An Expat’s Dining Survival Guide to Tulsa Updated 9-2007
Have you recently moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma? How did I get here? Where are the people? Where is the traffic? Why does the tea come iced? Why are these grocery cashiers, security guards, complete strangers acting so very friendly towards me? I could go on… This is a dining survival guide just for you. If you can eat well, you can survive anything.
Actually, Tulsa’s dining environment has improved greatly since 2001 when I arrived here. Back then, there was no Starbucks and no decent Chinese food. The big news was the opening of Krispy Crème where they gave away free doughnuts while you waited in line to buy your doughnuts (presumably 2-3 dozen).
The guide highlights ethnic restaurants and those restaurants with healthy fresh food and some vegetarian options. If you are a lover of continental cuisine, you will need to look elsewhere.
A few pointers:
• Never try a restaurant at random when driving around town.
• If you visit an ethnic restaurant, you should discuss the menu with the owner and tell them that you want “authentic Chinese” or “authentic Indian” food. They might make you something special or at the very least suggest the best dishes.
• Please call and double check the hours before visiting these places to make sure they are still in business. They could also be taking the summer off. I’m not kidding.
• Finally, Tulsa diners should remember that one or two good dishes make a restaurant here great. Do not become complacent and order just anything on the menu. M
• Most Tulsa menus rarely change with the seasons or with the years. Is it laziness? Do Tulsa diners just expect the cuisine to stay the same? I’m really not sure.
Best Dressy Restaurants
Stonehorse Cafe and Market
1748 Utica Square
Tulsa, OK 74114
Hours: Tues-Sat, 11:00 am-10:00 pm
Steak and seafood dishes are solid. Desserts are very good. The menu rarely changes. Vegetarians will appreciate the wonderful salads and vegetable side dishes but they sometimes sneak bacon fat into stuff so please ask if it matters to you.
The Brasserie Restaurant and Bar
3509 S Peoria
Tulsa, OK 74105
Hours: Monday 11am – 9pm
Tuesday thru Saturday 11am – midnight
Sunday 10am – 9 pm
This french bistro offers escargots, french onion soup, steak frites plus terrific fish entrees, salads and vegetable side dishes. Dessert is not their strong suit.
3512 S. Peoria Avenue
Creative continental cuisine with some ethnic flair. Chic setting!
Less ambience than the restaurants listed above. This newcomer has healthy, local food with an emphasis on fresh vegetables. Desserts are decent but Kokoa is better.
4329 S. Peoria Avenue
Tulsa, OK 74105
Hours: 11 a.m. to 10 pm daily
1980 East 21st Street
Tulsa, OK 74114
Hours: Open everyday 11:00 am-10:00 pm
Yes this is a chain but it is consistent Asian food which is rare for Tulsa.
BE LE Vegetarian
6634 S. Lewis Avenue
Tulsa OK 74136
Hours: M-F 11-2:30, 5 – 9 pm, Sat 11-9
This is one of a handful of strict vegetarian restaurants in Tulsa. It is basic Asian stir-fry with various sauces for the most part. There is soy is just about everything. The menu refers to items as Chicken (soy) or Pork (wheat) even though it is actually vegetarian. This is designed to make meat-lovers comfortable. There are not many true vegetarians in town.
Recommended dishes: Spring Rolls, Triple Delight, Soy Pork and Soy Shrimp dishes.
4932 E 91st St # 102
Tulsa, OK 74137
Hours: 11:00 am-9:30 pm daily except Sunday
The owner of this restaurant (Ri) is a vegetarian and they have some dishes, like sesame soy chicken, that are not on the menu. So please consult your server.
4123 S. Sheridan Road
Tulsa, OK 74145
Hours: Tues.-Thurs (10:00 am-5:00 pm), Fri. (10:00 am-9:00 pm, Sat. (11:00 am-4:00pm) Closed on Sunday & Monday
Suggested dishes: Greek salad, spinach pie, dips and pita.
Halim and Mimi’s Deli (Lebanese
)2615 E 11th St
Tulsa, OK 74104
Hours: Weekdays 11:00 am-3:00 pm, some Fridays from 5-7
Closed Sat. and Sun. and most of the summer
Helen of Troy
6670 S. Lewis Avenue
Tulsa, OK 74136
Hours: 11-8 Monday – Friday, Saturday 12-8
www.742dine.com (for menu
)Traditional Middle Eastern, offers lamb, chicken, terrific dips and Mediterranean salad.
