed at 8:45, but I was welcomed anyway.

(Note: I don’t think I got special favor. My steak tasted sour, and I woke up sick. Other diners came in after me.)

This weekend, I sat down at a Tacoma hot dog bar at 8:55 p.m. The business hours posted on the door said the place stays open until 11 p.m. However, the “kitchen” — steam tables and bun warmers, really — closed at 9. I only had time for

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Pan-cultural pleasures of pigs feet

Months ago, a caller complained that I eat “weird” food, not “American” food.

This week, an e-mailer wants me to tell him where to find the best pozole and the best borscht in Tacoma.

I love swimming in the melting pot, but I’m coming up empty on pork-and-hominy stew and beet soup recommendations.

Meantime, my colleagues and I are working on a series of stories about South Tacoma Way. I’m doing the cultural angle, which can often be told through food.

Hong Sheng Fung (aka The Pot Sticker) opened recently at 8302 South Tacoma

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Bombay Bistro’s parking jeopardy

“When is Bombay Bistro gonna open?”

That’s the No.1 question in my e-mail in-box hit parade.

I’ve popped my head into the on-the-verge-of-opening restaurant so many times now that I feel I’ve been welcomed and adopted as a member of the owners’ family.

The answer to the question I’ve asked the people at Bombay Bistro keeps going like this: “In about …”

Let’s park that sentence there. Because parking is what is keeping Bombay Bistro from opening. Co-owner Anita Walia told me today that she and her husband, Kamal, are ready to open …

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Honk if you’re hungry

If you dare drive to Seattle for dinner now through Aug. 29, The Georgian at The Fairmont could be your destination.

Or it could just be the source of your daily chuckle, as it was mine when I opened my e-mail today and read about the restaurant’s I-5 Menu, in honor of the construction that’s predicted to snarl northbound traffic into Seattle.

In addition to the $12 I-5’er Martini (Tanqueray Ten Gin, Cointreau and Red Bull with splashes of fresh cranberry, pomegranate and lime juice), The Georgian is offering 3-course dinners for $45 person.

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When only butchers will do

Looking for dog bones, I got lost in the meat department of a supermarket whose initials aren’t important. Quizzically frustrated and confused, I asked the person wearing a butcher’s smock if the store sold shank bones.

I’m pretty sure the guy in the butcher’s smock wasn’t half as sharp as the idle butcher’s bandsaw in the background. After giving me a look that was as dull and blank as shrink-wrapped sirloin, he said he didn’t know.

A customer came to my rescue. He pointed to bags of sawed-up bones in the freezer section, near the pizzas, lasagnas

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Souring the melting pot

One of my last assignments for Restaurant Ray was cataloging Social Security numbers from employees at two restaurants.

“You don’t have to verify them,” Restaurant Ray told me. “Just collect them, stick them in a binder and put the binder on that shelf.”

When I said, “But … “, Restaurant Ray said it’s the government responsibility to verify whether the Social Security numbers were real or bogus.

I knew about the “no-match” letters that the government would occasionally send employers. I have no idea whether Restaurant Ray ever received a no-match letter from the government.

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