Monday, June 02, 2008

Sgt. Schultz was right...Deutsch Lebensmittel ist wunderbar!

On our way home from our recent harvest sojourn, we passed through the bustling town of Lawton, Oklahoma (population 93,000) - pretty huge and culturally diverse city by OK standards.

What this meant to my immediate situation was a chance for my family and I to dine on food of a more international menu -- something we took for granted back in our LA days, but look back on now with fondness and gastronomical desire.

As much as my wife and I were tempted to tempt fate and tempt our taste sensations with the tantalizing temptations awaiting us at any one of the dozen Korean Buffet Restaurants, our ever widening search parameters (and the handy dandy State of Oklahoma's Tourism Department travel guide) brought us to the front door of a little wonder called, The German Quick Stop Restaurant.

The little greasy spoon didn't offer much in the quaintness department from the outside. In fact, my slightly nearsighted eyes detected a KFC facade circa 1970's hiding beneath the eggshell white paint and red and white gingham tablecloths.

But the wafting smell of freshly prepared food that wasn't a grilled hamburger, chicken fried steak, or combination enchilada plate was both welcoming and gratifying, in a "I'll be leaving this place in an hour or so with a well earned smile of gluttonous satisfaction on my face," kind of way.

Stay with me now...while the girls opted to share a small wurstsalat with a cup of potato soup and cup of goulash between the two of them, wifey and I went for the platter of plenty known as the Grill Teller for Two.

I'm not sure in what dimension this impressive menu item we ordered would feed two people, but wherever it is, my stomach and I want to retire there. This teller for deux could easily fill the gullets of a family of four hungry homo sapiens, and in that family I'm including the most ravenous group of Oklahoman's and Hawaiian's (the biggest eaters I've ever witnessed) on the planet.

Needless to say, it was plenty of food.

On a layered 1" thick bed of German potato salad rested a large-diameter 160 gram frisbee-sized wiener schnitzel.

Joining the delicately thin, crispy and tender breaded patty was a huge bratwurst (bursting out of it's crispy grilled skin), an even girthier pair of knackwursts, several robust wienerles (Dodger Dogs only smaller and grilled), several huge slices of leberkaese (think Spam only meatier and the size of a softball glove), a wurstbroetchen (some sort of sausage wrapped in puff pastry -- help me), accompanied by ridiculously generous family-style portions of al dente spaetzles, sassy sauerkraut with caraway seeds and enormous capers, and a sublimely spicy red cabbage salad, that effectively rounded out the meal and put the final touches on our perfect international meal.

The only disappointing moment in our meal came at the end when the pleasant waitress with the calves more muscular than mine asked us which type of strudel we'd like to try,", apple and cheese, blueberry, blueberry and cheese, cherry, cherry and cheese, mixed berry, mixed berry and cheese, or just plain honey...or honey and cheese."

Alas, we had left not a smidgen of stomach space for dessert. Double-dog-drat.

Our doggie bags were so full of food that any casual observer spotting us exiting the joint would have to assume that we had ordered take-out and were carting the food home to feed a small harvesting convention of combine operators and their families.

The bill was uber-reasonable, especially considering we had several full "leftover" meals from the styrofoam lunch wagon.

When in Lawton, I say go dutch. Or Deutsch rather.


jake said...

OK, now you've done it. All I'm going to be able to think about fron here on out (at least until my craving is satisfied) is the back-to-my-youth memories of fine German cuisine. I know of a few great places in the OC, but none in Pas or near home.

Thanks buddy. :-)

OKDad said...

Yep, don't think I wasn't thinking about you and the rest of your family as I repeatedly tucked fork fulls of schnitzel, wurst and spätzles into my mouth.

In fact, I even told a few H family stories as we dined that late afternoon...the one about your sister seeing your recently passed Grandfather wandering the fence row of his old farm got the girls all goosebumply.

In OC, I recall dining at the Old World Rest. in Hunt Beach, but closer to home there was the now closed Bavarian Inn on Huntington Drive.

Then there's always the Alpine Village down in the South Bay area.

Hey, I just recalled a quick lesson on grilling brats you gave to Mr. Ely a few years back.