Tacoma >Food & Dining > Frisko Freeze
1201 Division Ave, Tacoma, WA | Directions 9840347.259937 -122.455595
Neighborhoods: North End
I grew up near Frisko Freeze, and whenever I come home for a visit, I make sure it is one of my stops. And no matter when I come home, and I have lived in New Jersey for the past 26 years, the food is the same. It is the one thing, along with Ivars Fish & Chips, that I can count on. Over the years, I have learned that patience is a virtue; if you want good food, then sometimes you have to wait for it. The employees of Frisko Freeze, like any employee in the service industry, get frazzled and frustrated with customers who are less than desirable in their comments, attitudes, and belligerent behavior. I have stood in the rain, and cold, and heat for 30 minutes; its not that it just happened, its been that way for decades. If your order is incorrect, just return it, in a polite manner, and say so-simple as that. The last thing I want to see is a closed Frisko Freeze when I come home to visit, which is not often enough.
In addition to the above, the French fries are as good as any that I have tried, along with the sauce. I have eaten at a lot of restaurants abroad, in NY, NJ, PA, DE, VA, DC, MD, etc., and nothing, apart from "Five Guys," comes close.
In closing, a business, like Frisko Freeze, cannot please everyone, and it is obvious that it won't be able to from time to time; but, as a kid, teenager, graduate of SHS, young adult, and middle age female, I know, for a fact, that a few hundred complainers will not close the doors of Frisko Freeze. You get what you pay for; the employees are underpaid; they work very hard, and have done since I was six years old. It would be nice if those of you who are happy with the food/service to drop the employees a tip for old time sake!
P.S. It would be nice to have a Frisko Freeze, and Ivars, here in South Orange, New Jersey. There is nothing like sitting on the benches of Frisko Freeze, on a warm summer night, and eating a hamburger w/fries and a Root Beer float! I
GREAT!!! – im joe and im 10 years old this is the best food (burgers) in the countery
Average burger joint, from the Frisko Freeze night manager. – My name is Joe and I am the weekend nightshift manager at Frisko Freeze. A lot of the reviews I have read about them are true but some are not. Frisko Freeze was founded in 1950 by Mr. Perry Smith. He origianlly designed the place to be an ice cream parlor and over the years made it into what it is today. Perry did occasionally work at the establishment and everyone of the crew back then had been there for years. Now a days the crew is part of a younger generation but not all of them. Their is only one female who is also the youngest at 17. The rest of the crew ranges from 18 to 27. So yes a lot of the crew is young but most of us have been there at least a year or two. Yes the burgers are good but yes they are also expensive. I don't know how many times I have had to hear from customers how much the food is and how little you get. It isn't fun when we get a rush of people who want our food that we the crew have to rush around and try to get everything done and a lot of the time I have to apologize to the customers about burning their food. But the customers have to understand, we have to run around the building to get everything made to order so a lot of the time we get messed up and get the wrong food out. As part of the crew I also have to complain not just about the food but how the crew is treated. As a manage I only make $9 an hour when some of the crew make $8.50 or even $9.50. The two general managers make almost $14 an hour. I have all this responsibility for my position but yet I get paid very little and after eating Frisko Freeze for more than 2 years every shift, i'm tired of it. Every differnt burger my co-workers make for me taste differnt and about 50% of the time its burnt of there is a lot of something on it. I recommend Frisko Freeze every now and then when you are looking for a good burger. But if you eat it enough, you get tired of it.
The grossest malt ever!!! – I went to Frisko Freeze on Sunday because I happened to be in Tacoma, and was craving a Pineapple Malt. What I got was a cup that was probably filled abou 1/4 full with malt and the rest filled w/ vanilla ice cream, no pineapple! It was undrinkable b/c with all the malt it was just a gummy mess! The median age of the staff seemed to be about 15, so that could have been part of the problem. They weren't even busy at the time, which would have been another possible explanation. Whatever the explanation, I definitely wasn't impressed!
Might be on the downhill slide – I began visiting the Frisko Freeze in the mid-60s, but the place has been there since 1951. Externally it hasn't changed much over the years. It has always been a no frills joint with pretty decent, albeit small, burgers. In all the years I've gone there I've never had a good order of fries. The portion was generous, but that didn't make up for the luke warm potatoes. About the only thing the fries were good for was to scoop the tartar sauce out of the little cup. That said, I still enjoy the burgers. The entire sandwich is extremely juicy, and thus very messy. Because they're made to order, they're hot and fresh. They have a somewhat unique concoction of pickles, some relish, chopped onions, and shredded lettuce. When these ingredients mingle with the grease from the meat patty, it tastes surprisingly good. Service has been okay on the times I've been there. They've never messed up my order. But given the chaos that is extant during meal rushes I suspect a few orders have been screwed up. My son refers to their burgers as gut bombs. You can stuff them in pretty quickly, but all of a sudden you're bloated. Prices have risen over the years, but with the exception of electronic gadgets, what product hasn't? I still stop by now and then, but to be honest, I'd rather go to the Pick Quick in Fife. Their fries are much better, and their burgers are definitely competetive. I can only award 3 stars to Frisko Freeze.
