Thursday 10 Jul
 
 

Top of the city

With Josh Valentine running the kitchen at The George, the anticipated opening of the restaurant atop Founders Tower has been worth the wait.
07/09/2014 | Comments 0

Going dark

Local brewers are expanding production, purchasing equipment and facilities and releasing new brews as Oklahoma’s craft beer industry continues to expand. Oklahoma City-based Black Mesa Brewing Company, fresh off its gold medal at the World Beer Festival, released a new beer, Alexander Supertramp Dopplebock, in June.
07/09/2014 | Comments 0

Experiments in spice

Jordan Winn of Dead Rooster Co. and Scotty Irani of local company In The Kitchen with Scotty want to inspire foodies to get more from barbecue.

During the Fourth of July weekend, many of us will attend or host a cookout.

There are two local options to make grilling time more satisfying for everyone.

07/02/2014 | Comments 0

OKG Eat

Ah, the perils of working with special dietary needs. It can make dining out a pain. Luckily, with restaurateurs becoming more savvy to their diners’ needs, there are a bevy of places in OKC to satisfy your craving for the foods you love without losing taste. All choices this week have been road-tested by gluten-sensitive foodies to guarantee satisfaction.
07/09/2014 | Comments 0

OKG eat: Know your rights

What better way to celebrate your freedom than grilling it to perfection over an open flame? We’ve combed local meat markets for the best ingredients to make traditional burgers or brisket. Feeling more adventurous? Why not go for lamb or buffalo? Whatever your heart desires, local butchers will be more than happy to help you praise hot-off-the grill freedom.
07/02/2014 | Comments 0

OKG Eat: The OKG staff eats, too

Culled from a list overflowing with some of the best and least-known names in the city, here are the places you’re likely to see a member of our staff. These are several top recommendations from Oklahoma Gazette staff.
06/25/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Food · Restaurant Reviews · Ricardo’s...
Restaurant Reviews
 

Ricardo’s restaurant


South-of-the-border specialties come served in very inviting surroundings.

Doug Hill November 9th, 2011

Ricky’s Cafe is an impressive, freestanding Spanish colonial-style building in a bustling strip mall. It’s maroon and pink outside with a brick-colored tile roof. Although named “cafe,” Ricky’s is closer to being a fancy restaurant than a snack bar or coffee shop.

Ricardo Lopez (its proprietor) operates this flagship location. There are two other Ricky’s Cafes in OKC.

Pride in ownership and operation are evident in the spotless interior that’s spacious and attractive. The place exudes attention to detail. Tasteful floral arrangements, wrought-iron candelabras and colorful Mexican ceramics are at every turn. Behind glass, next to the comfortable waiting area, is “Ricky’s Tortilla Factory,” where an employee operates a stainless steel machine and mini assembly line. We watched her crank out the freshly made warm flour tortillas that are served with every order. The dining rooms are divided between comfortable booths and mauve-colored granite-top tables.

right, Bianca’s Favorite

Friendly waitstaff brought tortilla chips, salsa and queso immediately after we were seated. Ricky’s menu has their logo on the cover, a smiling cartoon chili pepper with two teeth, wearing a sombrero, serape and Western boots; inside, it’s a full six pages that require careful reading. You’ll find some truly authentic Mexican cuisine among the more common Tex-Mex and straight-up American dishes.

I like places that name plates after their friends, patrons or celebrities, and Ricky’s has several. If I owned a Mexicano restaurant, there would certainly be my own version of Ricky’s Special Mexican Dinner ($14) on the menu. It’s a gigantic platter with chicken and cheese enchiladas, two tamales, one taco, guacamole and beans and rice.

The taste is unmistakably from family recipes. Nothing about this food hinted at a corporation lurking in the cocina. But it’s not midnight-in-the-barrio taco truck fare, either.

There’s no baby goat or lingua in fried masa. Ricky’s is definitely Norte Americano friendly. Unlike many Mexican restaurants that cater to gringos, Ricky’s salsa is boldly spicy. Made in-house with plenty of cilantro, garlic, fresh tomato and chili, the salsa’s fragrance and flavor are above the insipid stuff sometimes served in these parts.

Bianca’s Favorite ($15) is guiso, beef tips sauteed with tomato, onion and jalapeño, a chicken and sour cream enchilada, carne asada taco, fried potatoes, rice and beans. The delicately seasoned beef, flavored with caramelized onions, was delicious rolled up in a tortilla.

Tony’s Special ($13) features costillas de puerco or pork ribs, along with a taco, enchilada, rice and beans. The ribs were not as tender as they could have been, but otherwise tasted good. Chile Colorado ($12) was as fiery on the palate as it appeared on the plate. A distinctively crimson guajillo sauce gave this dish a real piquant bite. Ricky’s has some veggie plates including Fernando’s Taste of Mexico ($12) with cheese quesadillas and guacamole.

Seafood dishes tend toward shrimp and catfish filets. Cocktel de Camaron ($10) is shrimp cocktail with lime and tomato served in a big glass goblet.

There’s a section of the menu titled “Breakfast in America.” These egg-and-meat plates are served all the time. The machaca ($8.99) is scrambled eggs with dried and spiced shredded beef. It’s a traditional favorite of silver miners in the Sierra Madres in the state of Chihuahua, but rarely seen on Oklahoma menus.

There are several grilled steak choices, including Bistek Ranchero ($11), a small beef steak served with cheese, beans, rice and pico de gallo. Wash one of those big platters down with a large frozen margarita ($8.49), a Dos Equis Amber ($3.89) or go for a more exotic choice. Ricky’s version of horchata ($1.99) combines sweetened milk with ground rice, vanilla and cinnamon. They also serve tamarind and hibiscus tea concoctions. If that’s too much of a walk on the wild side, you can always stick with house-made lemonade ($1.99) or domestic suds ($2.99).

Photo by Mark Hancock

Oklahoma Gazette’s restaurant review policy is to highlight the positive aspects and include constructive criticism regarding food, ambience or service when appropriate.

 
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