A May 2010 trip
to Anchorage by Wildcat Dianne
Quote: Eating out in Anchorage, Alaska can be expensive and a drain on one's wallet, but Larissa took me to some of the least expensive and best restaurants Anchorage has to offer including a place you can have dinner and watch a movie at the same time.
Restaurant | "Off The Menu Pleasures"
Upon meeting Trevor, I was surprised to see a tall handsome man of Caribbean-African descent. Upon getting to know Trevor, I discovered he is from Trinidad and Tobago, and it is so funny that a man from a tropical island destination has relocated to a place that has 24-hour daylight in the summer and cold and harsh winters. They say that about my being from Rhode Island and living in Idaho for 16 years.
After meeting up with Trevor at his shop (more on the shop in another journal entry), he asked if we wanted to go to lunch at his favorite restaurant, Thai Curry which is located across the way from Trevor's shop on 4th Avenue. Larissa and I accepted Trevor's invitation graciously and headed across the way to Thai Curry.
Trevor, Larissa and I were greeted warmly by the hostess who knows Trevor as a regular to her restaurant, and we were seated near the window. It was about 3 when we came for our meal, so it wasn't that busy except for three girls at a nearby table having a late lunch. Being a regular, Trevor gets a little preferential treatment from the owners of Thai Curry, and even with Larissa and I tagging along on this day, Trevor wanted to treat us to something not on the menu. Trevor ordered spicy chicken wings for him and then Larissa and I got a shrimp dish for each of us. Larissa got hers spicy while I got mine mildly spicy.
While waiting for our food, Trevor entertained us with stories about him and his life and how he is dealing with his landlords giving him barely a month's notice to vacate his shop. It angered me that a hard-working man like Trevor has to move his shop especially when it was going into the heat of tourist season in Alaska. Makes one want to take all landlords and managers out and shoot them!
Finally our food arrived, and Trevor let Larissa and I try one of his chicken wings which was in a mildly spicy sweet and sour sauce. The chili sauce gave the wings a nice kick. Our shrimp dishes were similarily prepared in a stir fry with lots of veggies and big pieces of fresh shrimp. The chili sauce in the sauce gave the food a nice kick but not so much that my tongue was numbed, and I couldn't taste the food any more. Rice came with our dishes, and by the end with water and tea of the meal, we were very full and satisfied. Trevor joked with the hostess that our shrimp stir fries should be put on the menu as "Trevor's Special." I don't know if the lady will do that, but maybe it's better that Trevor's Special be kept a secret between her and Trevor.
Prices at the Thai Curry are pretty reasonable from what I could see from the menu that we never ordered from. There is a lunch and a dinner menu, and it looked like a great variety of foods from vegetarian to meat and seafood dishes.
Thai Curry is located near the post office on 4th Avenue near the Federal Building and is well-worth a lunch or dinner stop when you are in Anchorage.
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 28, 2010
Thai Curry Restaurant
333 West 4th Avenue #228
Restaurant | "Larissa's Awesome 40th Birthday Dinner"
Good thing Larissa made reservations earlier that Saturday on Memorial Day Weekend because when Larissa and I arrived for our early 5 p.m. dinner, it was already starting to get busy, but due to having a reservation, Larissa and I were seated immediately at a window seat facing 5th Avenue and near the big fireplace in the middle of the restaurant. The fireplace is quite the conversation piece and gives the Brewhouse a cozy ambiance.
After getting our menus, it took Larissa and I a while to figure out what we wanted to eat. Everything looked really good, and I wanted seafood but wasn't sure whether to get salmon or halibut. Finally, we decided what we wanted to eat, and our waiter came by and took our order before we could change our minds. Larissa got the Babyback BBQ Ribs while I went with the Grilled Salmon Platter. Larissa pre-ordered her favorite World Famous Bread Pudding and we chatted while waiting for our food while enjoying the complimentary fresh homemade breat with olive oil drizzled on top.
