In business since 1974, Olivia’s de Mexico (downstairs at 222 Seward St., 907/586-6870, Mon.–Fri. 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Sat. 5–9 p.m., $12–18) serves big portions of traditional Mexican food in a basement setting.
Located across from the Auke Bay boat harbor,
Chan’s Thai Kitchen (907/789-9777, Sun. 4:30–8 p.m., Tues.–Sat. 4:30–8:30 p.m., closed Mon.) is popular with locals looking to spice up their lives. The food is dependably fine, but the place gets packed most nights, so be ready to wait. Spring rolls, chicken coconut soup, and any of the curries are all recommended. They have delicious Thai iced tea too.
For surprisingly good Japanese sushi and Chinese in a proletarian setting, head to the Korean American–owned Seong’s Sushi Bar (740 W. 9th St., 907/586-4778, Mon.–Fri. 10 a.m.–9 p.m., Sat. 4–9 p.m.) across from the Federal Building. Lunches (around $9) are the real attraction, with big plates of chicken sukiyaki, broccoli beef, or shrimp with veggies.
Another locals’ favorite is Dragon Inn (5000 Glacier Hwy., 907/780-4616, daily 11 a.m.–3 p.m. and 4–9:30 p.m.), in Lemon Creek three miles north of town, serving dim sum appetizers, seafood with pan-fried noodles, sautéed eggplant in garlic sauce, and more. Lunches are around $9.
Pel’ Meni (on Marine Way in Merchant’s Wharf, 907/586-0177, Sun.–Thurs. until 1:30 a.m., Fri.–Sat. until 3:30 a.m.) is a tiny Russian eatery where the house specialty is $6 dumplings made with sirloin steak and topped with a spicy curry and cilantro sauce. This night-owl hangout is popular with teens.