The weather report is in! The spring season is serving up heavy doses of sun and reign! Saturday, May 18th is Reign FC’s second home match of the season, and Washington soccer fans are ready. Planning to make some noise in Tacoma this season? Check out the In-TEN-tionalist guide to eat, drink, and shop in support of PoC-owned* businesses near Cheney Stadium!
*Businesses owned by people of color
The Melon Seed Deli and Frozen Dessert
The Melon Seed Deli and Frozen Dessert boasts an exceptional menu of deliciousness. From its menu of savory gourmet sliders to its tart frozen yogurt creations, owners Mac and Tashia Charles execute everything at this cafe to perfection.
Owned by Jeremy and Ratchanee Ray, Loak Toung Thai stands out from other Thai restaurants because it specializes in flavorful dishes from the Isaan region which is influenced by Cambodian and Laotian culture. Customers travel near and far to experience Loak Toung Thai’s extensive menu, beautiful plating, and distinct flavors and spices.
What started as a taco truck in Kent in 1997 has since expanded into multiple locations of Taqueria El Sabor. Tacoma-location owners Pedro Guzman Soltero and Cecilia Leal Naranjo serve authentic Mexican food including street tacos and (perhaps more importantly) truly perfect churros.
Flipping Out Burgers and Fries
Owned by Sam Nam Kim, this burger joint has a mom-and-pop diner feel and serves up no-frill burgers topped with bacon alongside its rave-worthy onion rings (among other delectable menu items). Flipping Out Burgers and Fries is most beloved for its casual ambiance and reasonable prices.
Whether you’re at Mandolin Sushi and Steakhouse for a lunchtime bento box or a night on the town, owner Doo Song has designed an upscale ambiance meant to impress. The hibachi dinner experience at Mandolin Sushi and Steakhouse is a popular experience for date nights and special occasions.
Owned by Kyung Hee Lee, Joy Teriyaki lives up to its name. The restaurant puts smiles on regulars’ faces with its hot cups of complimentary green tea and its perfectly cooked teriyaki chicken, flavorful gyoza, and large portions.
Tuan Nguyen’s La Cà Bar has brought a slice of the Vietnamese bar scene to the Puget Sound region. Inspired by the Vietnamese street food dishes that originated in Thua Thien Huế, the former imperial capital of Vietnam, the robust menu at La Cà Bar is also accompanied by a selection of delicious cocktails.
Craving a sweet treat that packs a punch of real fruit nutrition? Muzaffar Shafiq and Parveen Qureshi’s Boba Smoothies has been serving up dairy-free smoothies, sweet juices, customizable bubble tea, and creamy gelato (as well as a small menu fried appetizers) to folks in the Tacoma area since 2007.
Blanked on your best friend’s birthday or need to pick up a quick housewarming gift? Head to Adorned Abode inside Tacoma’s Freighthouse Square. There, you’ll find owner Benita Smith’s expertly curated selection of vintage-inspired goods, including handmade greeting cards, luxurious candles and soaps, plants, patterned rolling pins, and more — all just feet away when you hop off the train.
Owned by Tina Louise Bergseth, Hidden Treasures Antiques & Collectibles Mall is home to a curated collection of vintage pieces that features unique furniture, clothing, comic books, toys, and more. This charming spot is known for its reasonable prices and charming customer service.
Which awesome Tacoma PoC-owned brick + mortar small businesses did we miss? Let us know and add your favorites to the growing Intentionalist community!
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Intentionalist is your local guide to small businesses and the diverse people behind them. We believe that where you spend your money matters, and we’re sure glad you do too. Whether you identify as a localist, activist, or just a good neighbor, we make it easy for you to connect with, learn about, and support small businesses in your community through everyday decisions about where you eat, drink, and shop.