Whether you like them waffle cut or straight, made with regular potatoes or sweet potatoes, nothing beats a fresh order of fries. After all, they’re mouthwatering and delicious, plus you can put just about anything on them, and they’ll still taste like perfection.

While our Idaho neighbors may lead the nation in potato production, producing nearly a third of all U.S. potatoes, surprisingly, it’s a tiny Washington town of Othello that has been dubbed the French Fry Capital of the World, producing 1.5 billion pounds of frozen french fries, tater tots, and hashbrowns a year. This is thanks to the region’s newfound “potato belt,” found only in the Columbia Basin as more and more production plants emerge to cater to this favorite starchy root vegetable.   

The Columbia Basin produces a whopping six billion pounds of frozen potato products each year. With them being made so close to home, it’s no wonder why french fries at local Tri-Cities restaurants are always fresh, tasty, and some of the best you’ll ever have!

French Fry Capital Tri Cities
Can’t decide at IDK Restaurant? Then try this yummy trio. Photo courtesy: IDK Restaurant

IDK Restaurant

335 W Columbia Drive, Kennewick

It may be named the IDK Restaurant, but patrons of this hidden, hole-in-the-wall gem know without a shadow of a doubt that all the items on this menu are pretty tasty, especially regarding the fries.

Whether you’re stopping in for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, there are always some delicious potato options on the menu. Enjoy them crispy, or try out their loaded IDK Cheese Fries topped with melted cheese, bacon, green onions, and black olives.

The Pub

7001 W Clearwater Avenue, Kennewick

Kennewick’s laid-back gathering spot, known simply as The Pub, offers pub grub and games to the Tri-Cities community, and with such grub comes delicious, golden french fries. They pair perfectly with the establishment’s mouthwatering burgers, sandwiches, and wraps.

With options for house cut, tater tots, or pub chips, you can’t go wrong picking potato-worthy sides here. There’s even a Southwestern Cheddar Tots option for an appetizer described as “potato blended with Jalapenos and cheddar, fried golden and served with choice of dip.” Yum!

French Fry Capital Tri Cities
Who knew garlic fries could look so beautiful at Foodies Richland? Photo courtesy: Foodies Richland

Foodies Kennewick

2701 Columbia Park Trail, Kennewick


Serving up golden fries at both their Kennewick and Richland locations is Foodies. Their locally owned craft kitchens feature house-made recipes that are a fun spin on your favorite classic American dishes and include such sides as house chips, salt & pepper fries, and Fuego season tots.

For an appetizer, try the specialty, “Fries My Way,” which features a choice of garlic fries with parmesan cheese, chives, and sea salt piled high and served with a choice of dip. Swap out the garlic fries for sweet potato fries or Fuego seasoned tots if you feel frisky. Ooh, spicy!

French Fry Capital Tri Cities
No cheesesteak is complete with a yummy side of fries at Brother’s Cheese Steaks. Don’t forget to try the Philly Fries too! Photo courtesy: Brother’s Cheese Steaks

Brother’s Cheese Steaks

8524 W Gage Blvd. A4, Kennewick

The three passionate individuals running Brother’s Cheese Steaks strive for nothing but the best in their extensive menu of dreamy cheesesteak options, including their assortment of fries. Their fresh-cut steak fries are reported to pair perfectly with any sandwich option on the menu, and their special fry sauce adds that extra kick for your taste buds.

The staple fry dish on the menu is their Philly Fries, which features ribeye meat, onions, bell peppers, provolone cheese, Cheez Whiz, and aioli, all on top of their fresh steak cut fries. Don’t forget to follow their social media for special, limited-time French fry menu options. In the past, they’ve featured such classics as Ribeye Steak Fries and Flamin’ Crunch Steak Fries featuring Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. Mmm, tasty!

French Fry Capital Tri Cities
You can’t go wrong with classic Poutine at Poutine, Eh? Photo courtesy: Poutine, Eh?

Poutine, Eh?

3902 W Clearwater Avenue Unit 120, Kennewick

Poutine, anyone? Well, at Poutine, Eh? that’s all you find as this specialty restaurant serves the Tri-Cities the best of the very best of this traditional French Canadian classic fry favorite! Pick beef, pork, chicken, or vegan options, and they’ll coat their crispy fries in gravy and top them off.

Local favorites include “The Lumberjack,” with crispy fries, half-pound roasted tri-tip, herby gravy, and cheese curds, all topped with crispy onions. “The Bavarian” is crispy fries, cheese curds, beer-braised bratwurst, herb gravy, soft pretzel bites, kraut, and stone ground mustard.

Here, the fries have even made their way over to the dessert menu, where you’ll find such specialties as “The Campfire,” which features deep-fried waffle fries, smoked ganache, graham cracker topping, Hershey chocolate, mallow drizzle, and toasted marshmallows. Yes, please!

French Fry Capital Tri Cities
Make your Elote Fries a balanced meal at Hot Mess Burgers & Fries by adding an order of Messy Fingers, aka chicken fingers, for them to dice up & put on top. Photo courtesy: Hot Mess Burgers & Fries

Hot Mess Burgers & Fries

212 W Kennewick Avenue, Kennewick

One could say fries are a given staple at Hot Mess Burgers & Fries, where they’re even included in the name of this local favorite burger restaurant. Besides the massive burgers, which definitely will be messy, the local food truck also has some unique fry options on the menu.

Why, just this past November, they featured “Grandma’s Feast Fries” that celebrated everything on Grandma’s holiday side dish list and featured sage and spice fries with grilled corn, white cheddar, fried onion curls, apple cider gravy sauce and cranberry jalapeno jam. Though it may be gone with the holidays, their other favorites remain on the menu, including “Elote Fries” that come with grilled corn, Cotija cheese, tajin & fire sauce and their “PB&J Fries” that feature Thai peanut sauce, RC Cola BBQ, and jalapeños.

These are just a few fantastic local restaurants in the Tri-Cities serving fresh, crisp, golden, delicious fries here in the “French Fry Capital of the World.” Do you have a french fry favorite that we missed? Send us your answers to submit@columbbasintalk.com, and they might end up on the next french fry feature!

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