Shish-Kabobs - Persian Food
11605 E. 31st
Tulsa, Oklahoma 74146
Hours: 11 - 8 Monday – Thurs, Friday & Sat 11 - 9
Extremely casual setting for middle eatstern food with some Persian influence.
6963 S. Lewis
Tulsa, OK 74136
Hours: Open everyday- 11;00 am-2;30 pm and 5:00 pm-10;00 pm
Try the Paneer Makhni, Dal Makhni or Baigan Bharta. They serve meat dishes as well. You may want to request white meat chicken if you prefer it. If you ask they will make you Podhina Raita (Mint Yogurt).
6122 South Garnett Road
Tulsa, OK 74103
Hours: Open everyday 9:00 am-2:00 pm and 5:00 pm-9:00 pm
This is a family-run restaurant with a tiny dining space. Chicken biryani is good but the owner can offer great suggestions. They have a wide variety of Indian sweets here as well.
3966 South Hudson Avenue
Tulsa, OK 74135
Hours: Everyday- 11;00 am-10:00pm
Try the saag and curry dishes. Indian fast food.
You cannot have ambience and decent Mexican food together in Tulsa. And if you are a strict vegetarian, please consider learning to cook Mexican food.
El Rio Verde
38 N. Trenton
Tulsa, OK 74120
Hours: Open everyday 8:30 am-9:30 pm
Wet burrito can feed a family of four. Heartburn may follow.
4518 S. Peoria
Tulsa, OK 74105
Hours: Mon-Fri. (10:00 am-9:00 pm.) Sat. and Sun. (8:00 am-9:00 p-m
Ted's Cafe Escondido
3202 W Kenosha St
Broken Arrow, OK 74012
Hours: Monday – Thursday (11 am – 10 pm), Friday – Saturday (11 am – 10:30 pm) Sunday (11 – 8:30 pm
)Fresh tortillas and basic Mexican food. This place is decent but not great.
Chipotle! Stay tuned….This is opening on 71st Street soon!
Doe’s Eat Place
1350 E. 15th St.
Tulsa, OK 74120
Hours: Mon-Sat. 5:00 pm-9:00 pm, closed on Sunday
Fleming’s Prime Steak House & Wine Bar
1976 Utica Square
Tulsa, OK 74114
Hours: Mon.-Thurs. (5:00 pm-10:00 pm) Fri. & Sat. (5:00 pm-11:00 pm) & Sun. (5:00 pm-9:00 pm
Texas Roadhouse (Casual)
11111 E. 71st St.
Tulsa, OK 74011
Hours: Mon.-Thurs. (4:00 pm-10:00 pm) Fri. & Sat. (11:00 am-11:00 pm) Sun. (11:00 am-10:00 pm
There are several upscale Italian restaurants in town but none of them have consistently good food. Biga is the most consistent of this group but it still falters from time to time.
4329 South Peoria
Tulsa, OK 74105
Hours: Tuesday – Saturday 5 – 10 pm, Sunday 5 – 9 pm
To my knowledge this is the only Italian restaurant in town with homemade pasta and it’s wonderful.
Gina and Guiseppe's (at the Riverwalk
)400 Riverwalk Terrace
Jenks, OK 74037
Hours: Mon.-Thurs. 11:00am-9:pm
Fri. and Sat. 11:00am - 10:00pm
Sunday 11:00am - 4:00pm
This is the best restaurant in the Riverwalk. It is not great, but it is the only fairly consistent place at that location.
Suggested: Order Pizza but ask for “half the normal amount of cheese”. The grilled vegetable salad is terrific. Their chicken breast special was very good. The pasta and other traditional dishes are underwhelming.
Warning: Do not eat Mexican Food at the Riverwalk. The restaurant is terrible!
3323 E 51ST Street
Tulsa, OK 74135
Weekdays 11 – 2 & 4-9
Sat 11 – 9:30
Sun 4:30 – 8:30
Greasy New York style pizza.
Albert G's on South Harvard.
2748 South Harvard Ave
Tulsa, OK 74114-5944
This is literally an old gas station converted into a BBQ joint. If you have never had BBQ, you may be shocked when your meat arrives on a plastic tray (no plate) with white bread and side dishes. The smoked chicken dinner is only available on Wednesday and Saturdays. It always sells out.
