Thursday 31 Jul


OKG Newsletter

Topic: chow chat

Lane Whitesell

Lane Whitesell’s home town is Muscatine, Iowa. A single guy, he is an instructor in the chemistry department at the University of Central Oklahoma. Most people know him as the librarian and opera host at KCSC 90.1, broadcasting from the radio station on the Edmond campus.

A professional chef, too: “Yes, but I left that profession, went back to college and I have now been teaching for 19 years. I also cater wedding receptions and do parties, but I don’t look for jobs.”

Cheffed at: “Several, including Christopher’s and at Barry Switzer’s favorite, (the former) Pete’s Steak House and I taught cooking at Texas A&M.”

Your steady diet consists of: “Mostly fowl, but I have a freezer full of buffalo, venison and good and bad sausage.”

Good cook: “My friends say so — I will find something at the supermarket and call my friends (up to eight) and tell them I need to cook.”

Famous person you look like: “Nobody famous, but I have two ‘twins’ in Oklahoma City, and we don’t look like anybody else than one another.”

Relaxation time: “I do my share of reading, and I am waiting for the next David Weber set of science fiction, volume 5.”

All-time favorite cookbook: “Larousse Gastronomic, which assumes you know all the techniques in its recipes.”

Would love to have met: “Julia Child.”

Best-liked recipe: “Chicken Nordic, with boned and stuffed chicken pieces wrapped in ham and finished with white wine and the pan drippings. But you can’t beat a good prime rib.”

Would never eat: “Deep fried insects.”

Come back as:  “A 6-foot, 7-inch bass with a rolling voice.”

Most treasured possession: “My (many) autographs of famous opera singers from Joan Sutherland, Jeanette MacDonald to Pavarotti. I’ve gone to Santa Fe and Munich for opera.”

Get your creativity boost from: “Gardening and revolting against celebrity cookbooks, which are not-for-real cookbooks.”

No kitchen should ever be without: “Butter!”

by Carol Smaglinski 05.07.2012 2 years ago
at 09:00 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Trendy eats

Let's talk trendy. What are the best local restaurants to see and be seen?

Here were some of your answers from Facebook:

Iron Starr!” —Gog Ger

Sushi Bar.” —Craig Kerr

Signature Grill in Edmond. It feels like NYC.” —Stacey Turcotte Burnett

VZD's and Flip's … always have been, always will be. New Orleans Coffee Company Cafe, too.” —James Hawley

Braums.” —Austin Tackett

Sushi Neko.” —Sue Haynes

Zorba's at May and N.W. 59th in OKC. The food is delicious as well, and the service outstanding!” —Douglas Gordon

Zarates in Edmond.” —Teresa Hopkins Gage

Bistro Lorene in Chickasha!” —Lorene Fite Wood

VZD's.” —Derek Higgins

Local, Ludivine and The Diner.” —Quentin Bomgardner

Rococo!” —Amber Kendall

Nic's Grill.” —Sean Rains

Vito's.” —Missy Childs Ward

Pepe's in Norman.” —Will Muir

I think that any place that are at is the place to be and be seen!” —Melissa Bullock-Bianco

Local.” —Sarra Curl

Trattoria II Centro and Saii.” —Kalen Norm Flansburg

Fish City Grill.” —Dee Cope

Mutt's Amazing Hot Dogs! OMG good.” —Ashley Osborn

Bistro Lorene in Chickasha.” —Jennifer JCoop Jenny Totten

Stella!” —Chris McKenna

Greek House in Norman.” —Jan Sperry Astani

Republic!” —Kristen Towler Childers

Cafe Kacao.” —Eric Ellenwood

Travel by Taste on N.W. 49th and MacArthur.” —Jacob Straney

I love Cafe Pranzo!” —Melissa Brumfield

Abuelo's Mexican Restaurant.” —Benjamin A. Pena

La Baguette.” —Brandi & John Heavrin

Toby Keith's, the bomb, food and drinks!” —Sharon Hicks Dean

The Mantel Wine and Bistro in Bricktown!” —Boone Griffin

All about Local in Norman!” —Cody Ponder

"When places become 'places to be seen,' they usually fall off my list. However, my favorite local restaurants are Whispering Pines (Norman), O' Asian Fusion (Norman) and PawPaw's (Chickasha). Local (Norman) may become one, but I need to try them a few more times.” —Jennifer Burnes

