New Options in the Urban Core
February’s foods to seek out
The Midtown Neighborhood Jam opened Feb. 1, bringing the popular breakfast-brunch concept from Hal Smith Restaurant Group to the urban core. This is the fourth location for Neighborhood Jam, with three in the metro and one in Tulsa. The Midtown spot is in a new building off NW 11th and Dewey that occupies the space that was the long-time home to Boulevard Cafeteria. Importantly for the urban core, especially a district as congested as Midtown, a large parking area is located on the north side of the building.
Neighborhood Jam serves breakfast, brunch and lunch, with coffee from Topeca Coffee in Tulsa, and a full bar of coffee and specialty cocktails. One of the tastiest features is the rotating draft latte, which for opening was a toasted Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal milk latte. Its delicious taste combined with its ease of service – it’s on tap so no wait – means it should be a high volume option.
The menu includes brunch items like waffles, pancakes and Benedicts, the latter of which includes a Corn Cake Benny with jalapeno pepper jam and pulled pork. The cakes themselves are so good, they should probably come in a basket with butter, like the certified famous biscuits. A gluten free menu is available, as is a section on healthier eating – Neighborhood Watch – that includes a bison power bowl. HSRG continues to be the rare dining group that regularly offers bison options.
Neighborhood Jam is open seven days a week from 6:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., meaning they are one of the few early morning breakfast options in the urban core.
The Omni Oklahoma City Hotel
Four of the food-beverage concepts in the new Omni Oklahoma City Hotel opened on Jan. 26. The hotel adjacent to Scissortail Park will have seven concepts when fully open, but one – a poolside bar with a view of the park – will be seasonal. For now, the primary food options are at OKC Tap House and Bob’s Steak & Chop House. The Tap House is a beer-centric sports bar that faces Scissortail on the west and the Chesapeake Arena on the north, making it pre- and post-game central for Thunder fans in a post-COVID world. Local beers abound, as does good, hearty food like burgers, nachos and pizzas, with the added perk of chef-driven options like charred octopus with harissa hummus and brick roasted cauliflower.
Bob’s is a corporate partner with Omni Hotels, so they can be found in other cities where they’ve earned a reputation as an excellent fine-dining steakhouse with delicious food, a thorough if familiar wine list centered on popular California brands, and great service. The menu will be familiar to fans of Oklahoma City steakhouses: prime steaks, chops, seafood, and lamb with comfort-food-based sides like onion rings, sautéed mushrooms and creamed corn.
The Basin Bar is located in the beautiful, expansive lobby, and works as an after-work happy hour destination for the serious cocktail drinker, or as a waiting area for Bob’s or Seltzer’s (when it opens). A menu of small plates means you can get a snack to share or fend off hunger until your table is ready. Park Grounds is the coffee shop on the west side of the hotel, facing the park. A small selection of pastries from La Baguette is available, as are gelatos and other packaged snacks. Double Double, the walk-up burger concept, will open seasonally, like the Catbird Seat pool bar.