I recently had the chance to try another one of Justin Thompson’s divine Tulsa restaurants: Tavolo. This Italian-inspired eatery in downtown Tulsa at 427 S. Boston is situated in the art deco-classic Atlas Life Building and offers so much more than just pasta and bread.
For my dinner, I chose the Chef’s Tasting, a menu selection that changes every few weeks. My tasting included a Strawberry Fields Salad with a delicious cream on the side, Risotto with Beef Tips, Gorgonzala, and Asaparagus, and Tiramisu for dessert. Let it be known that Risotto is undoubtedly the specialty at Tavolo. You can “create your own risotto,” choosing a sauce (pesto, gorgonzola, parmesan, or chianti), a vegetable (mushrooms, tomatoes, butternut squash, or spinach), and a protein (chicken, Italian sausage, tenderloin tips, or shrimp). The risotto is truly amazing, and you won’t find anything like it anywhere else in Tulsa.
For appetizers, my husband first chose the Butternut Squash Soup (crème fraÎche, toasted pumpkin seeds). This unique, creamy soup is naturally somewhat reminiscent of Thanksgiving time. He also opted for the Fried Risotto Cakes (fresh mozzarella filled, tomato jam, sage aioli). Once again, the chefs at Tavolo have gotten creative with risotto and fit it into a creative, superb appetizer.
For his main course, my husband also tried the risotto: selecting the Pesto Spinach Shrimp create-your-own option.
We shared the Tiramisu from my Chef’s Tasting for dessert. It was light, fluffy, spicy — everything Tiramisu should be!
The Tavolo menu is full of other Italian-inspired specialties, including Ricotta Gnocchi, Carbonara, Veal Marsala, Garlic Herb Chicken, and Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo. I look forward to trying more of these options in the near future.
While the meal was truly pleasing and satisfying, the atmosphere was equally enjoyable. Dining in the old Atlas Life Building (also home to the Courtyard Marriott Hotel, the Tulsa Press Club, Baytide Petroleum and The New Atlas Grill) made me feel like I had stepped back in time to the 1920’s, when the building was home to the Atlas Life Insurance Company and Tulsa was at the height of its oil boom success.