Restaurant to serve real Western cuisine
BY KYLE ARNOLD World Staff Writer
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
1/04/11 at 5:55 AM
Johnny Wimpy wanted a real Western restaurant, the kind he grew up with in his Texas homeland.
Forget the peanuts on the floor and single-faceted menu of steaks and ribs. Wimpy wanted Western food, like trout and tenderloin mixed in with his steak and burgers.
So when the iconic Avalon Steakhouse folded in southwest Tulsa last year, Wimpy and his wife, Aila, knew they found the place to launch their concept.
The couple opened the Go West Restaurant & Saloon recently in southwest Tulsa, doing a major remodel on former Avalon Steakhouse restaurant at 6205 New Sapulpa Road.
"It's contemporary cowboy cuisine," Wimpy said.
Heck, Wimpy even hired a chef from Houston, Doug Atkinson, to complete the authentic Western feel.
The site's former tenant, the Avalon Steakhouse, closed in October 2009 after more than 40 years of serving cuts of meat to customers near Interstate 44.
Avalon owners Linda C. Parise-DeArman filed for bankruptcy in June with $1.7 million in debts, according to court records.
Avalon had only moved into the new location in 2006 from a more rustic location just down the road.
The sudden opening of the location was a windfall to the Wimpys, who have been caterers at a nearby Christian youth ranch, Camp Loughridge, for eight years.
The menu at Go West is a newer attempt on classics mixed with some creative additions.
Wimpy brags about the jalapeno cheesecake that "tastes sweet but leaves a burn in your throat," he said. There is also brisket taquitoes, calf fries, salmon, goat cheese salad and more. Dinner entrees average around $15.
Even though the restaurant's location was relatively new, the Wimpys still decided a total overhaul was in order. They covered the wood floors, added walls and painted the walls a more inviting brown.
An "expo" kitchen was built to let diners see their steaks on the grill.
Wimpy also hung saloon doors and added a large black walnut counter top to the bar, which also includes comfortable leather couches.
"It's a much different feel," Wimpy said. "It's very nice but inviting at the same time."
The restaurant has 36 employees.
Go West restaurant
6205 New Sapulpa Road, Tulsa
Owners: Johnny and Aila Wimpy
On the web: tulsaworld.com/gowest
Original Print Headline: Taste of the Old West
Kyle Arnold 581-8380
John and Aila Wimpy at their restaurant Go West in Sapulpa. STEPHEN PINGRY / Tulsa World
The Wimpys did a major remodel on the former Avalon Steakhouse. STEPHEN PINGRY / Tulsa World
An "expo" kitchen was built to let diners see their steaks on the grill. STEPHEN PINGRY / Tulsa World
The Wimpys decided to redo the entire interior of the restaurant. STEPHEN PINGRY / Tulsa World
Oak Roasted Pork Chop is one of the Western dishes served at the new restaurant Go West in Sapulpa. STEPHEN PINGRY / Tulsa World