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.

Tag: Harbor Lights reopening

April
18th

Tacoma’s Harbor Lights reopens today – here’s a menu preview

The exterior of Ruston waterfront restaurant Harbor Lights  has been repainted beige. Joe Barrentine/Staff photographer
The exterior of the Ruston waterfront restaurant Harbor Lights has been repainted beige. Joe Barrentine/Staff photographer

Harbor Lights is expecting to open this afternoon after a five-week remodel – click this link to read John Gillie’s story about what the interior looks like.  Anthony’s (the corporate owner) COO Jeff Arnot gave me a snapshot of the new menu in a phone interview last week. Read more »

March
6th

A Tacoma icon: After half a century, a remodel for Harbor Lights

Allie Leaphart, a bartender at at Harbor Lights on Ruston Way Wednesday banters with restaurant guests. The institution on Tacoma's waterfront will undergo a remodel. It closes Monday, March 11 for a three-week planned remodel. Dean J. Koepfler / Staff Photographer
Allie Leaphart, a bartender at at Harbor Lights on Ruston Way Wednesday banters with restaurant guests. The institution on Tacoma’s waterfront will undergo a remodel. It closes Monday, March 11 for a three-week planned remodel. Dean J. Koepfler / Staff Photographer

Vacationing in Maui, Donivan Fowlkes sat down at a bar. The bartender asked his hometown. “Tacoma,” he replied. The bartender shot back, “You ever been to Harbor Lights?”

You bet, Fowlkes has his own drink there. An uncomplicated concoction of vodka and water with a splash of Rose’s lime juice. His favorite Harbor Lights bartender asks Fowlkes if he wants “a Donivan” every visit. He has been dining and sipping vodka waters at Harbor Lights for 25 years with his wife, Becky, at his side.

Like many Tacomans, Fowlkes counts the waterfront restaurant and bar as an institution belonging to the people. The nearly 54-year-old restaurant’s got a far-flung reputation — from here to Maui, as Fowlkes discovered. Everyone in Tacoma’s seemingly been to Harbor Lights and if they haven’t, they’re too embarrassed to admit so (or should be).

But the iconic restaurant will be closing down for three weeks for remodeling, starting Monday, and Fowlkes’ hand wringing has begun. You can hear the undertone of “don’t mess with it” in his voice. He’s more diplomatic with his words. Read more »