LOCAL LOVE // marrow

Something I'm really excited about with my best friend moving to Tacoma is sharing all my favorite places with her.  I think Tacoma is full of amazing restaurants, bars, and other attractions, contrary to the impression the rest of the world seems to have, so it's fun to be able to introduce someone to the city by sharing favorite hang outs and activities.

One of the places I've grown to like in Tacoma is Marrow.  Marrow opened a couple years ago after my favorite coffee shop went under, so I was glad the space ended up becoming something great.  Marrow is slightly on the spendy side (for me), so I don't frequent it too often, but it's one of my favorite places to go on a little date with Dan to grab a whisky ginger and beer on happy hour.

I've always had great service at Marrow.  The staff has always been very attentive and knowledgable about both the food, specials, and drinks.  Their food is relatively exotic featuring items like oxtail, and, appropriately, bone marrow.  They also separate their menu between vegetarian and not vegetarian, so if you lean towards the animal-free cuisine, they make it easy to find options that will work for you.  About half the menu is vegetarian, so it's a great place to go if that's your jam.  Like I said, the food can be a bit exotic, but if you have any questions about what something is, just ask the staff as they seem to have a solid knowledge about the specifics of the menu.  The drink menu is a little less exotic, though still leaning towards the craft cocktail end of the spectrum.  1022 South paved the more creative, from-scratch, exotic cocktail path for Tacoma bars and Marrow has definitely gone more that route than your standard cocktail menu.

I've gotten a few of their specialty cocktails.  I tried the Lillian a couple times because the description was similar to the Lavender cocktail offered by 1022, and while it didn't quite meet the off-the-charts tastiness of the Lavender, it didn't leave me wanting.  On this particular journey to Marrow I tried their Bronson cocktail, which is bourbon, peach habanero bitters, and ginger beer on the rocks.  Being a whisky ginger fangirl I was intrigued to see how the peach habanero bitters interacted with the whisky ginger and quite enjoyed the result.  The peach adds a distinctly Southern attitude to the cocktail and the habanero isn't overwhelming at all, just adding a bit more depth and complexity to the drink.  Dan and I have been adventuring in making our own bitters the past year, so we might try to come up with a peach habanero bitters recipe ourselves!

The vibe in Marrow is very pleasant.  6th Ave can get crazy, and some places just get too overwhelmingly rowdy to go if you want to have a conversation that doesn't involve yelling.  Dan and I usually avoid 6th Ave on Fridays and Saturdays for this reason, but sometimes we forget and end up on 6th searching for somewhere quiet enough to enjoy one another's company.  Marrow usually suffices.  The classy, intimate, and calm atmosphere (and likely the slightly higher pricing) keeps riff raff out, despite being located right next to the hub of the craziness.  A little refuge from the madness.

The food is around $14.00 for their entrees so we usually end up going for appetizers or happy hour.  I was there for happy hour this time and got a grilled cheese slider, mostly because it had the fingerling potatoes with aioli sauce.  They're amazing.  I think they're Dan's favorite.  Perfectly salty, crunchy, and seasoned just right.  If you go with a few friends you can each get an appetizer and share everything, so then you're not spending a ton of money on food, but you still get a variety of things to taste.  

Marrow is definitely somewhere I recommend to people from out of town.  It has nice atmosphere, great food, and it's not terribly expensive.  They've also started doing Sunday brunch, which we've been to one time, and that was really fun.  Lots of bloody mary options and a good variety of different breakfast choices, from the sweet to the savory.  If you're in Tacoma, or are visiting the area, I recommend checking out Marrow if you're in the mood for some fun cocktails and an exotic culinary experience!