FOOD: Interactive Eats
It’s date night, family night, Tuesday night. We know the drill and we follow with ritualistic fare. Soccer night chicken strips, salad with the girls, the obligatory steak dinner in a corner booth with dim lighting and meaningful conversation. But do we really want one more chicken strip or meaningful conversation? Or would a little laughter and entertainment bring new meaning to the table instead?
If your idea of interactive dining is loading up your own plate at a buffet and pretending no one sees you hit the dessert bar twice, explore some lively new options with both a menu and mood for fun.
Dinner and a Show
Day or night, the tableside hibachi grill dining at Musashi’s Japanese Steakhouse is a dazzling show. Like masterful samurai swordsmen, the skilled Teppanyaki chefs wield their knives and spatulas in a showy display of dexterity—tossing, dicing and slicing with the precision of a choreographed ballet. Aspiring cook or no, you can’t help but go home with a new appreciation of the magic of your kitchen utensils.
The spacious, flat hibachi grill is like a stage and the steamy aroma of freshly grilled Kobe beef, New York Strip, Filet Mignon, lobster, shrimp and scallops fill the air with mouthwatering anticipation. Comedic banter is lobbed about as often as the flying rice bowls and spinning spatulas. And when the signature onion volcano is ignited in a blazing finale of spewing embers, a collective round of awe can be heard.
David Hung, Director of Operations for the Western Concepts Dining Group, credits Musashi’s head chef of 12 years, Minh Nguyen, with the consistently exquisite food and exceptional presentation. “The highly trained chefs are also hosts and entertainers. The show plays a very important part in the dining experience,” Hung says. Guests also enjoy a full service bar, sushi and Robata specialties—Tappas cooked on skewers over an open flame.
Burgers and … S’mores?
You’re never too old to re-live those carefree college days when a great burger, a little music and 20 of your closest friends made for the perfect day. Flatire Burgers near UCO is not only a hip hangout but a burger-lover’s paradise. Recognized as one of the first restaurants in the area to put eggs on burgers, Flatire’s Blowout burger with a fried egg is a must-try. Their Green Chili burger, made with in-house roasted and peeled Anaheim peppers, is another highlight. They also serve up the best fried pickles in town (again, revert back to your college days when you actually had a metabolism to burn off such indulgences).
In addition to a full bar, live music, Thursday night trivia and a sprawling covered patio, Flatire also features make-your-own s’mores. A wooden bowl sectioned with marshmallows, graham crackers and chocolate pieces is served tableside with skewers. General Manager, Jeff Caillouette, says, “The center section of the bowl is lighted at the table and customers love the Lazy Susan turn-style access.”
On Sundays, diners enjoy $1.00 off the reminiscent campfire treat.
Steaks and Stones
Enjoy the ultimate, delicious and healthy interactive dining experience. Café Icon’s Black Rock Lava Stone Grill is made from stones that originate inside a volcano. Stones are heated to 824 degrees in Café Icon’s specially designed black rock ovens and served right at your table. Cut one or two bite-size portions of your favorite hand-cut beef filets, fresh seafood or lamb and sear it to your personal taste.
The black rock lava stone stays extremely hot for approximately 35 minutes so take your time and savor the experience. Complete with a creative combination of spices and sauces, it makes for the perfect night out.
For locations, menus and hours of operation, visit musashis.com, flatireburgers.com and thecafeicon.com.