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Bite size, 7-20-11


News and notes on OKC dining

Carol Smaglinski July 20th, 2011

There were swan songs for a few places around the metro recently.

SAY FAREWELL
Many restaurants in the area decided to stay closed for the Fourth of July holiday. One such was Los Comales, 1504 S. Agnew. It was probably a good thing the restaurant was closed since high winds and hail caused extensive damage to the roof and tiles fell down into the eatery.

The mess caused by the rough weather has forced Los Comales to close until repairs can be completed.

Finally, an update on Othello’s in Norman, which closed just a few weeks ago. The restaurant will be back in the mix with new owners who are planning to get it up and running by August. The owners of the successful Edmond Othello’s, 1 S. Broadway, are taking over at the now-closed Norman Othello’s, 434 Buchanan.

Said new owner Nancy Weiss:

“We are going to bring it back to what it used to be.”

The Weiss family will be offering the original recipes from Othello’s. Nancy will be working with her parents, Bob and Tammy, and sister, Jennifer, in both restaurants.

CATTLEMEN’S GETS A MENTION
Cattlemen’s Steakhouse, 1309 S. Agnew, known for its mouthwatering steaks and lamb fries, has been chosen among the favorite roadside wonders in the new cookbook “Southern Living Off The Eaten Path!” The book, penned by award-winning travel writer Morgan Murphy, shares the origins of well-loved restaurants along with recipes from their menus.

CHEEVER’S NAMED A TREE-TO-TABLE RESTAURANT
Cheever’s, 2409 N. Hudson, was chosen to participate in a national “Tree-to-Table” campaign in honor of National Rainier Cherry Day on July 11.

Northwest Cherries had chosen one restaurant in each state to create and feature a unique Rainier cherry menu item, and the popular Cheever’s was the choice in Oklahoma.

Cheever’s stepped up to the challenge. Executive chef Mark Ridener offered a special cherry dish all last week, which was the peak of Rainier cherry season. Among the other restaurants in the campaign were the St. Paul Grill in St. Paul, Minn., and The Shaved Duck in St. Louis, Mo.

By the way, did you know that cherries are a great source of potassium? Increasing evidence shows that a diet rich in potassium may help to control blood pressure and reduce the risk for hypertension and stroke.

CHOW CHAT
James Kraham is the director of operations of The Meat House, 2245 W. Danforth, a franchise butcher shop and gourmet grocery store planning to open in late August in Edmond. More than 25 people will be employed in the 5,000-square-foot store.

Married to: “Kristin Kraham, a physician’s assistant. We met in Oklahoma City and last October, we married.”

Someone famous you look like:

“Superman! I’m serious.”

Education: “I had a football scholarship to University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and (I earned) an undergraduate in hotel and restaurant administration. Guy Fieri was in my class.”

During your seven years in Las Vegas: “I worked as a butler at The Mansion in Las Vegas and waited on Tiger Woods, King Abdullah, the king of Jordan, and Presidents Obama, Bush and Clinton. Of course, I had to taste the wines they drank (like the 1982 Petrus at $10,000 a bottle) and make sure it was good. One time I didn’t have enough time to taste. President Clinton took a taste and told me the wine was corked. It was.”

Best tippers: “Drew Carey and Rosie O’Donnell. She always tips 50 percent. But I made $200,000 a year and I took photos and know all the dirty laundry. Some treated me like I was invisible and others did not.”

Your best feature: “My personality.”

Cooking tip: “When it comes to beef, get to understand the types of meat. I love educating people on products.”

Greatest extravagance: “Travel.

We have traveled through Italy.”

In The Meat House: “Eighty percent of the sales will be meat. From top local beef, free-range chickens, to emu, ostrich and rattlesnake — any critter that is legal.”

A sad passing
On a sad note, the Oklahoma Gazette learned that Charlie Fox died last week after complications from surgery. The always-congenial Fox was the former manager of the now-closed Le Cep Bistro in Edmond and was the current manager at Bolero Spanish Grill & Tapas Bar. —Carol Smaglinski

 
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