In a big, bright stucco building just off the highway, chefs at Victor’s Chile Mercado Mexican Grill are hard at work recreating Mexican flavors as well as American-influenced Tex-Mex dishes. They blend fresh salsa several times a day and hand-roll pork tamales according to the traditional Mexican method of using fresh masa and wearing giant foam hands. The guacamole is fresh, too—servers mash each order tableside from Haas avocados. House specialties include crispy carnitas with fried onions and peppers and bacon-wrapped steak chile rellenos, but the menu also abounds with staples including burritos, enchiladas, and tacos.
Attempts to sip a cupcake up a straw rarely succeed, but the staff of The Cupcake Lounge encourages customers to try with their Cherry Limeade cupcake. The confection is made of a lime-infused cake base topped with whipped cherry frosting and comes garnished with a lime slice and a tiny straw.
This drink-inspired treat is one of only 10 cupcake flavors the shop stocks daily. The rest of the menu is a rotation of funkier flavors, including a banana cupcake with a Hershey’s Kiss hidden inside and crowned with peanut-butter frosting. For further sweet treats, diners can nibble at an array of cookies or sip espresso creations infused with amaretto, hazelnut, and other flavors. The bakery also caters to sweet teeth with classes that teach students how to adorn a cake without just stacking another cake on top of it.
The owners and chefs at Santa Fe Cattle rely on old family recipes that demand steaks are aged and cut in-house, rolls are baked fresh each day, and signature sauces are mixed onsite. These touches transform the menu’s casual, regional eats into dishes worthy of John Wayne’s personal dressing-room buffet. Steaks, fajitas, and sliders are plated next to housemade sides of cole slaw, Santa Fe taters, and of course, a bucket of peanuts—which guests shuck directly onto the floor. The peanut shells add character to each one of the restaurant’s 20 locations, which evoke old-west saloons with touches such as brick walls draped in horse saddles and weathered wooden floors.
Wings to Go's fresh, daily-made traditional or boneless wings are available by the bucket and come with bleu cheese, celery, and your choice of 20 sauces. Nab a bucket of 10 with one flavor ($6.99), or fuel a four-hour CHiPS marathon with 30 succulent winglets flavored with up to two sauces ($20.79). Standard wing sauces range from smooth and buttery mild to a tongue-scalding extra hot. Specialty sauces run the gamut of regional American flavor, including hickory-infused honey barbecue and Cajun-spiced hot sauce, and teriyaki and curry sauces fly palates over the Pacific without the pesky jetlag or mid-flight alien abduction.
Dickey’s Barbecue Pit has smoked beef brisket in-house nearly every night since 1941, painting each morsel with a tangy house-made sauce. Pulled pork, turkey breast, and polish sausage round out the menu with meals that are heartier than a burrito wrapped in Paul Bunyan’s plaid shirt. Boxed lunches and catered buffets brim with homestyle sides such as coleslaw, mac 'n' cheese, and jalapeño beans. Once the last pickle has been crunched and the last finger has been licked, guests can savor one of the restaurant’s most cherished traditions: a vanilla cone, on the house.
Ron Baber has expanded his eponymous franchise from a single 10-seat stand to a 20-strong chain of burger joints by tapping into his greasy-spoon ethic and passion for delicious hamburgers. Thanks to his keen attention to detail, which includes topping the still-grilling patties with buns to soak up beefy juices, Ron has earned a recurring spot on Urban Tulsa Weekly's The Absolute Best of Tulsa list and a loyal following. His burgers come in 1/5-pound, 1/3-pound, and 2/3-pound sizes, and showcase such savory toppings as Owens hot sausage, jalapeño peppers, and the eatery’s signature chili.