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Two years after a fire, downtown Tacoma restaurant finally opens

Happy Teriyaki poke

Today was a triumphant day for restaurant owner Tim Bartz. More than two years after a fire took out his popular downtown eatery Happy Teriyaki #4, he reopened the doors (August 3, 2020).

“We’re very excited to offer another dining option downtown and re-engage the downtown community,” said Bartz.

He closed his restaurant in February 2018 after an oil bin outside the restaurant caught fire and caused extensive smoke damage to the restaurant at 2223 Pacific Ave. 

Happy  Teriyaki #4 has been a  longtime lunch destination for busy office workers in search of good, affordable eats with a fast turnaround. 

Bartz is also a restaurant owner who stays on top of food trends. His restaurants were among the first in the area to offer sushi burritos and poke bowls. Both are standard menu offerings at all his Happy Teriyaki restaurants. 

There are several Happy Teriyaki restaurants throughout the region, but Bartz runs only the locations in Fife, DuPont and now downtown Tacoma again. He’s a second-generation restaurant owner. He’s also been working hard on expanding his restaurant profile in Pierce County. Last year, he also purchased TheKoi in downtown Tacoma from Jeannie Han, who still operates Sushi Ari in South Hil.

The Happy Teriyaki restaurants are known for having menus extensively beyond teriyaki. They include Chinese wok items and at some of his locations, he offers sushi counters, design-your-own poke bowls, ramen (with miso, shoyu or tonkotsu broths) and diners also might spot sushi burritos on his menus. There’s also a handful of Korean dishes. 

What I appreciate the most about the Bartz-owned restaurants is the pricing and speed with which the food is delivered.

Tacoma’s reopening brought those same good deals. Lunch specials on the downtown Tacoma menu are priced economically at $8.95 for combinations, or $12.95 for larger Bento Boxes. Bento boxed go up to $15.95 at dinner and entrees are in the $9.95 to $16.95. Ramen, with a choice of three broths, is priced $10.95. Sushi burritos are $11.95. Poke bowls are $11.95 to $13.95. Chinese wok specialties range from sesame chicken to Mongolian beef and are priced $11.95. There are a few Korean dishes on the menu, such as daeji bulgogi ($11.95) and Korean short ribs ($16.95). 

Bartz said the Tacoma location is open for take-out and third-party delivery for now. He’ll also use the Chownow platform on his website with in-house delivery within five miles. Hours will be 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays-Saturdays.


Tacoma location: 2223 Pacific Ave. Tacoma; 253-272-1544 

Info: https://www.happyteriyaki.com/

DuPont: 1100 Station Loop, DuPont; 253- 912-0700

Fife: 4910 Pacific Hwy E., Fife; 253- 896-3668


Did you see my story about the new BB.Q Olive Chicken opening in Lakewood? The restaurant will be an upscale family-friendly Korean fried chicken pub. Check out my story here.