3410 South Peoria Avenue
Tulsa, OK 74105
Hours: Tues, Wed 10 – 5:30
Thurs, Fri, Sat 10 - 11
This is an amazing coffee and dessert location. They are also open for lunch. Plus, they have a truly gourmet private dinner party one evening a month that you can attend. It’s a prix fix menu developed by chef and owner Steven Howard.
Suggested: Truffles, Chocolate Pot de Crème, Chocolate covered gingersnaps. Order what was baked that day.
Nordaggio’s Coffee Inc
This coffee house serves wonderful gelato. There are two locations in Tulsa.
• 300 Riverwalk Terrace Suite 120, Jenks, OK 74037 (918) 392-9944
Hours: M-F (8:00 am-11:00 pm) Sat. (9:00 am-midnight) Sun.(10:00 am-11:00 pm
)• 8156C South Lewis Avenue, Tulsa, OK 74137 918) 296-5288
Hours: M-F (7:00 am-midnight) Sat (9:00 am-1:00 am) Sun.(10:00 am-midnight)
White River Fish Market
1708 N Sheridan Rd
Tulsa, OK 74115
Hours: Monday – Thursday till 8pm, Friday and Saturday till 8:30 pm
Founded in 1932, this seafood restaurant is a true landmark. The fresh fish is on display as you order your meal. Fish dinners come with 2 sides and their fried hush puppies. Folks in overalls eat alongside folks in suits on wooden benches.
This place is near the airport so it’s perfect to visit before or after a flight.
1834 Utica Square
Tulsa, OK 74114
Hours: M-F 7:00am-7:00pm
A landmark for ladies who lunch. Queenies has wonderful salads, soups and homemade desserts. The service is better if you take-out!
Decent Brunch when entertaining Guests
1301 E. 15th St
Tulsa, OK 74120
Hours: Tues.-Thurs. 11:00am-2:30 pm and 5:30 pm-10:00 pm
Fri. & Sat. 11:00am-2:30 & 5:30 pm-11:00 pm
Sundays 9:00am-2:00pm, Closed on Monday
La Villa Restaurant At Philbrook (at the Philbrook Museum
)2727 South Rockford Road
Tulsa, OK 74114
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 11am-2pm
Sunday Brunch 11am-2pm
A beautiful setting for a meal. Come early to brunch so they don’t run out of your favorite dessert!
Thai Food, Sushi
We cannot recommend any restaurants. There are plenty of decent picks but nothing stellar.
Specialty Food Stores
Laxmi Spices of India
5555 East 41st Street, Tulsa, OK 74135
Hours: Mon.-Sat. 11:30am-8:00pm, Sunday 11:00am-6:00pm
Indian grocery store for pantry and freezer staples
Tulsa Oriental Market
11320 East 21st Street, Tulsa, OK 74129
Hours: Everyday from 9:30am-8:00pm
Authentic asian market for pantry items and fresh produce.
La Donna's Fancy Foods
1523 E 15th St
Tulsa, OK 74120
(918) 582-1523 Hours: M-Tues-W-F: 10:00am-6:00pm Thurs. 10:00am-8:00pm Sat. 9:00am-5:00pm Closed on Sunday
Wonderful cheeses, chocolate, teas and specialty ingredients. Don’t leave without their cocoa powder and Callebaut chocolate chips.
1748 Utica Square
Tulsa, OK 74114
Hours: Tues.-Sat. 10:00am-7:00pm Closed on Sun. and Mon.
Excellent quality meat and fish to cook at home plus pre-made items like pate.
Wild Oats – Soon to be Whole Foods….
1401 E. 41st St
Tulsa, OK 74105
Hours: Everyday from 8:00am-10:00pm
Center 1 Market
35th and Peoria
This market features offerings from Dawsons Market, Farrel Family Organic Bread, Petals & Soup and Nuyaka Natural Farm.
1441 S. Quaker, Suite A,
Tulsa, OK 74120
Prepared foods to take-out including entrees, soups, salads, dips and baked goods.
re: Brian S
I would point out that Nam Hai is mostly a Vietnamese market.( Only because Brian calls it a little slice of China and that seems a little misleading.)
As to the new place on 31st and 129th, It's OK. It is trying to carry more of a multinational variety of goods than other Asian markets in Tulsa ( including a fish counter in the back). I did note the last time that I was there, that much of their frozen seafood originates from China, which I tend to shy away from , due to questions about sustainability and fishery practices.
