Oak's Lucid Plates

With the right frame of mind, Jason Maddy can take you anywhere

Sit where you like and lose yourself in the projected image of an Oak tree at the back of the dining room. Its branches sway in a subtle breeze as the foliage slowly shifts from lifelike green to pink to purple and back to green again. It's a visual meditation that's both strange and calming.

This is what you've been looking for. A comfortable space with a more than competent staff that's as worthy as the plates they describe with passion and detail. They know their wines, too, and will let you sample glass after glass till you find the right mate.

Oak's hamachi crudo plate glistens like an artist's pallette.
Lori Bandi
Oak's hamachi crudo plate glistens like an artist's pallette.

Details

Oak Crudo $12
Moroccan octopus and pork jowls $13
Spiced lamb loin $28
Seared black bass $26
Spaetzle $7
Veal schnitzel $12
Oak, 1628 Oak Lawn Avenue
214-712-9700, oakdallas.com, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., 5 p.m.-10 p.m. Monday- Thursday, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., 5 p.m.-11 p.m. Friday, 5 p.m.-11 p.m. Saturday, $$$$ Closed Sunday

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Share some time with a crisp, acidic Grüner Veltliner the color of corn silk that drinks like that blonde you let get away. You've captured her now. And tones of grass and minerals from clay-rich soils will set you off on your next adventure, this time to Austria, with spaetzle that's been given a rich and crunchy brown crust in a sautee pan. One bite could invoke the texture of crispy hash browns from a childhood breakfast, the next a vacation meal amidst snow-capped Alpine mountains — you could easily go either way. It's your dinner. And it's your memory. A meal can take you anywhere when it's prepared with this much imagination.

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