Classen Grill: better than you expect

by | August 26, 2009 | 16 Comments


Classen Grill

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5122 Classen Circle
Oklahoma City, OK 73118

Classen Grill in Oklahoma City

A quick glance at the unimpressive, slightly run-down exterior of Classen Grill and you won’t be expecting much more than an average greasy-spoon. Walk inside to find a mix-matched, unpolished interior and your expectations will be reinforced. Try the food, however, and you’ll most likely be impressed. The folks at Classen Grill appear to be masters at managing expectations, setting you up for run-of-the-mill food and surprising you with an edge of quality you don’t expect.

Take the orange juice, for example. I’m not sure you can get a fresher glass of OJ anywhere. They’ve got an orange juicing machine right in the dining room where the juice is squeezed right into pitchers which are then brought to your table to serve. You’ll pay up for it, of course, but if freshness is what you’re after, you’ll love it.

The surprises don’t end there. Read down the menu and you’ll see that this isn’t average diner fare at all. You’ll find creative ideas all across the breakfast and lunch menus.

For an appetizer, I like the chips with red and green salsa ($2.29). There’s nothing special about the chips, but the salsas impress me. There’s a tasty, tangy red one and, my favorite, an unusual green salsa, served warm, that’s not too hot but has a little kick. It’s not that these are the best salsas I’ve ever had, but they are good, and much better than I would expect at an average diner. Plus, they’re a great value as one order can easily satisfy a party of 4-6.

For my meal, I almost always get the jalepeno swiss burger. It’s not on the menu, but it was a special one time and every time I go back I’ve just asked for it and they’ve made it for me. They’ve always charged me $5.99 for it, which is a great deal considering it comes with home fries. Their home fries are thick-cut chunks of potato encased in a very tasty batter, but for some reason, they just don’t seem very greasy.

I think the burgers here are very good. They’re served on a very good bun, which is slightly toasted and a little crispy on the edges. The burger patty is thick with a seared exterior and very juicy inside. It’s always well done with no pink but never, ever dry. On the jalepeno swiss burger, the toppings are fresh and the jalepenos are hot and whatever sauce they put on it is fantastic. Of course, there are several other burger options to choose from and all are good.

Lots of people love the breakfast here, which I can understand. They’ve got things like the Biscuit Debris ($6.89), which is three biscuits topped with ham, sausage, gravy and cheddar cheese and served with hashbrowns. It’s definitely a conversation starter, but for me, it’s just too much. I’ve also tried the migas ($6.99) and the pancakes for breakfast. Both are fine, but for some reason, I’ve never been as wowed with the breakfast as others I know have. For me, lunch is the time to go.

Whenever you choose to go, Classen Grill is worth your attention. You’ll find interesting dishes that almost always exceed your expectations.

Have you been to Classen Grill? Leave us a comment below and let us know what you think.

Classen Grill on Urbanspoon

More Photos from Classen Grill

Chicken, Egg Whites and Fruit at Classen Grill in Oklahoma CityEggs Benedict at Classen Grill in Oklahoma CityBreakfast Taquitos at Classen Grill in Oklahoma City

This article was posted by Tim Wall on Wednesday, August 26th, 2009. It is filed under:

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  • Cult of Nobody says:
    August 27th, 2009 at 7:39 am   

    I almost ate at Classen Grill yesterday but I chose Barry’s Grill on May instead

    Sounds like I should have stuck with my first choice because Barry’s, while not awful, wasn’t anything to remember either.

  • DishinAndDishes says:
    August 27th, 2009 at 9:14 am   

    We ate with some friends here last weekend and we really enjoyed it. I had the Migas and they were okay. My husband had the Eggs Benedict and they were fabulous. The fresh squeezed juice is great!

  • Kevin says:
    August 29th, 2009 at 11:13 am   

    Simple pleasures work for folks like me.
    Places which undersell and overdeliver always make me smile.

  • Nickie says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 9:01 am   

    The Classen Grill is perfect for breakfast/brunch on the weekends. On of the only places, I am met with a hug from the waitress. The food and service is outstanding. I have only ate breakfast there, must try the lunch after I read your review.

  • DishinandDishes says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 11:02 am   

    I forgot – my favorite thing was the strawberry cake! It’s moist and yummy!

