Restaurant View: Ajax Cafe in Port Hadlock

The Ajax Cafe is the kind of place you go with friends or people  you want to be friends with, unless you’re comfortable putting on a jester’s hat with any old person.

ajaxpurple

If you’ve never been, it’s a small, quirky place in Port Hadlock with hats for the borrowing hanging on the wall, posters, pictures and paintings of a hodgepodge of things including Shakespeare, Duncan Hines, Elvis. The poem “Purple” (also known as “Warning”) by Jenny Joseph hangs as though it’s a theme song for the restaurant:

“When I am an old woman, I shall wear purple
With a red hat which doesn’t go and doesn’t suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves …”

I visit the place at least once a year (with friends) and have written about it before, as have many other publications from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, when it was a newspaper, to guidebooks such as Frommers and online reviewers such as UrbanSpoon.

I went again recently and rather than give you a written out review of the place, I broke out the camera so you can see for yourself in this series of 10 photos:

The Ajax is on Water Street, across from the wooden boat school.
The Ajax is on Water Street, across from the wooden boat school.

It has a patio for outdoor seating, decorated with a few small homes like this.
It has a patio for outdoor seating, decorated with a few small homes like this.
Hats hang on the walls and few patrons go without donning one.
Hats hang on the walls and few patrons go without donning one.
Hats line the hallway outside the Jack Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe-themed bathrooms
Hats line the hallway outside the Jack Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe-themed bathrooms
The cheese plate, which included smoke salmon and a variety of cheeses, some drizzled with honey or balsamic. It's served with slices of crisp bread.
The cheese plate, which included smoke salmon and a variety of cheeses, some drizzled with honey or balsamic. It also comes with crisped slices of bread.
The menus are mounted in record album covers.
The menus are mounted in record album covers.
The grilled lollipop pork chop with carmelized onions, garlic and strawberry rhubarb chutney.
The grilled lollipop pork chop with carmelized onions, garlic and strawberry rhubarb chutney.
The evening's special, rack of lamb on a bed of quinoa and sauteed vegetables.
The evening's special, rack of lamb on a bed of quinoa and sauteed vegetables.
And of course, dessert. The ice creams are handmade and the flavors change regularly.
And of course, dessert. The ice creams are handmade and the flavors change regularly.

2 thoughts on “Restaurant View: Ajax Cafe in Port Hadlock

  1. Well done.
    They must have gotten rid of the paper pieces (dollar bills?) dangling from the ceiling.
    We enjoyed the Ajax Cafe often, especially after we learned to cover our plates whenever the door opened. The breeze fluttered the hanging paper on the ceiling and caused loose dust to drift down and land on the plates….it was a unique, funky and neat place to go. Food was great too…
    Thanks for the memories…
    Sharon O’Hara

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