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March 22, 2014 at 8:41am

Tournament of Burgers Day 3: Friday's winners and four new burger battles

Duke's will second guess its lettuce portion ... oh maybe for a minute before making another batch of awesome chowder.


Even in this era of kohlrabi salads, Haute Mexicanand Chinese-Peruvian, the hamburger remains America's favorite food, and burger fans - of which you are undoubtedly one - are insanely opinionated about what the consummate burger should look and taste like. Tear into the Tournament of Burgers, make a mess and dribble 'til the cows come home.

Yesterday's Results

Game 1: Duke's Chowder House vs. Chalk Talk Bistro

Duke's Chowder House has fancy newsletters, kick ass chowder and a gorgeous view of Commencement Bay. Chalk Talk Bistro has chalk ... oh, and delicious burgers. Formerly Mary's Burger Bistro, the sportsified Chalk Talk put the dispsy-doo double-a-roo on Duke's, and grabbed 56 percent of the votes from way at the end of the grill, BANG!

Game 2: Pick-Quick Drive-In vs. The Schooner Pub & Galley

The Schooner Pub is a dark place. It's truly one of the darker watering holes in the South Sound. Obviously, there are advantages to drinking in dimly lit joints. For one, squinting isn't attractive. Anyway, yesterday was the Lakewood bar's worst possible cave scenario. We haven't had many sunny days since early autumn. The Schooner's competitor, Pick-Quick Drive-in, offers a nice park-like outdoor eating area (albeit, with a view of I-5). The walk-up burger joint was packed with questionable open shirts and giddiness. Sunshine grabbed 75 percent of the votes and Pick-Quick moves into the next round to take on Chalk Talk Bistro March 28.

Game 3: Loose Wheel Bar & Grill vs. The Westside Tavern

If there's one thing our food tournaments has seen over the years; you don't mess with West Olympia. The community huddles around their own - more often than not with sleeves rolled up and a chew in place. The Westside Tavern grabbed a respectable 62 percent of the votes yesterday in its win over the tough Loose Wheel Bar & Grill. That's impressive. That's the Westside.

Game 4: Pacific Grill vs. South Bay Pub & Eatery

If there's a trend developing it's that elegance or unique toppings don't wow Tournament of Burgers voters. Sure, a fancy burger can get you somewhere in the Tournament of Burgers, but it doesn't guarantee anything - your burger foundation has to be sound before voters will get behind some of the fancier stuff. While Pacific Grill gushes sophistication and class, it had a tough day on the burger court. It beat Olympia's scrappy South Bay Pub & Eatery by one vote. One. Pacific Grill will need to reanalyze its game plan, as it will take on another scrappy Olympia burger flipper in the Second Round - Westside Tavern.

Let's weed through the condiments. The following are advancing to the Second Round:

  • Chalk Talk Bistro
  • Pick-Quick Drive-In
  • Westside Tavern
  • Pacific Grill

The daily burger battles on Walkie Talkie are sponsored by Ricky J's Restaurant and Lounge in Puyallup.

OK, let's dive into today's First Round burger battles. Vote for one burger joint per game. Voting for today's burger battles ends at 11:45 p.m. 

Tomorrow's First Round Burger Games

Game 1: NetShed No. 9 (3313 Harborview Dr., Gig Harbor) vs. Harmon Brewery & Eatery (1938 Pacific Ave., Tacoma)

Game 2: Five Guys (5605 Lakewood Towne Center Blvd., Lakewood) vs. Engine House No. 9 (611 N. Pine St., Tacoma)

Game 3: Meconi's Pub Tacoma (709 Pacific Ave., Tacoma) vs. The Hub-Gig Harbor (1208 26th Ave. NW, Gig Harbor)

Game 4: Tatanka (4915 N. Pearl St, Ruston) vs. The Swiss (1904 S. Jefferson, Tacoma)

LINK: Hot Damn! Yes, I want the South Sound Happy Hour App!

March 15, 2014 at 12:43pm

Night Moves: Deadkill, Rusty Cleavers, White Gourd, Oly Mountain Boys, The Adarna, Grand Royale, Elbow County Rough Riders and others ...

Stolen Society


Charlie's Restaurant Puyallup. Elbow County Rough Riders. 9 pm. $5, Ladies NC.

Doyle's Public House Tacoma - Stadium District. Rusty Cleavers, Ethan Tucker Band. 8 pm. NC.

