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Not-so-adult entertainment on Sprague. Plus, barbeque and trade magazines.

click to enlarge The Luxury Box's Tina Bishop (right) and Marcia Hunt - YOUNG KWAK
  • Young Kwak
  • The Luxury Box's Tina Bishop (right) and Marcia Hunt

If you’re like me and have no idea that “luxury box” is a term applied to VIP box seating in sports stadiums, you might get the wrong impression about the Luxury Box on Sprague Avenue in Spokane Valley. Nor should you confuse it with the myriad of adult-themed destinations on the eastern stretch of Sprague Avenue.

No, the Luxury Box is a multi-pronged venture encompassing a restaurant, lounge and an event center, that specializes in comfort food and weddings.

Owner Tina Bishop, a former event planner, and her manager Marcia Hunt “dreamed up” the Luxury Box last February as solution to the “vicious circle of networking” that’s part of event planning. Having all the resources for an event under one roof saves both time and costs.

The event center, available for wedding receptions, business gatherings and the like, opened for business last August.

With the goal of becoming the Spokane Valley’s newest hot spot, the restaurant and lounge opened just last month.

It’s a little incongruous. Not as high-end or sports-oriented as the name suggests, it’s half family restaurant with roomy booths and half sport-ish lounge, with a pool table, darts and an electronic poker machine.

But according to Hunt, the “luxury” is meant to come from great customer service and great food — and, in this respect, the name works. The place is comfortable, and the food’s delicious.

Chef Brad Chase describes the menu as “comfort food with a twist.” For example, there’s a club sandwich on the menu, but it’s made with crab and shrimp instead of the traditional turkey and ham.

And those traditional dishes are what the customers like. At lunch, the daily “blue plate” specials are especially popular. I had the Yankee pot roast and mashed potatoes, tender and creamy — much like my mom’s recipe, which is just what Chase had in mind when designing the specials.

It’s the kind of food you don’t want to stop eating, especially the home-style desserts. And when trying out a new restaurant, I’d say that’s a luxury.

The Luxury Box, at 10512 E. Sprague, Spokane Valley, is open Mon-Wed 11 am-Midnight; Thurs-Sun 11 am-2 am; Sunday 11 am-10 pm. Visit theluxurybox.net or call 999-4472.

Pools and Grills

“People are talking about it. I don’t know how many people come in every day and ask me about it,” says Bob Hemphil, owner and cook at Chicken ’n More, in his soothing Texan drawl.

Hemphil, whose Chicken ’n More will have been in business for 18 years in July, is talking about the Pool World Restaurant Grill Off.

Wait a second… Pool World Restaurant Grill Off? Yes, you read that correctly. Pool World in Spokane Valley is sponsoring a cook-off featuring three local restaurant owners: the aforementioned Hemphil, Gary Swiss of Crazy G’s and Jeremy Hansen of Santé will be engaged in a friendly faceoff over burgers and other grilled fare.

If you think the selection of competitors seems random, you’re not alone.

“You want to talk about eclectic?” Swiss laughs. “I’m a cook; I’m not a chef. Bob’s been cooking for, I think, 30 years. I’m a griller; Bob’s a smoker. And Jeremy’s an educated chef.”

Swiss himself entered the restaurant business only about a year ago, after he and his wife moved to Spokane following their retirement.

With different areas of expertise, the competitors should bring a variety of grilling styles and flavors to the competition — which, for Pool World, is a good thing.

The Restaurant Grill Off is a way for the business “to showcase” their line of Weber and Traeger high-end smokers, along with “local talent,” according to Pool World Service Writer Shawn Reynolds, who got the idea for the cook-off from a trade magazine.

The Pool World’s Restaurant Grill Off takes fire on Saturday, May 22, from 1-5 pm at Pool World, 13514 E. Sprague. Call 928-6585.

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