For a unique dining experience in Tulsa, visit Chopsticks Restaurant. Enjoy Classic Chinese favorites, as well Chinese & Korean special dishes.
Over the past 2 years, I’ve developed a very close group of friends in Stillwater. We’re all about the same age, and even though a few have kids, we all still enjoy doing adult funtivities together. The down side is that the options of fun things in Stillwater are limited. We always talk about doing more things in OKC and Tulsa, but never really find out about them until after the fact.
Two weeks ago I created a Facebook list of groups/pages that are dedicated to activities in and around OKC and Tulsa. Last Wednesday I was scrolling through, and saw that the Fleet Feet Half Marathon was coming up on Saturday morning in Tulsa. I was planning to run 10 miles Saturday morning and then go to Tulsa for Bedlam Baseball that evening anyway. So I figured why not run 3 extra miles and get a medal?! Judging by the reaction of my friends when I told them, I’m the only one who thought that logic made sense.
On Thursday I went to Tulsa to pick up the race packet at the Fleet Feet on 61st, which just happens to be just a few blocks from Chopsticks Restaurant. I had visited Chopsticks once before, and my camera wasn’t cooperating and the pictures were horrible. So this was the perfect opportunity to visit again for lunch.
Chopsticks is located in a strip mall complex in South Tulsa. When I first pulled into the parking lot I didn’t see the restaurant at all, and for a minute thought that it had closed down. But this strip mall is huge, with 3 large buildings and business all the way around, and I just hadn’t found the right building. As I turned the corner and saw Chopsticks, I also saw that it was next door to Oklahoma Joe’s, which just happens to be owned by an OSU alumnus. I briefly thought about going there instead, but then saw that it’s not even open yet. So I’ll save the Joe’s story for another post.
Chopsticks is not very large, seating maybe 50, and the seating is a combination of tables and booths. On both visits I’ve arrived well after the lunch rush, but on this occasion the restaurant was a little more crowded. From the reviews, I’m sure that during the height of lunch and dinner, the restaurant is very crowded.
The first thing that comes to the table are big crispy noodles
This is the only restaurant I’ve ever seen the noodles so big. I really like them, as they are so nice and crunchy, and not greasy at all. The down side? Just like with chips and salsa at Mexican restaurants, it is much too easy to mindlessly eat these. And that’s exactly what I did for the first 5 minutes. Eventually I pushed them away, and when my appetizer arrived I asked the server to just take them away so I couldn’t eat anymore.
The Chopsticks menu is large, as is the case with many Asian restaurants. Of course, they have the standard menu items, as well as a substantial lunch menu. One very unique aspect is that Chopsticks also offers Chinese and Korean specialty dishes. On my first visit I wasn’t adventurous enough to try them. I considered them again this time, but they are quite a bit more expensive than the other menu items. Chopsticks also offers menu items that are listed completely in Chinese/Korean. The menu is listed on the website, but I’m guessing when you’re in the restaurant you have to ask for the menu that is not in English.
I decided to start with the chili wontons. I wanted to try them last time, but I can’t remember what changed my mind. Clearly I can’t let that happen twice.
These wontons were absolutely fantastic. The pork was so flavorful, the wonton wrappers tasted homemade, and the chili oil added a wonderful heat. I like that they bring you extra chili oil, in case you want to pump up the heat even more.
I hesitated ordering the wontons because I knew it would be 6 pieces. When I tasted the first one, I wasn’t sure how I would stop myself from devouring all of them at record speed. I was quite proud of myself though, because I stopped after 3, and took the rest home. They were just as good that night when I ate the rest.
All lunch entrees come with soup. It was really hot that day, so I briefly considered not getting the soup at all. But by the time I was placing the order, I went ahead and got it. My favorite type of soup at Asian restaurants is wonton, but that soup is not an option on the lunch menu. I had the hot & sour soup on my last visit, and nearly scalded my tongue and throat from the heat. So I went with egg drop.
The soup was fabulous, and I later learned that it’s made in-house. They are very generous with the eggs, and they are nice and creamy. Yes, I know I said I didn’t want soup, but I ate most of it while I waited for my entree.
On my last visit, I had the hot garlic beef. That was the worst photo of all during the visit, and on the last post I used a photo of the hot garlic shrimp I found online. I had considered getting something else, in the spirit of Repeats with a Twist. But since I didn’t have a picture from the last time at all, and since I added the wontons this time, I decided to go with the hot garlic beef again, with steamed rice
The garlic beef was good, but it didn’t live up to the version I had on my first visit. There wasn’t enough of the brown sauce, and some of the vegetables seemed slightly under-cooked. The dish still had a lot of flavor, but it was just lacking something. I added a little bit of the chili oil to the beef, and that added both kick and flavor. Normally, egg rolls are just okay. I don’t know what they put in this one, but it was outstanding. I can’t really explain the flavor, but it was really, really good. Even though I didn’t try the egg roll right away, it was still quite hot when I bit into it.
Will I go back to Chopsticks? No question. Now that I’ve had the same entree twice, I have to get something different. I’ll probably ask them to completely skip the crispy noodles. They are good, but they are empty calories that I don’t need. One thing that won’t change…I will always start with chili wontons.