Eagle's Hall Olympia - Downtown. KOWA-FM "Ides Of March" Benefit, with Yogoman Burning Band, Fabulous Downey Brothers, Oh Rose, Old Growth Poetry Collective, DJ Selector Dub Narcotic. All Ages. 7 pm. $8-$20 sliding scale.

Jazzbones Tacoma - Sixth Avenue. St. Patrick's Weekend, with Grand Royale (Beastie Boys tribute), The Boomin Grannies, DJ Pedro, Joey Roxville. 9 pm. $7.

Le Voyeur Café and Lounge Olympia - Downtown. Ol Dirty Crackers. 9 pm.

Louie G's Pizza Fife. The Adarna, Van Eps, Amadon, Stolen Society. All Ages. 8 pm.

Maxwell's Restaurant + Lounge Tacoma - Downtown. The Kareem Kandi Band. Aall ages. 8-11 pm. NC.

The New Frontier Lounge Tacoma - Dome District. Argonaut, Deadkill, Levels. 9 pm. $5.

  • If the band name doesn't tip it off enough to you, I don't know what to say. They're called Deadkill. What do you think they play? Chillwave? (On a side note, I would love it if there was an explosion of dream-pop acts with misleadingly aggressive names. "Have you heard Satan Dick? Their latest opus is like laying in a sunbeam while a butterfly tickles your nose.") Deadkill make hardcore punk with little dashes of shredding metal - nothing fussy or complicated. Their objective is clear: whatever they can do to expedite the deterioration of your eardrums, they will do it. Even though fist-pumping punk is their business (and business is good), there's still more melodicism than you'd expect. Far from cranking up their guitars and calling it a day, Deadkill are subtly savvy as songwriters. - Rev. Adam McKinney

Northern Olympia - Downtown. White Gourd, Corum, Arrington De Dionyso, Danield Buscher, China Star. All Ages. 8 pm.

The Spar Tacoma - Old Town. The Olsen Brothers. 8 pm.

Theatre on the Square Tacoma - Downtown. 9th Annual KRUNK Fusion Hip Hop Dance Showcase. All Ages. 7 pm. $15.

Traditions Cafe and World Folk Art Olympia - Downtown. The Makedonians. All Ages. 8 pm. $10-$15.

Uncle Sam's American Bar & Grill Spanaway. Metal Nite, with Fueling The Heathen, Skinwalker, Zorokaser. 9 pm.

Westside Tavern Olympia - Westside. The Oly Mountain Boys. 9 pm.

LINK: More live music Saturday, March 15 in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

March 8, 2014 at 1:03pm

Night Moves: Lark vs. Owl, World's Finest, Rockwell Powers, Rae Solomon, BayBay LeRude and others ...

The Space Lady


Bob's Java Jive Tacoma - Central. Lark vs. Owl, Back From Hiatus, the Past Impending, Photon Pharaoh. 8 pm. $5.

  • Lark vs. Owl refer to their music as "the new hard rock," which is the sort of self-aggrandizing statement that I can totally get behind. While a duo of multi-instrumentalists utilizing ukulele, glockenspiel and loop pedals - not to mention the very name of the band - may not smack of hard rock, there's a certain fiery energy that lurks at the heart of Lark vs. Owl. Look no further than their blistering cover of Suicide's "Rocket USA" for proof that this band means business. With their feet planted firmly in the alt-rock fatalism of the '90s, Lark vs. Owl may not be the type of band to soundtrack your house party, but there is a certain downer conviction to their music that might've convinced you to write some lyrics on your sneakers, back in the day. - Rev. Adam McKinney


March 7, 2014 at 7:47am

5 Things To Do Today: Black Violin, RAGS, "Angry Housewives," Coma Figura ...

Yes, violins. Yes, hip-hop.

FRIDAY, MARCH 7 2014 >>>

1. From Bach to Bird to Biggie, Black Violin executes a unique and often brilliant juxtaposition of urban and classical styles. The two-man violin/viola hip-hop outfit of Wil B and Kev Marcus mix classical music with hip-hop beats, and then toss in some rap and freestyle to keep it interesting. Yes, violins. Yes, hip-hop. With the addition of a hip-hop DJ, this talented trio fuses funk, hip-hop and classical music to create a sound and style that very nearly defies traditional genre categorization. Some might call it revolutionary. Check it out at 7:30 p.m. in the Pantages Theater.

