What started as a trip to Mulhall, OK for lunch ended with a visit to the very unique Stables Cafe in downtown Guthrie, OK
Aaron and I had been talking about going to lunch at Lucille’s since last summer. I had been there before, and raved about the food, but for some reason we never made it there. So we finally made plans to go the Tuesday before Christmas. As we were headed there I pulled up the website to confirm the address, and found out it’s only open Thursday – Saturday. I was so bummed, but at the same time very happy that we figured that out before we had made it too far. We made a quick change and instead went to DaVinci’s in town, since I hadn’t written a blog post. Fast forward a month, and we headed to Lucille’s at about 10:30 on Saturday morning so we could be there when it opened at 11. As we pulled up, we first saw the “for sale” signs in the windows. We didn’t panic, thinking that maybe they were just in the process of trying to sell. Then we saw the white pieces of paper taped to the door. Bad sign. I went to the window and looked in, and the dessert counter was gone. Really bad sign. Apparently they had been trying to sell the place for months, and had completely closed down the week before. We were mad and hungry. Neither of us had eaten breakfast so that we would have plenty of room for lunch. We were only about 12 miles from Guthrie, so we decided to try Stables Cafe. This was the first time either of us had ever taken this back route to Guthrie, and it covered winding roads and a pretty nice view. I’m sure it’s much prettier in the summer when everything is in bloom.
Stables Cafe is about 2 blocks from downtown Guthrie. I’ve driven past it every time I go to town, and had always thought about eating there, but never took the plunge. I had heard both good and bad things, but wanted to make my own decision. The inside looks like an antique shop, with knick knacks, signs, and pictures literally everywhere…walls, counters, tables, everything. There was also a very random combination of music. It started as country, moved to 80’s pop, and as we were finishing up it switched to Sinatra.
We arrived about 11:30, and there were only a couple of other tables of guests. The dining room itself is a pretty decent size, with a combination of booths and tables. The dining room has several separate sections, including Tap Room 223. The Tap Room is an adults-only section that was added in 2012, and features 22 craft beers, a bar, and a more quiet dining space. The space can also be rented out for private functions.
One of the negative things I had heard several times was that the service can be extremely slow. After we were seated it took several minutes for our server to arrive, and I was worried we were going to get hit with that slow service. She immediately apologized, saying she didn’t realize that we had been seated in her section. After that, she was very attentive, helpful and friendly.
The Stables Cafe menu is pretty large, and they offer a lot of options. What I really like is that the prices are very reasonable, especially for the portion sizes. It’s also a very unique menu, as they cover everything: burgers, salads, South of the Border, spaghetti, BBQ, seafood, and chicken.
We were starving, so we started with the mini onion rings
I got these because when I saw “mini”, I thought that meant a smaller portion. Boy was I wrong. This was a massive mound of onions! But they came out screaming hot, perfectly fried, and the batter was delicious. I was mindlessly eating them, as I do with chips & salsa at Mexican restaurants. Very dangerous.
Aaron had his heart set on chicken fried steak from the start, so that’s what he got
I tried a bite of his steak, and it was delicious. It was a huge portion, and he took close to half of it home.
Stables Cafe offers their “famous salad bar”. I have to admit, I was more than a little hesitant about it. I love salad bars, but I wasn’t sure it would live up to its name at Stables. You can get all-you-can-eat for one price, or add one trip through the bar with your entree for a small charge. Aaron added one trip through, to check it out
How awesome is this display?! I didn’t even see it until after we were done eating, and so of course I had to get pictures. Aaron got a few of the pasta salads, and they were all really good. And when I tagged on Facebook that we were there, one of my friends said the salad bar was her favorite part. Lesson learned…don’t judge. I was wrong, and I can admit that.
I don’t do well with large menus, so of course I couldn’t decide what to get. I narrowed my focus to burgers or BBQ, and with the help of my server, finally decided on the hickory jack pepper bacon burger with fries. They make both to order, which I love. I wish more restaurants would do that.
The fries were exactly how I like them: scorching hot, crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. I got the hickory sauce on the side, because I wasn’t sure I would like it. Well, it was fantastic. It actually reminded me of a sweet chili sauce. I ended up using it as a dipping sauce for my fries. The burger was delicious. The meat was seasoned very well, and the bacon was perfectly cooked. I will say I was disappointed in the burger bun. It wasn’t stale, but it definitely wasn’t fresh.
Our server asked if we wanted dessert. No chance, especially since we both took leftovers to go. We had seen the list of desserts on the menu. They don’t skimp on the dessert options, and they are displayed in a case as you walk in
We very briefly considered getting a piece to go, but decided it wouldn’t be a good idea.
Will I go back to Stables Cafe? Yes! The food was delicious, the atmosphere was very cool, and I want to check out Tap Room 223.