Perched overlooking the river, Anthony's at Spokane Falls has been serving fresh seafood with a memorable view for more than a decade. It recently had a relative arrive in town.
In a corner of the South Hill Regal Plaza where the new Target went up, Anthony's Beach Café opened its doors at the end of October. Both restaurants are part of a family of Anthony's restaurants that originated in Bellevue in 1969 and now have locations throughout the Pacific Northwest, each falling into one of three categories: dinner houses, casual dining and to-go fish-and-chip bars. Anthony's at the Falls lands in the fine dining group; Anthony's Beach Café is in the middle as a casual, sit-down restaurant.
The café may not have a waterfront view like its older brother, but the inside exudes a charming, carefree-day-at-the-beach atmosphere. Framed vintage bathing suits, wooden paddles and water skis surround the dining area. An upright boat displays the liquor behind the bar. Bright, striped umbrellas dangling from the ceiling and walls remind you to "Relax, you're on beach time."
I took a seat at the long, wooden counter facing the exhibition kitchen where you can look up at the mirror ceiling, looking down on everything cooking. From the lunch menu, I ordered a Wild Alaska Salmon Burger ($12) that came out juicy and smeared with sun-dried tomato basil mayo, clasped in a warm potato bun. It was accompanied by a basket with skinny French fries you can dip in endless tartar sauce and paired with a huckleberry lemonade ($4.50) made in-house with huckleberry sauce, which means actual berries bobbing around the glass.
Pan-fried Idaho rainbow trout ($13), a mahi mahi taco and chowder ($11) and Alaska Cod 'n Chips ($11) cooked with panko for a crispier finish are a few of the other items on the lunch menu. If you come in for dinner, you'll find a similar selection, though dishes cost a few dollars more for larger portions and the sandwich list is replaced by "Turf" items like a flat iron steak ($18) flavored with chipotle lime butter and cranberry relish or the Surf and Turf ($23), top sirloin and barbecued garlic prawns. ♦
Anthony's Beach Café • 2912 E. Palouse Hwy. • Open daily, 11 am-9 pm • anthonys.com • 448-0668