Le Waffle House.” —Robert Hamilton

Tried Fuzzy's today in Bricktown. The guac was delicious as well as the chicken taco salad!” —Tempie DeVaughn Farmer

"The McDonald's on 23rd Street.” —Hans Owens

"Cafe 7!” —Kalen Norm Flansburg

"Big Truck Tacos for lunch, Cuppies and Joe for desser!” —Cora Brinkley-Gutel

Ludivine and The Wedge on Western.” —Kristi Rowley

by Carol Smaglinski 05.10.2012 2 years ago
at 02:00 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Mike Turek

Mike Turek

A groundbreaking was held recently in Choctaw at the 36-year-old Old Germany where the family-owned restaurant will have a new addition out front.

Co-owner Mike Turek said it will be a German sports bar annex. With good weather, it should be complete before football season.

Maybe a contest to name it: “I want to call it Schnitzengiggle, but maybe …”

Menu highlights: “German pizza, Rueben sliders and much more.”

Hometown:Bad-Soden, Germany."

Wife: “Sammie and a step-daughter, Sierra.”

Met your spouse: “At my Rotary Club at Old Germany.”

People don’t know: “I am a licensed electrical contractor.”

Talent: “I can dance and did Dancing for the Miracle for Children’s Hospital and did the tango, swing, salsa and finished with a Lady Gaga routine to Bad Romance."

Come back as: “I would be remiss to not come back as myself. Each year I take people on a cruise or land tour. We’ve gone to Europe, Napa, Alaska and on June 4th to Vienna.”

Just love: “Nutella.  And also, corn dogs with yellow mustard because of the memories I had while eating my first one when we were taking over a building.”

Nickname: “’Fritz’, which is my middle name.”

Wildest thing in a professional kitchen: “When a military policeman came through our (Old Germany) kitchen looking for bombs with his large German shepherd because a three-star general was dining with us.”

by Carol Smaglinski 05.14.2012 2 years ago
at 01:00 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

American, Italian or Asian — oh, my!

We recently posed this to our Facebook readers:

American, Italian or Asian: Assume you had to choose between those cuisines. To which local restaurant would you head?

Bella Vista is great for Italian food!” —Michael Shoopman

Grand House.” —Joe Meinhart

Jana's in Norman: Thai and Italian.” —Gene Glaser

Spaghetti Warehouse in Bricktown.” —John O'Connor

My new fave: Charm, for Thai.” —Sara C. Jacoby

Bistro Lorene in Chickasha.” —Lorene Fite Wood

American: Cheever's. Italian: Vito's. Asian: Thai Kitchen Cafe downtown.” —Rot Job

You simply cannot beat that old American standby … Taco Bell.” —Adam Orendac

P.F. Chang's, Texas Road House, Olive Garden.” —Benjamin A. Pena

Pachinko Parlor for sushi!” —Bekki Liles

Papa Dio's.” —Suzanne Pennington Short

by Carol Smaglinski 05.21.2012 2 years ago
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Sarah Stinson

Sarah Stinson

Delightful and funny, Sarah Stinson, 23, is a hostess at Nonna’s in Bricktown. Moving here from Grand Prairie, Texas, in 2003, her father was in the military. Her two pets, Lil’ Bit and Bella, are both smart dogs.

How you got your job: “My boyfriend and I were walking through Bricktown picking up applications. He got me one from Nonna’s; I filled it out and Nonna’s gave me a call, and I was my smiling sweet self for the interview, although they thought I was a bit overqualified.”

Future plans: “I want to climb the ladder. I am going into training soon to become a server.”

When you were laid off, it never crossed your mind: “That I would work in a restaurant.”

Real talent: “I am a painter and went to Oklahoma City Community College to study and have been painting since I could hold a pencil. I do cubism and realism.”

Kinda look like: “Kat Von D, but without the tattoos.”

Take an out-of-towner: “To Nonna’s, of course, and around Bricktown — that has so much to see.”