2. Sure, Tacoma celebrates its status as an arts community.  Sure, Tacoma loves to band together for a good cause.  With the YWCA RAGS wearable Art Sale and Gallery, continuing for its 20th year, it does both. RAGS started as a fun way to raise money for the YWCA, whose mission statement is all about honoring diversity and creating opportunities for women’s growth, leadership, and power in order to attain a common vision: peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all people. RAGS offers guests an opportunity to view and acquire fabulous handmade clothing, jewelry and accessories created by artisans from across the country. Check out RAGS from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. inside the Mercedes-Benz of Tacoma new showroom at 1701 Alexander Ave. East in Fife.

3. The Tacoma Community College Symphonic Band concert and trombone soloists Sara Mayo present a variety of contemporary wind band music, exploring ideas around tradition, conversation, spirits and dance at 7:30 p.m. in TCC Building 2 Auditorium, which is close to South 12th and Mildred.

4. The genial satire of contemporary feminism Angry Housewives ran for ages in Seattle centering on Jetti, Bev, Wendi and Carol — good friends, but angry over the lack of respect from their men. So, they form a punk rock band, Angry Housewives, and take their local club scene by storm gaining new self-respect and renewed respect from their men. The play opens at Paradise Theatre at 7:30 p.m.

5. Near as we can tell from what little music is available of Coma Figura, one might describe them as a sort of Foxygen or Titus Andronicus for the bedroom pop set. These are bands that mash together influences and jumble them up into something that surges past imitation and into a kind of fervent homage. Whereas Foxygen and Titus Andronicus reinterpret pastoral psych rock and boozy Springsteen-isms, respectively, Coma Figura take stabs at the idiosyncratic singer-songwriter. Catch the band with BA the Scribe, FLORIDA, Mad Youth at 9 p.m. in The New Frontier Lounge.

LINK: Friday, March 7 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

March 1, 2014 at 1:39pm

Night Moves: TBASA, Captain Algebra, American Wrecking Company, Twang Junkies, Judy Fjell...

Fingers Crossed


Bob's Java Jive Tacoma - Central. Death By Stars, Elbow Coulee, French Letters, TBASA. 9 pm.


Filed under: Night Moves, Music, Fife, Olympia, Tacoma,

February 22, 2014 at 1:43pm

Night Moves: Art Alexakis, Speakerbox, Angie and the Car Wrecks, Kareem Kandi Band, Velocity, The Breaklites ...

Bishop Bishop


4th Ave Ale House Olympia - Downtown. Speakerbox, Mr. Von, Bishop Bishop, D-Logic. 9 pm. $5.

B Sharp Coffee House Tacoma - Downtown. The Kareem Kandi Band. All Ages. 8pm to 11pm. free.

Bob's Java Jive Tacoma - Central. Blackstone Rangers, Midday Veil, People Under The Sun. 9 pm.


February 14, 2014 at 2:52pm

Night Moves: Leroy Bell & His Only Friends, The Paralytics, Hunnywell, The Pecos, Hot Death and others ...



Amocat Cafe Tacoma - Triangle District. Amocat Live! featuring the Amocat House Band. All Ages. 7 pm.

Jazzbones Tacoma - Sixth Avenue. A Valentine's Evening With Leroy Bell & His Only Friends. 8 pm. $15.

Le Voyeur Café and Lounge Olympia - Downtown. The Paralytics. 9 pm.

Louie G's Pizza Fife. Michael Anthony Pratt Band. All Ages. 8 pm.

Maxwell's Restaurant + Lounge Tacoma - Downtown. Lance Buller Combo. 7 pm.

Metronome Coffee Tacoma - Sixth Avenue. Hunnywell w/ Dames and Ricky Reyes. 8-11 pm. NC.

The New Frontier Lounge Tacoma - Dome District. Valentine's Day Party, with The Pecos, MILK, Roller Derby Weddings Benefit. 9 pm.

Red Bicycle Bistro and Sushi Bar Vashon. Love Duets II, hosted by Pete & Allison, with Shane Jewell & Kim Thal, RISK, Allison Shirk & Joe Panzetta and more. All proceeds will go to the RISK scholarship fund. All Ages. 8 pm. $5 suggested donation.

Rock the Dock Pub & Grill Tacoma - Downtown. Anti-Valentine Party. Featuring Accidental Heroes, scavenger hunt, Man Purse Game, Who's Your Daddy game, prizes and more. 8 pm. NC.

