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Good news!

Carol Smaglinski July 6th, 2011

Lucille’s, that famous restaurant in Mulhall, is planning to reopen.

The restaurant was closed due to a fire that tore through the historic building in 2009, but is going to open its door to business, much to the delight of people who enjoyed going there for the food and the dancing.

It wasn’t just a fire that has challenged Lucille’s. In 1999, a tornado came through Mulhall and leveled the town but left standing the historic bank that housed the restaurant.

Lucille’s has a storied history. It was named for Lucille Mulhall, who, as legend says, was dubbed the “first cowgirl” by Will Rogers. She could rope, ride and wrestle livestock several times her size.

Her namesake restaurant was certainly one of Oklahoma’s landmark eateries. But after the fire two years ago, there were no plans to get her up and going again. However, happily, Lucille’s will reopen in August, with an official grand opening slated for September.

Mulhall natives Don and Chris Harman purchased the restaurant and are doing a major expansion. They will build a new addition and plan to add inside seating for 170 and another 170 outside, with plenty of space to accommodate motorcycle crowds and room for live music.

“It’s a bit like visiting Mayberry — a place you can step back in time and enjoy yourself,” Don Harman said.

CHOC TAKES TWO MEDALS
Krebs-based Choc Beer Company took home a gold and silver medal at the recent 2011 North American Beer Awards held in Idaho Falls, Idaho. The competition included more than 1,200 beers.

Choc’s Signature Biere de Garde won a gold medal, and its Signature Smoked Porter took home the silver. The annual North American Beer Awards is sanctioned by the North American Brewers Association. Now in its 15th year, the competition is held in conjunction with Idaho Falls’ Mountain Brewers Beer Fest.

Choc brewmaster Michael Lalli said the awards mean a lot to the brewery. “I could not be more proud of our team! These awards are a tribute to the work they put in every day to make world-class beer,” he said.

LET'S CELEBRATE AT PASEO GRILL
Paseo Grill, 2909 Paseo, turns a big 5 years old this July and will celebrate with a five-course pre fixe dinner for $50 offered to its loyal patrons for five days, from July 12 to July 16.

The restaurant opened on July 10, 2006, and has earned recognition as one of only two establishments in the state ranked by OpenTable.com as among the top 50 American-cuisine restaurants in the United States.

Its owners, Joe Jungmann and Lesley Rawlinson, recall the last five years as outstanding. “We’ve been in the restaurant world for a long time, and there is truly something special about what we’ve done here at the Paseo Grill,” Jungmann said.

For more information, call Paseo Grill at 601-1079.

CHOW CHAT
Catherine Cunningham is the sales manager for Aunt Pittypat’s Catering and has been on that job since November. A single mom, she has a son, Finely, who is 4 years old. By the way, Aunt Pittypat’s is owned by Chef Christine Dowd and Maggie Howell, who also own Trattoria il Centro in downtown Oklahoma City.

Best feature: “My eyes.” Biggest vice: “I have three:

chocolate, cheese or peanut butter.”

In the business: “For 18 years, since I was 16 and I worked at the Belmar Golf Club in Norman. And (I) have worked as an event planner.”

Favorite way to spend downtime:

“Cook out or watch TV. In the fall, I never miss ‘Castle.’” Most recent movie: “I took Finley to see ‘Cars 2.’ He loved it.”

Your signature dish: “Something Latin inspired.”

You won’t touch: “Those animal innards. I am not big on tongue or liver.”

Get recipes from: “Online, magazines and Cooking Light.”

Famous person you look like:

“Dana Delany, or years ago, Jennifer Aniston.”

You like to eat out at: “(I) tried Inca Trail; we loved it.”

If you had an hour to burn: “I would sleep or find a really good Pilates class.”

Don’t take away: “My blender or my coffee maker.”

Largest catering at Aunt Pittypat’s:

“Just recently, a luau for more than 1,000. I have a good staff.”

Who inspires you? “Oprah, she’s done amazing things.”

Al kitchen snafu: “I never have had a Mother’s Day off, but once I did and went to a restaurant for Mother’s Day. (The restaurant) got pounded and ran out of menu items. The staff kept calling the owner asking if they could please close. They didn’t close, and I thought it was funny.”—Carol Smaglinski

 
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