#123 - Deep Fork Grill, Oklahoma City, OK

Last week at work I decided I wanted to start doing "touch point"/stewardship visits.  I had actually planned to do it last year, and started putting together thoughts, but then never got around to it. So when it popped back into my brain last week, I wasn't letting anything hold me back.

Our development/major gifts staff is relatively small compared to our peers around the country.  In reality, we have one of the smaller overall athletic departments in terms of employees.  I really felt like we weren't going out to just visit with our premium donors. Matt and Larry are out all the time, but their focus is more on the ask.  So I made an executive decision to do something about it, and take care of the social call.

Today were my first visits, and one included lunch.  This is perfect, because I can combine food blog research with work!  Can't beat that.  I was meeting a couple who have club seats. I had never met them in person before, but love getting Mark's emails after home games. He's always funny and entertaining, and they make me laugh every time.  I was excited for the opportunity to finally meet them in person.

They suggested Deep Fork Grill.  Mary and I actually ate there once, a couple years ago, on the way to the caravan in Altus. But this was before the food blog, and I can't even remember what I had.  So I'm counting it as a new entry.

Deep Fork Grill is in OKC, near to Penn Square Mall and Chesapeake Energy's main campus.  I drive past it all the time, but just never go there.  And I really don't know why.  We met at 12:30, and so of course it was packed.  It's definitely a destination for employees working in the area, as most of the clientele was in business attire.  If you just take into account the main dining room it doesn't seem like a very big restaurant.  But it's deceiving, because they also have 5 rooms for private parties.  The main dining room is pretty cozy, with seating for about 100, comprised mainly of booths.  There are also a couple of booths and tables in the bar area. What I love is the "date night" table (I named it that).  It's along one of the walls, in an alcove, and has a curtain that you can lower down.  How awesome is that?!  Never seen anything like like it.

As we discussed what to eat, I brought up my seafood in a landlocked state bias.  Lisa is from Rhode Island, so she felt the same way. But she also said she had learned that OKC gets fresh seafood flown in every other day for restaurants.  I'm gonna need to do a little research on that, and figure out which restaurants get it.  And that's where I will go.

As we were deciding what to eat, they brought out rolls.  But no butter.  I thought that was really weird, but decided not to say anything.  As we were leaving I realized it was just a fail, because there were little plates with pats of butter at the serving station.  Oh well, I probably didn't need the butter anyways.  The rolls were good and warm, but would have been better with butter.  Then again, everything is.

I'm not sure if Mark ordered it or not, but all of a sudden this little plate of chicken brochettes appeared at the table

marinated chicken and artichoke wrapped in applewood smoked bacon, served with chipotle aioli
I have to say, I'm quite surprised you only get 3, considering it's $10 on the appetizer menu. That aside, it was delicious.  The bacon and artichoke kept the chicken super moist.  And the aioli was really good.   I could have eaten all 3 of them myself, but I knew I had soup and a sandwich coming so I held off.  And besides, that would have been rude. 

Mark said the tomato crab bisque was good, so I started with a cup of it.

Wow, this was excellent.  Creamy, smooth, just a hint of spice.  And it was served hot, which I really liked, because so often bisque is just above room temperature.  I don't like "liquid" tomato things...so tomato soup and bloody mary's are out for me.  But this soup, I wish I had gotten the bowl instead of the cup.  

Mark likes to play this trivia game to decide who pays for lunch.  If I get it right, I pay.  If not, they pay.  Deal.  The question?  What is the last book of the Old Testament?  Nope, no clue.  Sorry to my Henry side of the family for not knowing the answer...He then told me that since they were buying, I should go ahead and get one of the expensive entrees. They all looked good, especially the sea bass, but I just couldn't do it. Instead I went with a blue rye sandwich and fries

chicken breast with caramelized onions, bleu cheese, spinach and basil aioli
One bite and I was sold.  The sandwich was amazing.  When I saw the menu I kind of wondered if it would be served on rye bread, but didn't think so, because you really don't see it very often on menus outside of a deli.  Nope, I was wrong.  And I'm not a fan of rye because I don't like caraway seeds, I think they're way too strong and overpowering.  But honestly, there was so much other stuff going on in the sandwich that it wasn't too bad.  I stopped eating the bread after the first half, but only because I wanted a fighting chance of finishing the insides.  The onions were so deeply caramelized I almost forgot they were onions.  I absolutely love that they use so much fresh basil for the aioli.  The steak fries were good and hot.

Mark got the prime rib sandwich and Lisa got the Deep Fork fettucini

shaved prime rib and Swiss cheese on Cubano bread served with au jus and horseradish sauce
Alfredo sauce & shaved Parmesan
I forgot to ask them how it was, but Mark ate his in record time, so I'm thinking he liked it! 

I really enjoyed doing these visits.  It's great to visit with our donors outside of a gameday situation, and them knowing I'm not there for an ask is a good thing too.  

Will I go back?  Of course!  The food was delicious, and the atmosphere was really cool. And I want to sit at the "date night" table.  And maybe, just maybe, I'll find a date to go with...