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Picasso Cafe paints Paseo in better light

The Food Dude visits Picasso Cafe in the heart of the Paseo Arts District.
by Dave Cathey Modified: February 20, 2013 at 12:12 pm •  Published: February 20, 2013

Using the same dough made for the Indian taco, chef John Madore serves a handful of specialty pizzas, plus a build-your-own option. I'm partial to the prosciutto, fig mozzarella and bleu cheese version.

Speaking of figs and prosciutto, Madore's standout appetizer menu offers a Medjools wrapped with the same prosciutto and stuffed with the aforementioned bleu cheese. The house-made pretzel with bacon bleu cheese cream is a crowd-pleaser. The seared tuna with candied garlic, rosemary and soy is as beautiful to look at as it is to eat. The quinoa tacos are cool like Sunday morn and delicious to boot. The white queso with chorizo is as good as it sounds.

Perhaps Picasso's greatest strength is its vegetarian-friendly offerings. Let's face it, the vast majority of us consume too much meat of one kind or another. No, dear friends with councils concerned with beef, pork and poultry, I'm not suggesting the general population picket your products. Far from it. I am advocating balance, which has been proven to be the path to enlightenment on many levels. Picasso Cafe does the unusual in that when you do opt for a meatless meal, they offer one that is thoughtful, filling and delicious. Note to my many restaurateur and chef friends, there is more to vegetarian meals than the seasonal vegetable platter.

Picasso offers the previously praised Indian taco without tuna and a chicken-fried Portobello with vegan soy gravy. There also is a pesto-mushroom pasta with caramelized onions, artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes and feta. How about a Fritos chili pie with vegan chili, red pepper, jalapenos and provolone? Madore also makes a cheeseless vegan pizza with garlic puree, marinara, Roma tomatoes and basil.

Madore also offers six salads and a quiche of the week. The arugula-beet with fried goat cheese and toasted pine nuts is divine.

All this, and I can get a Pimm's Cup, too.

On Sundays, Picasso offers a brunch menu including crepes, frittata, French toast, breakfast sandwich and burrito, an omelet bar and selected regular menu items from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Fiaccone and Dansereau have not only rekindled the spirit of Galileo but elevated it.

Also operating The Other Room, formerly Isis Bar, Fiaccone and Dansereau offer the full Picasso menu in the narrow watering hole that is open until 2 a.m. every day.

Picasso Cafe continues the Galileo tradition of presenting live local music Wednesday through Saturday.

The restaurant is open 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Wednesday; closing at 2 a.m. Thursday through Saturday, and operates 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday.

For information about catering and private parties, call 602-2002 or go online to picassosonpaseo.com.

by Dave Cathey
Food Editor
The Oklahoman's food editor, Dave Cathey, keeps his eye on culinary arts and serves up news and reviews from Oklahoma’s booming food scene.
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