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OKG7 Eat: Snack to the future


Louis Fowler January 29th, 2014

Too bad time machines don’t exist. Imagine hanging out in diners, inventing rock ’n’ roll and making out with your own mother at the Enchantment Under the Sea dance. Wait... Yeah. The last two things will always be impossible. In the meantime, those classic ’50s diners still light up our main streets. Pile the family into the DeLorean.

Classic 50’s Drive-In

1521 W. Lindsey St., Norman 

321-2271

Looking like the type of Friday night hangout where greasers and bobbysoxers would mingle together over burgers and malts before a switchblade-laden rumble, Classic 50s Drive-In is a tried-and-true Norman institution. The classic long coney with cheese ($3.19) is a treat, as is their selection of potato boats, including the Fantasy Boat ($6.89) stuffed with barbecue brisket. What really sets Classic 50’s apart is the Sprittle ($3.19), a concoction that mixes Sprite with a bag of Skittles.


Ann’s Chicken Fry House

4106 NW 39th St. 

943-8915

Ann’s Chicken Fry House is a John Waters movie come to life, adorned with the kitschiest of mismatched ’50s memorabilia that begs for newbie Route 66 riders and veteran patrons to take selfies between bites of its one-pound chicken fried steak dinner ($13.65). Order it with the signature mashed potatoes, gravy and fried okra. It’s all in an atmosphere that lends itself unironically to pink flamingos and pink Cadillacs alike.


Yarber’s 50s Cafe

2801 S. May Ave. 

681-3148

Yarber’s is an anomaly, a diner situated among the taquerias and food trucks. However, Yarber’s captures an honest timeout-of-place feel that is reflected by the broad menu, most of which features items named after popular stars of the time. For example, why have a plain ol’ cheeseburger when you could have a Charlton Heston ($6.29) or a Louie Armstrong ($5.99)? The Duke ($5.99), covered in chili, onions, kosher pickles and secret sauce, ain’t too shabby either, pilgrim.


Sherri’s Diner

704 SW 59th St. 

634-4796

To paraphrase Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, “Sherri, baby, can we eat out tonight?” This diner is complete with checkered linoleum floors, classic metal signage and a menu with reasonably priced items that even Ike would’ve liked. For a double-barreled meal of four-wheeled nostalgia, gas up with the turkey and bacon T-Bird sandwich ($6.29) or the ham and Swiss Pink Cadillac sandwich ($5.99). And don’t forget that fresh cherry cobbler!


Hamburger King

322 E. Main St., Shawnee 

878-0488

A Shawnee favorite, Hamburger King lives up to its name with high-quality burgers for a steal, served in an old-school diner with no pretension. Hamburgers, cheeseburgers and all the double- and triple-meat variations thereof fill the menu. Try the Triple Kicker ($8.55): three all-beef patties, bacon, pepper Jack cheese, grilled jalapeños and all the fixin’s in a titanic sandwich that’ll permanently erase the word “Whopper” from your vocabulary.



Boomarang Diner

517 N. Porter Ave., Norman 

boomarangdiner.com 

801-2864

Put on your poodle skirt and twist over to one of Boomarang’s locations (all over the state). Try one of its famous breakfast items, like the big ham country breakfast with a slice of ham, two eggs, hash browns and toast or biscuits and gravy ($9.79), served all day. If breakfast isn’t your thing, don’t cry, baby; stop in for a gourmet hickory cheddar burger ($4.09), a hot link sandwich ($4.79) or a chicken strip basket ($7.99). Don’t forget the fries ($2.29) and hot fudge cake ($2.29).


Fat Elvis Diner

4 E. Main St., Yukon 

354-9702

If your baby left you and you’re looking for a new place to dwell, head on down to Main Street in Yukon to the Fat Elvis Diner. While the King might have been past his prime by the time he was packing on the pounds, the Fat Elvis diner is anything but. Start with the hunka hunka burning love that is the King size fried onion burger ($3.09) or the eponymous Fat Elvis burger ($4.99), and then get all shook up with a side order of fat fried pickles ($1.60) and an extra-large sundae ($4.25).


— by Louis Fowler, photos by Mark Hancock and Shannon Cornman

 
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