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  • Hills' Restaurant & Lounge

    401 W. Main Spokane - Downtown


    While the food at Hills’ is often simple, it’s prepared with such care and fresh ingredients that we can’t stop thinking about it. The bar is also notable — their tap selection is usually unusual, and they have surprising reserves of port and scotch. Owner Steve Hill can recommend a hard-to-find beer or whip up a specialty cocktail, if that’s more your speed. (July 2013)
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  • Hong Kong Express

    2345 N. Division Spokane - North


    Hong Kong Express is the sort of Chinese restaurant with a Coca-Cola machine in the lobby. But authenticity of atmosphere hardly matters. There’s a delicious all-you-can-eat buffet: Orange chicken, egg soup and kimchi. Big shrimp, little shrimp and medium shrimp. The one downside? There is a point, sadly, where you have actually eaten all you can physically eat. (DW)
  • Humdinger Drive-In

    205 Hill St., Kellogg Coeur d'Alene/Post Falls


    Under the “worth the drive” category, this Silver Valley drive-in is a little snapshot of small-town America at its best. Peruse the common-sense sayings on the walls and become a fan of Kellogg Wildcat sports while you wait for your order to be cooked, hot and fresh. Don’t forget dessert: ice cream, of course! (CS)
  • Jimmy's Down the Street

    1613 E. Sherman Ave Coeur d'Alene/Post Falls


    It’s not surprising that some of the biggest TV attention the Lake City has received has been for this well-known mom and pop restaurant. But even its appearance on Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” couldn’t quite capture Jimmy’s famous breakfast offerings: from fresh pecan rolls to homemade biscuits slathered with thick milk gravy, everything is homemade and Southern-inspired. Check out the lunch menu for huge burgers and sandwiches or freshly baked pies.
  • Joe's Philly Cheesesteak Factory

    102 Church St. Sandpoint


    The aroma of grilling meat and onions might lure you from First Avenue to check out this side-street eatery. Burgers, egg sandwiches and, of course, cheesesteaks (beef and chicken both) served up hot and fast. Call ahead and they'll have 'em ready when you arrive. (September 2012)
  • Kay's Teriyaki Plus

    601 E. Francis Ave. Spokane - North


    The menu at this friendly refuge from a gritty stretch of Francis is enormous. It lists Combinations, Entrees, Cooked on Char-Broiler, Side Order and, my favorite, Authentic Food. Mmm, You got all your teriyakis, bulgogis, two kinds of katsu and plenty more. A genial counterman steered a newbie to the lunch buffet as a hands-on way to figure out future faves. (KT)
  • Kim's Teriyaki

    927 W. Garland Ave. Spokane - North


    Delicious. Fast. Cheap. If you're looking for authentic offerings of the Eastern persuasion, Kim's Teriyaki falls under the latter criteria. The ambiance is nothing to write home about, naturally — but that's OK, because if you're coming here, it's either for takeout or to satiate an intense hunger craving that must be met expeditiously. Everything is under $10: combos, entrees, wok specials, stir-fry. Bam. (BT)
  • Knight's Diner

    2909 N. Market St. Spokane - North


    A breakfast staple since 1949, Knight’s is also a love letter to Hillyard’s rail-riding past. The diner — whose employees steam and hand-peel 100 pounds of Idaho Russet potatoes daily — is housed in an old dining car from the Northern Pacific Railway. With plenty of bacon and eggs to go along with your taters, what else do you need?
  • Little Garden Cafe

    2901 W. Northwest Blvd. Spokane - North


    Located in a sweet little terra-cotta-colored stucco building across from Audubon Park, this little café reminds us of an English tearoom, with its cozy wicker chairs, pastries and of course, tea (along with some pretty darn good coffee). Children are welcome here — there’s even a space for them to play. Enjoy a juicy conversation or take advantage of the free Wi-Fi. (July 2013)
  • The Mill

    2360 N. Old Mill Loop Coeur d'Alene/Post Falls


    The chainsaws on the bar and vintage handsaws strung across the walls makes this strip mall bar a perfect fit for Idaho. It's not an all-night stop, but definitely good for an after-work rendezvous or precursor to a night on the town. Mostly bar food, beer and wine, the game on TV, plenty of tables for you and your crew and a clever theme that caters to lovers of lagers and loggers alike. (January 2013)
  • Moscow Alehouse

    226 W. Sixth St. Moscow/Pullman


    With the New Year comes a new name. This former Coeur d’Alene Brewing Co. outpost serves still serves hand-crafted ales and tasty burgers to hungry customers. They hope that in the future, they’ll serve beers from the newly-named River City Brewing Company. For now, try one of their other rotating beers on tap. (January 2013)
  • Nectar

    105 W. Sixth St. Moscow/Pullman


    The twinkling glow of candles on tables with fresh flowers gives Nectar an almost ethereal atmosphere. The food, however, is what truly makes this a delightful spot. The ever-changing menu features gourmet items made using local ingredients, allowing you to treat yourself without breaking the bank. (July 2013)

  • Noodle Express

    305 W. Prairie Shopping Ctr., Hayden Coeur d'Alene/Post Falls


    The chicken Osaka is why you stop by Noodle Express for lunch; the excellent service, fun staff, and clean atmosphere is why you come back. Although Noodle Express is a chain Asian eatery, the food is far from lacking if you’re looking for a fast lunch. Try a dinner-sized portion with a beer to fill up, or their smaller lunch special (with soda) that runs around $5. The egg rolls and potstickers are excellent, but you can also find old favorites like mac-and-cheese if you’re feeling less adventurous. (January 2013)
  • O'Doherty's Irish Grille

