In retrospect, I should have ordered the lobster. Anthony’s had a lobster special in conjunction with the Pierce County Restaurant Rally. I love lobster. When Peg and I visited Cape Cod several years ago I vowed to eat lobster twice day. I always keep my vows; however, the oysters at Anthony’s are always excellent, too.
In case you don’t realize it, our local restaurants are having problems. COVID not only presents a problem with smell and taste, but the reduction of jobs in a time of economic downturn is catastrophic to many local eateries and the families who depend on their income. Our server told us that Anthony’s just last week had to lay off eight workers due to few patrons. The current Restaurant Rally ends November 19, 2020. Give a round of applause to our Pierce County officials who applied through the CARES Act to and received funds for our restaurants in Pierce County to help with livelihoods and the reason to open another day. Restaurants taking part in the rally are offering a 30% discount on food; however, the offer is not good on Fridays or Saturdays. This is chance for you and your friends and neighbors to support your favorite places to dine, or try out a new one you’ve always wanted to visit.
Anthony’s at Point Defiance as long been a favorite of ours. The restaurant is built out over the water and provides diners views of Point Defiance, the Olympic peninsula mountains, Vashon and Maury islands, the Point Defiance ferry landing, the Tacoma Yacht Club, and the passage north from Browns Point to Seattle with the North Cascades with now snow-capped mountains. This is a 180° view!
As we parked our car, and walked towards the restaurant we could see a crowd of people coming our way. It was impossible to make reservations because the wait list wasn’t working. Currently Anthony’s opens at three in the afternoon. Within minutes we were sitting (socially distanced, of course) at the window with a wonderful view and being welcomed by Melissa. Soon I had a Shirley Temple with “lots of cherries” (my usual request) sitting in front of me.
The menu was drastically reduced from what we are used to during normal times. We often choose the steamed mussels or fried clams as an appetizer. Their clam chowder is excellent as well. We decided to try the deep-fried calamari. We were disappointed from the moment it was set down in front of us. Many of the calamari rings had the coating (not much darker than the white rings) falling off. The portions of legs/arms were better but just a little darker in color. It was okay . . . but it wasn’t $17 okay. Perhaps, the kitchen crew was trying to push the food out to quickly to accommodate the growing crowd. Other diners might have loved it, but it was not what we were expected and hoped for.
Peg ordered the oysters. I was prepped for lobster, but I thought it through too much and thought it might just be a small lobster tail, so I followed suit with Peg and ordered the oysters. Later I was kicking myself all the way back to our car after I saw the large lobster tail shell on a fellow diner’s plate. Oh, well. Anthony’s always does a great job on our Pacific Northwest oysters. They were cooked perfectly. The French fries were perfect, especially with the cocktail sauce served with the meal in addition to the ketchup.
For dessert Peg chose the Roasted Apple Bread Pudding with ice cream and candied pecans. Like other items it was okay. The mint leaf had wilted, but probably our main problem was we are used to the fantastic cobblers at Anthony’s. The peach cobbler, the blackberry cobbler, the huckleberry cobbler . . . with ice cream melting on top of the crust is what dreams are made of. The Apple Bread pudding will not bring us back. Great food, the views, and servers like Melissa will continue to bring us back. Hopefully the Restaurant Rally will bring Anthony’s a deserved shot in the arm and introduce new food lovers to them.