Wednesday 30 Jul
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OKG Newsletter

Topic: Food and Drink Features

Drink thyme

Herbs bring out the soul of summer cocktails.

Food and Drink Features

Heide Brandes
At the Cheever’s Cafe bar, Ariana Khalilian pulled out the plastic squeeze container containing a mixture of simple syrup and the pulverized essence of cilantro.
Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Glorious garlic

The pungent root vegetable is for more than keeping vampires at bay.

Food and Drink Features

Carol Cole-Frowe
Garlic, how I love thee.

Let me count the ways. Cut and rubbed on crusty, rustic bread.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Chinese buffet to benefit recovering deputy

Fundraiser set for Aug. 27 at Mr. Pho.

Food and Drink Features

Carol Smaglinski
Mark your calendars for Aug. 27, the Asian District’s benefit fundraiser for Maj. John Waldenville of the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s office.
Monday, August 15, 2011

Summer sizzle

With every inch meticulously planned, Hensley’s is brought back to life from decades ago. It’s a win-win arrangement.

Restaurant Reviews

Carol Smaglinski
Since June, Hensley’s Top Shelf Grill, 1551 Garth Brooks Blvd. in Yukon, has become a magnet for beef lovers.
Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Eat for Upward

Hideaway’s new location hosts Celebrity Wait Night on Aug. 31.

Food and Drink Features

Carol Smaglinski
Want to visit with local celebrities while you help raise funds for a good cause?
Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Thirst for the Cure returns

Annual benefit set for Sept. 14.

Food and Drink Features

Carol Smaglinski
Who knows who might need money for urgent medical care this year? Through the Thirst for the Cure 2011, scheduled from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Sept. 14, money being raised might come to the rescue of needy people in the local hospitality business who otherwise couldn’t afford care.
Friday, August 26, 2011

On a stick!

Before the invention of kitchen utensils, people cooked food on a stick over an open fire. Stop in at any of these seven local restaurants to enjoy skewered food.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Under the sea

I promise not to write in all ‘The Little Mermaid’ quotes. Take it from me.

Food and Drink Features

Jenny Coon Peterson
I know a few people who refuse to eat anything that “swims.” I say, they’re missing out. We may be landlocked, but it’s not all fried catfish showing up on the plate. Head to local fishmongers (what a great title, right?) and restaurants for all the goodies hanging out — and yes, swimming — under those waves.
Wednesday, September 28, 2011

BEST OF OKC: Food & Drink

This year's best in food and drink!

Best coffee shop: CUPPIES & JOE

727 N.W. 23rd A small pleasure of life is the uplift from the aroma of a great cup of coffee. Nowadays, we all need to slow down a bit, but who can after stopping at Cuppies & Joe for that needed caffeine boost to get us on our way? Captivatingly cool, Cuppies & Joe’s cupcakes are intensely flavored. By the way, their coffee is roasted by Elemental Coffee Roasters, a local company.

2. Java Dave’s, several metro locations

3. The Red Cup, 3122 N. Classen Blvd. Worth mentioning: Gray Owl Coffee, Coffee Slingers

Best breakfast or brunch: JIMMY’S EGG

several metro locations The cock crows when the light rouses, and at Jimmy’s Egg, the food starts pouring out of the kitchen at 6 a.m. and does not stop until 2 p.m. Whether it’s the traditional bacon and over-easy eggs, or an omelet packed with everything but the kitchen sink, there is so much on the menu that some patrons eat there daily. This local family concept is now being franchised throughout the U.S.

2. Classen Grill, 5124 Classen Circle

3. La Baguette Bistro, 7408 N. May Worth mentioning: The Diner, Seven47

Best place to have lunch: BIG TRUCK TACOS

530 N.W. 23rd Anybody up for lunch? Then hustle on over to Big Truck Tacos, where it only takes one visit to understand what all the fuss is about. The owners, who brought along years of experience and know-how, have managed to maintain the high standards of the food they cook, yet have a blast doing it.

2. Irma’s Burger Shack, 1035 N.W. 63rd and 1120 Classen Drive

3. Saturn Grill, 6432 Avondale Drive and 4401 W. Memorial Worth mentioning: City Bites , Coolgreens

Best appetizers: LOUIE’S GRILL & BAR

several metro locations It’s a chow-down with Louie’s Grill & Bar’s best-selling golden fried pickles and boneless chicken wings. Makes one wonder: Where in the world did they find those fine feathered friends with no bones? End your search for lip-smacking apps by stopping by any one of the metro’s several Louie’s locations.

