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Get the first peek into Tacoma Restaurant Week menus & the Tournament of Beer

Boathouse 19’s famous Fresh Strawberry Salad. Photo credit: Facebook

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With the return of spring also comes Tacoma Restaurant Week. From April 8-12 and 15-19, a plethora of Tacoma area restaurants give patrons a little nudge to dine with them. Each participating establishment offers a three-course dining experience for a cool $30 or for those offering up a lunch only $15. This is an excellent incentive to try a new restaurant (hell, put two, three or four places on your itinerary since you're saving some green) or indulge an old favorite without the pocketbook guilt. It's the full meal deal on a dime. We are going to share some menu previews leading up to the festivities. Get on the treadmill and start earning the extra calories. Dessert is included!

Boathouse 19 is offering up both lunch and dinner options that'll have you zipping down 19th Street all the way to the water. Both meals include Caesar or Fresh Strawberry Salad, Smoked Salmon Clam Chowder or the soup of the day to start. For both lunch and dinner, you can choose between the Baileys Chocolate Mousse, Berry Crisp or their house-made lemon or raspberry cheesecake jar. If you haven't had this mason jar delight, now is a better time than ever. For dinner, you can opt for the Peach Barbecue Chicken or Grilled Certified Angus New York Steak. Luvvas of our fishy friends under the sea can choose from Blackened Rockfish with Strawberry and Mango Salsa, Smoked Salmon Fettuccine or the Southwestern Prawn Salad. The latter packs a flavor bomb with cumin-crusted jumbo Pacific prawns, avocado, roasted red pepper, tomato, black beans and pepper jack drizzled with a lime cilantro dressing then finished with crunchy tortilla strips. For lunch, the prawn salad, fettuccine and chicken options remain, plus, they add a tasty Lamb Burger to the mix. 9001 S. 19th St., Tacoma, 253.565.1919,

Another waterfront dining gem, The Lobster Shop on Commencement Bay, will also have killer steals for both afternoon and evening diners. Both lunch and dinner include uber-fresh Ahi Nachos with crisp wontons, avocado, cilantro slaw and sriracha aioli. If that's not your bag, rich lobster bisque, or either a Caesar or Roasted Beet Salad might do the trick. Dessert also remains the same from afternoon to night with your choice of Banana Cream Crème Brûlée, hand-crafted ice cream or a dark chocolate cupcake topped with vanilla infused cream cheese frosting and white chocolate shavings. Lunch features a diverse menu with options from King Salmon Nicoise or Steak Salad, Thai Seafood Stew, Crispy Fish Tacos, Southwest Chicken Sandwich or Salmon Sliders with grilled, cold-smoked King Salmon finished with a rhubarb chutney, baby arugula and minted yogurt sauce with a side of fries. Dinner will include the salad and stew options and add Brandied Prawn Linguine. If you don't mind indulging, for $6 more you can opt for the Steak and Mushroom entrée or Twin petit Maine Lobster Tails with truffle-salted fingerling potatoes and fresh asparagus. 4015 Ruston Way, Tacoma, 253.759.2165,

Though Bar Bistro is a bit off the beaten path, it's a well worth addition to your TRW itinerary. During course one you can choose from the Charred Hearts of Romaine, Creamy Wild Mushroom Soup or fresh Ceviche with prawns, cod and scallops jazzed up in a citrus marinade, avocado purée and tomato-lime vinaigrette. The dinner selection does not disappoint with Grilled Swordfish, Pork Chop or their Paella with saffron rice, green peas, chorizo and crab surrounded by seared cod, prawns, clams and mussels sautéed in house-made seafood stock. Satiate your sweet tooth with an Ice Cream Sundae, Apple Pie Beignets or Classic Crème Brûlée. 1718 99th St. E., Tacoma, 253.537.3655,

April doesn't just bring showers and TRW, it also brings Peaks and Pints' Tournament of Beer. This year those passionate about all things Northwest Porters are in for a treat. From April 6-28, Washington, Oregon and Idaho porter sippers can pick winners each day until the grand champion is crowned. The victor will receive a permanent handle through the spring and summer at Peaks and Pints, and of course, bragging rights. To help choose who reigns supreme, Peaks and Pints invites you to cast your vote for your top three PNW porters at Some lucky someones will win a $25 gift card. The first tier of the throwdown begins April 6. Find out more and stay up to date at

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