Visting Tulsa last weekend, we had occasion to try both museum restaurants. Philbrook for lunch on Friday was excellent. The setting is lovely as everyone knows, and the food was quite good as well--a fine tortellini special, nice shrimp quesadilla, good grilled chicken salad with dried fruit. Too bad it was 100+ degrees so we did not walk the gardens.
We went to the Osage Room at Gilcrease for Sunday brunch. Although I always visit the museum when I am in Tulsa, we hadn't been to eat there in quite a few years. The view of the Osage Hills is still beautiful. The service was a little disjointed although the maitress d' was clearly trying hard to keep things running smoothly. The food was fine, but mostly mundane. However, the desserts wowed--addictive chocolate chip cookies, assorted cheesecake and tarts, chocolate-dipped marshmallows and fruit kept us coming back for more.
These are both good places for semi-casual occasion dining, although Philbrook did seem to have the advantage.
Thank you so much for an excellent guide, including all the replies! My only disappointment (visiting Tulsa til tomorrow) is that tonight is Sunday and I forgot that once outside of New York City, lots and lots of the good stuff is closed on Sunday evenings! Guess I'll have to wait til next trip for the Tulsa landmarks! I had a decent lunch at Local Table, but was disappointed that there was no info on the ingredients on the very non-local appearing menu... and no Oklahoma wine on the list (I was hoping to try a taste, at least!).
Two of my favorites that aren't mentioned -
Cedar's Deli & Catering
2606 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK, 74129
I don't know what kind of food you'd call it - they have the BEST cabbage rolls and tabouli. Mmm!!!
The Boston Deli Grill & Market
I love that every time I have been there they have something different (Chalkboard specials) And their Pecan Pesto dressing is delicious!!!
Great post. As a spouse to a longtime ex-pat (and yearly visitor to Tulsa) this helped make our trip so much better. We hit a few of the restaurants mentioned and I'd be happy to share my thoughts.
We hit the White River Fish Market right after landing. It was terrific. It was one of the better fish meals that I've ever had, and I've spent lots of time trying to convince people that cant comprehend how the fish can be so fresh in land-locked Tulsa. I had the broiled rainbow trout with just a squeeze of lemon. It didn't need anything else. We sat down near what I assume is the carry out part of the restaurant surrounded by huge cuts of fresh fish on ice. White River is definitely on the list of places to return to next time
We also ate at the Local Table. Very nice decor, not unlike something you'd find in a hip restaurant in Chicago. The servers were casual to the point of seeming hungover, and were not much help with the menu. I too had the cajun meatloaf and the poster above is correct; the meatloaf is great but they somehow made some of the blandest mac and cheese I've ever eaten. The bill for 4 with drinks was only $120 which is quite reasonable for a place that is delivering a pretty high end experience. The desert special was crepes. They were a bit of a letdown
We also went to Albert G's BBQ. Fun little BQ joint. The pork was a little dry but the brisket was fantastic. Ordered a full order b/c it was just a couple of dollars more but couldnt eat more than a half order. The potato salad was basically just a cup of mayonaise but the baked beans were the best I'd ever had. They were in a sort of broth and has some deep, rich spices. I could have eaten a pint of them.
Other spots were less memorable. We'd been to the chalkboard on a prior visit and it was significant only in that it felt like we had taken a time machine to 1970. Beef Wellington, oysters, and a menu and decor that was frozen in time. It almost felt like we were being put on but I think it just hasnt changed with the times.
We always go to Chimi's for mexican food though this was probably the worst meal we've had there. The queso, though, is as good as you can get in Austin, and that means something.
I insisted on having a snack at Coney Islander too. Tiny little hotdogs covered with an almost tasteless chili and cheese. The minced onions help, and it becomes the White Castle of hotdogs, which is either very good or very bad depending on your tastes
Two vegetarian places come to mind immediately. The first is Re-Li on South Lewis. It is the original just relocated and reopened. And I saw a place on Harvard near 36th called PURE. Apparently they are going to be doing a raw vegetarian menu. This is the midwest and Oklahoma, not too many pure vegetarians here but everyone does eat a lot of vegetables. I can hardly wait for the Cherry Street Farmers Market to reopen the first weekend of April. Then I have to wait till July for the first tomatoes.
