Rocking "R" Ranch House Restaurant
Preview 918 Magazine Article: March 2020
Most people who drive past the white picket fence and sprawling driveway think Forest Ridge Golf Club is a private country club because of the luxurious feel; they don’t realize they too are invited to play and dine at the Robson Ranch.
“We’ve been fighting that [private] country club stereotype for years,” says Lance Allen, general manager of Forest Ridge Golf Club. “But we’re open to the public. No membership required to dine, drink, or golf.”
Another misconception people have is that Forest Ridge Golf Club and the Rocking “R” Ranch House restaurant is “way out there.”
“We’ve been fighting [that] for a long time even when we opened up 30 years ago,” says Allen. “But when the Creek [Turnpike] opened up, that opened up all of south Tulsa for us and some of the smaller towns in the area.”
Now you can get from downtown, south Tulsa, or midtown door to door to Forest Ridge in about 20 minutes. Even if the drive were longer, the view from the dining room overlooking the No. 1 and No. 9 holes would be worth it. “You just don’t get this kind of view anywhere,” says Allen.
While the serene country setting is a breath of fresh air, another benefit is there’s always plenty of parking. Wednesday through Saturday, a chauffeured golf cart will pick you up from your car and drop you off at the entrance of the Rocking “R” Ranch House restaurant.
The décor inside reflects the ranch life, but don’t worry, you won’t be eating in a barn; it’s not that rustic. Instead, you can expect a polished, upscale ranch house feel with Southern hospitality and charm in the décor, service, and food. From the stunning cypress ceilings known for its texture and oblong holes to the wagon wheel chandeliers and solid wood tables, the ranch and southern influences are everywhere. Gather the family around the large community table that seats 10 made from one slab of wood right off the Robson Ranch or dine more intimately at one of the candlelit tables.
When the weather is nice, take your party outdoors on the patio voted one of the best patios for dining. Throughout the year, they host several outdoor events, including live music, food, and drink specials. While the view and rustic charm will entice you to dine at Rocking “R” Ranch House, it’s the food that will keep you coming back.
Serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, there’s no need to go hungry. The chefs at Rocking “R” Ranch House combine Southern-style cooking with twists of modern flavors
for superior dishes both in taste and presentation. When in season, fresh herbs from their on-the-premise garden add to the rich ranch house flavor.
The public is encouraged to spend the entire day at Forest Ridge Golf Club. “We want them to enjoy the facility as a whole,” says Allen. “Come in, eat, grab a couple of beers, go play, come back in, and eat afterward.” Whether you come early before tee time to catch a bite to eat, have a hankering for eggs and waffles for dinner, or bring the family for brunch, the Rocking “R” Ranch House serves up breakfast just the way you like it offering Saturday and Sunday morning breakfast buffets from 8-10:30 a.m. that include scrambled eggs, breakfast potatoes, bacon, sausage, biscuits and gravy, and fresh fruit. The Sunday brunch buffet from 10:30 a.m.–2 p.m. serves an omelet and waffle bar cooked to order, breakfast, and lunch offerings from the buffet. Kids age 4 and under eat free. For Easter and Mother’s Day, Rocking “R” Ranch House goes the extra mile. “We carve rime rib, have omelets and waffles, and different fish dishes as well as chicken,” says food and beverage director Brad Rockholt. The smorgasbord style buffet also includes different styles of potatoes like mashed and oven-roasted, two to three different vegetables, and more. Of course, weekends and special occasions aren’t the only reason to dine at Rocking “R” Ranch House, which is open to the public for breakfast and lunch, seven days a week, and Wednesday through Saturday for dinner.
Complimentary bread and caramelized cornbread (served at dinner) top every table. But don’t fill up because you’re going to want to choose from one of their many savory appetizers like the sweet heat shrimp; loaded housemade chips topped with pulled pork, onions, peppers, feta cheese, and honey chipotle; or the tobacco onions, thinly sliced onion rings served with housemade remoulade sauce.
Sure, they have all the soup, salad, sandwich, burger, and even taco favorites, but why not enjoy the signature dishes like the meatloaf with beef and sausage seared with a tomato glaze, the succulent smoked baby back ribs lightly glazed in tangy barbecue sauce, or the chargrilled steaks including rib-eye and filets with roasted prime rib served Saturday nights.
“We use fresh produce instead of frozen, and Black Angus beef, but we source as much as we can with local companies and items,” says Rockholt.
Perhaps you’re more in the mood for chicken or fish. You can’t go wrong with the sautéed trout, salmon, chicken-fried steak, fried chicken, blackened chicken pasta, braised beef gnocchi, or anything else on the menu. If you leave hungry, it’s your fault since there’s something on the menu for everyone.
Just off to the side of the dining room is a door leading to Rocking “R” Bar. Open to the public with five TVs and a full bar serving cocktails, beer, wine, and menu items from the restaurant, it’s a great place to unwind after golf or work. “We have a couple of stud bartenders who’ve been out here for nine or 10 years,” says Allen. “They know how to make about every drink you can imagine.”
Whether you’re taking the kids or grandkids out on the green to play three or nine holes, or treating them to a meal from the kid-friendly menu, you’ll enjoy special family time at Forest Ridge Golf Club. Family golf nights are planned for this season, so check the website for days and time, but every Wednesday is family night at Rocking “R” Ranch House. For every adult meal ordered, you get a free child’s meal (12 and under), and kids can get a prize from the treasure chest on the way out.
For that extra special occasion for a crowd of up to 150 people, you don’t have to be a member of the golf club to rent the elegant space with a glass wall overlooking the picturesque golf course. Newly renovated with an old-world chandelier, wood floors, and stylish yet comfortable interior grand room, it’s the perfect space for your event. Whether you’re hosting a wedding reception, office or Christmas party, reunion, proms, or other special occasions, the glass veranda event space has everything you need, including audiovisual equipment and private bathrooms for guests. “We can do different plated and buffet-style meals,” says Rockholt. “If you have something in particular that you want, we’re always flexible to make it happen.” While it’s always best to book your event well in advance (at least two weeks out,) they will do their best to accommodate last minute bookings. “Typically, we can put it together pretty quick,” says Allen, who in the past has put together an event in 48 hours.