Review by Scott Cherry Photos by Matt Barnard
After Society got off to a rousing start when it opened last summer on Cherry Street, Garrett Mills almost immediately started plans for a second location.
“We hoped and intended to have more than one location, and it was the customers who allowed it to come to fruition,” said Mills, president and CEO of Chandler Hospitality Group, which includes Society and Rib Crib. “The first one had to be successful.”
His search for a second store took him to far south Tulsa in the Plaza Del Sol shopping center at 101st Street and Mingo Road. He toured space that formerly held Paddy’s Irish Restaurant, Off the Cuff and Infuzion Ultra Lounge & Bistro.
“When we first walked through this building we saw the potential,” Mills said. “It’s bigger than our store on 15th Street, and it has a big patio that has been a hit.
“Though we are only a mile from possibly the busiest intersection in Tulsa (101st Street and Memorial Drive), we were drawn to this because it has a great neighborhood feel to it.”
The new Society, which features burgers, salads, appetizers, sandwiches, beer and craft cocktails, opened in late July. We stopped by recently for a weeknight dinner with a daughter and son-in-law.
Two of us ordered salads, the Chopped ($11.50) and the Salad No. 4 ($12). We also got the Theta burger ($9), the Clubhouse sandwich ($8.50) and a couple of appetizers.
Society’s version of the Theta included fried pickles, a mild barbecue sauce, house-made mayo and a heaping portion of melted cheddar cheese. The fried pickles gave it an interesting twist.
The sandwich was a flavorful combination of seared chicken, crispy bacon, Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato, honey bacon Dijon and a signature house sauce. As much as I liked the sandwich, I am inclined on my next visit to try a new item, the Sweet “Cheeesus” burger, that I overlooked this time. It has melted brie cheese, caramelized onions and cherry compote.
Both salads were sizable, though our daughter downed every bite of Salad No. 4, which included spring lettuces, strawberries, goat cheese, candied walnuts, croutons and red onions with a honey balsamic vinaigrette. It called for seared chicken, but she was able to substitute seared tuna, which was delicious.
The chopped salad was filled with seared chicken, bacon, tomato, avocado, hard-boiled egg, feta cheese, cashews and haystack onions. A good ranch dressing was substituted for honey bacon Dijon. We uncovered what looked like only a tiny bit of avocado, but otherwise, it was a tasty combination.
Our appetizers were plenty to share around the table, and they both were a hit. Hot chicken bites ($9) were spicy hot but short of fiery and were served over haystack onions with a blackberry dipping sauce. Truffle fries ($8), one of Society’s most popular dishes, were tossed in truffle oil with green onions and grated Parmesan and topped with truffle aioli.
Society is among the latest restaurants to add the plant-based, vegan and gluten-free Impossible burger to its menu. It is dressed with vegan American cheese, lettuce, tomato, pickle and vegan mayo on a vegan bun.
A vegetarian addition is the Bella sandwich with fried portabella mushroom, pepper jack cheese, caramelized onions, lettuce, tomato and pickle with the house sauce.
This Society also has a Saturday-Sunday brunch menu served 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. that includes such items as honey chicken biscuit, gluten-free banana pancakes, yogurt parfait and biscuit French toast. Most dishes run $6 to $10.
“We serve a small brunch menu on Cherry Street on farmers market days, and probably will be adding the full brunch menu there soon,” Mills said.
Various flavors of shakes are made with Tulsa’s Rose Rock Microcreamery ice cream. Boozy shakes also are available.
Items for ages 10 and under on the regular menu include a choice of hamburger, chicken bites or mac and cheese with a side of fries or sweet potato fries for $4.50.
The patio was packed and misters were helping keep diners cool on the steamy evening we were there. In the winter, a fireplace will help keep folks warm. Like the original Society, this one has pass-through bar service to the patio.
“We were lucky this location already had a fireplace,” Mills said. “We had to add one on Cherry Street.”
Mills said no specific plans currently are in the works for a third Society in the Tulsa area.
“These take about a year to develop, and we are going to take it one step at a time,” he said.
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