A stamp cost 20 cents and gas was only $1.25. A new car cost just over $6,000, which was about half of the average income of $12,000. Ronald Reagan was president and Sally Ride became the first woman to go into space. McDonalds introduced McNuggets. Michael Jackson released his Thriller album. Fraggle Rock was the favorite children’s show and Mario Brothers was released. Ghandi won the Academy Award for Best Picture, and Flash Dance, WarGames, Mr. Mom and Risky Business made it a great year for movies.
And Dick Young opened Northwest Sausage & Deli.
The year was 1983. “Dad owned Dick’s Beef Shop in Grand Mound, across from Maple Lane, doing slaughtering, cutting and wrapping,” says Julie Pendleton, Young’s daughter who now owns Northwest Sausage & Deli along with her husband, Dave. “He wanted to get out of seasonal work, but he opened a custom game meat business which is just as seasonal,” Pendleton says with a laugh.
Young bought the property on the corner of Prather Road and Old Highway 99; an empty lot where he designed the building he wanted. Pendleton has fond memories of playing with her brother in the dirt. The restaurant began as a smaller building and Young started with a basic selection of products, including summer sausage, Polish and Kielbasa. “He played around with recipes until it was the way he wanted,” says Pendleton, smiling. She still uses those recipes today.
The deli service was also smaller. The seating area near Old Highway 99 wasn’t there, only the room where deli cases now stand, and there were five tables. Sandwiches were the main menu item and the establishment offered all-you-can-eat chips. “Some people would eat the sandwich and then just sit and eat bag after bag of chips,” Pendleton says.
As for drinks, “He only sold import beers back then,” Pendleton says, “no micro or domestic until we got licensed and sold our own.”
The kitchen, where Young made sausage, was expanded around 1995 when the brewery was added. Around that time, the restaurant seating area was enlarged as well. The cozy outside deck was added in 2016.
Northwest Sausage & Deli became a full restaurant when dinner service was added in the early 2000s. You can now get hot or cold sandwiches, salads or dinner items such as prime rib. Dinner is offered Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings, while they’re open for lunch Monday through Saturday. They’re closed on Sundays.
Pendleton is pleased with the business’ success. “For a rather strange location, we’re very busy and it has increased. I think it has a lot to do with the beer; people like to look for off-the-path micro-breweries,” she muses.
After 35 years of successful business, the Pendletons want to recognize and thank their customers. Northwest Sausage & Deli will be celebrating the entire month of October with different weekly specials. The featured items will be posted on the reader board outside the restaurant and on their Facebook page.
The best part? They will be using promotion “buy one item, get the second for 1983 pricing.”
In addition, they’ll host a special celebration on October 18 from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m., as part of the Chamber After Hours event which will last from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. The team at Northwest Sausage & Deli is excited to continue the party. A beer garden will be set up outside, complete with a tent and heaters in case the weather doesn’t cooperate. Guests can enjoy hors d’oeuvres, snacks and beer while waiting to see if they win fun raffle prizes. The restaurant will also be open as usual for those wanting a full meal.
This family-friendly event will feature some new merchandise such as t-shirts, sweat shirts, wood signs and pint glasses. And pick up a book of matches marked with the family’s slogan since the beef shop: “You can’t beat Dick’s Meats.”
“People love the slogan and they like getting matches,” Pendleton says with a laugh. “No one gives away matches anymore.”
Pendleton hopes customers visit and share their favorite memories from the past 35 years. One woman shared fond memories of coming in with her father every Friday to get a pepperoni stick. “There are so many fun memories for kids,” Pendleton says. “It has that feeling of a Christmas tradition and we want to hear those stories.”
Northwest Sausage & Deli
5945 Prather Road SW
Centralia WA 98531