click to enlarge A foolproof map to find the perfect pickle of your dreams
Leslie Douglas photo
Outsider's pickle pizza is really good.

It's a weekday afternoon and you're going about your day as normal — ignoring your emails, thinking about your crush, hiding from that one coworker — when it strikes. The urgent, undeniable, overpowering craving for a pickle. It overwhelms you, fogging your brain and cramping your stomach with the pangs that can only be satisfied by dill, vinegar and salt.

The decision is made for you. You must devour the perfect pickle as soon as possible. Your quest, therefore, consists of only two steps: Figure out exactly what kind of pickle will satisfy your craving, and then attain said pickle at all costs.

The first step, you find, is deceptively difficult. Never fear, fair friend. You have in your hands the map to your perfect pickle. But it is now up to you, and up to you alone, to follow the prompts, follow your heart, and pick the one pickle that will set you free.

1. Do you want a pickle?

a. With all my heart. Continue to 2.

b. No. You're wrong. Repeat 1.

2. Hot or Cold?

a. Cold. You're cool as a cucumber. Continue to 3.

b. Hot. A daredevil, are we? Skip ahead to 7.

3. Do you want to eat or drink your pickle?

a. Eat. That crunch is haunting you. Continue to 4.

b. Drink. You're completely off the rails, but on the right track. Skip ahead to 6.

4. Sweet or savory?

a. Sweet. Eureka! You made it! Both your sweet tooth and your pickle craving will be satisfied with Spokane Sugar Candy's dill pickle flavored cotton candy. Seek out the colorful stand at community celebrations like Medical Lake Founders Day (June 14-15) or Spokane Gallery's Fairy Festa (June 22-23), or cater the specialty candy maker at your next private event.

b. Savory. A wise choice. You're nearly there. Continue to 5.

5. Big pickle or pickle bits?

a. Big. Congratulations, connoisseur. There's no other choice for you than The Big Dill at Garland Sandwich Shoppe.

"You know those delis that hand you a piece of paper and you check off all the ingredients you want on your sandwich? My list nearly always includes: Turkey. Ham. Bacon. Cheddar. Lettuce. Tomato. Mustard. Pickle. It's almost as if the Garland Sandwich Shoppe looked at my list of faves and said, "Who needs bread? GIANT PICKLE INSTEAD!" when creating The Big Dill. What a delicious, crunchy take on a sandwich that celebrates the real star." (SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL)

b. Bits. You've struck gold. Look no further than the pickle pasta salad at Zozo's Sandwich House.

click to enlarge A foolproof map to find the perfect pickle of your dreams
Young Kwak photo
The dill pickle pasta salad at Zozo's Sandwich House.

6. Do you already have a beverage?

a. Yes. You're prepared, a good sign in a pickle warrior. Your foresight has led you to the dill pickle beer salt from Inland Empire Spice, the perfect way to perk up your drink (and make sure you get your electrolytes in). You're a hydration hero.

b. No. Never fear. Quench your thirst with a pickleback at T's Lounge. Chase a shot of whiskey with real pickle juice from a pickle jar for an intense, and intensely delicious, celebration of your success.

7. Breaded, on bread, in bread or between bread?

a. Breaded. Your treasure awaits. Nearly there. Continue to 8.

b. On bread. Your search leads you to the very depths of the dill-dom. Skip to 9.

c. In bread. Your unique quest has led you to something as unexpectedly magical as you. The pickle biscuits at Domestikated Biscuits have been waiting for you this whole time. Get yourself to the Fairwoods Farmers Market on Tuesday evenings or stop in at The Supper Club to fill the void in your heart.

d. Between bread. You have chosen to go not around, above, nor under, but through. Skip to 11.

8. What is your weapon of choice?

a. Shield. You defend those you love, and you shall be rewarded. With round, tiny shields of deep fried pickles, that is. The good people at Post Street Ale House, Elliot's an Urban Kitchen or Shelby's Burgers are ready to supply you with battered and deep-fried pickle chips that are as golden as your golden heart.

b. Spear. You throw yourself after what you want, and your aim is true. May the long, spear-shaped pickle fries at Emrys Beer & Mead Works, Logan Tavern, Outlaw BBQ or Market Street Pizza be the prize you've been striving for.

9. Sweet or Savory?

a. Sweet. Lest you thought your quest was in vain, here lies the prize: the pickle fritter at Donut Parade. But lo, the elusive fritter is only available on Wednesdays and Thursdays. If you're in search of the fritter on a different day, you will be forced to learn that most dreaded lesson of the universe: delayed gratification.

b. Savory. Though you venture further, you will not be disappointed. Continue to 10.

10. Cheese or more cheese?

a. Cheese. Huzzah! It could not hide forever. Your true love draws nigh — the pickle cheddar ranch bagel at Hidden Bagel.

"Hidden Bagel's Kendall Yards location is just a hop, skip and a jump from Inlander HQ, making it my go-to lunch spot when I've inevitably forgotten to pack one. The first thing I do is check to see if they have pickle cheddar ranch bagels that day. The bright pickle and ranch flavors cut through the buttery cheese and complement any sandwich or spread you choose. (May we suggest a grinder bagel sammy?) New Yorkers might have a problem with such flavors hijacking their precious bagels, but I certainly do not." (MADISON PEARSON)

b. More cheese. You looked neither left nor right, but kept your eyes fixed on the ultimate reward: pickle pizza. Get yourself to Outsider in Spokane or Embers by the Lake in Hauser.

"This might be controversial, but I'd rather eat a million pizzas adorned with pickles before I even think about considering a pizza with pineapple on it. This stems from a long-held, anti-pineapple opinion of mine, but after trying Outsider's Pickle F---er pizza, I can wholeheartedly stand behind that assertion. The acidic tang of pickle slices melts into the sweet, gooey cheese atop a perfectly oven-fired crust, creating a decadent taste profile that's indescribably immaculate." (COLTON RASANEN)

11. Classic or crazy?

a. Classic. You will not be trifled with. You're a straightforward type with a straightforward love of all things pickle. Get yourself a Dude-Fil-A sandwich at Saranac Public House, which slaps a pickle brined fried chicken cutlet, plus more pickles(!), into a brioche bun.

b. Crazy. You've got killer style, and you're not for the faint of heart. Join your gang at Killer Burger and grab a peanut butter pickle bacon burger and watch them all turn green with envy.

Riverfront Eats @ Riverfront Park

Tuesdays, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Continues through Aug. 20
  • or

Eliza Billingham

Eliza Billingham is a staff writer covering food, from restaurants and cooking to legislation, agriculture and climate. She joined the Inlander in 2023 after completing a master's degree in journalism from Boston University.

Madison Pearson

Madison Pearson is the Inlander's Listings Editor, managing the calendar of events and covering everything from local mascots to mid-century modern home preservation for the Arts & Culture section of the paper. She joined the staff in 2022 after completing a bachelor's degree in journalism from Eastern Washington...

Colton Rasanen

Colton Rasanen is a staff writer for the Inlander covering education, LGBTQ+ affairs, and most recently, arts and culture. He joined the staff in 2023 after working as the managing editor of the Wahpeton Daily News and News Monitor in rural North Dakota.

Samantha Wohlfeil

Samantha Wohlfeil is the News Editor and covers the environment, rural communities and cultural issues for the Inlander. She's been with the paper since 2017.