2. Republic Gastropub, 5830 N. Classen Blvd.

3. Deep Fork, 5418 N. Western Worth mentioning: Rococo Restaurant & Fine Wine, Bolero Tapas Bar & Restaurant


several metro locations The undisputed prince of pizza in the metro area, Hideaway is your pick for perfect pie. Everything that goes on its yummy menu is top-notch, and locals eat up the friendly service and casual ambience. Hideaway is one of Oklahoma’s least pretentious, yet most ambitious fleet of restaurants, with locations throughout the metro, including the latest in Automobile Alley.

2. The Wedge Pizzeria, 4709 N. Western and 230 N.E. First

3. Upper Crust Wood Fired Pizza, 5860 N. Classen Blvd. Worth mentioning: Humble Pie, Joey’s Pizzeria


1035 N.W. 63rd and 1120 Classen Drive Irma’s is the hands-down winner for the best damn hamburger in town. Find the old gal, who is actually fictitious, at two locations. Keep your shades on while you eat, and you won’t see the meat juice spurting out onto your clothes as you attempt to pack this wondrous burger into your mouth. Its No Name Ranch beef has become mandatory for some.

2. Johnnie’s Charcoal Broiler, several metro locations

3. Nic’s Grill, 1201 N. Pennsylvania Worth mentioning: S & B’s Burger Joint, The Cow, Calf-Hay 

Best barbecue: EARL’S RIB PALACE

several metro locations All hail the king! This classic concept has managed to stay on top of the heap of all the blockbuster barbecue joints. When we want something, we want it now! And what we want is barbecue. The food at Earl’s includes mouthwatering grilled chicken, juicy burgers and baked beans.

2. Iron Starr Urban Barbeque, 3700 N. Shartel

3. Van’s Pig Stand, several metro locations Worth mentioning: Swadley’s Bar-B -Q, Steve’s Rib

Best sandwiches: CITY BITES

several metro locations At City Bites, it is certainly hard to imagine a better sandwich. You voters agreed, and patrons have made it a destination for years. The four Blevins brothers, Mark, Brad, Gary and Eric, have been slapping those phenomenal sandwiches together since 1986. Some prefer dessert first and never miss nibbling on the cookies and brownies.

2. Someplace Else, A Deli & Bakery, 2310 N. Western

3. Saturn Grill, 6432 Avondale Drive and 4401 W. Memorial Worth mentioning: ND Foods, Hobby’s Hoagies 


1309 S. Agnew Cattlemen’s Steakhouse stays packed day after day with hungry customers cutting into the thick, juicy steaks. Inarguably the mother ship of steakhouses in Oklahoma, this award-winning restaurant has a menu with a taste for adventure and is the city’s crème de la crème for beef. It’s a little schlep to get to Cattlemen’s, but the drive is certainly worth it. Start out with the lamb fries. Happily, nothing has changed.

2. Boulevard Steakhouse, 505 S. Boulevard in Edmond

3. RED Prime Steak, 504 N. Broadway Worth mentioning: Ranch Steak house, Junior’s

Best sushi: SUSHI NEKO

4318 N. Western All sushi appetites lead to none other than Sushi Neko, where the fare is impeccable and created with ultimate precision. The chefs maintain a highvoltage charge with their sushi rolls, along with dizzying menu items such as jumbo shrimp, curry udon and salmon. This first-rate place has been around long enough to know just how to make us swoon.

2. Tokyo Japanese Restaurant, 7516 N. Western

3. In the Raw Sushi, 575 S. University, Norman and 200 S. Oklahoma Worth mentioning: Pachinko Parlor, Saii Asian Bistro

Best seafood: PEARL’S OYSTER BAR

5641 N. Classen Blvd. Pearl’s Oyster Bar has done it again. Think “seafood,” and Pearl’s pops up. This is a real sweet spot with chefs who are comfortable in the cuisine. (You’ll never find a stinky piece of fish here!) Fantasies start with oysters and everything from the sea. Drool over the weekend New Orleans brunch favorites in this decades-old institution.

2. Sushi Neko, 4318 N. Western

3. Rococo Restaurant & Fine Wine, 2824 N. Pennsylvania and 12252 N. May Worth mentioning: Crabtown, The Shack Sea food and Oyster Bar Best vegetarian or healthy menu options

Best vegetarian: COOLGREENS

6475 Avondale Drive and 14201 N. May It’s easy to eat healthy when there are so many delicious options. Want hearts of palm on that salad? You got it! Toasted pecans in the wrap? No problem! Whether ordering off the diverse menu or building your own meal, it’s obvious the staff at Coolgreens goes for quality. And for you veggies out there, get your protein fix with the tofu or chickpeas.