Won’t touch: “Mushrooms; I like the flavor, but not the slimy texture.”

Would kill for: “A hot fudge sundae.”

People don’t know that you are: “A closet gamer — it takes away the tension.”

Pet peeve: “People who chew with their mouths open.”

Come back as: “Myself."

Best thing you did in 2011: “Got a job.”

Silliest questions you’ve been asked as a hostess: “One man asked. ‘Does your elevator go down to the canal?’ And a lady called and wanted to celebrate her birthday at Nonna’s, but couldn’t believe that we didn’t serve cat fries. She said she just ‘slaps ‘em on the grill'.”

by Carol Smaglinski 05.29.2012 2 years ago
at 01:00 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thunder games and food

With the Oklahoma City Thunder ready for Game 1 of the NBA Finals (Go Thunder!!!), we recently posed this question on Facebook: To watch Thunder games on TV, to which local bar or restaurant do you go? And what do you order? We wanna know!

And the people spoke:

“Dan O'Brien's!!! Closest to being at the game ever. Atmosphere is awesome and food is incredible!!! Chicken nachos, mmmm!” —Ashley Osborn

“Twin Peaks. Its refreshing to sit in a non-smoking bar and come home not smelling like an ashtray. Don't Okies know that secondhand cigarette smoke kills!?” —Jeff Jonaitis

“”Belle Isle Brewery … upstairs. Great atmosphere.” —Tempie DeVaughn Farmer

“”Cousins Bar and Grill! And beer.” —Jason Champ

“”Home with Pizza Hut and Bud Light.” —Christina Rivas

"Pizza Hut. They have great food, inexpensive, and tons of TVs!” —Tana Libby

by Carol Smaglinski 06.11.2012 2 years ago
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Nancy Kitko

Nancy Kitko, owner of Nancy’s 57th Street Lighthouse at 5708 N. May, grew up in Pennsylvania. Boss of more than 25 employees, she has regulars who stop by night after night.

What do you wish you knew five years ago: “How hard a bar was. I am a caterer first and do what people want me to do; but if a bar owner did that, they would go to jail.”

You look like: “Annie Potts, and years ago, like Melanie Griffith when I had long hair.”

Most difficult: “Owning a bar.”

A favorite thing to do: “Spend time with my family. My husband is Ray, and my children are Ryan, Allen and Jamie Lippoldt.”

Where did you meet Ray: “In a chat room on the Internet in the late '90s.”

Signature dish at Nancy’s: “Reuben sandwich.”

A nice recent happening: “After the Thunder beat the Spurs, I got up on the microphone and said, 'The Spurs’ losing streak starts now!'”

You would never eat: “Sushi.”

But love: “Anything with tomatoes.”

Fav cookbook of your collection of 250: “Betty Crocker, but now the Internet.”

Essential in the kitchen: “Good teamwork between workers.”

Hidden talent: “Played flute and basketball in college, but was horrible. I am a very good listener, and I can hear what you don’t say.”

Most unusual catering happening: “Surprised a bride and groom with Whataburger in the center of the table. That was what they really wanted instead of the eclectic menu. Anyone who was at that wedding 12 years ago still talks about it.”

Come back as: “Bette Midler.”

A song that describes your life: “'You Are My Sunshine.'”

Unusual catering request: “Food for 300 in two hours. We did it.”
by Carol Smaglinski 06.13.2012 2 years ago
at 07:00 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Kamala Gamble

Years ago, Chef Kamala Gamble was in the banking industry. She left that to own and operate Kam’s Kookery and Guilford Gardens. Her husband, Lance Cornman, owns Mid American Roofing and Construction and helps Gamble with her businesses, too.

Children: “Mason and Annabelle Cornman.”

You look like: “Haley Mills.”

Your best feature: “In cooking and catering, we can do anything.”

You take care of: “Gathering food from my gardens for 80 people this summer. We are not at any of the farmers markets this year.”

Food you would never eat: “Innards.”

But love: “Tomatoes.”

Your signature dish: “Panzanella salad with fresh summer vegetables.”

What is your personal motto: “Flavor. That’s what it is all about.”

Favorite thing to do: “I read everything.”

Imperative kitchen gadget: “My knife.”

