We had an early dinner… got there just before they opened. They were nice enough to seat us and let us read the menu while the kitchen prepared for the evening. Service was extraordinary the entire time. They were very friendly and helpful, and had a great sense of humor.
The Szechuan calamari was tasty, but did not meet our expectations. We were expecting something spicy. This dish has a little heat to it (very little), but also has a black bean sauce which makes it kind of sweet. If they called it something other than Szechuan calamari, like maybe Asian calamari or something, we wouldn’t have been surprised. As it was, the dish was fine, but nothing special and a little bit of a letdown as we wanted something spicy.
The corncakes also did not meet our expectations. The menu says “seared shrimp, chipotle butter, roasted tomato salsa and crema.” So we expected the shrimp to be hot. Words like “seared” and “roasted” led us to think the shrimp would be hot. It was served cold, refrigerated cold. Like the calamari, the dish was very flavorful and we liked it. But the explanation did not properly allow us to anticipate what we would be getting. We were a little disappointed with this one, but not as much as the calamari. This is a very tasty small snack.
They had a pan-fried cod special that night with a delicious sauce served over potatoes. I don’t particularly care for the texture of cod, but my wife literally devoured this dish. I tried it, and the flavor was at the same time deep, fresh and tangy. And we both loved the crisp crust they created while cooking. If you like cod, this is among the best we’ve ever had.
The Park Burger also significantly exceeded our expectations. You can pick from about 6-7 toppings, and we chose cheddar and bacon. The cheddar was sharp and melted perfectly, and the bacon was thick enough to retain its flavor and add it to the burger, but not too thick that it overpowered the burger or was hard to eat.
They ask you how you want it cooked, and we told them medium with a little red in the middle. It was cooked perfectly, and I mean perfectly. It was thick and juicy and very flavorful. It had a real beefy taste and with the bacon and the cheddar and the fresh bun, this was a mighty fine burger.
It came with aioli fries that I liked, but the wife was not overly impressed. They’re thin fries that while quite brown in color, weren’t particularly crisp. I loved them, especially the seasoning.
This was a delicious meal, and it was very reasonably priced. We will definitely be back. Maybe before a Dodger game.
As an aside, now we’ve been to The Park (this restaurant), Park Barbecue (very good Korean barbecue in K-Town), and Park Ave. in Stanton (excellent steaks and seafood in an unlikely location). Maybe they're onto something with this Park name.
1400 Sunset (Corner of Douglas)
East Echo Park