Belt-tightening times mean smaller portions. That doesn't mean you have to give up flavor, though, when you're dining in Olympia. (Was that sufficiently newspaperish? I fear for our local rag, and am practicing.)
In no particular order, some of Olympia's best side dishes and appetizers. Suggest your own in the comments!
hot and sour soup, Little Da Nang
Tofu, green onions, bamboo shoots, mushrooms, and more in a tangy, spicy broth. Pair it with the charbroiled pork sandwich, its perfect complement, for only $6.50.
beer-battered onion rings, Iron Rabbit
The best in town. Maybe the best in the state.
baked beans and potato salad, Ranch House BBQ
Why choose only one when you get at least two sides with every meal?
cheesy bread, Brewery City Pizza
With a little marinara on the side. Bring a couple friends, though. It's a big plate.
chips and salsa, Cancun Plaza
Chips are chips. But the salsas: an oniony concoction for bite, and a mild coleslaw for pizazz.
[Oh, and by "Olympia" I mean "The Greater Olympia Metroplex," including Oly, Lacey, and Tumwater.]