Ever Flexible, Always Exceptional at Nonesuch - 405 Magazine

Ever Flexible, Always Exceptional at Nonesuch

Garrett Hare elevates the Nonesuch experience.

Yuzu olive oil ice cream inside a meringue bowl with strawberry curd, sorrel vinegar gels, white balsamic pickled strawberry, fresh mint and strawberry granita from Nonesuch in OKC.

Yuzu olive oil ice cream inside a meringue bowl with strawberry curd, sorrel vinegar gels, white balsamic pickled strawberry, fresh mint and strawberry granita. Photo by Rachel Maucieri.

Garrett Hare elevates the Nonesuch experience.

From a menu perspective, the method at Nonesuch is very counterintuitive. Most restaurateurs consider specific holes to fill: burger, chicken, steak, kid’s menu, vegetarian options, etc. The process begins with entrees. Not at Nonesuch.

“Dishes usually begin being conceptualized as we start seeing produce,” executive chef Garrett Hare said. “An ingredient tends to get the ball rolling. Whenever we are putting away produce on Saturdays, we start floating some ideas.”

Hare received formal culinary training at the International Culinary Center in New York City and then completed an externship at Babbo before moving to Colorado. After working at Panzano and Tavernetta in Colorado, Hare returned to his native Oklahoma City — he grew up in Moore — to take the gig at Nonesuch.

“Coming back to Oklahoma City was not something I had in the cards,” Hare said. “I was going through some personal struggles. I had my eye on Nonesuch for a while, and when I got back, I didn’t contact very many restaurants when I returned. I wanted Nonesuch, and I wanted to make sure it was a sound decision.”

He started working as a line cook in April 2021, learning the ins and outs of a very atypical kitchen and methodology. “The environment at Nonesuch was something completely foreign,” he said. “I remember arriving to work to heavy metal being blasted and being tucked away in a corner nervously picking garnishes.”

The challenge at Nonesuch — as with any tasting menu restaurant — has been to produce food as delicious as it is beautiful. Hare won’t be the one to say it, but the restaurant seems to be reaching its potential under his leadership. He is quick to share the praise, though.

“Whenever Tuesday comes around, chef de cuisine and pastry chef Madison Petry and I will work on ideas and come to a place where we feel confident,” Hare said. “The menu is free-flowing and allows for input from everyone on the team. Trevor Crabtree has been in charge of our bread program for a while; he has put a couple of different courses together. I tend to do the majority of the savory courses, while Maddie takes on the dessert side of the menu, and everyone pitches in to fine-tune each dish.”

Everything at Nonesuch is sourced as locally as possible, and definitely within Oklahoma. Hare said the limitation of sticking to Oklahoma proteins and produce is a challenge, but he calls it a “blessing” as well, given that it forces him to be creative with what’s available. It’s also why you won’t see popular items like halibut and scallops — staples of high-end dining — on the menu. As for seasonality, Hare said he’s moved away from changing the menu seasonally in favor of letting dishes evolve according to availability and creativity.

“My main objective at Nonesuch regarding the menu is to rely on our purveyors and showcase whatever is available, at any given time,” he said. “Some dishes only stay on the menu for a night depending upon availability. We will let some dishes continue evolving on the menu, while the ones we feel less confident with continue to change until we feel great about them. We are always striving to improve the guest experience.”

The relationships with local farms and ranches keep the menu stocked full of Oklahoma flowers, meat and produce. Hare rattles off a list of the restaurant’s long-standing and even new relationships: Sam Forbes, Prairie Earth Gardens, Leatherwood, Ward, Bootstrap, Rooted Farms, Wellness Connections, LWJs Catfish, Comanche, etc. The menu stays fresh and interesting thanks to the creativity of the team and the quality and freshness of sourcing locally.

Guests are quick to highlight one of the features at Nonesuch that enhances their dining experience: Each dish is presented by a chef, so the explanation of what they’re enjoying is thorough and accurate. If you want a word that describes the Nonesuch experience — beyond the beautiful interior with its brilliant use of negative space to highlight the food — it’s meticulous. Tasting Hare’s food is an adventure, and even difficult tasks, like balancing bitterness, are done with rigor and skill. The bitterness weaves through the dishes without overwhelming the palate; it’s the kind of detail that makes you pause and think about what you’re eating, and that’s rare enough these days.

Executive chef Garrett Hare
Bison tenderloin, charred romaine and onion, brown butter roasted kohlrabi and bison demi-glace
Braised radish, raw turnip, sugar snap peas, charred cauliflower and amazake puree, and fermented green tomato foam
Nonesuch’s design is purposefully minimal to keep the focus on the food.

Photos by Rachel Maucieri