Eddie's Fireplace Inn offers tasty fare
By Margaret Bauman
Alaska Journal of Commerce
KING SALMON - For a heaping plate of comfort food after a long day of fishing or business travel, Eddie’s Fireplace Inn is a good bet in King Salmon, a transportation hub for the Bristol Bay fishery and the gateway to Katmai National Park.
This friendly, rustic inn, complete with a full bar, is just a short walk from the airport in this community of about 400 residents, No doubt more than a few diners have a plane to catch, so the prompt, friendly service is most welcome.
Along with the hometown atmosphere - checkered red and white tablecloths, walls covered with photos of wolves, bears and Alaska scenes - the friendly wait staff who show up quickly even when several dozen hungry diners are already seated.
The fare runs from a variety of burgers, hot dogs and burritos to homemade clam chowder, sandwiches and salads, steaks, poultry and, ah yes, wild Alaskan seafood.
Eddie’s homemade chili comes with a warning on the menu about its spicy content: "For the faint of heart, our medic is standing by."
Eddie’s also boasts its world famous potato salad, prepared with "only the finest potatoes, farm fresh eggs, mayonnaise, sweet onions, pickle chips, tang yellow mustard and special herb and seasoning."
Seven burgers on the menu range from $9.90 for the quarter-pound Bearburger with melted American or cheddar cheese to the $12.95 chiliburger, featuring two quarter-pound patties, topped with Eddie’s famous chili, grated cheddar cheese and diced onions.
Given somewhat of a time limit before my own flight back to Anchorage, I ordered an iced tea and an entree of Alaskan cod pieces with cole slaw. The iced tea, with a nice slice of fresh lemon, was delivered quickly, and a generous plate full of crisp slices of cod - piping hot -and an excellent homemade cole slaw -nice and cold - followed in short order.
Other entrees - from hot dogs to sandwiches to fresh buttered halibut cheeks - also come with the choice of French fries, cole slaw or potato salad.
For those just wanting munchies at the restaurant or adjoining bar, the appetizers range from onion rings at $7.95, to nachos at $10.95. There’s also a sandwich-garden salad combo, at $10.95.
The chicken-fried steak or ground sirloin entree, at $16.95, come with a choice of soup or salad, plus potato, hot roll and butter. Other hearty beef options include a 16-18 ounce New York steak, at $29.95, the 24-ounce rib steak, at $34.95 and the $34.95 T-bone steak. It’s "so tender we are amazed the cow could even stand up" boasts the menu.
For seafood lovers, the options range from prawns and halibut to (market priced?) Alaska king crab legs.
Featured desserts are slices of fruit pie, at $4.50 and pie alamode, $6.50, and non-alcoholic drink selections - coffee, tea, milk, soda and fruit juices - priced at $2 to $3, that round out the menu.
Bottom line: Hearty portions at moderate prices, served up quickly by a friendly wait staff. You might need a doggie bag to go.
Eddie’s Fireplace Inn
1 Main Street
Margaret Bauman can be reached at [email protected]