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Buffalo Joe’s

A restaurant in an old Sonic Drive-In proves to be one of my favorite places thus far in Pawhuska.

I noticed a restaurant last week when I was getting my grand tour of the town. The only reason I noticed it was because the building happen to look like an old Sonic Drive-In. My co-workers filled me in and said it was actually a restaurant called Buffalo Joe’s (Sonic had moved down the road). I asked if any of them had tried it and they all shook their heads “no.”

Being from Arizona, I am eager to try the local Oklahoma restaurants especially since in Arizona the majority of the local places tend to be Mexican restaurants.

I asked my fellow co-worker Benny Polacca, who happens to be an Arizonian as well, to accompany me to Buffalo Joe’s. He gladly accepted and off we went in my “O’odham Pony,” aka my SUV.

Once we arrived the first thing Benny noticed on the menu was the stuffed burgers and instantly fell in love. He also noticed they had buffalo burgers and suggested I try it. I pondered it for a second and told him, “I don’t think I’m ready to go down that road yet.”

The owner Kim Laird came over and told us to try their new-featured burger, the Short Rib and Chuck Steak half-pound burger. It is 100 percent Black Angus topped with Blue Marble Jack cheese and choice of veggies.

Laird told us the interesting part of the Short Rib and Chuck Steak burger is the burger doesn’t taste like a burger but rather a steak. We both looked at each other with our eyebrows raised.

“The meat is Rib tip meat and top butt meat that is made into a hamburger patty,” said Laird. “Customers who order it say it is the best burger they have ever had.”

Once I heard “top butt meat,” I said, “Come again?” and Laird said, “Yeah Rib tip meat and top butt meat.”

I immediately said to myself “Pass!!!”

Instead, I decided to try a quarter-pound burger with home-cut fries since I broke up with McDonald’s and Burger King many moons ago. And the only time I eat burgers is when my family has cookouts.

Benny ordered his half-pound stuffed burger with home-cut fries. We were like two kids in a candy store when our food finally arrived and dug in. The first words out of Benny’s mouth was, “This burger is well cooked and very good.” With my mouth full I nodded in agreement.

We sat in silence for a few minutes and I began looking around. The simple décor of cowboy boots and buffalo statues in the windows added a little bit of the charm to the place.

We licked our bowls clean and were ready for dessert. Benny wanted cobbler but it was still baking in the oven so we both got the “Pie of the day,” which was a homemade cherry cheesecake Laird had made.

The cheesecake had a graham cracker crust with whipped cream and cherries on top. It was tasty and sweet. Not to mention, it was my first time having homemade cheesecake and in my opinion not bad, not bad at all.

The best part of all, both our meals were under $11. I love when the food is cheap and tasty.

If you happen to be in the neighborhood, you should check out Buffalo Joe’s at 401 West Main. They are opened Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. with lunch specials from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. You can also order to go – which I might just have to do sometime.

To see photos from Buffalo Joe’s, visit the Osage News Flickr page.