Olympia's longstanding local joint is no more.
Tony Roma, a fixture in Olympia cuisine since 1962, has abandoned his operation for a life of margaritas and mai tais on a cruise ship somewhere in the Caribbean. Roma established his eponymous restaurant when barbecue was a backwater boondoggle, and through award-winning slow cooking and secret sauces steadily built up a reputation for excellence in all things pork, beef, and sometimes chicken.
What led to the decline of that one-of-a-kind blend of Italian flair and country vittles? I blame Best Buy and Claire's Boutique for slowly corrupting the mall, over the past two decades replacing homegrown stores and eateries with an accretion of soulless corporate crap. I blame Olympians for forgetting their roots. And, mostly, I blame myself.
So long, Tony Roma's. We'll sure miss your rib-sticking ribs.