5801 S. Western Ave.
Oklahoma City, OK 73109
WHY have I not heard about this place?
Our good friends Joy & Dale took us here today after church, and mercy goodness..thank goodness they did!
First off, I must warn you. As we followed the directions to this place and then approached it, I was a little leery. For you see there was neon blue and yellow paint, bars on the windows, and it was not in an end of town I am familiar with. And the decor is different than what you’d expect in one of our American Italian restaurants as well.
The decor consists of bright blue walls, fountains, lots of greenery and statues.
But don’t let that stop you. Seriously.
You’ll miss out.
This is old school classic Italian at it’s best. The portions are more than plentiful. The food is divine.
Bella Vista is the baby of Dina and Milt Korkolis. Native from Greece, they have brought a blend of Italian and Greek food to Oklahoma City and it is delicious. In fact, they are so Greek, they close the restaurant for the month of August to return home to visit, although Joy tells me they now visit relatives in Texas as well.
Featured on the menu, there is a range of classic dishes like lasagna and spaghetti and meatballs, but you will also find a few Greek dishes like Mousaka, a Greek favorite with layers of baked eggplant, marinara and potatoes or Dolmadakia (stuffed grape leaves).
But prominent on the menu is Italian food, and when I say Italian, I don’t mean fancy-schmancy new world dishes with truffle oil or the likes.
Bella Vista has old school classics from Italy. We ordered several of them and went home with a ton of food leftover. The portions are beyond generous, they don’t skimp on things like cheese or sauce, and you will be pleasantly surprised if you make the drive to Bella Vista.
We started out with a few of the appetizers offered. I ordered the Spanakopitakia.
Five triangles of deliciousness come out made of flaky, crisp phyllo dough wrapped around fresh spinach and cheese.
Alongside of them is a side of marinara sauce that is heavenly. I am in love with the red sauce at Bella Vista. It is freshly-made each day, bright, tangy and herby. Wonderful.
My kids went nuts over the Garlic Bread with Cheese.
Garlic powder isn’t factored into this recipe. I tasted real butter and fresh garlic and it was topped with both mozzarella and provolone cheeses that strung from the platter to your plate when you took a piece. And again, the scrumptious sauce..they put it with everything just to drive you wild.
And if that wasn’t enough bread, the house-made sliced rolls arrived and Joy’s salad.
The dressings and bread are all made in-house. The ranch I tasted was thick, rich and flavorfully creamy and made the simple salad special. The bread, is warm and delicious..but don’t be an idiot like I was and get too full on the bread and appetizers…because there is pasta, and pizza…and plenty of it.
Let’s talk about the pizzas at Bella Vista. One of these babies could be easily split by two persons.
My friend Joy loves the Polposa pizza.
This pie has chopped onions, and slices of their homemade slow-cooked meatballs, mild Italian sausage, green peppers and had lots of mozzerella and provolone cheese. They also drizzle their pizzas with a special olive oil made for them.
Don’t yell at me, but I am not a huge pizza fan…but holy cow, this was good.
Mr. Wonderful also got a pizza. He ordered the El Grecco pie.
This one had onions, green peppers, black olives, garlic, feta cheese and…
Chopped gyro meat!
Again, topped with mozzerella and provolone and drizzled with that fantastic olive oil.
And staying within the pizza/calzone family, Dale ordered the calzone..this is a small ladies and gents.
And it’s easily the size of your head. I had to see what was inside of this thing to make it so huge.
Remember what I said about them not skimping on anything? Mounds of oozing cheese spilled out of the crispy browned crust and more of that delicious sauce.
Tori had the classic lasagna.
According to Dina, this is probably their most widely-favored and well-known dish. With layers and layers of noodles, their house-made meat sauce, and layers of six cheeses, this was bliss at its best.
And yes, I did say six cheeses. There is Mozzarella, Ricotta, Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pecorino Romano, Marscapone and Asiago, mixed in with sweet basil and garlic as well.
This would feed two people comfortably, or one person with an enormously large stomach and appetite.
As would the other pasta dishes we ordered. Kayla ordered the Chicken Fettucini Alfredo.
The sauce here has more of a cheesy consistency and is topped with black and white pepper and nutmeg. Italians frequently like to use nutmeg in white sauces, so if you don’t like it, you may ask for them to spare it. We thought it was delicious.
I ordered the Ziti Alla Vodka.
Not usually a huge red sauce fan (it messes with me), I cannot stress again how delicious their red sauces are. This one was no exception. With hints of garlic, basil, oregano, butter, nutmeg and heavy cream, it is topped with shrimp and as usual, a generous sprinkling of Pecorino Romano and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Oh yes, and vodka…which lends a special flare to the sauce.
If…and I stress if….you can make it to dessert (we couldn’t), there is a glass case full of cream cakes, Tiramasu, and Baklova provided by La Baguette Bakery.
But if you can make it dessert, you my friend are either crazy-insane, or have the biggest appetite known to man. Because we will be eating leftovers for a week.
Try Bella Vista soon. It’s amazing.
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