  • Aimee says:
    September 9th, 2009 at 10:08 am   

    The chicken & eggs enchaladas for breakfast is amazing. I crave it. The people that work there are very nice and they seem to enjoy their work. It alsways love it when a person enjoys there job and makes my day better for going in!

  • Brian says:
    September 10th, 2009 at 2:58 pm   

    Chicken fried steak is pretty dang good!

  • Lindsey says:
    September 24th, 2009 at 2:40 pm   

    The Memphis French Toast is AMAZING!! It’s french toast with peanut butter, bananas, honey, and powdered sugar. Extremely rich, but tastes so good.

  • Kimberly says:
    September 28th, 2009 at 3:26 pm   

    I ate here at 1 pm on Sunday and it was busy, but we were seated right away. Was starving and didn’t know what to order and the waiter was so nice and just made me a sandwich based on what I wanted. Delicious and fast service!

  • Corrie says:
    November 17th, 2009 at 4:16 pm   

    I was introduced to this restaurant by some friends of mine when I first moved here. Coming from a city which was steeped in local, non-chain eateries I was a little worried that finding a place like Classen Grill would be next to impossible. I was shocked to find this place (which does look like a hole in the wall) was delicious and just what I was looking for! The orange juice was fabulous and while our waitress was a little gruff the service overall was excellent, as was the food.

  • Maneki Neko says:
    December 10th, 2009 at 5:39 pm   

    A group of us had lunch there today. One of my dining companions was driving and started to take us to Jimmy’s Egg when I absolutely refused (yuk!) so we pulled into the nearby Classen Grill. We started out with the chips, salsa and queso, which is quite large. The salsas are fresh and the queso is thick & orange with lots of flavor, just like hubby likes it. Nothing like the watery and bland stuff you get at some places. What’s up with that watery queso anyway? Is that a newer thing or was I just lucky enough to avoid it for most of my life? It seems that in the past few years quite a few restaurants have started slinging that crap out. I digress…Breakfast is served all day but they will hand you a lunch menu after 10 or 11 so just ask about breakfast if that’s what you want. One of my fellow diners got the Eggs Benedict with hash browns and ate every last bite. Their hash browns are not your normal shredded grease pile. They’re little cubes of potato and not greasy at all. They are not what I would even call hash browns and I didn’t try them, but judging by how fast they were scarfed down across the table they must have been very good. I ordered the grilled veggie sandwich with home fries. The fries are excellent and crispy. Whatever they batter them with is some yummy stuff. The bun was sort of like ciabatta bread, it was different and tasty. Next time I will try a side order of the “Classen Grills,” which our server explained are fried mashed potatoes. ??? That sounds weird but good! They also have a veggie burger, Caesar salad, and other vegetarian options which is great for me since I eat a lot of veggies and fish/seafood. I do wish they would add a tuna melt or tuna salad sandwich to the menu as I was really craving one today. Anyhoo, we loved the food, the service was great and we’ll be back. P.S. – The OJ is a must!

  • J says:
    March 18th, 2010 at 10:13 am   

    AMAZING grits!! They are garlicky and cheesy and wonderful. The BLT benedict is also great, and of course you can’t beat the fresh squeezed orange juice. BUT on several occasions their bacon tasted kind of like it was fried in vegetable oil or something. It is pretty drippy and doesn’t have much flavor. Good place.

  • Elegy says:
    April 1st, 2010 at 3:30 pm   

    The Classen Potatoes are amazing. Garlic Fried Mashed-Potato balls with Hollandaise sauce. Insane way to start your day. Great OJ too, and you wont leave hungry.

  • Kaylee says:
    November 4th, 2010 at 9:10 am   

    Went with a coworker yesterday for lunch. We split the Classen potatoes which were delicious! We both had pancakes as well and they were probably the best in okc. I can’t wait to take my husband!! You must try it, don’t let the outside fool you!

  • Kelli says:
    January 2nd, 2012 at 6:44 am   

    Yes, just ate at this restaurant for the first time a couple of weeks ago.I had the Chinook eggs for breakfast and it was awesome! It is salmon patties covered w/poached eggs and hollandaise sauce served with cheese grits on the side and 4 pieces of toast. Very filling! I’ve lived in OKC for all my life and am sure sorry I missed this place -I’ll be a regular now!

  • Tim says:
    January 2nd, 2012 at 9:03 am   

    Kelli, so glad you found it and enjoyed it! Thanks for sharing your comments.

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