2. The Earth Cafe and Deli, 750 Asp, Norman

3. Picasso Cafe, 3009 Paseo Worth mentioning: The Red Cup, Matthew Kenney OKC

Best comfort food: CHEEVER’S CAFE

2409 N. Hudson You voters must like your comfort with a bit of class. The gorgeous Cheever’s, in a renovated flower shop, turns out comfy favorites (like a chicken-fried steak), but does so in style. A typical greasy spoon, this is not. And if your idea of comfort veers more toward the healthy, fear not: Cheever’s has you covered with salads and lighter fare.

2. Ann’s Chicken Fry House, 4106 N.W. 39th

3. Iron Starr Urban Barbeque, 3700 N. Shartel Worth mentioning: Mama E’s Soul Food, Cajun King

Best meal under 10 bucks: BIG TRUCK TACOS

530 N.W. 23rd Who needs Taco Bell to eat like a (broke) king when you have Big Truck? It’s open late, it’s cheap (without needing to clarify it’s using actual beef) and it’s delicious. The only hard part about eating at Big Truck is deciding if you want to try the 5th Amendment. We say go for it. It’s not like it’s going to set your bank account back too much.

2. Louie’s Grill & Bar, several metro locations

3. Cafe 7, 14101 N. May Worth mentioning: Saturn Grill, City Bites

Best locally made beer: BRICKTOWN BREWERY

1 N. Oklahoma Bricktown Brewery has been in the beer-brewing game the longest, and you voted it the best. The brewery and restaurant, a stalwart of Bricktown businesses, recently started updating its look, food and even that favorite beer. Lots of changes are in store at this spot, so head there to try out the new selections.

2. COOP Ale Works, 1124 N.W. 51st

3. Choc Beer Worth mentioning: Mustang Brewery, Coach’s Bar & Grill

Best cocktails: PROHIBITION ROOM

Well, this one’s bittersweet. Like Old Yeller, sometimes the things you love the most leave you (although, hopefully, there was no frothing at the mouth at Prohibition Room). That’s right: As of this writing, Prohibition Room is closed, with no definite plans of reopening. Now we have the sads. We loved the pitchers of Prohibition Tea and classic cocktails that made us feel like Don Draper.

2. Ludivine, 805 N. Hudson

3. Blu Fine Wine & Food, 201 S. Crawford, Norman Worth mentioning: The Lobby Bar, Tramps


several metro locations You planted some sugar on La Baguette Bakery & Cafe. From delectable cakes to perfect pastries baked in Norman, La Baguette has been creating indulgent desserts since 1984. And you don’t need to trek down south to sample the goodness; La Baguette’s desserts can be found in restaurants and hotels across the metro.

2. Sara Sara Cupcakes, 7 N.W. Ninth

3. Cuppies & Joe, 727 N.W. 23rd Worth mentioning: Nonna’s Euro-American Ristorante and Bar, Sugar.

Photos by Shannon Cornman, Mark Hancock and Lindsey Cooper

by OKG Webmonkeys 09.30.2011 2 years ago
at 02:00 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

BEST OF OKC: Restaurants

The best restaurants in the metro, circa 2011!

Best restaurant downtown: IGUANA MEXICAN GRILL

9 N.W. Ninth They had us at the chips and salsa, and apparently you, too. The colorful Iguana has been whipping up fantastic, Latin-inspired dishes (try the fish tacos!) and some seriously amazing margaritas for a couple of years now. But it’s the cool atmosphere that really makes this place — it’s fun, festive and always a memorable meal.

2. Zio’s Italian Kitchen, 12 E. California and 2035 S. Meridian

3. RED Prime Steak, 504 N. Broadway Worth mentioning: Nonna’s Euro-American Ristorante and Bar, Ludivine

Best restaurant on the Northside: REDROCK CANYON GRILL

9221 Lake Hefner Parkway Hang out at this airy, laid-back restaurant and bar that draws locals looking for simply cooked plates of splendid food. The lakeside Redrock is constantly thronged with diners, yet its chefs deal nicely with the constant stress and pressure. There is an exciting flavor fusion going on, and it shows in its first-class, creative menu.

