Jamil's offers history with Lebanese cuisine

By Marcy Williams Modified: July 12, 2010 at 5:11 pm •  Published: May 29, 2009

TULSA — Going out for a special dinner can actually be a history lesson when you enter Jamil’s in Tulsa.

As the city’s oldest steak house, Jamil’s has been serving superb Lebanese food for 65 years.

Originally opened in Bristow, it was moved to a location on 11th Street and then to 27th and Harvard.

In 1957 Jamil’s was relocated by owner James Elias to a house on 51st Street. There was considerable controversy and years of litigation about the zoning for a business in an area that was zoned for residences. The publicity afforded by the news stories just served to increase clientele.

Elias continued to serve the classic Lebanese-style menu — including tabouli, hummus tahini, barbecued ribs and bologna, and cabbage rolls — with his hickory-grilled steaks.

After more than 50 years in the same location, the restaurant moved to a new site in September 2008 due to future highway construction. It didn’t go far, however, just 10 blocks farther east on 51th Street.

The Elias family continues to operate Jamil’s and along with the family history is that of Robert Antoine Jones, who began as the only employee when he was 18.

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4 to 10 p.m. Monday to Sunday

(918) 742-9097

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