No one is quite sure exactly when it happened, but sometime over the last few years the restaurant scene in OKC really upped it’s game. Those who have witnessed the change firsthand say that it was gradual and started with a handful of places that broke the mold of the typical chain establishments. Over the last year or two you can tell that things have truly arrived. Neighborhoods like Midtown, the Paseo, and Uptown 23rd seem to have new openings almost every month. And not just any new openings either, but places that are unique, fun, and delicious. That brings me to the Hall’s Pizza Kitchen in Midtown, which is a perfect example of this new and welcome change to OKC.
The Hall’s Pizza Kitchen started out as a food truck back in 2013 and quickly gained popularity with a reputation for serving amazing pies. The truck was started by the Hall family, who had a tradition of making homemade pizzas on Saturday night. This tradition carried over to the pizza truck and after a few years of growing success they expanded into a brick and mortar establishment in the alley at 9th and Hudson in 2017. And boy, am I thankful that they did.
The restaurant is modern and welcoming and the smell as you enter is utterly intoxicating. Whether you were hungry or not before, you definitely are in the mood for pizza now. Kacy and I also noticed the desserts on display on the way in and made some mental notes for later.
We were escorted up to the rooftop patio that was perfectly adorable and offered downtown sunset views. Equal parts romantic yet welcoming enough for a group of friends, which worked out great as we were joined by our trusted accomplice Taylor. We enlisted her help in being able to try more of the menu and not carry as much guilt when ordering way too much food and wine (an old food blogger trick we’ve picked up over the years).
After surveying the menu, we decided to start off with the Olive You, Bacon Jam + Pimento, and the Katy salad. The Olive You consisted of green olives marinated in a lemon and thyme oil that were stuffed with goat cheese. As someone who despises olives, I can tell you that these were outstanding. Besides a little bit of saltiness, the olive flavor was subtle and gave way to the delicious marinade and cheese stuffing. Kacy and Taylor love olives and said that this may turn out to be a “gateway olive” for me. I’m not sure sure but would definitely eat more olives if they were all prepared like this.
The Bacon Jam + Pimento was just as good as it sounds with charred jalapeño pimento cheese topped with bacon jam. The dish was accompanied by a plate of wood-fired flat bread, which was essentially bare pizza crust. It was great and we scraped the jar clean to get every last drop. The Katy salad was a fun take on a caprese salad as it included fresh tomatoes and mozzarella topped with a balsamic reduction. The fun (and delicious twist) was the addition of pesto and some quick pickled red onion. We were off to a great start.
Now let’s get to the main attraction, the pizza. We opted to order individual slices so we could try more of the creative offerings. We were in pizza heaven.
For our slices we had the Saturday Night, the Company, the Matt, and the Russell the G.O.A.T. The meat on the Saturday Night and Company was full of flavor and not too heavy. I especially loved their sausage and pepperoni. The peppers and artichoke hearts in the Matt were nicely roasted and made for a great pairing with the pesto. The Russell the G.O.A.T. is aptly named after the greatest-of-all-time in every Oklahoman sports viewer’s heart, none other than Russell Westbrook. The combination of goat cheese, pesto, and balsamic roasted tomatoes would make the triple-double king proud.
Somehow, we still had some room for dessert. They had an assortment of cookies and cakes, but the Strawberry Shortcake and the Birthday Cake stood out above the rest. Nothing is better than fresh strawberries in the Spring. These paired beautifully with the citrus curd, flaky shortcake and vanilla whip cream.
The Birthday Cake, which they told us is only available on the weekend, was otherworldly. It was just the right amount of dense and rich while not being too sweet. Eating this will make you think it is your birthday, it is so damn good. Luckily the serving size is generous so we didn’t have to fight each other for bites.
Overall, we had a fantastic meal that showcased what has turned OKC into the culinary hot-spot it is today. We can’t wait to go back and do it all over again as soon as possible!
This post is part of a collaboration with Visit OKC.
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