The icon of burger joints in Tacoma for over 40 years – I have been a customer of this hamburger joint for 34 years. I remember the original owner working in it on some nights. If you have not read about him and how he helped out the high school boys he employed there, search the archives of Tacoma News Tribune back in the 70's or 80's for the story. I won't use space to tell it to you here, but it is a fantastic story about a very generous and caring man who wanted to make sure the kids he employed were empowered to face the working world and that they had some help getting their financial world going (he had an interesting loan procedure).
The place has changed hands. It does not quite offer all that it used to offer, but the food is basically the same. Great fries and burgers and they used to have a shrimpwich that was good but I did not see it on the menu last time I was there. I don't see much being done in terms of upkeep on the exterior or signage. In fact the electric signage seems to have dwindled from its heydays in the 70's and 80's.
The whole allure of going to this type of place is to shrug off the current society expectation of getting food (and everything else) immediately. We are a "fast food" society and it has seeped into everything including the prescription medication market. The wait is long for food as some have stated but it is part of the deal since it is a small place with limited grill area to prepare the food. The shakes are hand made (albeit from soft serve ice cream) and the fries are simply the best in terms of texture (crisp outside, real potato inside) and taste, and the burgers are simple, greasy, not extravagant, but good tasting. If you like Whoppers/Quarter Pounders and the heavy dose of cookie cutter atmosphere and impatient/trashy-behavior-of-people that comes with that type of dining, then skip this place and go have your no-wait Double Whopper or Big Mac.
ROME HAS FALLEN – After reading lander's review posted just today, i felt the need to say to the world that I couldn't agree more. I've been going to frisko freeze since i was a kid. I ate there at least once a week until recently. Being made to order food; the quality goes up and down as the faces there change, but i could always count on the friendly faces of the neighborhood guys who worked there for years, some of them even knew my name and already knew exactly what i want with out me having to order. I stopped going there about three weeks ago because the last few times i have gone there the food/service has been awful.... and what happened to the staff? i don't think there is a single person working there that has been there more than a couple months. I heard that the owner sold the business at the end of this past summer. I just want to let who ever the new owner(s) are that you have ruined my favorite place to eat. Frisko Freeze has looked run down for years, but it was the service and the food that made it so special. Rome has fallen.
Sad it's gone downhill so much – I'm so sorry this place has gone so far downhill. Long waits and somewhat high prices.
I just left a few hours ago because my order was "missed"; this after waiting half an hour for a burger and fries.
The gentleman in front was missing a hamburger. The guy prior to him had phoned in an order, got it in a few minutes, then came back because it was also missing items. He came back a few minutes after that and demanded his money back because most of the food was cold. He was definitely not a happy camper.
I've been going to the Freeze for over 30 years off and on. Sure hope they get their act together.
Best burger within state border, if not farther!:) – Best burger around. My father may work there, but I'm keeping this completely unbiased. the lines are almost always busy, and most people hate long lines. Me, on the other hand love lines, it is a sign that people like the place. The wait for food may be long, but thats because they cook what the orders say, when they get the order, unlike places like McDonalds, that have all their chemically altered food sitting on a warming tray.Perhaps In 'N Out is better, I haven't eaten there yet, but the creators of In 'N Out got the idea from the first owner of Frisko Freeze, Perry. Besides burgers they have great fries, chicken, and prawns, but, for the kids they have a great selection of shakes ice cream. So if your out and don't want to go to a 5 star place, but want good food and a place where your kids won't embarrass you, check out this little burger joint.
Just Avoid - Very slow – I moved to Tacoma about 3 years ago. Someone suggested this place and it was good (though pricey). I've gone another 6-10 times and every other time has been terrible.
1. One time I waited 50 minutes for fries. I walked up to the window 4 times and asked if my food was done. They said "yeah, we'll get it out". Finally I asked for my money back. Didn't even get an apology.
2. Stopped there to use a debit card. They told me there's an extra charge if I don't spend over $5 bucks. I spent over $5 and they said there's an additional charge since it's a debit card, which was added and I noticed.
3. Prices are high for all of the food. The burgers are so small. I admit the first burger I had there was good, the rest have been mediocre or bad. It's not always consistent.
4. The wait (even at non peak times) is 20-30 minutes. This is not fast food, though it tastes like fast food.
Very unsatisfied, though I believe it was probably better in the past, the present Frisko Freeze is terrible.
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