Good memories: “I worked with (nationally-known Oklahoma chef) Rick Bayless doing TV shoots in his home in Chicago and other scenes on the side.”

Met Lance: “In a running group, and when we married at the Round Barn in Arcadia, I skipped down the aisle barefoot with my dad, Bill, and my grandfather, Bill, married us.”

Claim to fame: “Lance and I have run marathons in every state and the hardest one was in Alaska, which is the second hardest in the U.S.”

Favorite cookbook:The Joy of Cooking — it’s the bible of cooking.”
You reboot every day: “With my husband and children.”

Wildest catering job: “We were doing cedar-planked salmon and green beans for 200 and were promised a large space, but they gave us a tiny space. We needed four times the amount of grilling space. The mom of the bride was wonderful and went to 13 different Wal-Mart’s to purchase equipment for the wedding.”

Best advice you’ve ever received: “Just that 90 percent of what you worry about never happens.”

by Carol Smaglinski 06.27.2012 2 years ago
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Rehearsal dinner

Congrats! You're getting married! (Just play along.) Which local restaurant would you choose for your rehearsal dinner? We posed the question on Facebook recently, and received a deluge of responses:

“Iguana Mexican Grill” —Randal Marsh

“Ranch Steakhouse” —Sara C. Jacoby

“Night Trips” —Jeff Brown

“Red PrimeSteak” —Rachel Irick

“Cafe Do Brasil” —Angela M. Thomas

“The Metro or Red Prime” —Stephanie Riggs

“Hensley's Top Shelf Restaurant, but we are having ours on the Devon boats with Aunt Pittypat's catering!” —Robert C. Howell

“Charleston's” —Michael Riley

“Cheever's Cafe!” —Misty Wilson

“We are wanting to have ours at Iron Starr.” —Jenn Dietrich

“Nonna's” —Rachael Reed

“Big Truck Tacos did ours. It was fabulous.” —Krista Singleton Wulf

“We had ours at Irma's in Midtown.” —Allison Eubanks

“Crabtown!!!” —Risa Variale

“Cheever's!” —Christina Hughes

“My brother just got married last September and theirs was at Deep Fork Grill and they did an awesome job.” —Stephanie Moore

“We had ours at Crabtown and it was perfect!” —Amy Green Apt

“Rococo” —Nathan Aguilera

“Harvest” —Mark Sadler

“Local!” —Audrey Julian

“We had ours at Iron Starr, and it was great!” —Lisa Janssen Lloyd

“Yamato” —Russ Brown

“In the Raw Sushi!!” —Anna Mains

“We held ours (in 2008) at Iron Starr. The staff was terific, the venue was great, and the food was superb.” —Todd Fagin

“Stuffed Olive Cafe” —Tami Robb

“Paseo Grill” —Crystal Jane Young

“Zorba's” —Okie's Chicken & Grill

“The Ranch” —Bevan Graybill

"Spencer's Smokehouse and Barbacue” —Jene Cheek

"Cheever's” —Brandy Sitts

"Nonna's” —Beth Vrabel Ketchum

“Cheever's” —Sarah Graham Fitzpatrick

“Spencer's Smokehouse” —Richard Cheek

“The Ranch!!” —Nancy Nichols Piccolo

“Deep Fork!!!” —Pam Dabbs Cribbs

“In the Raw” —Angie Martin

“Rococo Restaurant & Fine Wine or Rococo Northpark so we could have Roccoco crab cake” —Kyle Golding

“Just got married in July and had Big Truck Tacos cater; it was fantastic!” —Anne Murray

“Deep Fork Grill! Can't go wrong — fantastic food and service every time!” —Stephanie Ruminer

"Nonna's!” —Alisha Davidson

"Charleston's in Edmond … yummy food and a great private room with no more than a reservation needed.” —Stephanie Campbell Joseph

"Definitely the Ranch” —Janie Skalovsky

"Deep Fork” —Melissa Haydon Milburn

"I was married in Louisiana, so that won't help … but I am an event planner and a lot of my couples choose Rococo, Deep Fork Grill or Kang's. Those are all wonderful places ...” —Christina Garcia

by Carol Smaglinski 08.20.2012 1 year ago
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