The Swiss Tacoma - Downtown. Mr. Pink. 9 pm.

The Triad Theater Yelm. Valentine Cabaret, featuring Crooners & Spooners. 8 pm. $10-$15.

Uncle Sam's American Bar & Grill Spanaway. Hot Death, Conjurer. 9 pm.

LINK: More live music Friday, Feb. 14 in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

February 8, 2014 at 9:17am

Night Moves: The Balms, Walking Papers, Nudity, CFA, Naive Melodies, Black Top Demon, Oly Mountain Boys, Kareem Kandi Band ...

Wizard Hits


B Sharp Coffee House Tacoma - Opera Alley Downtown. Barleywine Revue. 8 pm. NC.

Bob's Java Jive Tacoma - Central. La Luz, Pony Time, The Fucking Eagles, The Tom Price Desert Club. 8 pm. $5. 

Doyle's Public House Tacoma - Stadium District. Naive Melodies (Talking Heads tribute). 9:30 pm. NC.


February 7, 2014 at 9:42am

Valentine's Day in a Tacoma pub or your car

Ah, Valentine's Day. Love is in the air. But if you're a little like me and think love smells like the Tacoma Aroma and have zero desire to sit among the lovey-dovey newlyweds who stare longingly into each other's eyes while dining out on Valentine's Day, it can be a hassle - and an awkward, uncomfortable hassle for the less romantic types. Let's face it, just because you're less ooey-gooey about your show of affection doesn't mean you want to hole yourself up for the day. We enjoy a good meal out with the missus or mister, too. In light of that, here's a list for the low-maintenance types to grab a nibble on V-Day.

Pub Grub

There are some exquisite local hot spots that don't require a jacket and tie or heels and black dress combo to dine: pubs, bar and grills, you know the type. No fuss, no frills - just good eatin'. Below are a few of my picks.

Dirty Oscars Annex falls into the "neighborhood bar: category: it's comfy, casual and a bit of a mad house when it comes to the late night crowd. However, the gastropub-style cuisine is gourmet quality. It's fun, inventive and worthy of its spotlight on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives. Plus, you can pair the fancy eatin' with a tallboy, moonshine flight or glass of wine.

Nothing about The Red Hot speaks the language of love, but gourmet dogs and craft brews make this a great go-to on Valentine's Day. Please note, I did not include Red Hot for the sexual innuendo potential, you know, because there's wieners involved, but if your date has a sense of humor, this could go the distance.

208 Garfield is in the Pacific Lutheran University bookstore, which may scream smoldering to a select group of bookworms. But really, it's more casual than anything, with great shareable plates and gastropub fare in a café-type environment. 208 serves up lots of local vino varietals as well, which is always a bonus on Valentine's Day - even for the less romantic.

Top of Tacoma Bar and Cafe is another neighborhood joint the locals love. Its menu features loads of locally sourced ingredients and options for vegans and vegetarians. It's no fuss fun and fabulously delicious.

Located in Hilltop, Peterson Brothers 1111 has a quirky dive-bar charm and amazingly tasty sandwiches. The service is aces and unpretentious. Throw on your chucks and jeans and have a bite paired with a bourbon or brew in an intimate but casual dining space.

Take Out

Don't feel like braving the crowds and want to eat at the homestead without the mess of cooking? Or maybe you want to grab a bite, and then warm yourself with a stroll at Wright Park or the like. Well, then take out is the solution.

If you enjoy a solid, deli-style sandwich, MSM Deli is the natural go to. Pop into this convenience store-styled deli, grab a couple of sammies, some chips and drinks to go along with it, and head to wherever your heart desires to nosh.

Tatanka Take Out serves up bison-based cuisine good to go mobile with burritos, burgers and even bison on a stick. Plus, it's a hop away from Point Defiance Park and the Ruston Way waterfront for those who want to add just a whisper of romance with a view.

Frisko Freeze in Tacoma and Pick Quick Drive In in Fife both serve up burgers, fries and shakes to go. It's classic, greasy fingered dining for those not afraid to get a little messy in front of their date.

Shake, Shake, Shake is another burger, fry and shake joint that will surely please those looking for delectable nibbles on Valentine's Day. Take it to go, or dine in the über nifty retro restaurant (unlike the two listed above).

And there you have it - a few of my favorite go tos for phenomenal nibbles for the less romantic. Wallet friendly, playful and no reservations required.

