Bluestone Steak House Emphasizes Pure Ingredients

Local Dining By BLAKE AUSTYN
Contributing Writer

SOUTH TULSA DESTINATION: Bill and Sharon Tackett took ownership of Bluestone Steak House and Seafood Restaurant, 10032 S. Sheridan Rd., in 2014. The emphasis of Bluestone’s menu is on “scratch cooking” with all food, including sauces, prepared on-site from fresh ingredients.

BLAKE AUSTYN for GTR Newspapers

Purity and quality. That neatly and clearly sums up the mission of Bill Tackett, local restaurateur and chef, who became owner of Bluestone Steak House and Seafood Restaurant, 10032 S. Sheridan Rd., with his wife, Sharon, in 2014.

Tackett’s background in the restaurant industry is long and varied: he has owned restaurants, launched new restaurant concepts, worked for U.S. Foods as a protein specialist, served as a restaurant consultant in six states, worked for a saucier, and aided in the launch of the Certified Angus Beef effort in Oklahoma and surrounding states.

His work in restaurants began at 13 years old in a local steakhouse. By 16, he was working as the kitchen manager for Red Lobster. He later graduated from Oklahoma State University’s culinary school, where he received training in culinary arts, baking science and meat fabrication.

Tackett helped with the design and menu creation of Bluestone in 2007, so, when the restaurant came available in 2014, he took it as a way for him and his wife to return to their hometown.

Among the changes that Tackett made to Bluestone is its emphasis on “scratch cooking” with all food, including sauces, prepared on-site from fresh ingredients. “I don’t like to use additives or anything that perverts the products,” says Tackett.

Tackett also honed in on the menu, focusing the food offerings largely on steaks and seafood, with a few pasta and chicken dishes added in. Gluten free and vegetarian options are also available.

“My mission is to provide all of the public with something,” Tackett says in reference to all of Bluestone’s food offerings as well as to its comfortable yet upscale interior, diverse array of live music and drink lists. The restaurant offers live music seven nights a week, 6-9 p.m.

“You can come in here in a black tie or blue jeans; just come expecting a great dining experience,” he continues.

While the core items on Bluestone’s menu mostly remain the same, Tackett is also always tweaking the offerings, adding daily and weekend specials in addition to seasonal menus and a growing drink menu.

“The idea is to always keep the menu lively,” Tackett says.

He is currently preparing a reserve wine list with wines of varying price points – “this is an offering that can’t be found out here in south Tulsa,” he says – and a spirits menu, featuring unique scotches, some that are served with specialty chocolates from downtown Tulsa’s Glacier Confection, various whiskeys, including the 100-year tribute to Frank Sinatra with Jack Daniels’ Sinatra Century whiskey, and infused bourbons.

Tackett’s focus on all aspects of his restaurant serve him well. Since he and Sharon took ownership of Bluestone, they have seen sales double and are currently ranked as the sixth best steak and seafood restaurant in the state.

“All cylinders have to be firing to be successful in the restaurant business,” he says. “The food has to be great, the music and ambiance need to be set to make guests feel comfortable, and service needs to be top-notch, or people won’t come back.”

Bluestone is also launching an app for iPhone and Android and a texting application. Individuals can download the free Bluestone app or text 95577 to begin receiving special offers.

My family began our dinner on a Sunday evening with the Portobella Mushroom as our appetizer. It was a hard choice, with close to 20 appetizers to choose from, ranging from Spinach Artichoke Dip to Fried Oysters and Asian Beef Brochettes. The dish comes with slices of mushroom placed alongside toasted baguettes with a bowl of herbed goat cheese mousse. The mousse made this dish outstanding; it was creamy and rich, leaving us wanting much more and, yet, eager to see how the rest of our dishes would measure up.

For our entrees, I chose the eight-ounce Halibut, upon the suggestion of our server, who described it as one of the best dishes on the menu. The halibut came topped with crabmeat and two jumbo shrimp bathed in caper and lemon-butter sauce. The fish was tender with the sauce being a nice compliment and not overwhelming the fish.

Our server also recommended the Certified Angus Beef Tenderloin Tails, similar to a filet in tenderness. The dish is made up of four thick slices of meat equalling 12 ounces, topped with a wild mushroom port wine sauce and heavy cream. For meat lovers, it’s an excellent choice.

For our third entree, we selected one of Bluestone’s weekend specials: a combination K.C. steak and sirloin steak, topped with shrimp.

All of our dishes came with the choice of a soup or salad, the choice of rice or a potato, and a side of vegetables. One of the most noteworthy sides was the Lobster Bisque, which was soothingly creamy with chunks of lobster.

For dessert, we shared the vanilla creme brûlée. Although I don’t naturally gravitate toward creme brûlée, this was wonderful with a thick filling that was more creamy like custard as opposed to gelatin. There was also a key lime flavor of creme brûlée available; the offered flavors change regularly. The dessert menu is lengthy, with cheesecakes, cakes, cobblers and pecan pie.

The restaurant also offers beer and wine specials during their daily happy hour, 4-6 p.m.

Bluestone Steak House and Seafood Restaurant is open Sunday–Thursday 4–9 p.m., Friday and Saturday 3–10 p.m. Call 918-296-9889 for reservations.

Updated 04-25-2016

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