Weekly Volcano Blogs: Served blog

Posts made in: May, 2014 (45) Currently Viewing: 31 - 40 of 45

May 20, 2014 at 9:25am

Eat This Now: Kramerica

You need to live in Kramerica's glory at Little Jerry's in Tacoma. Photo credit: Jackie Fender

When I heard rumor of a Seinfeld-inspired establishment serving up breakfast and burgers, my interest was piqued. Though I'm by no means a Seinfeld fan, the idea of good grub and sitcom kitsch matrimony was something I simply needed to check out. And boy, I'm glad I did.

Little Jerry's Breakfast and Burgers is an intimate little greasy spoon tucked away in a small strip mall in the Fern Hill district. By intimate, I mean it is tiny - and on my most recent visit, it was packed. This means one of two things, 1. Seinfeld groupies are aplenty in Tacoma, or 2. Little Jerry's serves up delicious breakfast and lunch fare. Both may be accurate, but judging by my own experience, number two is likely the case.

What do I think you should Eat Now? The Kramerica ($9.95).

Though many cleverly monikered plates caught my eye, the Kramerica featured a favorite breakfast staple of mine in the hollandaise sauce.

Let's break it down. Your choice of hash browns or home fries are topped with your choice of biscuit or English muffin -I opted for the browns with biscuit. The hash browns were golden brown and the biscuit fluffy and filling. This foundation is topped with two eggs your way, though poached only seems natural and a wise decision with yolk oozing out when you cut into it. Add gratuitous amounts of crisp slices of bacon, sliced tomato, fresh spinach all smothered with hollandaise and oh, em, gee, you got yourself a winner. The trick is to get a little bit of every ingredient onto your fork with each bite, and maybe a spattering of Tabasco. The crunch from the bacon, creamy decadence from the hollandaise and fresh veggies to boot makes the Kramerica a balanced breakfast dish.

Little Jerry's is a must for Seinfeld fans and casual curious diners alike. Large groups may have difficulty dining here due to space constraints, but the mismatched mugs, Seinfeld-themed decor and unique menu are worth a visit.

LITTLE JERRY'S BREAKFAST AND BURGERS, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, 8233 South Park Ave., Tacoma, 253.474.2435

Filed under: Eat This Now, Tacoma,

May 20, 2014 at 3:00pm

Former Seahawk Marcus Trufant to unveil his "You can't handle the Tru" Stacked Burger

The intern who handles press release on recently retired Seahawks who go on to create their own burger just handed us this news flash:

Marcus Trufant, whom recently retired with the Seattle Seahawks after a long successful career, will be unveiling his own Custom Stacked Burger at Stacks Burgers, Shakes & Fries and signing autographs. A percentage of all the sales from the evening will go back to benefit the Trufant Family Foundation.

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May 20, 2014 at 4:39pm

Chef Hudson Slater now reviews films ... and gives away appetizers

Chef Hudson Slater: He's fun! Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Several weeks ago Weekly Volcano food critic Jackie Fender gushed over Maxwell's Restaurant & Lounge's head chef, Hudson Slater. Deservedly so - the man is on culinary fire.

Today, The Grand Cinema couldn't hold back its love for Slater any longer. The Grand announced it has invited the chef to host a post-film discussion after the 3:10 p.m. screening of Chef, Saturday, May 24. Let's read The Grand's handiwork:

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May 22, 2014 at 9:19am

Aviateur Parisian Diner is open for lunch in downtown Tacoma

Treat yourself to Les Croques at Aviateur Parisian Diner in Tacoma. Photo credit: Jackie Fender

With the recent news that TWOKOI Japanese Cuisine and Steel Creek American Whiskey Co. cut back their lunch service, thoughts of employees huddled in their cubicles during the noon hour sent shivers down my spine. Downtown Tacoma certainly doesn't need less people walking the streets. And what of a domino effect? One restaurant closes mid-day, then another, and suddenly every restaurateur want to sleep in wants.

Good news. Downtown Tacoma's new Parisian dinner, Aviateur, has been opened for lunch the last two weeks.

Weekly Volcano food critic Jackie Fender says the French restaurant is worthy.

May 22, 2014 at 11:49am

Intern Report: Checking in with Anthem Beverage and Bistro

The Anthem in downtown Tacoma hosts live music often. Photo credit: Drake Birnbaum

Hello! My name is Drake Birnbaum. I'm a runner, dancer and a Jew. I prefer my pizza cold and my hair styled. As the newest member of team Volcano, I'm like the communal sidekick. This is my first article, and I gotta say, I think I did great.

Some places hold memories. For me, one of those places is the Puyallup coffee shop Anthem Beverage and Bistro. It was a Forza back then, yet equally wonderful for enjoying gelato with my mom and brother. Suddenly, it was called Anthem Coffee & Tea, but that didn't stop me from painting on Buddha Board with family and friends. Before I knew it, another Anthem had opened on Pacific Avenue in downtown Tacoma.

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May 22, 2014 at 3:41pm

Beer Dinners Alert: Chambers Bay and Pacific Grill hosts both ends of the Narrows Bridge

Wine dinners have become commonplace events around the South Sound, and with new local breweries opening up; I imagine beer dinners will become more common, too.

Right now, two beer dinners are worthy of your attention - one in University Place and the other in downtown Tacoma.

First, Chambers Bay hosts neighboring Narrows Brewing Co. for a five-course beer dinner tomorrow night. Looks as if Chef Joshua Corcoran and his crew will have fun with the Narrows brews. Smokey pork belly tacos, Beecher's double cheeseburger and cinnamon doughnuts are on the docket. Narrows head brewer Joe Walts will bring Siren's Call Hibiscus Saison, Galloping Gertie Golden Ale, 4.0 in Damage Session Pale Ale, Giant Pacific Octopus IPA and his Post-Tension Porter. Tickets are $50 per person. Sign up at 253.552.4867.

