The interior was clean, bright, and spacious and looked nothing like the taco shop that was formerly at this location. The menu was a bit odd; Med/Middle Eastern on one side, Burritos on the other. There were several beers on tap, most of them standard local brews. I found the combination of all three kind of confusing....was this a bar serving Mediterranean food, or a Med-Mex restaurant featuring beer and wine. Throw in the hookah room in the back, add ESPN running on all the television sets and you got a Med-Mex-hookah-sports bar. The folks running the place are friendly enough. I was told they own the liquor store across the parking lot, so maybe that explains the beer and wine.
Most of the plates, salads, and stuff ran north of $7.95, but under ten bucks, which didn't seem bad. I decided on something called the "Crazy Kofta" ($9.95):
Basically mass produced pita, with some mildly seasoned kofta meat, a bit on the dry side. Iceberg lettuce, tomato (which was actually pretty good), red onion, and sumac. Throw in some rather limp fries and a mild yogurt sauce. Nothing really special. It was nice to have this option in the neighborhood, but this didn't seem like a good value.
Still, the folks running the place were really friendly, so I returned with some friend for drinks one evening. We basically had a couple of beers, Ange a glass of wine, and we decided to get the Falafel Plate.
The falafel were really hard, gritty, and dry,tasting of too much parsley, with a bit of bitterness thrown in. The hummus was too thick and tasted like the store-bought stuff. This also seemed a bit over-priced at $7.95.
For some reason, it just seemed like Bay Park just couldn't pull off some really good grub.....Oasis just seemed like a bar that served Mediterranean Pub Grub. But maybe that's what they were shooting for. I really like the folks here, but I'd pretty much marked this down as a place to get a beer or two and not much more.
A couple of weeks ago, I happened to be in the area during lunch and decided to stop by again. I was surprised to find a "Lunch Specials" menu, with everything at five bucks. So I decided on the Falafel Pita. I was surprised when my plate arrived....there was no mention of fries on the menu, but there it was.
Sure, it was the same mass produced supermarket pita...iceberg lettuce, sumac, et al. But there were four falafel in the sandwich, which were much better, more moist, and the parsley taste had been toned down so I could make out some mild spice.
The fries were done to a decent SYSCO-liciousness. Perhaps the kitchen was still feeling its way during my first two visits. I thought this was priced right at $5, or even six.
Oasis is a nice addition to the neighborhood, though not a place to go out of your way for.