Oakhaus, a new hofbrau-style tavern serving hearty German and American dishes and a varied selection of beers on tap, has opened on Broadway in Oak Park.
Oakhaus soft opened in May and began offering a full food menu earlier this month. The dinner menu suggests Thanksgiving in June, with its confit turkey leg and sides of mashed potatoes, “Grandma’s Stuffing,” potato gratin, Brussels sprouts and glazed carrots. Spit-roasted chicken, prime rib and pork schnitzel also are options.
Lunch is sandwiches and salads. Oakhaus’ snack menu leans mid-century Americana, with mini-corn dogs, deviled eggs and hush puppy-like “kraut balls” made with sauerkraut.
The draft beer list includes offerings from Germany’s Erdinger and Weihenstephaner breweries as well as beers from several Sacramento-area producers.
The hofbrau sits near 34th Street in the mixed-use Broadway Triangle complex. It is the brainchild of Tom Schnetz, the successful Bay Area chef/restaurateur who returned to his hometown of Sacramento to open La Venadita taqueria last year in a rehabbed older building on Third Avenue. The two restaurants sit less than half a mile from each other.
Oakhaus’ design aesthetic is clean but also kitsch. A collection of Black Forest cuckoo clocks hangs on a wall near the bar. Shelving behind the bar holds decorative beer steins, vintage audio equipment and a pink “Mendl’s” bakery box just like those from the fictional bakery in the film “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” which was directed by that established kitsch-master, Wes Anderson.
Schnetz has said he was inspired to open a hofbrau by a youthful fondness for Sam’s Hof Brau in Sacramento. Oakhaus’ German/Americana mix also evokes downtown Sacramento’s Empress Tavern, and its emphasis on beer and communal seating is reminiscent of midtown’s LowBrau (but with less sausage).
“It’s going to be my take on that style of food, what I really like to eat,” Schnetz previously told The Bee about his hofbrau project. “It’s not going to be a straight-up German hofbrau where you can barely pronounce what you are ordering.”