Neighborhood Gems

Your guide to eating outside your 'hood

click to enlarge The sea bass spoon dish at Satay Bistro. - YOUNG KWAK
Young Kwak
The sea bass spoon dish at Satay Bistro.

Coeur d'Alene

Bistro On Spruce Bistro on Spruce is a lovely little neighborhood bistro located in Coeur d'Alene's happening midtown. This is where discriminating locals come to find a menu that's incredibly diverse, with offerings like Lemon and Thyme Risotto, Shrimp and Grits and Coffee and Spice Pork Tenderloin. Look for the $4 tapas menu (Monday through Saturday), or go crazy and spring for some of the $5 small plates. 1710 N. Fourth St., Coeur d'Alene • Idaho • 208-664-1774

Fisherman's Market and Grill This is the place to shop for fresh fish when you want to make your own sushi rolls at home. But if that seems daunting, or you're exhausted from a trip to the Home Depot (it's across the street), then take a seat at the counter here and order a squid salad, shrimp tacos, or one of their many sushi rolls or hitokuchi (one bite sushi). 215 W. Kathleen Ave., Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 208-664-4800

Satay Bistro One of Coeur d'Alene's best dining experiences is located, improbably, between Taco Bell and the Long Ear music store. Satay offers a wide selection of wines, an upscale fusion menu and plenty of elegance. You can enjoy trademark satays (meaning skewered, grilled meat) like filet beef with shiitake mushroom demi-glace or Red Chili Scallops. They also serve a range of salads, pasta dishes and steaks, and the menu is always evolving, making return visits a must. 2501 N. 4th St., Coeur d'Alene • Idaho • 208-765-2555

Seasons of Coeur d'Alene From pork polenta tart to a Kobe pub burger to bronzed salmon, Seasons offers seasonally inspired cuisine at a range of price points from $8 up to $25. Their large dining room is full of activity throughout the week, whether it's happy hour, ladies night, half-priced wine night, burgers and brews night or a local musician crooning for diners. 209 Lakeside Ave., Coeur d'Alene • Idaho • 208-664-8008

Liberty Lake

Cork House With menu items ranging from sea scallops to enchiladas and rib-eye steak to pork confit, the Cork House features gourmet comfort food. The dinner menu features a lengthy list of appetizers such as calamari, skillet cornbread and ahi tuna tartare. Among the favorite entrées is the mac and cheese, with chicken, bacon and jalapeño. On Saturdays and Sundays, days brunch is served from 9 am to 3 pm, with more than 20 items including Belgian waffles, a triple-decker BLT and beignets. 1400 N. Meadowwood Ln., Liberty Lake • Wash. • 922-4210

Northeast Spokane

Geno's The latest addition to the Elk family of casual restaurants, Geno's differs from its sisters in at least one significant way: They have French fries. Its spacious dining area opens to a patio protected from the hubbub of Hamilton Street, and the bar offers a selection of exclusively craft beers. 1414 N. Hamilton Ave., Spokane • Wash. • 368-9087

Northwest Spokane

Downriver Grill With a dedicated following of regulars, this upscale bistro in the Audubon Park neighborhood serves fresh, locally sourced food paired with Washington wines and brews. The Signature Salad, Gorgonzola Fries and Osso Bucco braised in a sage pork jus have earned a cult following over the years. 3315 W. Northwest Blvd., Spokane • Wash. • 323-1600

Little Garden Café The Little Garden Cafe is known for having a kid-friendly happy hour. Patrons stop in for a glass of wine, latte or light meal after spending the afternoon at the park or nearby Bowl & Pitcher. The atmosphere is quaint, warm and well-divided. The front of the cafe boasts bar and outdoor seating with a panoramic view of Audubon Park. A private front room offers a haven for those searching for peace and quiet, while a separate back room has ample space, tables and numerous toys for the tot set. 2901 W. Northwest Blvd., Spokane • Wash. • 328-5500

Post Falls

The White House Grill Guests have been leaving this Post Falls gem for 20 years reeking of garlic, and that's part of the White House Grill's appeal. Their unabashed love of garlic and the sharp, tangy flavors of Greece, Turkey and Italy are reflected in a tasty menu of souvlaki, gyros and sarma.  712 N. Spokane St., Post Falls • Wash. • 208-777-9672

South Hill

Anthony's Beach Cafe Located in a corner of the South Hill near Target, Anthony's Beach Café is 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 Beach Café is in the middle as a casual, sit-down restaurant.  2912 E. Palouse Hwy., Spokane • Wash. • 448-0668

Gordy's Sichuan Cafe There was a big change at Gordy's on the South Hill in the past year, but our voters didn't mind, voting Gordy's Best Asian Food. Gordy Craft, the ultra-popular Chinese spot's namesake, and his wife Jaymie sold the restaurant in August 2015. Thankfully for Gordy's loyal fans, the restaurant is now in the hands of two longtime Gordy's chefs, Dan Burns and Casey Riendeau, who have maintained the Sichuan-style menu while adding a few updates to the cozy space. 501 E. 30th Ave., Spokane • Wash. • 747-1170

Laguna Café After eight and a half years on Regal Street, Laguna's owners decided it was time to move the cafe to a larger space, while keeping all the other aspects of Laguna as much the same as possible. The new location on East 29th Avenue in the Grapetree Village Shopping Center offers additional seating space, a full bar, more parking and a bigger patio, while retaining a drive-through. Still, it's Laguna's menu of burgers, filet mignon, ribs and salads that has built its following. 4304 S. Regal St., Spokane • Wash. • 448-0887

Lindaman's Pick up dinner on the way home, or linger with a cocktail — either way, Lindaman's is a sure bet. Chalk it up to practice over the course of three decades. Lunch favorites include the wildly popular romaine salad, chicken pot pie, Nanaimo bars, and a gluten-free peanut butter chocolate chip oatmeal cookie. 1235 S. Grand Blvd., Spokane • Wash. • 838-3000

Picabu Neighborhood Bistro Picabu Bistro tweaks its specials depending on the season; the introduction of their summer salads, for example, elicits squeals of delight from devoted customers. Their Italian Cobb or Creole Salmon Caesar are variations on combinations popularized in other cultures or conventions. Their Baja Blackened Shrimp salad, however, surprises with fruit salsa and crisp shaved cabbage. On the hearty end, consider the Desert Lime Chicken or Curry Bowl. 901 W. 14th Ave., Spokane • Wash. • 624-2464

Rock City Grill After 24 years in River Park Square, Rock City Grill moved up to the top of the South Hill and opened this summer at the spot formerly occupied by Famous Ed's. Don't worry, your favorite dishes made the move, including their large list of pizzas, including the grill's famous Thai pizza. 2911 E. 57th Ave., Spokane • Wash. • 290-5080

South Spokane

Latah Bistro On any given day of the growing season, a local farmer might drop into Latah Bistro with a load of mushrooms, greens, carrots, tomatoes or even beef or pork. Such is the commitment to sourcing food locally at Latah. The fine dining menu runs the gamut from seared scallops with creamy potatoes, mushrooms and bacon salt to zucchini and squash spaghetti with basil pesto.  4241 S. Cheney-Spokane Rd., Spokane • Wash. • 838-8338

Spokane Valley

Ambrosia Bistro Ambrosia Bistro wants to bring a little bit of the downtown vibe to Spokane Valley, with its patio, full bar and innovative menu. Entrées come with wine pairing suggestions. Consider their Prawns and Purses, featuring truffle-and-mascarpone-stuffed pasta, and the short ribs, with mashed potatoes and gremolata. 9211 E. Montgomery Ave., Spokane Valley • Wash. • 928-3222

  • or