Our food showed up a while later, and it was well-worth the wait. Larissa's ribs were smothered in jerk rub and BBQ sauce and came with french fries and a veggie. My salmon dinner was grilled on alder wood giving it a smoky flavor that I enjoyed very much. The salmon was drizzled with a nice sweet sauce and came with garlic mashed potatoes, wilted spinach, and a veggie. It was a nutritious and delicious meal that left me not wanting desert, but when Larissa got her bread pudding, the smells of it drove me nuts. Larissa let me share some of her pudding, and OH BOY! It was sooooo good. The pudding was a nice hot vanilla custard concotion and came with a warm cinnamon sauce called Yukon Jack Sauce, apples, currants, and carmelized pecans. I need to find a bread pudding recipe this winter and make it at home it was that good!
This meal cost a little more than our other meals around Alaska, but the almost $80 with tip was well-worth it, and I was glad to have treated Larissa to a nice meal on her birthday, and I didn't embarass her by having them come to the table with a birthday cake and sing "Happy Birthday!" The Glacier Brewhouse is well-worth a visit for lunch or dinner whenever you are in Anchorage.
Member Rating 5 out of 5 on July 26, 2010
737 West Fifth Ave
Anchorage, Alaska 99501
Restaurant | "Diet Gone to Hell in a Handbasket!"
Cut to my first Thursday in Anchorage, I had just gotten some good exercise walking to Elderberry Park and exploring around there and headed back into the downtown via 4th Avenue. I was looking for a place to put my feet up and crash for a while and enjoy a little snack while waiting for my friend Larissa to pick me up on the way out from work. I was walking along 4th Avenue minding my own business when this nice young lady standing outside this cute little bakery asks me if I want to try a sample of Northern Lights Pie. "Do bears s---- in the woods?!" I thought to myself, and I said yes to the girl and ate my sample in one swift bite. Oh boy! Any thoughts of diet went out the window, and if my buddy and diet boss Laurie was there, she either would have killed me or joined me. I declared the Northern Lights Pie delicious and asked the girl where I could get more. She pointed straight behind us and said I could order a piece of pie inside the place.
So here I am entering The Cake Studio in Anchorage. This is a new establishment that has only been open since December 2009, and from what I could see on display, I hope they will be successful. Knowing what I wanted to snack on, I told the girl behind the counter, I wanted the Northern Lights but it took me a while to decide what to drink. I wasn't feeling like a latte because I had my share at Starbucks the last couple of days, and I can get soda at the gas station. I felt like a cup of tea, but not Lipton or something mundane. Ah! I see something called Paris Tea, and I asked the girl what it consisted of. The tea was a flowery tea, she tells me, but it's not overpoweringly flowery. I don't like flowery teas, but this Paris tea was something new to try out, and I ordered a large cup to have with my pie in the restaurant.
After ordering at the counter, I took a seat near the window facing the Federal Building on 4th Avenue and perused my surroundings. The Cake Studio's interior is small with a few tables and Julia Child's saying, "If you don't have cream, use butter!" painted on the wall above the entrance to the restrooms. Now I think the same should go for Paula Deen who used butter in just about everything.
Not long after sitting, my food was ready, and I picked up my Northern Lights and Paris Tea and sat back down. Oh boy! That pie was slap your mama yummy. The Northern Lights is a layered cream pie of four flavors, lime, raspberry, lemon, and mango, on a macadamia nut crust. It is a small piece, but the Northern Lights is so decadent, it's all you need to be satisfied. My tea was piping hot, and I had to wait a little bit to let it cool before drinking it. No problem! I wasn't in a rush and got to spend some quality time with myself enjoying my Northern Lights and Paris Tea which was not flowery at all and very warming.
It looks like the Cake Studio is a local hotspot because I must have been the only tourist in the place and I saw one of Anchorage's finest come in for some pastries to go. I guess no doughnuts for the Anchorage PD!
After about 45 minutes enjoying my pastry, tea and relaxing, I was ready for another lap around Anchorage before Larissa came and picked me up. My little snack cost about $8 and it was well-worth it.
