Tuesday 22 Jul

Food briefs: You’re toast, er, pretzel

There’s a new food truck on the scene.
07/22/2014 | Comments 0

Vietnamese comfort food

I’ve always had a love affair with the refreshing, healthy cuisine of Vietnam. I love the fragrances, the fresh herbs, cilantro, basil, mint and other Asian herbs: perilla, Vietnamese coriander and sawtooth cilantro. And I love the contrast and balance in almost every dish: spicy vs. cool, salty vs. sweet and steamed vs. crispy.
07/16/2014 | Comments 0

Hill tops

Northwest Classen High School has produced an impressive list of alumni over the years, including current Sonic president and CEO Cliff Hudson, former Oklahoma City Mayor Ron Norick, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Bill Hill, a 1969 alumnus, left Oklahoma after graduating from the University of Oklahoma and has been instrumental in the development of some of California’s super premium vineyards and wines.
07/17/2014 | Comments 0

New kids on the block

There are a wealth of new local eateries cropping up in the metro and even more coming. If they’re not on your radar, they should be. From the comfy atmosphere at The Barrel on Western Avenue to the laid-back vibe at the Plaza District’s coffee shop, you might find a new regular hangout.

— by Devon Green, photos by Mark Hancock and Shannon Cornman

07/16/2014 | Comments 0


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
Home · Articles · Food · Restaurant Reviews · Different is good
Restaurant Reviews

Different is good

Let your taste buds take a walk on the wild side.

Greg Elwell April 10th, 2013

The Lobby Cafe & Bar
4322 N. Western

What works:
great service, interesting dishes, excellent atmosphere
What needs work:
Prices can be a little high for the amount of food.
Park in the back, where there’s lots of room.

By: Shannon Cornman

Just order something weird, OK?

Look, I know it is scary going to new places and trying new things. And when you have finite resources, it seems even more important that you really enjoy the food on which you’re spending said resources.

But if you never try anything new, you’re never going to find your new favorite thing. And I think a lot of you will consider The Lobby Bar & Cafe your new favorite, given the chance.

Located on a particularly restaurant-y stretch of Western Avenue, is The Lobby Bar. Inside, you’ll find a menu that is probably different from what you’re used to seeing.

Sautéed calamari, for instance. Or a lamb slider. Or the beet salad. And that’s a pretty great place to start.

The roasted beet salad ($9) is a gorgeous little blend of greens topped with slices of hearty beets — a little sweet, a little savory — and paired with almonds, a vinaigrette and goat cheese mousse. Salads are often an afterthought, but this is a well-crafted and well-reasoned dish.

Want something a bit warmer?

I like the soups at the Lobby Bar, too. It has daily specials, but the white bean and bacon ($2.50 for a cup, $4.25 for a bowl) is always on the menu. It’s a light soup, with a broth that is thin, but substantial. There’s not a ton of bacon, but the flavor is there in spades. It’s smoky, peppery and tasty.

The tapas menu is a real draw, with plenty of items you’re not likely to see elsewhere in the metro. The bacon-wrapped dates stuffed with goat cheese and chorizo ($5.50) are a sweet bite that pairs well with wine or a cocktail — as a bar, the Lobby Bar is pretty well-stocked — although I found the flavor to be very comparable to sweet potatoes.

I was a little less taken with the roasted red pepper hummus ($8); however, I bet many would disagree. Unlike some versions of this dish, I detected a lot of red bell pepper. It’s a bit wetter than most hummus, but with much more flavor. I liked it, but there’s more on the menu that I crave.

Like the grilled cheese ($8) with a mix of Spanish cheeses like Manchego, Mahon and Tetilla. It’s a little greasy, a lot nutty and very delicious. It’s not a meal in and of itself, but that’s kind of the point here: Try a little of a lot of things and you’ll enjoy yourself.

One of the most popular dishes on the menu is the lobster slider ($8). While I understand the appeal, I was a little disappointed in the lack of lobster flavor. There’s plenty of lobster, which is great, but paired with bacon, tomato and horseradish aioli, it gets lost in the mix. It’s still a great-tasting mix, but if you’re looking for lots of lobster punch, you might not be satisfied.

For those wanting something heavier to pair with libations, the bacon-wrapped meatloaf slider ($8) comes with balsamic ketchup and Swiss cheese. Oh, and my affection. That’s in there, too.

Have you saved room for dessert? There’s seasonal ice cream ($4) and a lemon panna cotta ($8) with a vanilla gastrique. I say this in the best way possible — that panna cotta reminded me of lemon yogurt. Like, the purest expression of lemon yogurt ever. It’s creamy, tender and tartly sweet. The only problem I had was sharing.

But that’s how things work with a menu like this. It’s different, although not shockingly so, and everybody is going to want to try a bit of everything. So make it a point to go there with friends ... or at least enough of an appetite to finish off a few items by yourself.

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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