Charlie's Bar-B-Q and Deli: New eatery's owner builds impressive cooking skills
BY SCOTT CHERRY World Restaurant Critic
Thursday, May 03, 2012
3/28/13 at 8:36 AM
Tamara Hernandez still had a year of college remaining when her father, Charles Goforth, approached her last May about opening a barbecue restaurant.
"He wanted to do something like he had seen in his hometown of Miami (Okla.)," Hernandez said. "So we started out planning to do a chopped beef stand, but it escalated into this."
"This" is Charlie's Bar-B-Q and Deli, which opened last November in Gilcrease Hills Center, a few blocks west of Tulsa Country Club.
Although Hernandez does all of the cooking and handles the day-to-day operation of the restaurant, she said she still is on course to graduate this month with a degree in international business from Oklahoma State University.
"I only had one class I needed to finish, so it hasn't been that hard doing both," Hernandez said.
We met some family members who live not far from the restaurant on a recent Friday night and sampled a variety of items.
We wound up with two four-bone rib platters ($12 each), a pulled pork platter ($9.99), a chopped beef sandwich ($6.50) and pulled pork sandwich ($5.50). The menu didn't offer meat combos, but I was able to add one fried catfish fillet for $3.
Other meats, such as brisket, bologna, smoked sausage, hot links and chicken tenders, also may be added for an extra charge.
The medium-sized ribs were meaty and almost falling off the bone. They had just enough fat to stand on their own without Hernandez's house-made barbecue sauce.
All servings included a generous amount of meat. The pulled pork was smoky and moist, and the chopped beef, like the ribs, had a little fat chopped thin for extra flavor.
The barbecue sauce falls somewhere between sweet and medium. Spicier sauces are available for those who like to kick up the heat.
The platters come with two sides and the sandwiches one. My favorite was the double-baked beans cooked in a thick sauce with a little green pepper, and the mashed sweet potatoes with sugar and cinnamon. A mild potato salad was dotted with green and red peppers.
I ordered the macaroni and cheese, and I was happy as a 3-year-old that I did. The cheesy sauce thoroughly covered a bowl of good-sized pasta. I don't know if it was made from scratch, but I know it didn't come out of a blue box.
My uncle sprang for a piece of flavorful but not too sweet pecan pie that he shared with the table.
Desserts will vary, Hernandez said. When I went for an interview, different flavored cupcakes from I Baked It were the dessert choices.
Ages 9 and under may order chopped brisket, chopped brisket sandwich or catfish nuggets with one side and a drink for $4.99 each. Smoked meats also are available by the pound for carryout.
Hernandez said an experienced barbecue chef taught her how to use the pit, and she worked out most of the side dishes on her own.
Hernandez said the room was an empty box when it was acquired. They constructed walls and counters and left enough room for eight tables covered in red and white checked vinyl cloths.
CHARLIE’S BAR-B-Q AND DELI
2315 W. Edison St.
Service: Order at counter
(on a scale of 0-4 stars)
11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday-
Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Visa, MasterCard, Discover.
Original Print Headline: New to 'cue
Scott Cherry 918-581-8463
A plate of smoked meats is flanked by coleslaw, potato salad and a plate of catfish and fries. STEPHEN PINGRY / Tulsa World
Owner Tamara Hernandez (right) poses with employees Danielle Knighten and Jamel Halley outside Charlie's Bar-B-Q and Deli. STEPHEN PINGRY / Tulsa World