We were seven of the rowdiest, half-drunk (some were drunk), food service veterans that could have possibly strolled into a restaurant at closing; potentially the best or worst customers possible. They stayed open for us, and we treated them well for making the right decision.
Straight out of the gates we ordered two bottles of Veuve Clicquot Yellow label, and three different varieties of oysters. I also had a thirst for some Scotch, ordering a luscious Oban 14 to start. parkside has by far the largest selection of oysters in Austin, with an average of fourteen varieties on the menu. Almost nothing beats a fresh oyster drenched in malt vinegar washed down with a little bit of bubbly. Recession this.
The kitchen was closing, so the few of us that actually wanted to eat dinner had to make a decision quickly. Appetizers were being spouted out at our accommodating server, and one of our brood slunked after her to order some secret bottles of wine. Unfortunately, they were out of the marrow bones, which are divine -- I think they lifted the recipe from St. John, because the presentation is damn near the same -- so we had to skip those. The table started to run out of room as our apps came out: calamari, and patè grand mere (chunky and porky=crazy delicious). After some discussion with our server about innards and funky bits, she brought out a plate of their patè blonde on the house. This mousse style patè was delicate in texture, and robust in it's flavor. It was served with a strawberry salad that perfectly complimented both the texture and taste. You can guess what was in it that made it sooooo good.
Only two of us ordered dinner, I think... I had a braised lamb shank, served with a turnip puree, that was unctuous and earthy. Tim opted for their bar steak and fries, which I really enjoy, which was cooked perfectly. I must confess to you dear reader, that I have been going to parkside about once a month since September, but have been reluctant to do a proper review. This is not a review either, more of a tale of revelry, so stay tuned for one.
We drank the two bottles of Buehler Cab that were ordered secretly, and rejoiced. Cory was going quickly to the land of the sentimental drunk, frequently interjecting a sloppy "I love you guys," every now and again. We had dessert, which was probably unnecessary, but delicious none-the-less. We had their doughnut holes with three dipping sauces, and some caramel laden cakey thing with ice cream. Both were great, but I was already overstimulated by patès and grape juice so these were just icing on the cake. In the end our group of former law students, Hudson's servers, produce managers, and unemployed dudes laid waste to parkside, leaving a high water mark on our souls as we walked or stumbled out onto Sixth St.
We were denied entrance to two separate bars; one wouldn't let me in with my bag on (!?), the other stopped Cory at the door, because his legs apparently weren't working the best that they could've been. As if we needed further stimulation, there were shots, and more shots. Car bombs, and sake bombs... blegh. It made for a great morning. In the end, it was a memorable night, full of revelry, and camaraderie; good booze, and better food.