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May 23, 2014 at 10:16am

Beer Weekend: Engine House No. 9 and de Garde Brewing release VOLTRON, plus beer events

Engine House No. 9's brew house sits in an adjoining building.

With the camaraderie between Washington state breweries, collaboration beers are natural and frequent occurrences. For many brewers, the only inhibitor to embarking on a group project is the inability to fit collaboration into a busy brew schedule. Brewery collaborations also create a way for breweries that sometimes compete for consumer attention and dollars - and even for talented staff - to hang out under friendly circumstances.

The industry also sparks friendships first, which leads to a collaboration - as in the case between Shane Johns from Engine House No. 9 in Tacoma and Trevor Rogers of de Garde Brewing in Tillamook, Ore.

"We have very similar brewing interests and genuinely enjoy chatting about beer and drinking beer together," says Johns of his friend, Trevor Rogers. "I enjoy his beers and try to get down to his place whenever I can. Otherwise we text back and forth a couple times a week."

The two brewers have collaborated on a Brett DIPA called VOLTRON, which will be released at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 24 at Engine House No. 9. Brett DIPA translates to double India pale ale incorporating Brettanomyces yeast, or Brett for short. Doubling an IPA generally means twice the amount of hops and twice the alcohol by volume, which means a strong, hoppy beer.

"Trevor and I felt like Brett brings new and interesting flavors that you can't get with Sacc yeast," says Johns. "We had wanted to brew a Brett DIPA for a while. I had been working with it a lot in the farmhouse beer series - batch five headed to distribution yesterday - so we just decided to get together and brew a couple different versions. Trevor had the hops. I had the Brett and the facility. We worked the malt bill out together."

There will be three total batches of VOLTRON brewed. They'll change the hops each time.

Why VOLTRON?

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Filed under: New Beer Column, Tacoma,

May 23, 2014 at 11:01am

Mac and Cheese Madness: Rock Wood Fired Pizza & Spirits

Get Back Mac and Cheese can help. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Don't look at me like that. I have a soft spot in my heart for Rock Wood Fired Pizza & Spirits, ever since it opened next to The Swiss back in the mid-'90s when it was called Rock Pasta Brick Oven Pizza. After any major trauma in my life, a dish of Get Back Mac and Cheese from The Rock (it's a classic rock themed joint) has bolstered me and given me a full belly and clear mind with which to plow ahead - even on rainy days when "Landslide" is on its hi-fi and parking tickets are being placed on windshields. That mac and cheese is what I want when I'm sick, when I'm sad, when I'm happy, even when I'm not particularly hungry. It's obscenely velvety, with a four-cheese, rich cream sauce (cheddar, mozzarella, Romano, Jack) that clings to every square millimeter of giant chunks of chewy peppered bacon and penne pasta. Served in a piping hot skillet, the dish forms a protective layer of love around my heart. Pairs well with their classic-rock themed beers, which are brewed from Fish Brewing Company in Olympia.

ROCK WOOD FIRED PIZZA & SPIRTS, 11:30 a.m. to midnight daily, 1920 S. Jefferson Ave., Tacoma, 253.272.1221, also in Federal Way, Lacey, Lake Tapps and Puyallup

LINK: Other South Sound mac and cheese dishes

May 25, 2014 at 11:19am

Plan Ahead: Toscanos summer whiskey dinner

Toscanos Cafe and Wine Bar does brown June 25.

Do you remember all those career-placement tests you had to take in high school? The endless guidance-counselor appointments taking up your free periods? In all that time, did anyone ever happen to mention the possibility of becoming a professional whiskey taster?

Wednesday, June 25, Jim Beam Distillery is sending one to Toscanos Café and Wine Bar in Puyallup.

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Filed under: Culinary Events, Booze, Puyallup,

May 26, 2014 at 7:37am

Served Blog Banner Boy: Q&A with R.J. Adler of Pint Defiance in Fircrest

R.J. Adler, assistant manager at Pint Defiance, a craft and specialty beer store and taproom on the edge of Fircrest. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Every week we swap out the Served banner art above, introducing you to the people who serve food and drinks in the South Sound. This week, meet R.J. Adler.

Server Banner Boy, May 26-June 1, 2014

R.J. Adler

Assistant manager, bartender, server

Pint Defiance, a craft and specialty beer store and taproom on the edge of Fircrest

Why do you serve?

"I serve for the love of great craft beer. This answer is complete cheese, but I mean it."

Who is your favorite server in the South Sound?

"Oof, I have to pick just one? Sean at the Parkway seems to have a preternatural sense for knowing what I want before I do."

What are you most proud to serve?

"Anything local. I love being able to say, 'Here, a guy I know made this.'"

What's your current drink of choice?

Berliner Weisse

Favorite movie?

"No Country for Old Men"

What don't you serve?

"I try not to get snobbish about beer but you won't find me cracking any 'cold-activated' cans, if you catch my drift.

What's on your radar at Pint Defiance?

We always have awesome events on our calendar - Deschutes Brewer's Night on June 11, a sour beer night on June 25. I'm also looking forward to all the summer seasonal releases that are hitting our shelves. I'll be trying them all ... ya know ... for research.

LINK: Meet last week's Served Banner Girl.

About this blog

Served, a blog by the Weekly Volcano, is the region’s feedbag of fresh chow daily, local restaurant news, New Beer Column, bar and restaurant openings and closings, breaking culinary news and breaking culinary ground - all brought to the table with a dollop of Internet frivolity on top.

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