The Cake Studio is located on 4th Street right across the street from The Federal Building and the courthouses. Make sure you make a trip for your share of decadence when you come to Anchorage. VERY VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!! Oh yeah, our little diet challenge ended this week at work, and I gained a pound. Not from my sweettooth getting the best of me, but from walking a lot and putting on a little muscle! I will not be a prisoner of the scale!
Cake Studio Bakery & Boutique
608 West 4th Avenue
Restaurant | "Dinner And A Movie with Johnny Depp and Alan Rickman"
Larissa arrived at the Bear Tooth and got our ticket and I ordered my food at the to go counter. I was still craving pasta, and the last time Larissa and I ate at the Bear Tooth, she had the Chicken Fettucine entree that looked pretty good. So I ordered that along with the Bear Tooth's Caesar salad to give me some veggies with my dinner. My meal once again cost about $16. Larissa had to go inside to the other ordering station in order to order her Pizza for One. The Bear Tooth has a huge variety of pizzas that you can order, and you can order a pizza for one person or for two or more people. Prices vary depending on what you would like on your pizza or if you order a theme pizza.
After ordering our food, getting our orange cones, and getting some water from the fountain, Larissa and I made it into the theater. It was Sunday on Memorial Day Weekend, and the place was pretty busy, and there were families with children there which surprised me because this version of Alice in Wonderland was a little bit scarier than the other renditions of this fairy tale. My neighbor 11-year-old daughter was reluctant to see this movie because she heard it was a little bit scary. Larissa and I took a seat on the left side of the theater since there weren't many seats left in the middle unless you like to get whiplash sitting in the front row watching the movie!
Once again our food made it during the previews, and it was once again, very delicious. My chicken fettucine was full of chunks of white meat chicken and topped with parmesean cheese. My caesar salad was once again full of green romaine lettuce, croutons, and more parmesean cheese. Larissa said her pizza was very good and filling, and she wound up taking half of her pizza home with her after the movie.
Alice in Wonderland was a great movie and the colors and cinematography were awesome. A nice surprise was that Alan Rickman, one of my favorite actors who has a voice that can make me swoon, was the voice of the Cheshire Cat. Along with Johnny Depp playing the Mad Hatter to the hilt, I was a happy camper. Two thumbs up!
Once again, I highly recommend a trip or two or three to the Bear Tooth Theater Pub in Anchorage, Alaska. In addition to the movie theater, you can dine in the little dining room in front of the restaurant or take the food to go, but the best experience is dining while watching a movie. Eating a great meal and watching great movies is better than movies with stale old popcorn, and I once again will say to anyone in Pensacola who reads this, "Could they please open something like the Bear Tooth here?!"
Bear Tooth Theater Pub
1230 West 27th Ave
Anchorage, Alaska 99503
+1 907 276 4200
Restaurant | "Dinner And A Movie: White Ribbon and Pasta!"
The movie was to begin early in the evening, so Larissa and I got there at a reasonable time to get our tickets and order our food once again at the to go counter. Larissa got the Chicken Alfredo Pasta while I got the Chicken and Portabello Fettucine and the Basil Vinaigrette Salad with Mixed Greens. Larissa didn't get a salad so her meal was about $11 while mine cost about $16 which was a good deal for salad and an entree in Anchorage.
After getting our orange cones and our water from the fountain near the movie theater entrance, Larissa and I took our seats in the theater. Our food showed up shortly after the lights went out and we were watching the previews before the movie.
Both the movie The White Ribbon and our dinners were great once again. My Chicken and Portabello Fettucine was well-done and full of chicken and portabello mushrooms in a nice wine sauce and topped with parmesean cheese. I am normally a ranch dressing person for my salad, but the basil vinaigrette dressing on my green salad was very flavorful and full of nice green romaine lettuce and not that horrible iceberg lettuce you see at some restaurants. Larissa said her Chicken Fettucine was good and we were both full by the time we finished our meals.
