Oklahoma — Food and Restaurants
All that riding on the range makes people in Oklahoma mighty hungry, and the restaurants don’t skimp when they pile up the plates. From Tulsa to Oklahoma City, and every town in between, the dining scene leans heavily towards All-American fare. There are plenty of diners along Route 66 and steakhouses in the city. Oklahoma is a great state to focus on the classics like chicken-fried steak, barbecue, and mashed potatoes. Buffalo is one of the unique meats on offer here. As for entertainment, you should stick with the big cities if you want any diversity in your nightlife.
Bars and Pubbing in Oklahoma
The downtown part of Oklahoma City is one of the best places in the state to spend an evening out. Its renovated historic warehouse district called Bricktown is the center of the action, with a solid range of bars, dance clubs, and restaurants. Adding to the pleasant atmosphere of Bricktown is a mile-long canal that cuts right through it. Water taxis run boat cruises and a statue-lined pathway offers nice strolling between drinks. The Bricktown Brewery (1 N. Oklahoma Ave, Oklahoma City) is a superb venue for craft beers and tasty barbecue. On weekends you’ll get live music thrown in. Another hot spot in downtown Oklahoma City is Citywalk (70 N. Oklahoma Ave, Oklahoma City) where seven bars and clubs get rowdy from Friday to Sunday.
Tulsa is another fun city to explore after dark, especially its Blue Dome District that spreads out around Route 66 in the downtown core. Among the dozen or so bars in this neighborhood are McNellie’s Public House (409 E. 1st Street, Tulsa) with its 350 beers on the menu and The Max Retropub (114 S. Elgin Ave, Tulsa), a funky arcade-style drinking spot that will appeal to people in their 40s. Tulsa’s Brady Arts District is another good part of town, particularly if you enjoy country western music. Venues like Cain’s Ballroom (423 N. Main St, Tulsa) have been dishing up live western swing music for decades. Oklahoma bars typically close up by 2:00 a.m.
Dining and Cuisine in Oklahoma
There is some seriously good food in Oklahoma that reflects its geography. The Tex-Mex, Mexican, and diner-style comfort grub is fantastic and usually very affordable. You can try a bison steak, a hand-cut piece of prime beef, or a variety of the state’s famous barbecue in most towns of size. In Tulsa, head to the 15th Street South strip known as Cherry Street, the Blue Dome District, or the Brookside District for plenty of dining options. Most locals will vouch for Elmer’s Barbecue (4130 S. Peoria, Tulsa) including President Bill Clinton, while the Mahogany Prime Steakhouse (6823 S. Yale Ave, Tulsa) is the top spot for quality steaks and seafood.
The legendary Route 66 runs right through the center of Tulsa and many other towns in Oklahoma, offering many tempting diners for a cheap diner-style meal. Tally’s Good Food Café (1102 S. 49th Ave, Tulsa) is a vintage diner gem not to be missed. Oklahoma City has the bulk of the dining options in the state, with hundreds of eateries spread across its distinct districts. Get your authentic Mexican in Capitol Hill District and your Asian fare in the Asia District. The city’s most famous restaurant is Cattlemen’s Steakhouse (1309 S. Agnew, Oklahoma City), a meat-lovers institution since 1910. They don’t take reservations, but any wait for their hand-cut and aged steaks is well worth it. Western Avenue is a good strip for dining as well, with a few standouts like the Metro Wine Bar & Grill (6418 N. Western Ave, Oklahoma City) with its intriguing fusion menu and huge wine list.