Depending on when you arrive at Old Town Bistro, you may think you've reached two completely different venues. During the week, chef David Ortiz and his staff serve up steaks, salads, and pastas. Prizing eclecticism over any particular type of cuisine, house specialties include fish and chips platters with house-cut fries and barbecue sandwiches loaded with pork shoulder that's been smoked for 24 hours.
On the weekend, the eatery transforms into a dance club with a thundering 10,000-watt sound system. Local DJs test the limits of eight house subwoofers, spinning tracks synched to videos on 10 flat screens. The sprawling dance floor keeps dancers in motion beneath a colorful swirl of disco lights as opposed to a colander taped on a spotlight
The Loft Cafe and Social Lounge marries the rustic beauty of lodge-like architecture with a modern menu of Pacific Northwest and Mediterranean flavors that change periodically. Their executive chef has crafted a catalog of small and large plates that pair regional seafood, such as pan-seared Alaskan halibut and bay scallops, with basil-pesto sauce and roasted red peppers in garlic cream. Large parties can even request a custom menu for their festivities, instead of piling their entrees into the shape of a birthday cake.
The chef dispatches all meals to two floors, where shadows cast by hanging lights and chandeliers play across wooden ceiling grids. He also sends meals out to the courtyard, where towering heat lamps warm hands grasping coconut mojitos—one of the eatery’s many handcrafted cocktails. During happy hour, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. every day, guests take advantage of the lower cocktail prices and snack on spicy pancetta prawns and dungeness-crab croquettes.
Metronome Coffee's founders built their business around the idea of fresh coffee, tasty foods, and good music to sooth both cravings and consciences. They acquire their coffee through direct trade with farmers, each cup benefiting the people who did the hard work of growing it. They stock their pastry case with treats from local Corina Bakery and serve up hot pancakes made from scratch. They even squeeze their orange juice fresh. And they pair their food and drink with the tunes of local artists, helping customers discover new music.
Built in 1925, the Temple Theatre first served as a vaudeville venue, later becoming a host for road shows, burlesque, and movies. However, the theatre closed in 1965, and would be subjected to disrepair, vandalism, and skeleton xylophone recitals for more than 15 years. A 1981 restoration project returned the theatre to its former glory. Today, seated under the gilded chandelier and wooden trim, theatergoers lose themselves in the thoughtful dramas enacted upon the stage.
Some of comedy’s most seasoned veterans and next big things wring laughs from audiences during standup performances at Tacoma Comedy Club. Now in its third year of tickling ribs, the venue stuffs its calendar with a slew of popular faces from TV. On Wednesday, open-mic night brings emerging voices to the stage to test out fresh material so that audiences can get a sneak peek at the laugh-masters of tomorrow and the microphone models of today.