In 2017, I reviewed a full 52 or so restaurants. This year, however, with the four or five month forced-sabbatical, I don’t think that this year I exactly made that number.
Still, my dire commitment to find the obscure, obtuse and outré restaurants (and other assorted dining establishments) in Oklahoma City—and beyond—that many others disregard or, even worse, discount, was in absolute full-force. I feel that, in this regard, it was probably the best year ever for coveted eats at the Lost Ogle. I was even interviewed for the Steve Reynolds Program, per the picture above.
So when choosing a handful of my top criticisms and commentaries for 2018, while yes, most of these restaurants are from the second half of the year, I feel these scant selections were some of my most inspired reviews, piercing love letters (or letter bombs) to the different cafes, canteens and chophouses that, if you blatantly missed it the first time, will hopefully take you into the new year the second.
A lonely place of frying along the sad landing strip of stripper’s row, at 4700 W. Reno Ave. this perpetually empty parking lot hides a secret treasure inside of wonderfully landlocked seafood, from the usually fried lakeside delectables to affordable boil-in-a-bag shrimp with enough fixings to give you the bends.
My visit to the steadfast OKC relic Chow’s, 3033 N. May, was an unusually bittersweet one, where I lamentably enjoyed chilled pig-ears and pan-fried pork stomach while solemnly reminiscing about my old friend Dzi Nguyen, who had just recently passed away.
While your mileage may vary, Chow’s will always hold a special place for me, in both my heart and my stomach.
Some of the most original, most delicious and yes, most Indigenous, food in Oklahoma isn’t in restaurants or diners—it’s in the recreational rooms of area churches and makeshift kitchens of community centers. The oldest intertribal organization in the state, the OKC Pow Wow Club, holds monthly Indian Taco fundraisers where their legendary Pow Wow Burger is always a top-dollar item.
In addition to the fundraisers--including one in February--over the next few months there are also a couple of dances you should probably check out. I might go and stand on my own, and leave on my own, and go home and cry and want to die.
The power of Christ compels you…to seek out this blessed church and their holy barbeque! With the Pastor dutifully manning the grill, the congregation at 1125 NE 36th came together to praise his name and raise some money for their Brotherhood Ministry. Big slabs of ribs, flame-broiled chicken and grilled brats were on the menu, giving the area BBQ joints in town a definite run for their filthy lucre.
Take a drive to the Northeast part of town some Saturday…it’ll be a true blessing from above if they’re out front.
The last big critique of 2018, what a muy perfecto way to cap the year off right; hidden from prying eyes at 2106 SW 44th, Naylamp is a Southside secret that specializes in Latin frailties such as plantains, yucca and their rotisserie-based Pollo a la Brasa special, feeding a family of quatro for under twenty bucks.
And while they don’t serve el roedor gigante dish cuy—you probably wouldn’t order it anyway, let's be honest—Naylamp’s pollo is probably the best in the city. At least it is for this year.