By Scott Cherry | Tulsa World
Getting one’s Lone Wolf Banh Mi fix just got a little easier.
One doesn’t have to wait for one of its food-truck stops anymore to pick up a pulled pork banh mi sandwich or kimchi fries.
Lone Wolf, which operates out of a commissary kitchen at 37th Street and Harvard Avenue, launched carryout service at that site about a month ago.
“We’re still figuring it out,” said Philip Phillips, who owns the business with his wife, Danielle. “We originally thought we would sell mostly take-home stuff from the fridge, but the (fresh food) takeout has been so remarkably busy that it has accounted for 90 percent of the business here.”
Those who go to the carryout location may choose anything off the Lone Wolf menu.
Some of us are creatures of habit about the things we like, and I’ve been that way about Lone Wolf. I never have had anything other than the aforementioned pulled pork banh mi and kimchi fries, so we decided to try something new on a recent visit.
The menu offers the fries, a variety of banh mi sandwiches and fried-rice bowls, plus an assortment of add-ons and condiments, including eight aiolis.
We ordered The Cure rice bowl ($9.95), a kung pao pork banh mi ($7.95) and a lemongrass buttermilk fried chicken banh mi ($8.95).
All rice bowls include jasmine fried rice, sweet basil, scallions, carrots, daikon slaw, bean sprouts and aioli. The Cure comes with pulled pork ($9.95), and we added mushrooms ($2) and a fried egg ($1).
As with pretty much everything in the Lone Wolf arsenal, the dish had some spicy heat, though this probably is one of the mildest selections. As with many Asian-style rice dishes, the addition of the egg was brilliant. In retrospect, I might have added two eggs.
The banh mi sandwiches all have slices of English cucumber, carrots, daikon slaw, jalapenos and aioli. The kung pao had a spicy aioli that gave it a little more zip than the fried chicken, but the chicken had a slightly more appealing flavor. It was a toss-up.
Diners currently may choose among eight aiolis — Thai chili, basil, roasted jalapeno, green curry, cilantro pesto, wasabi, Thai peanut and bacon.
Though we didn’t have the kimchi fries this time, they are worth mentioning. They are made with fresh-cut fries, Monterey Jack and cheddar cheeses, onions, jalapenos, cabbage kimchi, cucumber kimchi, aioli and cilantro. Kimchi means the items were fermented, and some bites of these fries can make one’s head glisten (my wife’s word for sweat). All bites are delicious.
Fans of Lone Wolf since the truck was launched in September 2012 might have detected a change in the fries — for the better — the past couple of years.
“When we started, we were using frozen fries and canned kimchi,” Phillips said. “Now we make our own vegan kimchi in huge beer-brewing barrels, and we use a 72-hour process for our hand-cut fries. It’s a much better dish now.
“Actually, Danielle had the original idea for the kimchi fries. We tried them at home one night, then had to have them again the next day. We knew then it was something we wanted to keep.”
Among items in the refrigerated section was a white chocolate and candied ginger creme brulee with a strawberry-thyme topping ($5.50). The brulee choices may change daily.
Other prepared takeout items may change as well, but ones to watch for include curry pastas, marinades, kimchi, stews, aiolis and pickles.
Lone Wolf also has some bottled waters and sodas. I had a tasty Boylan Bottling Co. black cherry soda ($2) from New York.
Lone Wolf has two stools in the waiting area where one can hang out and eat, which isn’t a bad idea. The staff is informative and fun — we met Natalie and Beaux — and good contemporary music wafted from the kitchen.
The takeout location is open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Phillips said he probably will extend the hours to 9:30 p.m. soon.
“If the temperature is below freezing or if the weather is really bad, we can’t take out the food truck,” Phillips said. “So longer hours here make sense.”
The truck makes regular lunch stops at places such as Guthrie Green and the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame, as well as dinner and Sunday brunch at The Fur Shop, 520 E. Third St. The brunch menu is different than the regular menu. Check out the Lone Wolf Banh Mi Facebook page for schedule and menus.