Live fire restaurant with an emphasis on local ingredients, fresh meats, house-made pasta, bread, and Neapolitan style pizzas

Oakwood Fire Kitchen-

Draper, UT –Pizza, New American,  – $$ – Casual
Sifter Critique

Multiple Authors: Phil H. and Brandon O.Updated Nov, 2019. Originally Published May, 2019

Overall 4.4 / 5.0

4

Food

4

Service

5

Ambience

4.5

Value

Overview

Oak Wood Fire Kitchen is a live-fire, contemporary American restaurant with an emphasis on local ingredients, fresh meats, house-made pasta, bread & Neapolitan style pizzas. As soon as you step inside you’ll be treated with a gorgeous, smoky aroma from the wood oven. For those of you who love to smoked food at home, this is a place for you with a dash of “rustic craft and soul.”

Value

Like many places alike, their focus is to provide you with fresh elegance but fresh does not always equal good value. A plate from Oak Wood Fire Kitchen will cost you anywhere between $10-$20 and in my book that’s a win for this fare. In addition to fresh Neapolitan style pizza and hand made pasta they do have a limited selection of meat dishes you can choose from, nonetheless, I would stick with their well-crafted pizza. Don’t forget to grab an appetizer as well!

3 most popular dishes

Baked Goat Cheese, Meatball Sliders, Fried Cauliflower, and the pizza (changes seasonally).

What I ordered

We ordered several dished between multiple visits. For appetizers, we ordered the fried cauliflower, fried quail, bone marrow, house fries, and baked goat cheese. For the entrees, we ordered the pastor pizza, pepperoni pizza, south side pizza, and roasted salmon with arugula salad.

Food quality

Each dishes uses the highest quality ingredients, such as fresh herbs, handmade dough, pasta, and choice meat. Oakwood also puts an emphasis on their presentation.

The pizzas:

The crust was consistently light, moist, and perfectly cooked for each pie. Puffy around the edges and thin in the middle. A slight char adds a touch of smokiness from the wood-fired oven but isn’t overcooked. The freshly prepared sauce on our four pizzas was more of a tomato and garlic puree than marinara, lightly glazed across the crust. The melted cheese is more creamy than elastic and quite runny when fresh out of the oven.

Pepperoni Pizza
The pepperoni pizza has a unique surprising flavor of hot drizzled honey. It added a satisfying touch, creating a sweet and savory dish.

Southside Pizza
The sausage has a strong chili and red pepper base and is somewhat acidic but also savory. Extremely well seasoned and tastes similar to chorizo. This is the first time that I’ve had mint on a red sauce pizza but it added a nice touch of sweetness. It introduced a lingering, cooling effect mixed in with the warm ingredients for a great experience.

Pastor Pizza
I loved the sweet and savory combination for this pizza. The Al pastor style pork belly was moist and seasoned well with the perfect amount of salt. The fresh pineapple added a splash of sweet and fruity tang! The pickled red onions and chives added a vibrant contrast of colors, enhancing the presentation.


Other entrees:

Arugula Salad with Salmon
This was a simple meal but well executed. The arugula was plainly dressed with a lemon vinaigrette and parmesan, hiding any bitterness. The salmon was sushi-grade and marbled nicely. The fish was lightly seasoned, putting the focus on the natural juices. I hadn’t had salmon seared before but it was delicious! If you don’t like your fish medium rare, just ask them to cook it longer.

Carbonara
The handmade pasta was flavorful and delightful but the Carbonara dish was flat, dry and again, oily. I couldn’t taste the bacon, peppers, or corn they added and I prefer Carbonara to be creamy.


The appetizers:

Fried Quail
Great buffalo sauce flavor! The small bites of meat were tender and juicy. The condiments added crisp and bitterness to the dish. The diversity was incredible. I really enjoyed the quail!

House Fries (made Dirty)
The fries had potential but came out too salty. We’ve had this experience before, at another restaurant, with another couple so we’re sure that we don’t have overly sensitive salt palates. We all went back a couple of times because, well, they’re fries and no one can resist dipping into a bowl of fries in front of them. After that, we were done. Too much salt and it ruined it for us.

Baked Goat Cheese
The highly favored baked goat cheese comes out in a bubbling bowl of marinara sauce. It is served with a warm parmesan, garlic, and rip apart bread that complimented it perfectly. However, we did find it to be a tad bit oily to our liking.

Fried Cauliflower
The cauliflower was perfectly Al dente and battered with a seni-salty poultry seasoning. The accompanying garlic aioli mellowed out the salty batter but his the other flavors.

Bone Marrow
The bone marrow was good but different from what I was expecting. I was expecting a very decadent homestyle taste but the pairings were more earthy, with the heat of the horseradish and the cool sweetness of balsamic melding nicely on the crisp sourdough. For me, the sourdough was the star of this dish. It had a good crunch on the outside but was soft and moist inside.

The Dessert

Skillet Cookie
The server brought us a pazookie on the house. It was thin and burnt with vanilla gelato, chocolate and caramel sauce. It was served in a hot cast iron pan that may have added to the overcooking. It would have been better if it was brought out a little underdone, then allowed to continue cooking while at the table.


Ambiance

When you enter the place you are greeted with an inviting industrial living room with fancy wallpaper, decorated pillows, and food books while you wait for your table. The dining area has a rustic farmhouse feel with modern chandeliers and light fixtures accentuating barn door table tops.

Since part of the kitchen and wood oven is seen from any seat in the house you can watch the chefs make the dough from scratch, transfer to the mixer, and then hand toss. They do this time and time again during the open hours. Fresh ingredients are lined up to add to any dish.

What I liked most

The pizza and the appetizers! The baked goat cheese was extremely delicious along with the Neapolitan pepperoni pizza. We really can’t get enough of it. My spouse enjoyed the vases of fresh flowers that added a splash of color on each table. You can tell details are important to the owner.

What I disliked most

Chef Brandon Price serves up an amazing menu with inspired recipes. I’ve eaten food prepared by him personally and it was exquisite! However, the Oakwood staff seems to occasionally miss the mark. This results in dishes sometimes being too oily, salty, or overcooked. I expect my dishes to be on par and consistent with each visit.

The verdict

Oak Wood Fire Kitchen is deep in the heart of Draper and has become a local favorite, as good or better than many downtown spots. I enjoy bringing family and friends to this joint for the aroma, the food, and home feel, so we will be back!

Food prepared in this establishment may contain wheat, shellfish, dairy, eggs, soy, and nuts. Please ask the establishment prior to consuming any food.

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