Rise and shine. Then head to Proctor.
The Tacoma neighborhood has turned into a go-to breakfast destination, a relatively new development.
Knapp’s has long held down the fort for greasy spoon lovers, but the last few years, we’ve seen the addition of broad options with the openings of Waffle Stop, Olympia Coffee Roasting Co., Top Pot Doughnuts, Cooks Tavern, Brewers Row and Viva Tacoma.
And as of July 25, Manny’s Place, which will serve breakfast all day. It opened in the former G Donnallson’s space next to Peaks and Pints (which now serves breakfast sandwiches). It’ll also serve lunch and dinner daily.
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The owners of Manny’s Place are longtime Tacoma restaurant owners and breakfast experts.
Brett and Linda Armstrong also own Alfred’s Cafe in the Dome District.
There’s significant menu crossover with both restaurants, but just enough of a difference to keep things interesting.
Like Alfred’s, the food at Manny’s Place is not fancy or upscale. You won’t find lavender lattes or foamed eggs with bacon caviar, but you will get good, solid American classics the likes of omelets, chicken fried steak, biscuits and gravy, burgers, diner sandwiches, grilled salmon, steak and spaghetti. You’ll also find coffee from Tacoma’s Valhalla Coffee.
Diners will lament there are no eggs Benedict on the menu at Manny’s Place, a staple item I’ve enjoyed myself at Alfred’s (I give top props to the California Benedict).
“The only reason I took those off is because they’re time consuming. I might add them back in. Give it a month and we’ll see how it goes,” said Brett Armstrong, who also worried about overwhelming the kitchen at Manny’s, which is smaller than Alfred’s.
The Monte Cristo sandwich, the most often recommended Alfred’s dish by my readers, also is missing from Manny’s Place, but not for long. Armstrong said he plans to add it to the menu.
What about the outstanding chorizo gravy at Alfred’s? Don’t fret. It’s offered at Manny’s as an option along with sausage gravy with the biscuits and gravy and chicken fried steak, which like all the breakfast items, can be ordered at 8 a.m. or 8 p.m.
Here’s a first-bite look at the new restaurant. It’s this paper’s policy to avoid criticism of food and service in a restaurant’s first month.
Dining room: Seating for about 60, a dozen or so fewer than the previous tenant. Armstrong removed the seats to add more space between tables. (Alfred’s seats 139, in case you were wondering). The dining room is comfortable and inviting with booths along the wall and four-tops in front. A bar is at the back, where it’s been since Pour at Four operated in the space.
That name: Named after Brett and Linda’s 8-year-old pug, Manny.
Breakfast menu: Two scrambles ($11.29) and six omelets, all priced $11.29 except the Dungeness crab with Beechers cheese, which is $19.99. Breakfast entrees include the Southwest hash ($12.29), chicken fried steak ($13.99), biscuits and gravy ($11.99) and blueberry pancakes ($8.99).
Lunch and dinner: Appetizers include calamari ($8.99), sliders or street tacos ($7.99). Three entree salads ($12.39). Four burgers include a burger dip ($11.99), bleu ($11.99) and chorizo burger ($11.99) with shoestring fries, chips or fruit. Six sandwiches include a Reuben ($11.99), Cuban ($11.99), Philly ($11.99) and Club ($11.99). Seven entree choices include spaghetti ($12.29), fish tacos ($11.99), pan-seared cod ($17.99), grilled salmon ($18.99), crab cakes ($19.99) and steak ($19.99).
Vegetarian: An Impossible Burger is listed as an option.
Bar: A full beer, wine and cocktail menu. Three beers on tap.
On a first visit: Whether at Alfred’s and Manny’s, always opt for the chorizo gravy. I like it served as a creamy river spilled over split-open fluffy biscuits with two eggs and crispy edged hashbrowns ($11.99). The French toast breakfast is also a solid choice with two thick blocky slices of Texas toast dipped in an eggy batter and served with bacon and two eggs ($12.69).
At lunch, look to the burgers. A Frisco arrived with a fat patty coated in melted cheddar and bacon with avocado slices and a swipe of mayo on top and lettuce, tomato and onions on the bottom bun ($11.99). It’s served with crispy shoestring fries.
Where: 3814 N. 26th St., Tacoma
Hours: 7 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Sunday.