The White Ribbon is filmed in black and white and has an Ingmar Bergman like feeling to it. Children growing up in Germany (and Sweden) during the early 20th century were brought up very strictly and capital punishment was very common in the schools throughout the land. There were scenes of children getting a warschen, the equivalent of getting hit on the hands with a ruler or taken out to the hall and whooped by the teacher. In this film, two of the preacher's children, are forced to each wear a white ribbon (the girl in her hair, and the boy had to wear his on his arm like a band) until the father considered them rehabilitated from their bad behavior or "pure." The village teacher narrates the film, and it is a movie I highly recommend and would like to get on DVD when it's available.
After the movie ended, Larissa and I left the Bear Tooth full and happy that we got to see a great movie and once again have a great meal.
Restaurant | "Dinner and a Movie: What More Could You Ask For?!"
I landed in Alaska at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, May 18, 2010. Larissa greeted me at Ted Stevens International Airport with a big hug and then waited for me in her car that she parked in front of the airport terminal. It took forever for the luggage from our flight from Dallas/Fort Worth to go through claims, and by that time, I was a starving little wolf. Larissa and I had spoken the weekend before about what I wanted to do when I landed on Tuesday, and I told her probably eat and then crash at her place afterwards.
It was a nice surprise when Larissa said we were going to the Bear Tooth as the locals call this unique eatery that allows you to have dinner and a movie. I was a little tired from flying all day, but I perked up when she said we were going to the Bear Tooth for dinner and a movie. Located on West 27th Street in Anchorage, the Bear Tooth is one of Anchorage's most popular eateries for locals and tourists alike, and Lonely Planet: Alaska and other travel books and magazines have named it one of the best places to eat in Anchorage.
Once we got to the Bear Tooth, Larissa and I only paid $3 each for our movie tickets to see Brooklyn's Finest with Richard Gere, Wesley Snipes, and Don Cheadle. Then, Larissa and I went inside and ordered our food at the To Go counter. I felt like Mexican and so did Larissa, and Larissa got the Habanero Halibut Tacos while I played it safe and got the Halibut Tacos ($10.95 each). If you want nachos and pizza at the Bear Tooth, you have to order it at the counter inside and not at the To Go Counter. After ordering and paying for our food, Larissa and I got an orange cone with a letter on it that would be placed on our table in the movie theater. The letter glowed in the dark so our server could see our letter when he or she delivered our food.
Larissa and I missed the first few minutes of Brooklyn's Finest but that was OK. While we were getting into the plot of the movie and seeing who were the good and bad guys, we ate some of the complimentary popcorn and sipped a beer to relax. Brooklyn's Finest is about a group of police officers in Brooklyn, New York who are going after a drug dealer (Snipes). Richard Gere's character is near retirement while Ethan Hawke's character is dealing with a growing family on a cop's salary which is crappy. A lot of violence and some nudity is in the movie, so this movie wasn't for children and no children are allowed in any of the R rated movies that show at the Bear Tooth or movies shown after 8 p.m.
Not long after Larissa and I got settled watching the movie, our food arrived. Both of our taco dishes had good-sized portions of soft-shelled tacos that were loaded with halibut, lettuce, tomato, guacamole, cheese and sour cream. We also had a side of tortilla chips, and my halibut had been marinated in the Bear Tooth's own hefeweizen ale. Delish! Larissa said her tacos were nice and spicy and good too, and we were both full after eating our tacos and enjoyed the rest of Brooklyn's Finest.
Movies at the Bear Tooth are shown nightly and the movie choices change frequently and the choices are anywhere between popular movies that have been out a short time and arthouse and foreign language films. My next journal entry on the Bear Tooth will talk about seeing the German Film The White Ribbon so stay tuned!
If you go to Anchorage, Alaska, you must make at least one trip to the Bear Tooth for dinner and a movie. I highly recommend it and I wish that the city of Pensacola or the town of Milton would open a theater like this. It would make going to the movies a lot more fun!
Member Rating 5 out of 5 on July 24, 2010