The Oasis in Goshen is an old-school bar serving up some old-school wings

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By: Michael Tomko
miketomko@outlook.com

Michael Tomko

The Oasis is a small bar located in its own building right in front of Linway Plaza in Goshen. When it comes to calling a place “old-school,” The Oasis fits the bill perfectly.

You get all the signs of an authentic old-school bar: the dark wood paneling, cigarette machine by the door, old cans and bottles on the walls, and one of the most beautiful old wooden bars you will find in the area.

This thing has arches, large pillars and ornamental decorations that are probably hand carved. I talked to the bartender a few years ago and he said the bar was originally in a building a bit further down on Lincoln Avenue, across from the courthouse. When they tore the building down to put in a bank, the old bar was moved up the street into The Oasis.

It is my recommendation to people who come to Goshen to check out First Fridays to stop in the Oasis for a drink, too. The atmosphere – and especially the bar – at the Oasis is another gem to see in Goshen with all the revitalization that’s happened over the last few years to get people downtown.

The wings here, too, are old-school. They don’t even have a buffalo sauce. I asked the bartender if they came with sauce and she just gave me a look and said something like, “Well, we have barbecue, ranch and honey-mustard to dip them in.” So, I would be eating my wings sauce-less.

The wings came out freshly fried and unbroken. I’m no fan of unbroken wings, but this place is old-school. You should expect things like unbroken chicken wings here, because that’s the way they were always made.

As I separated the wing and bit into a drummie, the old cliché came to mind, “tastes like chicken.” That is the best way I can put it — they tasted like fried-chicken-flavored chicken wings.

I’ll try to explain this better.

One of the beauties of chicken is that it has almost no flavor. Take a boneless chicken breast, put it in the oven for 30 minutes and take a bite. It’s like eating water. When you eat a sauced wing, the chicken and skin are still there for texture, but they take on the flavor of the sauce. When you eat fried chicken, the breading and oil added to the outer skin bring flavor and the chicken stays juicy.

This is what you have in the wings here. The breading was very light and crispy, and it could use a bit more salt, but  overall it was like eating a plate of fried chicken—if all they brought you were wings.

The wings are large, too. A lot of times, if you order a fried chicken platter, the wing portion is very small. These are jumbo wings like the ones you expect to get when ordering just wings. The price was very reasonable: six unbroken wings for $9.50 makes a CPW of 79 cents. That puts it into the lower range of the average price.

Would I order the wings from this place again? No, I would order a plate of fried chicken and get a breast or some legs along with the wings. Or maybe I’ll just sneak in my own bottle of Franks Hot Sauce.

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