Raegan and Ian and I visited the Interurban on Memorial, between Rockwell and MacArthur, for dinner today.
Permit me a trip down memory lane. When I moved to OKC in 1984, I had an extremely traumatic couple months, between a new job, and home issues. My friend Shel introduced me to the first of the Interurban restaurants, which was in Northpark Mall at 122nd and May in Oklahoma City. That particular restaurant became a significant part of my life for about five years. I ate there at least once or twice a week. The servers and cooks knew who I was. I had a lot of good times, was introduced to fettuccine and chicken alfredo (and got hooked on it there, the tagline on the menu was “It’s unusually good!“, and it darn sure was!), drank more than a few mixed drinks and beers there. I met at least one future girlfriend there, and took my future and then actual wife there many times. Another friend got caught trying to take a set of salt and pepper shakers out of there. I heard a horrible personal story there from a dear friend that I was hoping would be more than a friend, but the cause of the story interfered, and it never worked like I was hoping. I had one date there that was interrupted, by another former date. Shel and I saw someone there we were both interested in once, and sent her a Bloody Mary, her favorite drink. In short, many adventures were had. And through all of this, that Interurban was consistently an excellent restaurant, and in the process became sort of a gold standard for me for restaurants. The fettuccine, the Okie Pig (a pulled pork sandwich), the appetizers, the steaks, the fish and chips (really!), the iced tea, all were excellent and consistent. Even when that location closed in 1988 or so, and reopened at 50 Penn Place, we continued to eat there a lot. We also ate at a location in downtown Tulsa near the Doubletree a couple times. When the 50 Penn location closed a couple years later, I was surprised to see an Interurban (with a new logo, but the same basic menu) open in Ardmore a year later, and then another in Edmond. When we ate at the these locations, the food quality was not nearly as good. So, if you are responsible for the Interurban, please bring back the good fettuccine, and keep the Okie Pig, and the Theta. I’ll come back, I promise.
To today. The location on Memorial has been open a couple of years, but it’s far enough outside of our usual haunts that we don’t get by there very often. This day, I saw the fajitas delivered to a table near ours, and they smelled so good I ordered some: mixed beef and chicken. I asked for no bell peppers, but got them anyway. I picked them all out. The fajitas were OK, not any better than OK. The chicken had little flavor. The beef was OK, but was small. I didn’t think it was very good value. I asked for beans and rice (an upcharge!?!?); they were not delivered at first, I had to ask. The tortilla container was empty on delivery, and I had to ask for them. I had to ask for iced tea refills several times, with a 10-minute wait at one point.
Raegan got a Caesar salad and a lunch sized fettuccine with chicken, and sun-dried tomatoes. The salad was excellent. The pasta, she said was OK, but it had a LOT of the tomatoes in it, way too many. They took up a significant fraction of the volume of the meal.
Ian got a ribeye. It was a really good steak, and the most expensive part of the meal. He got it medium, and that’s how it came. It was tasty and had great flavor. He didn’t eat all of it, so I did. He got wild rice and mixed steamed veg, and ate most of it.
We got there around 1745 (the place was about 20% full), and left about 1830 (close to full). Our check was $51.15; I think that’s kind of expensive for what we had. The service was not very good. I had to flag our server down a number of times for stuff, and we had the small issues with the order. I don’t know that I would rush right back to the Interurban.
Maybe to get an Okie Pig next time. Or maybe if they bring back the original fettuccine and chicken…
BTW, they have some really good photos of OKC from the (I think) 30′s and 40′s on the wall, really, really cool.