After reading your reports along with so many other's about White River Fish Market and Restaurant I must hasten my trip to your fair city,I'm a transplant from Miami who sorely misses her seafood, been to Kansas and St louis haven't seen a market as what was shown on there web site, tell me is the seafood really that good???? I'm bringing a cooler with me to load up,am only coming to tulsa for the food so please help me would like the name of a good bakery that still makes good bread also any good meat market's around???? and would I be hoping for too much to ask if there is a german deli. thank you .
Welcome here on your food trip. May I suggest some of the following places for a stop if you have a cooler to fill up. I'm not big into bakeries, but there is a german deli in there! Most have their line ups and prices on their website so you can see if anything appeals to you.
Well I hope you both enjoy your trip, and more importantly give us a report on where you go and what you try and how good it is. Answering your post made me go back over those favorite websites and made me wonder why i haven't been to those places lately. Its so easy to get caught up in the day to day, and forget to go try some of the neat places that are right here in our own city. I think I'll be making a stop in at Siegi's and Bruner's myself this week.
will definetly give an update on trip to your city, this week is the dreaded tax week, so I won't be going till next tuesday or wednesday as that's when white river has their lobster special, can't miss out on that. ha-haaa.You know the old saying the eyes are bigger than the stomach,cause I'mm planning to pig out.
Hi all. I'm a Kansas native, but been living in and around Tulsa for the past 15 years. As far as breakfast goes, I second the Jimmy's Egg nomination. Can't beat their thick "home-made" toast. While technically it is a "chain," it is a relatively small local chain, and it seems like their waitresses stay around a long time and the food is consistant. Other breakfast recommendations would include Brookside by Day and Ollie's Station for a buffet on Saturday and Sundays. The former, for a more trendy see and be seen breakfast, the latter particularly if you have small kids in your party, as the restaurant also is a train memorabilia museum and has toy trains running all around the ceilings of the restaurant.
I lived in Tulsa from 1995-2000. I remember my favorite Thai restaurant was on or close to 31st and Sheridan, on the Sheridan side of a strip mall-- cannot remember the name, but the green curry chicken and Thom Kha Gai were fantastic. Are Flavor's and Bodean's closed? I remember them being good as well, and I loved the eggs benny and biscuits and gravy at the brunch at the Green Onion. Also I think there was a restaurant in Utica Square called the Wild Fork? That was delicious creative food, for the "ladies who lunch" crowd.
That would be Thai Siam, and it's still there, though the strip mall is slowly sinking into oblivion. It is tucked into the corner and is hard to miss, but you are right - food is still incredible (Pad Thai, spring rolls, etc.)
Otherwise, I am surprised the following weren't mentioned:
Binh Le (Vietnamese) - the son of Ri. Is an "extension" of the Ri Le that shut down on 31st/ Harvard. Is across the street from the strip mall mentioned above, on 31st/ Sheridan (on 31st, east of Sheridan). Exact same menu
Mary's Italia Trattoria - 15th and Peoria. I am a transplanted NY Italian, and this is by far the best Italian fare I've had since living in OK. Their veal dishes, their red sauce, etc. are incredible (though they have a weak wine list, and you don't go there expecting the best of service, though is OK). Even my mom loves their food, and Italian matrons, if you don't know any, are notoroiously jealous and critical of any food, except their own.
Umberto's Pizza - 21st and Harvard. About three years ago, I would have sworn by Mario's on 51st/ Harvard, but they have become very off and on. One night, their pizza rocks, the next, wouldn't give it to my pets. NYC - approx 46th and Harvard, is worth mentioning.
I've heard of a place in BA called Uncle Vinny's that three different people have sworn by, but I have not had the chance to drop by.
Ricebowl - approx 44th and Sheridan, in strip mall across from Sam's. This place must be Tulsa's best kept Chinese food secret. After our local fave went to hell in a handbasket years ago, my wife and I spent a couple years trying about every Chinese place in town. Rice Bowl is incredible - very fresh food, no MSG. If you get the vegetarian egg rolls, they seem to be made to order, and the General Tso's chicken is awesome. My wife swear's by the Buddhist's delight and the hot and sour soup - "best (she's) ever had."
Sidenote: Halim and Mimi's was sold off recently, as original owners retired.
Flavors is gone, it has been replace by Michael Fusco's Riverside. He moved to a new location on Riverside Drive called King's Landing next to where the Creek crosses the Arkansas. Pretty swanky I thought.
