Wednesday, November 19, 2008

We Find Good Food Again.

Someday, some university or culinary institute with time and money on their hands will fund research on why little, itty-bitty villages are homes to such great eateries.

Last weekend we were shooting a lure coursing event in Chickasha, OK. The trial was in conjunction with a dog show, so when we were looking to get something to eat on Saturday evening, we were hoping to avoid any place glutted with "show people".

Thanks to the sleuthing skills of our friend Elizabeth Lane, we found ourselves driving ten miles north to the little town of Amber, (pop. 521), home of Ken's Steaks and Ribs.

As we approached the establishment on Main St. (no traffic signals or blinkers, just stop signs), we first noticed Ken's Gas Station, and Ken's Convenience Store, and finally, at the end of a long building, Ken's Steaks and Ribs. There were a few cars and trucks parked in front. Then we saw the rest of the parking lot. A very packed parking lot! The place was apparently very popular.

Fortunately for us, Elizabeth and our other 3 dining partners were already at the head of the line for our table, and so was Ken himself, dressed in white from head to toe, with red suspenders (and belt). He looked like a cross between Colonel Sanders and Arthur Fiedler. He whacked Margaret on the arm in friendly greeting as we approached.

Down to business. Ken's serves only the basics, so there's no menu. Ribs (3 or 5), Sirloin (5oz or 8oz), Prime Rib, or Chicken. The salad bar is constantly kept fresh, with Romaine not iceberg! If you've never been there before (which Ken ascertains when you arrive), there's a basket of ribs on your table when you get back from the salad bar- one for each person at the table.

Our table was split between ribs (the best I've ever had, with a great dry rub that needed no sauce), and prime rib. The sirloin wasn't missed, though. As we were eating our salads, Ken approached the table and asked how we like to order steaks... we were pretty much together in the medium/medium rare camp. So Ken says, he's going to have the cook do up a medium rare sirloin for us to try. I'm trying not to use so many superlatives in this review, but by god that was the best tasting sirloin I've ever had.. seriously. Lean but juicy, with an almost buttery flavor. And really, really tender.

Based on this dining experience, we'll make the Chickasha trials a regular part of our Fall shooting schedule. It's not to be missed, even though....

...there's no bar or alcohol
...no credit cards, cash only
...only open Thursday through Saturday, 4-9:30

...at least our group comprised the only "show folk" in attendance.

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