Monday, April 22, 2013

Have you eaten at Fat Smitty's?

On the left hand side of the road heading west toward Sequim, this small-
appearing building actually can seat up to 50 people and serve more if
you want to do take-out in the summertime. 
My readers know that once in awhile I promote eateries that are unique, affordable (usually) and have good food. I have been driving by Fat Smitty's on Hwy 101, at the intersection of Hwy 20 to Port Townsend, here at the head of Discovery Bay on the Olympic Peninsula for too many months. Someone told me it was worth stopping there. On Saturday, I did it - I actually stopped and went in by myself. (This link will take you to a detailed story and more history of the place by Charlie Bermant of the Peninsula Daily News.)

Fear not... there is an ATM inside that will give you some
cash, if you have some in your account.
From the outside, it looks a little intimidating, but inside it is all heart... all the dollar bills stuck on the ceilings and walls eventually make their way to local charities. One of the servers told me that it all started when a salesman wanted to put up his card and tacked a dollar bill up on the wall with it. The gimmick caught on, and now when you walk in your hands will brush past bills on the door, bills framing the windows, dollar bills everywhere.

Last year, 2012, when a wall needed replacing, all the money was taken down and counted. The wall went back up and the funds were split between the Seattle Children's Hospital and the local chapter of the Boy Scouts for a total of $10,116.00. "All the money you see up there now has been put there since March 1 of 2012," my server said. Impressive. So it seems that once the customers realize how the funds will be allocated, they are only too willing to hang their money in the place where their mouths once were, leaving it for a good cause. (I did.) So much more appealing than a plastic tube on the counter.

By the way, as you will read if you go the the PDN link, there is a very good security system in place here and you might not want to risk the consequences if you try to help yourself to the 'decor.'

The split "Fat Smitty Burger" features several layers of burger with cheese,
lettuce, tomato, & a nice homemade sauce topped off with a pickle.
Fortunately the couple next to me decided to order the featured burger, the Fat Smitty Burger (link to the menu is here) and while the price is fair enough (and I don't guarantee the prices are going to be the same as shown here) it looked enormous to me. They opted to have it cut in half and pay the the "split burger' fee of $1.00 because they provide two plates with extra sides. I ordered the basic burger, just a bun and a package of chips and a soda for $6.75. It was a delicious burger!! Next time I'd probably get the cole slaw as the bag of chips was a waste of time, or you can get steak fries, but I knew I'd never eat them all. This is a Pepsi place, no hard liquor, so live with it... you shouldn't be drinking and driving anyhow.

Although I saw a motorcycle group pull up, this is very
much a family place with kid-sized meals. Those are
really dollar bills you see hanging from the ceiling!

A sweet touch is offering a Tootsie Roll Pop along with the check for 'dessert.'

The restaurant opens at 10:30 a.m. and closes at 7 p.m. every day, unless there's a change, and you can call them at 360-385-4099 to confirm.

I learned that the couple sitting at the bar with me are from Port Angeles and have been married for about 34 years. The wife had been to Fat Smitty's when it was in originally in Port Townsend and for all the years she's been married she has denied her husband the opportunity to eat at this fine establishment until this day... hope he doesn't have to wait another 34 years to come back! She said to me, "It seemed like every time we were going by we were on our way to eat someplace else or had just come from eating at another place. I'm really glad we decided to stop here today, though. It's just as good as I remembered it!"
The cook and the nearly life-sized burger carved in wood outside this
road-side eatery will remind you that you are coming in to eat!
Don't you make that mistake... you'll be missing out on a very fine burger and plenty of steak fries - there's nothing stingy about the food or the owners.


  1. What a great way to raise money for charity! It is amazing how much money can be raised when everyone just gives a little bit.

  2. My burger was good (not great) and my fries were completely overcooked. That, and the obnoxious Trump signs, are going to make me try a different place on my next trip out that way.