103 Years Later and Still Kicking out Amazing Burgers & Chili!

By on October 18, 2011

My first visit to Ike’s Chili was not for the chili. I was cruising down Admiral one afternoon in search of a burger and got lucky. It must have been the gravitational pull of good meat (grilled perfectly) beautifully charred and topped with jalapeno soaked bacon that brought me to Ike’s that day, or it could have been the spirit of good food that has lived on for 103 years.

Not just another restaurant in Tulsa, Ike’s represents the foundation of food and culture in Oklahoma. The restaurant was founded shortly after the Land Run and stands as one of the oldest operating restaurant brands in Oklahoma.

When you walk in the door you will feel the culture. Look around the room, many of the customers have been visiting Ike’s for years (and years and years), chances are they have been ordering the same thing every visit. I can relate, my last several visits have been similar, I can’t get away from the Jalapeno Bacon burger, its perfectly consistent every time.

After my first visit to Ike’s I was in disbelief as the burger side of my brain was telling me that I was eating the best burger in Tulsa. Sometimes you get lucky and the right person is back there on the grill, I kept telling myself. Soon after, my first visit turned into a 3rd and 4th and still an amazing burger each time. A thick hand-formed patty with nice grill marks on the outside and a little pink inside served hot. The bacon has been soaked in jalapeno juices then cooked, giving off just a little spice. The grilled jalapenos almost steal the show from the meat, grilled in burger juices with seasonings, I could eat a cupful alone. It’s the grill flavor that I love, maybe their grill is packed with a 100 years of flavors, that would be cool.

You can’t talk about Ike’s and not mention their famous chili. It is literally written in the history book of Oklahoma and my burger experience is not complete without a side of chili. I am not a chili person, but history, loyal followers and flavor speak for it as being, I’m sure, one of the best chili’s in Oklahoma.

Ike’s Chili

5941 East Admiral Place
Tulsa, OK 74115
(918) 838-9410

http://www.ikeschilius.com/

Ike's Chili on Urbanspoon

Brian McCullough

About Brian McCullough

TulsaFood.com was founded 6 years ago by Brian McCullough because he had a love of food. What started as a blog where normal everyday people dined out and posted about their experiences has grown into a legitimate food publication with professional chefs and writers, each with a unique culinary and educational background to pull from. In 2009 the site won the Oklahoma Magazine award for “Best Food Blog” and continues to be #1 local food website.

4 Comments

  1. DrillerAA

    October 18, 2011 at 6:45 pm

    There were three food institutions Tulsa at one time, Ike’s, Don’s Chili Bowl, and The Golden Drumstick (the best fried chicken in Oklahoma). Glad to see one of them is still alive and kicking.

  2. BobInTulsa

    October 25, 2011 at 12:05 pm

    You were lucky when you were looking. Ike’s started serving burgers just two or three years ago. If the grill is “packed with 100 years of flavors,” it came from somewhere else.
    Having said that, I’ve never had one of their burgers. It’s always been chili for me since 1984 when we arrived in Tulsa. Next time, I’ll give the burger a try.

  3. Tulsatraveller

    December 6, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    I’ve lived in Tulsa for 30 years and had never been to Ike’s until about 2 years ago. Figured I’d try 2 things with one meal and oredered a chili-cheeseburger. All it took was 2 bites and I paid the bill and left. That chili has to be one of the worst things I’ve ever put in my mouth. I told a friend about it (an avid Ike’s fan) and he told me “you just have to crumble uplot’s of crackers and load it up with hot sauce and it’s pretty good”. I admire the fact that it’s been around a long, long time, but, seriously, the chili is just terrible.

  4. Elle

    April 25, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    I agree the chilli was horrible. I cannot see why this restaurant is a Tulsa favorite. My bowl of chilli came with a layer of grease…. I will never go back.

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