2. Rococo Restaurant & Fine Wine, 2824 N. Pennsylvania and 12252 N. May

3. Pearl’s Oyster Bar, 5641 N. Classen Blvd. Worth mentioning: Ranch Steak house, Gopuram Taste of India

Best restaurant on the Southside: CATTLEMEN’S STEAKHOUSE

1309 S. Agnew At Cattlemen’s Steakhouse, the cowboys come out early for breakfast knowing that this is a place where the fare is good, prices are fair and the eatery is clean. Its down-home service is friendly, but never intimidating. This is what Oklahoma cooking is all about, and Cattlemen’s is a sweet taste of Americana.

2. Ted’s Cafe Escondido, 8324 S. Western

3. Chelino’s Mexican Restaurant, several metro locations. Worth mentioning: Dan’s Old Time Diner, Grill on the Hill

Best restaurant in Yukon/Mustang: INTERURBAN

11316 W. Reno, Yukon Cheers to more good years for the winner! Interurban has several metro locations, including your pick in Yukon. The owners are culinary and hospitality professionals dating back to the first Interurban that opened in 1976. Menu items are straightforward, but incredibly delicious. People gobble up crisp salads, pizza, sandwiches, burgers and more.

2. Alfredo’s Mexican Cafe, 1751 Garth Brooks Blvd., Yukon

3. Primo’s d’Italia, 1215 Garth Brooks Blvd., Yukon. Worth mentioning: Bad Brad’s BBQ, Harry’s American Grill & Bar

Best restaurant in Midwest City/Del City: BASIL MEDITERRANEAN CAFE

6620 E. Reno, Midwest City At Basil Mediterranean, a hungry diner can nosh extremely well. The menu offers one of the healthiest cuisines around, something that people are really getting smart about these days. There’s nothing to be afraid of here, because they simply have the best artichoke spinach dip, and patrons feast on its fantastic gyro platter and other dishes.

2. Mr. Spriggs BBQ, 1017 S. Air Depot, Midwest City

3. Don’s Alley, 4601 S.E. 29th, Del City Worth mentioning: Mid-Del Taco, Korean House

Best restaurant in Norman: THE MONT

1300 Classen, Norman The Mont is one of the go-to places for students, a place for hunger to go on holiday every day. Norman residents repeat this happy scenario, so it is no wonder that The Mont has been so successful. Sitting inside or on the patio, order food and drinks that present an overall mix of nothing but the best.

2. Tarahumara’s Mexican Cafe and Cantina, 702 N. Porter, Norman

3. Victoria’s Pasta Shop, 327 White, Norman Worth mentioning: Seven47, Benvenuti ’s Ristorante

Best restaurant in Edmond: FLATIRE BURGERS

318 E. Ayers, Edmond Flatire Burgers, a sister restaurant to the well-liked Lottinvilles, shows off its stuff with damn good burgers. The capable staff keep those tables turning, pleasing a diversity of students and fans at this restaurant, situated right on the edge of the University of Central Oklahoma. No kidding: Some guys and gals consider the inside of Flatire as their own living rooms.

2. Cafe 501, 501 S. Boulevard, Edmond

3. Boulevard Steakhouse, 505 S. Boulevard, Edmond Worth mentioning: Othello’s of Edmond, Lottinvilles Restaurant & Bar

Best Mexican or Latin restaurant: TED’S CAFE ESCONDIDO

Several metro locations Walk into any one of the Ted’s, and it’s obvious they mean business. Lines are long, but fast, perhaps because people have tasted its pièce de résistance — the Atomic salsa —and need air. When Ted Curtis hung the sign on the first Ted’s, people probably wondered, “A Mexican restaurant named Ted’s?” Now there are several locations, all going strong.

2. Iguana Mexican Grill, 9 N.W. Ninth

3. Tarahumara’s Mexican Cafe and Cantina, 702 N. Porter, Norman Worth mentioning: Chelino’s Mexican Restaurant, 1492 New World Latin Cuisine

Best Asian restaurant: MUSASHI’S

4315 N. Western There won’t ever be any good or bad surprises at Musashi’s, because what its loyal customers get is consistency they can count on. Musashi’s has an outstanding Japanese ambience, but what distinguishes this from the rest is the extra bit of interest the staff takes in everyone’s meals. Those knife-wielding hibachi chefs are so entertaining; just remember to duck.

2. Sushi Neko, 4318 N. Western

3. Grand House, 2701 N. Classen Blvd. Worth mentioning: Lido, Saii Asian Bistro

Best Italian restaurant: ZIO’S ITALIAN KITCHEN

12 E. California and 2035 S. Meridian Bursting with enthusiasm, Zio’s servers seem to deliver the food quicker than lightning. But who really cares when the food, a combination of comfort and spice, is as good as it is? The restaurant specializes in classic Italian dishes, and if you listen closely, you will hear a slight hum of contentment in the air when the dishes arrive.

