For a long time, Cattlemen’s Steakhouse was the only game in the Stockyards. That was until Michel Buthion of La Baguette Bistro teamed up with building owner Lindsay Ocker to open McClintock Saloon & Chop House.
What they decided to do over a bottle of whiskey in the back of Ocker’s boot shop was build one of the swankiest bars and restaurants in the city.
Steakhouses are not always adept at non-steak items. And far too many would-be restauranteurs assume serving brunch is as easy as throwing a couple of eggs on top of existing menu items.
Not at McClintock. The brunch menu here isn’t enormous, but it’s well thought out and well executed.
And while the restaurant comes from the La Baguette pedigree, it’s doing something different by fusing classical French technique to prepare hearty, cowboy-style fare.
For instance, I was not particularly surprised to find what seemed like a croque madame copycat on the menu in the ham steak ($10). What came to the table might have been inspired by that classic French dish or a remix with eggs benedict, but it was wholly unexpected.
The ham steak’s base is a piece of Texas toast covered in hollandaise rather than the usual bechamel and gruyere cheese. But instead of thinly sliced ham or even the thicker grocery store-style ham steaks you might get, the dish used two enormous thick-as-steaks pieces of real ham topped with a pair of gorgeously poached eggs.
Not that I wouldn’t be thrilled by a croque madame each and every time it arrives, mind you. I love a croque madame. But a cowboy benedict with two huge slabs of ham certainly didn’t hurt my feelings. Add to that it comes with a big pile of hash browns, and it’s an exceptional value.
As mentioned in The Never-Quite-Finished Guide to Oklahoma City’s Best Biscuits and Gravy, McClintock serves two big biscuits with bacon gravy for $6. The biscuits are nicely balanced, with a golden brown crust hiding a lot of fluffy dough. The gravy is peppery and comes sprinkled with chopped bacon. Not that I have any problem with sausage gravy, but it is nice to see a restaurant take a different tack, and McClintock’s bacon gravy is a treat.
My friend Forrest ordered the chicken and waffles ($15) and, wow, that’s a lot of chicken.
Seriously, it was half a fried chicken and it was cooked masterfully. Using a simple blend of flour, salt and pepper, the chefs prepared chicken that was crispy and flavorful on the outside and moist all the way through. I’m pretty sure the juice from the breast ran down Forrest’s face and the wing I snagged was truly wonderful. The waffle might seem like an afterthought, but it was done perfectly as well. I loved the combination, but I’d gladly eat just a pile of those waffles any day.
Meg ordered two eggs over medium ($9), because she’s smart and those eggs came out just right. It’s not a particularly exciting dish, but if you enjoy the classic combo of eggs, bacon and biscuits and gravy, it’s done well.
If you, like me, think, “Shouldn’t there be more bacon in this review?” you’re correct. Which is why we got the basket of bacon ($6). The basket was actually a glass, but it was full of lovely, crisp strips of salty bacon goodness. It’s a heck of a starter for the table.
There are mimosas and Irish coffees available, as well, but I couldn’t resist the bloody mary bar ($5) which came with a stiff pour of vodka and plenty of available fixings. I especially liked McClintock’s take on the bloody mary mix, which had a big, peppery kick. Toss in a couple of olives and a pickled carrot and you’ve got yourself a fine breakfast salad.
The menu isn’t set in stone, so I look forward to going back and trying more of their French-cowboy fusion in the future. I also heard they might be serving some specialty bloody marys in big glass boots in the near future, which you is Instagram gold waiting to happen.