A Singular Oasis

Eat It: The Oasis, May 19

‘Ark-Mex’ treat unlike anything else

The Oasis
53 Spring St. Suite C
Eureka Springs

By Rachel Birdsell
TFW Contributing Writer

Preamble Ramble

The Oasis is a singular Arkansas experience like no other. It’s tucked away in the middle of downtown Eureka Springs and is the definition of a hole in the wall.

They’ve invented a type of Mexican food unlike any I’ve ever eaten. It’s self-described as “Ark-Mex.” But the most important thing is that it’s one of the places in Eureka that the locals frequent, which is always a good sign in a tourist town.

Food For Thought

I ordered the mushroom and spinach enchiladas and added fresh garlic. The enchiladas came with chips and green salsa, a side salad, sour cream and pinto beans.

The enchiladas were very, very cheesy. They were also filled with fresh, sliced mushrooms and lots of whole leaf spinach. What made me the happiest, though, was that the garlic was healthy slices of raw garlic rather than minced. I would be munching along and then *POW!* I’d be hit by a burst of garlic. The enchiladas would have been good without it, but I think it made them much better.

The green salsa was also very good. It was made from fresh ingredients and had loads of cilantro in it. It had a tiny bit of a bite, but I would have liked it to be hotter.

The side salad was baby greens with tomato chunks and tossed with a vinaigrette dressing. The greens were very crisp and dare I say, fresh? I keep using that word, don’t I? I couldn’t figure out all the ingredients of the dressing, but it’s definitely delicious and maybe even a little addictive.

The pinto beans are whole beans rather than the usual mushy, refried beans that accessorize most plates of Mexican food. They were OK, but didn’t make me want to stand up and sing their praises.

The Sporkcast
(1-5 sporks)

Atmosphere: 4.4 groovy sporks with closely spaced tines and daisies on the handle. The Oasis is tiny and crowded. And did I mention crowded?
The walls are covered in old event posters, newspaper clippings, fliers and photos. The place definitely has a hippie vibe. It’s fun, funky and it’s far out, man. Far out.
Food: 4.70 one of a kind sporks. The food is a unique Arkansas reinvention of Mexican that you won’t find anywhere else.
Staff: 4.85 laid back sporks with peace signs on the tines. Everyone who was working was friendly, down-to-earth and very efficient.
Dollars spent: My lunch set me back about nine beans. The Oasis takes cash only, so make sure you have some before you go. If you forget, there’s an ATM around the corner.
Chance of returning: I’ll definitely go back to The Oasis for some peace, love and enchiladas.

If you know of a great eating place, drop me a line at rabirdsell@gmail.com. I’ll check it out and let you know what I think.

Categories: Food
Tags: featured