Another Indian restaurant is called Desi Wok on Hudson across the street from Bishop Kelley High School. Great place for a quick and tasty meal.
Another new place, KEO on S Peoria at the other end of the building that has Lava Noshery and Center 1 Market. Asian in that they do dishes from several countries around Southwest Asia. I am hooked on the Crispy Beef Curry Wontons appetizer. And the Pho is very good also.
Just spent the last six weeks in Tulsa, visiting family. Had a wonderful cup of real hot chocolate (mostly liquefied chocolate) at Kokoa's. Oh, it was good!
Would gently suggest that people note the difference between Mexican, Tex-Mex and Sonoran Mexican when speaking of restaurants, as it would avoid unpleasant surprises for some. That aside, El Rio Verde, Senor Taquila's (51st and Harvard location) and Cafe Lindo were worthy excursions.
Also noticed that nothing has been said about the BBQ places on the North Side. Unfortunately, it's been several years since I've eaten in the North Side, but we used to go to Lattimer's and Reed's all the time. Good stuff. And not a Q place, but Phil's was definitely the greasy spoon to go to. . .
And Jimmy Egg's serves a very day-fueling breakfast.
I'd skip Jamil's. It has gone down hill in the last couple of years and the last time I ate there, it was truly disgusting. Not even the steak could pull it out. Terrible food. My understanding is they're just waiting for the closure of the restaurant due to the widening of I-44 and then they're done. It was a Tulsa institution, but it's over.
On the other hand, I checked in here to tell anyone looking for food in Tulsa that I had one of the finest meals of my life this evening at India Corner.
It's been mentioned above and it's not a place you'll appreciate for its decor or ambiance, but talk to the folks who run it and you'll be charmed and enchanted as I was.
Most importantly, though, is the food. Oh. My. Stars. The food! We usually get the buffet because it's good, quick and gives us that Indian fix we crave.
Because it's icy in Tulsa tonight, they had closed up the buffet, so the four of us just sat down and ordered randomly from the menu and asked for suggestions from the owners. They have a "snack" section of the menu, and appetizers, of course, so we ended up with four main dishes and four snack/appetizers, a couple of different kinds of bread.
I don't think I'll ever go back to the buffet again, tasty as it is. This food was exquisite, all of it. The complexity of the flavors and the layer upon layer of spice and the richness and contrast of the textures ~ outstanding. It was food as crack: addictive, powerful, memorable, and now we just want more.
We had Chicken Shahi Korma, a boneless chicken cooked in cream and mild spices. It was mild, but so richly flavored that I wanted to simply hold this in my mouth. It was incredible how the flavors were layered one upon the other ~ exquisite. A new favorite.
We had the Dahi Puri, a crisp puri stuffed with onion, potato, garbanzo beans, yogurt and a spicy tamarind chutney. Again, this was unexpected and the flavors just exploded. They call it "Indian sushi" and I would have sworn there was some kind of meat in it. It was served cold with a splash of yogurt and the chutney making it explode in my mouth.
Aloo Tikki was, again, superb. A fried potato patty spiced with green chili and onion and topped with another kind of chutney. Very rich, chewy, an exceptional dish I'll order again and again.
We had Beef Kofta Curry ~ again, an exceptionally rich and flavorful dish, and Chickey Biryani, chicken cooked with basmati rice, nuts, raisins, and the ever present spices which gave it a heat and depth.
Paneer Masala was a dish of spiced masala and a cheese the owners make on the premises. We had it with paratha ~ a puffed fried bread, delicious.
These were all amazing dishes. We loved every one of them. If I had to choose among them, I'd go with the Chicken Shahi Korma, the paneer masala, the dahi puri and the aloo tikki.
I've got to have these dishes again, but given our experience this evening, of visiting at length with the owners over the menu and asking for recommendations, but also making our own leaps based on the ingredients given on the menu, I'll be redoing this exploration as often as possible.
We've eaten at a lot of Indian restaurants and this one is by far better than any others. It beats the other locals hands down ~ not in atmosphere or decor, mind you, but in incredible cookery and knowledge of ingredients. I asked the owners why their food is so different and they said that they just cook as they'd cook for themselves. They don't "dumb it down" for Americans. It's the same food they'd eat in India and it is superb.
