Review by: Michael Stern

Where Cattlemen Eat

Surrounded by what once was the largest livestock trading center on earth, Cattlemen’s is the consummate cowboy steak house. The original dining area maintains its old lunch counter, where brokers, haulers, and buyers come for breakfast of chicken fried steak starting at six a.m.

Cowboys vs. Cattlemen

In the South Dining Room, which was added in the 1950s, spacious upholstered booths accommodate big spenders. One entire wall features an immense, illuminated panoramic transparency of a herd of black angus cattle with two men on horseback watching over them. Curiously, the mounted cowherds do not wear buckaroo attire. They wear suits and ties, apparently to distinguish them from common cowboys who work for wages. These gents want you to know they are cattle ranchers who can afford a blue-ribbon steak.

Top-Of-The-Line Sirloin Steak

At the pinnacle of goodness on Cattlemen’s menu stands a sirloin steak as fancy as anything served on the white-clothed tables of New York’s steak row or in the premier beef houses of Chicago, Omaha, and Kansas City. You hardly need the steak knife provided. A butter knife would do the job. But how one’s mouth waters to feel the keen steel glide through beef that, although tender, has real substance. You are forking up red meat with character. It proves you are in a real cowboy steak house.

When You Crave Testicles, This Is The Place

Steak soup is wonderful: lusty mahogany brown and crowded with vegetables, beef, and lamb fries. Lamb fries are the polite term used to designate gonads. In fact, testicles rate as a highly-regarded delicacy in much of the West. When cowboys castrated young livestock on the range, they treated themselves to a testicle-fry at the end of the day. Like much deep-fried food, lamb fries’ breading makes the difference. The organ meat inside the crust delivers a rich, luxuriously sweet flavor reminiscent of sweetbreads.

What To Eat

Presidential Cut Steak

Lamb Fries

Steak Soup

Steak Burger

Strip Sirloin

Pepper Steak

House Salad

Baked Potato

Dinner Roll


Cattlemen’s Recipes


What do you think of Cattlemen’s?

2 Responses to “Cattlemen’s”

Ben Weiner

September 11th, 2012

Cattlemen’s makes a mean steak. You could determine this based upon their presidential pedigree, the fact that they have live cattle auctions on site, or by trying it yourself. Located in Oklahoma City’s historical Stockyard district, it’s tough to say I’ve had fresher meat in my life.

I ordered the prime rib at Cattlemen’s, which was absolutely awesome. An eating partner of mine ordered the Cowboy steak (rare of course) and that was even better. Cattlemen’s makes sure you leave full; offering delicious buttered rolls and a house salad that is absolutely fantastic. I’m not sure how they make it, but Cattlemen’s house dressing may be the best salad dressing I’ve ever had, seriously. Don’t leave without trying the lamb fries as well. If you don’t know what lamb fries are, try asking your waiter… after you eat them.


Bill LeGallee

March 12th, 2011

While I admit they serve the best steak I’ve ever had, and for that alone they deserve their notoriety, I don’t consider this a Roadfood establishment. The steak is a deal at $25. However, the remainder of the menu lacks luster. Accompaniments include uninspiring potato options and a standard cafeteria-style salad of iceberg lettuce with dressing from a bottle.

The place is inexplicably popular with locals, and as a visitor I marveled at a fascinating cross-section of Oklahoma’s socioeconomic strata. I found the 30-minute wait in the “holding tank” upstairs entertaining, though I have to wonder if the resemblance to a cattle-pen was intentional given the proximity to the stockyards.


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