Oakleys Bistro

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That a culinary impresario such as Steven Oakley still serves shrimp corndogs, meatloaf, and butternut-squash soup nearly 12 years after he opened his first solo effort may seem curious in a culinary scene that lauds the latest and trendiest. But Oakley is hardly resting on his laurels. His kitchen puts out dishes with multiple dazzling elements, such as short ribs with Maytag bleu-cheese poppers and both a red-pepper romesco sauce and hazelnut pesto. The bric-a-brac–heavy country French decor may want for a makeover, but this date-night and anniversary draw offers the consistent comfort of an old friend’s house. The polish is on the plates: the tidy bundle of the Seven Greens salad; the potato tower encasing risotto next to golden fillets of tilapia.

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