September 17, 2011 in Washington Voices

New sports bar opens in Spokane Valley

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Longtime Valley restaurateur Zeke Sawyer, and his girlfriend, Beth Grimm, have opened the Bag O’Nails Pub and Sandwich Shop.
(Full-size photo)

At a glance

Bag O’Nails Pub

Where: 8901 E. Trent  Ave. off Argonne Road

Hours: Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to midnight; Sunday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Phone: (509) 242-3360

A Spokane Valley man with deep roots in the area’s restaurant and hospitality business has opened a new sports pub and sandwich shop.

Zeke Sawyer opened Bag O’Nails Pub and Sandwich Shop in May in a strip mall near the corner of Trent Avenue and Argonne Road. He’s hoping the location and friendly atmosphere along with domestic beers, local and unique microbrews and fresh deli food will help turn his establishment into a popular neighborhood hangout.

“We’re just a small business that has a little different approach to how we sell our products,” says Sawyer, a 1989 East Valley High School graduate.

Those differences might include the large aluminum tubs filled with ice behind the bar that chill the 60-some varieties of brew – many served in the 22-ounce bottles with frozen glasses.

Customers might also notice Sawyer’s handiwork in the custom-made bamboo bar and tables, or the Ansel Adams prints that line the walls. The 1,400-square-foot location with 45 seats and three big screen TVs is the culmination of his restaurant experience.

“I grew up in the business. I’ve been in it my entire life,” says Sawyer, noting the stints of trying other career opportunities in radio, real estate and most recently construction until injury brought him back to something else he knew.

Sawyer’s late father, Bennie, owned the area’s five Norma’s Burger Barns, the Otis Orchard Ice Cream Parlor and co-owned El Patio. Just out of high school, Zeke Sawyer owned his own Norma’s Burger Barn Express and later Little Bennie’s restaurant on Trent Avenue.

To the pub he wanted to create a calm and cheerful place with a menu that includes mostly fresh deli sandwiches and salads, as well as nachos and fish taco appetizers. The pub special is the Bag O’Nails sandwich for $9.49 that includes roast beef, turkey, ham and three varieties of cheese.

With at least a days notice, Sawyer also offers catering services.

Are you opening a new business in the Greater Spokane Valley? Is your business expanding, moving or remodeling? Are you wondering about that new store that has opened in your neighborhood? Send an email to Voices editor Jeff Jordan at or Juli Bergstrom-Wasson at

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