    525 W. Spokane Falls Blvd. Spokane - Downtown


    Downtown emphasizes the Irish; in the Valley, it's the barbecue. Either place, you’ll find the Irish stew — meaty broth chock-full of veggies and potatoes — and the Burnt End sandwich, which sounds funny, but it's tangy and delicious. And if you're hankering for a Butte meat pasty, this is the place. On the boozing side, O'Doherty's is where you go to get a Johnny Jump-up (a shot of whiskey dropped in a pint of cider). It's also where you go hoping to see someone stand on the bar and sing for a chance to put a dollar bill on the wall. (July 2012)
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  • One World Cafe

    533 S. Main St. Moscow/Pullman


    One World Café is a sanctuary for artists and musicians, food enthusiasts and dog owners alike. The two-story café is half windows, providing brightness yet still remaining pleasantly cozy. Check out their host of local art and music while enjoying the company of friends — furry or otherwise. (TH)
  • Paul's Country Store

    702 E. Prairie Ave., Hayden Coeur d'Alene/Post Falls


    The front is a deli, while the back area is dressed in wine bottles, twinkle lights and other grotto-like features you’d expect for their occasional wine dinners. The European feel is apropos, with German specialties like bratwurst and a host of Italian-style panini. Dine in along the counter or call ahead for pickup on your way to the lake. (CS)
  • Pete's Pizza

    821 E. Sharp Ave. Spokane - East


    Welcoming families and patrons since 1972, Pete’s does not disappoint. Called “The Calzone King” by some locals, Pete’s offers food that’s great for after class (there’s one near Gonzaga) or on your way home (there’s another on Northwest Boulevard). Their secret-recipe, homemade pizza dough is blanketed in sweet, slightly spicy marinara sauce and piled with fresh ingredients. (July 2013)
  • Pho Thanh & Cafe

    2108 N. Fourth St. Coeur d'Alene/Post Falls


    The difference between lunch and dinner is a matter of perspective, not proportion. Big porcelain dishes of fragrant Vietnamese food with spicy sides and sauces. We call for take-out, convinced that one order of wonton soup lasted us four whole days! (CS)
  • Porky G's

    1527 Northwest Blvd. Coeur d'Alene/Post Falls


    liminating the overhead (there’s very little seating) means lower-priced lunch specials, like Porky G’s authentic, Southern-style pulled-pork sandwich and a drink for $5. All smoking is done in a closed barbecue pit, and the meats take on a special flavor thanks to the seasoned woods used in the smoking process, which takes as long as 14 hours. The restaurant features a bevy of beef, pork, chicken and sausage options, ranging from sandwiches to big ol’ racks of ribs. A new drive through makes takeout a breeze. (July 2013)
  • Rancho Chico

    2023 W. Northwest Blvd Spokane - North


    A moment after entering this colorful spot, you will invariably be greeted at the door with an “Hola, amigo!” It’s worth going just for the original margarita. Their rice is authentic and flavorful, and somehow it tastes even better to the tunes of mariachi music. You can also buy their hot salsa to take home. (July 2013)
  • Rancho Chico

    9205 N. Division St. Spokane - North


    A moment after entering this colorful spot, you will invariably be greeted at the door with an “Hola, amigo!” It’s worth going just for the original margarita. Their rice is authentic and flavorful, and somehow it tastes even better to the tunes of mariachi music. You can also buy their hot salsa to take home. (July 2013)
  • Rick's Ringside Pub

    921 W. Garland Ave. Spokane - North


    If there’s anything better with a bar than good food, it’s a bar with good food within walking distance. Rick’s is to the Garland District what the Elk is to Browne’s Addition: casual and smack dab in the middle of a residential area. It’s a classy dive with pool, ping pong and food competitive to the big daddy of Spokane bar food, the Swinging Doors. (BT)
  • Rocky Rococo Pizza & Pasta

    520 W. Main Ave. Spokane - Downtown


    For the past quarter century, this Wisconsin-based chain has been winning over Spokanites one rectangle-shaped piece of pizza at a time. The downtown joint offers whole pies and pizza by the slice, in addition to one of the most comprehensive salad bars you’ll find in town. They even have nacho fixings included in that salad bar. Oh, and do yourself a favor and get the breadsticks. You’ll thank us. (October 2012)
  • Rustler's Roost

    9627 N. Highway 95, Hayden Coeur d'Alene/Post Falls


    Dinner for less than $10 is dang-near impossible, but cowboy know-how comes through at Rustler’s Roost. The decor is rustic Western: wagon wheels, railroad lanterns and riding gear. Fresh, hot coffee. Full counter service and lots of little booths and tables for the whole posse. The "famous country breakfast" is served all day, with tasty eggs Benedict atop slow-cooked pit ham. Lunch is burgers, sandwiches, house-made soup and platters of home-style treats like meatloaf or roast turkey. A North Idaho family restaurant since 1982. (CS)
  • The Screaming Yak

    118 W. Francis Ave. Spokane - North


    With wings so hot they could make a yak scream, this North Side staple is a straightforward sports bar, with TVs, pool, videogames and pull tabs. Try the Screamin’ Demon wings, but only if you dare. You need to sign a waiver before you attempt to consume these bad boys. If you can’t take the heat, try the sliders or their decidedly upscale burgers. (July 2013)
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