It was almost five and it was nearly dark when I parked our car and we walked into Anthony’s at Pt. Defiance (5910 N Waterfront Dr, Tacoma, WA 98407). “Two for dinner?” The young, very young hostess greeted us. An hour earlier Peg had asked about going to dinner. My head popped up from my sketchbook. With raised eyebrows I said, “Anthony’s just sent a email alerting me to All You Can Eat Prawns. Are you interested?” It was a dumb question. I knew the answer.
In the cold and rain I didn’t care about the view. In fact I don’t recall even seeing the ferry that somewhere out on the sound was shuffling cars and people back and forth to and from Vashon Island. Soon we were sitting down at a table by the window looking out into the night. Natalie brought Peg a glass of Sauvignon Blanc, while I had a glass of red cherry juice and Sprite. My three speared cherries quickly disappeared. I said a silent prayer in memory of Shirley Temple and the non-alcoholic drink named after her.
Although the light gray letters on the menu made me frown, I smiled when I saw that it was All You Can Eat Fish night as well. I ordered the fish. Peg ordered the prawns. Both came with slaw, and French fries. Although, I don’t like their fries, I like the cocktail sauce. Most of my fries were gone by the end of dinner. We ordered lemon wedges and additional tartar sauce. It’s a poor workman, who doesn’t know his appropriate condiments and an adequate supply.
On New Year’s Day Peg and I had dined a mile down the coast at Katie Downs (3211 Ruston Way, Tacoma, WA 98402), while we watched the Rose Bowl on TV. At Katie Downs we ate a similar meal, but not All You Can Eat. Again, I had ordered the fish and chips and Peg had ordered the prawns. She had salad and I had curly fries. At Anthony’s, although Monday Night Football was playing at the Anthony’s Bar, it was too far away to see who was playing or who was winning. Our friendly Monday night competition was between the two food joints and their fish and prawn servings.
Although my fish was excellent, the beer battered fish at Katie Downs was better. The prawns at Katie Downs were excellent, but the prawns at Anthony’s were larger and more succulent. The Anthony’s cole slaw, with the malt vinegar and a couple squeezes of fresh lemon was better than the salad from Katie Downs. The curly fries from Katie Downs were better than the Anthony’s French fries. But if Anthony’s had those curly fries with their cocktail sauce, it would be a different story. And we all like a good story.
We ate no dessert at Katie Downs, but that’s a really, really good reason for dining at Anthony’s. Peg ordered the blackberry cobbler with ice cream, which was served melting onto the crust and juices.
Both restaurants provided excellent service. Katie Downs cost a few dollars more, but when you factor in All You Can Eat and blackberry cobbler, Anthony’s won the comparison hands down. I like little comparisons like this. It’s impossible to lose. Did I mention All You Can Eat deep fried prawns?
One more possibility . . . if I had my druthers, I would combine the French fries of PICK-QUICK Drive In (Fife), the beer-battered fish from Katie Downs and the All You Can Eat prawns from Anthony’s. Dining is a pleasure at each of these food service icons. I recommend you visit each one and enjoy!