Hello from Denver! I'm an Oklahoma native about to return to relocate back to Tulsa. I am a vegetarian (although I will eat fish about once a month if it is good) and am looking for suggestions on good vegetarian options. It looks like there are maybe two vegetarian restaurants in town, with vegetarian items on menus at various spots around the city. Any suggestions for where to find the best: Eggplant or Seitan Parmesan, quinoa dishes, pasta dishes, etc? I'm also into healthy foods, so while french fries are vegetarian, they aren't necessarily my idea of a meal! :-)
Another Tulsa ex-pat chiming in. I was in town over the weekend, and dined Friday night at the Local Table. Good stuff, and decent wine list. I had the most tender black pepper-crusted steak sandwich ever! My brother and sister-in-law both had steaks which looked and smelled very good. My husband had the creole meat loaf, which was very spicy and tasty, but it was accompanied by some rather bland mac & cheese.
Sunday we had brunch at La Villa at the Philbrook. One word: outstanding! Elegant but not stuffy, great egg dishes, wonderful bacon, crisp waffles and tasty biscuits and gravy. The fruit was fresh (especially for January!), and the grilled veggies fantastic. My only regret was that I did not get to sample every single item on the buffet (The prime rib looked wonderful, as did the salmon). I live in Chicago, and take my brunch VERY seriously, and this is hands-down one of the best brunches (buffet or no) I have ever had.
hey janmart ~ sorry i missed this earlier. You can't beat the vegetarian menu at India Corner, which I discussed above. Also Bin-Le between Sheridan & Yale on 31st St. across from a now defunct $1 movie. It's not all vegetarian, but lots of veggie selections.
An old favorite is Big Al's ~ again, not all vegetarian, but many, many classic old hippie veggie classics like smoothies, guacamole tacos. Very fresh, very good stuff, healthy and tasty. Great for a quick lunch.
There's an African-influenced restaurant out on Lewis near 71st St. The name slips my mind at the moment, but ordering from their menu, you'll find vegetarian selections and I believe they had a number of quinoa dishes. Also goat, very bony and well flavored, but not up your alley.
Sonoma Bistro - opened about 2 weeks ago in what used to be Prive, used to be Gill's, used to be Bistro (am I forgetting anything?). Deli-like ambience, rough service (though they get some leeway here due to still-recent opening). Small, charming menu - but unfortunately wansn't executed well at all. Steak too chewy, salmon distinctly not fresh tasting. Stellar wine list but, after ordering, learned they were out of the one new one I wanted to try. Run by the Brassiere folks, so I assume they'll improve and will try again. Not a hit the first time out, though.
Just a few restaurants you might think of trying...
Margarets at the Farm (German)
Brownie's at 21st and Harvard & Claude's at 38th and Peoria (hamburgers)
Grumpy's Garden east of 15th and Peoria (smoked hot dogs, polish sausage, etc)
Dalesandro's at 18th and Boston and Mary's at 15th and Peoria (Italian)
Lola's at the Bowery in the Brady district (tapas)
Thyme at 31st and Harvard (new American)
Elmer's at 42nd and Peoria and Hickory House in Sapulpa (BBQ)
Talking Drum at 71st and Lewis (African, Caribbean, and Italian)
Thanks to you and Brian S, my few weeks in Tulsa were far more enjoyable than my initial dread when I learned I would be working on-site there.
I can definitely second your Brasserie listing. Even though you classified it as "Dressy", I must admit that by your specific description of it, my impression of it is that of an almost-fast-food French cafe, if based solely on what you typed in its synposis.
I invite anyone looking for ouststanding French food and "stuck" in Tulsa to give the website a fair lookover.
Also, being from LA which has a sushi restaurant on every street on the Westside, I'd contend that Sushi Train off the 64/51 (Harvard exit maybe, I can't remember anymore) really isn't that bad. We went in with nearly no expectations, but the freshness of the fish was above-average, and everything else tasted OK.
Thank you for taking the time to write this. It must have taken your whole Labor Day weekend! I've spent a lot of time in Tulsa over the years, and have come to love it... so much so that when I'm back in New York I keep on boasting to people about how much better this is in Tulsa, how great that is in Tulsa etc.
I've posted a few posts on Tulsa which might complement yours. The first two focus on barbecue and on Tulsa landmarks. Some of the info might be outdated, but most is current. Things change more slowly than they do back East.