2. Victoria’s Pasta Shop, 327 White, Norman

3. Stella, 1201 N. Walker Worth mentioning: Othello’s , Papa Dio’s

Best European or Mediterranean restaurant: ZORBA’S MEDITERRANEAN CUISINE

6014 N. May When you win the lottery someday, you may never have to cook again. You can just eat every day at Zorba’s. No more squeezing on tomatoes or thumping melons! You’ll find all of the basics here, along with more unusual finds like skewers of beef or chicken bursting with flavor, or its hummus or baba ghanoush, all Middle Eastern delights.

2. La Baguette Bistro, 7408 N. May

3. Greek House, 768 Jenkins, Norman Worth mentioning: Mediterranean Imports & Deli, Nunu’s Mediterranean Cafe & Market

Best upscale restaurant: DEEP FORK

5418 N. Western Deep Fork constantly wins friends and influences people, and the Deep Fork Group has never gotten too big for its britches. The dining until 2 a.m. every Friday and Saturday is perfect for night owls. During the day, the red carpet gets rolled out with attention to detail, comfortable seating, fresh flowers, an excellent wine selection and awe-inspiring menu items — great for romance.

2. Boulevard Steakhouse, 505 S. Boulevard, Edmond

3. RED Prime Steak, 504 N. Broadway Worth mentioning: The Coach House, Ludivine

Best casual-dining restaurant: BIG TRUCK TACOS

530 N.W. 23rd Are you ready to order? Every once in a while, some knucklehead will go inside and actually take his or her time ordering. Although it’s difficult to wade through all the menu possibilities, anything you choose will hit those taste buds with great satisfaction.

2. Louie’s Grill & Bar, several metro locations

3. Republic Gastropub, 5830 N. Classen Blvd. Worth mentioning: The Wedge Pizzeria, Irma’s Burger Shack

Best family-friendly restaurant: POPS

660 W. Highway 66, Arcadia Terrific for family outings, take a short drive to Arcadia and stop by Pops, which is gaining national prominence. A gas station and restaurant, Pops has folks who challenge them to serve their fave soda from any state — and most likely they can do it. Friendly people are never far from your table when you order up a burger and a shake from its extensive menu.

2. Hideaway Pizza, several metro locations

3. Johnnie’s Charcoal Broiler, several metro locations Worth mentioning: Irma’s Burger Shack , Iguana Mexican Grill

Best restaurant ambience: REDROCK CANYON GRILL

9221 Lake Hefner Parkway You can’t beat a lake view, and that’s just what Redrock Canyon Grill offers its diners. Massive windows flood the place with light, making dusk a big deal at this popular spot. (Dine there around sunset and find out why.) If outdoors is the way you want to eat, cozy up to a big fireplace, and let the waves serve as your soundtrack.

2. Paseo Grill, 2909 Paseo

3. RED Prime Steak, 504 N. Broadway Worth mentioning: Rococo Restaurant & Fine Wine, Ludivine

Best little-known restaurant:PICASSO CAFE

3009 Paseo The new owners of this Paseo spot looked to another famous name for their eatery. And the artistic vibe doesn’t stop at the moniker — head inside for a pretty little restaurant with art on the walls and cool music being played. The menu is diverse (they love vegetarians and meat-eaters alike) and the bar still puts out top-notch drinks (try the Pimm’s Cup).

2. Nic’s Grill, 1201 N. Penn

3. Ludivine, 805 N. Hudson Worth mentioning: The Cow Calf-Hay, Burger Rush

Best new restaurant (that opened after May 1, 2010): MUTT’S AMAZING HOT DOGS

1400 N.W. 23rd Can you strike gold twice? The owners of Big Truck Tacos have proven so with their new concept, Mutt’s, voted your favorite new place to chow down. The dogs here run the gamut from the classic all-beef kosher to an upscale duck dog. And don’t pass up the sides at this retrochic spot — there are deviled eggs, baked beans, fried pickles and more.

2. Rococo Restaurant & Fine Wine at Northpark, 12252 N. May

3. Ludivine, 805 N. Hudson Worth mentioning: West, The Cow Calf-Hay

Photos by Shannon Cornman, Mark Hancock and Lindsey Cooper
by OKG Webmonkeys 09.30.2011 2 years ago
at 02:00 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)