Filed under: Food & Drink, Holidays, Fife, Tacoma,

January 25, 2014 at 6:21am

Night Moves: Hungry Ghost, Tin Man, Michelle from the Club, Righteous Mothers, Hollywood Kill Krew, Young's Double Chocolate and others ...

Hungry Ghost


4th Ave Ale House Olympia - Downtown. Razors & Red Flags, Hollywood Kill Krew. 9 pm. $5.

Bob's Java Jive Tacoma - Central. Michelle From The Club, Sherman Family, Eternal Fair, guests, 8 pm. $5.

  • Michelle from the Club recently found themselves opening up for Surfer Blood at a show at Pacific Lutheran University. That's a pretty potent feather in the cap for a band that values the power of steadfast guitar riffs as much as Michelle from the Club clearly does. While the anthemic roar of Surfer Blood is slightly outside of their purview, this Tacoma duo washes their songs with as much dissonant tone as their guitar-and-drum setup can allow. Having just had their debut EP funded by Kickstarter, this is a band that's getting ready to capitalize on their momentum. As for the music, Michelle from the Club does a fine job of combining the outbursts of guitar rock with more contemplative verses, ending up with the time-tested loud-quiet-loud structure that's served so many of their influences quite well. - Rev. Adam McKinney

Doyle's Public House Tacoma - Stadium District. Young's Double Chocolate Music Night. 9 pm.

Louie G's Pizza Fife. Tin Man, Late September Dogs. All Ages. 8 pm.

  • Most of the time, my music picks are of my own accord, bands I've loved for years, or maybe a hot new number a friend has turned me onto, or I found while bar hopping. This time, my pick comes from the boss, Pappi Swarner, who has a great ear and even better dance moves. (Ask him to show you his pop-in-lock next time you see him.) His recommendation is for Tin Man, a member of Maurice The Fish Record's growing family, and hot to release their sophomore album, Broke Wisdom. I have to agree with the boss, and MTFR, Tin Man has their singing and songwriting down. Initially reminding me of something in the Bonnie Raitt or Leonard Cohen vein, Tim Man has a little more twang, a little more pluck and a lot more Northwest feel. Hear for yourself this Saturday at Louie G's. - Nikki McCoy

McCoy's Tavern Olympia - Downtown. Full Moon Radio, Johny Las Vegas & The Melee'rs, Hot Cops. 9:30 pm.

The New Frontier Lounge Tacoma - Dome District. Lozen, Hungry Ghost, Shore. 9 pm. $5.

  • With its heavy blues riff and falsetto refrain, the opening moments of "Shame" instantly call to mind Led Zeppelin. Hints of Zeppelin are peppered throughout Hungry Ghost's eponymous LP, but the influences are more varied and far-flung than your typical Zeppelin-indebted bands. A supergroup of sorts, Hungry Ghost assembles the talents of members of Unwound, the Corin Tucker Band, the Irving Klaw Trio and the Drags - not to mention the producer of the album, Sam Coomes, who has worked with the likes of Quasi and Elliot Smith. Hungry Ghost are great at keeping you guessing, starting off the album with winsome guitar that takes a sudden right turn into head-banging heavy rock. This is the sound of some seriously music-loving people having internalized every bit of aural information and wrestling it into an unwieldy and intoxicating form. - Rev AM

O'Malley's Irish Pub Tacoma - Sixth Avenue. Saturday Bloody Saturday with Black Pussy, December In Red, Sick Either Way. 9 pm. NC.

The Olympia Ballroom Olympia - Downtown. Hip-Hop 4 The Homeless benefit featuring Afrok & The Movement, Speaker Minds (Portland), AKA & The Heart Hurt Goods, The Sharp Five and Real Life Click, plus the annual 25360 Awards celebration 5 pm. Donations.

The Spar Tacoma - Old Town. Tumblin' Dice (Rolling Stones tribute). 8 pm.

Stonegate Pizza Tacoma - South. Rob Rideout Trio. 9 pm.

Traditions Cafe and World Folk Art Olympia - Downtown. Benefit for PFLAG, with The Righteous Mothers, Steve Schalchlin, Olympia Gay Men's Choir. All Ages. 5 and 8 pm. $30-$60 suggested donation.

Treos Tacoma - Central. Stan St. Louis. 7 pm. NC.

LINK: More live music Saturday, Jan. 25 in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

Filed under: Night Moves, Music, Olympia, Tacoma, Fife,

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