Friday, September 12, 2008

Ah, well.... where to begin?!?

This being our first post, let us explain a few things first. We are not food critics. Or wine critics. But we do believe that we have good taste..... in food, and wine, and (if we must say) shoes, handbags, and clothes too! That being said... we are not 'ladies who lunch'. We are sisters and best friends who happen to eat out alot together and love to hit all the newest hot spots around town. So, after an interesting day on Wednesday, we decided we must share an experience unlike any other (and other experiences along the way!).

It was a lovely September day in Philadelphia. My sister and I had scheduled to head downtown (we live in the 'burbs) to have lunch and shop around. The day started off fantastic, actually. I had a quick casual business meeting at La Colombe, where we enjoyed yummy lattes, an amazing brioche croissant, and great company. Afterwards we did some shopping around Rittenhouse Square. Fast forward a few hours and this brings us to lunch.

Shopping can work up quite an appetite and thirst, so we were really looking forward to having a seat and enjoying a nice glass of wine. My sister suggested Lacroix for lunch, to which I happily agreed.... a nice lunch with great wine and a fabulous view over the park of the lovely day. Sadly, Lacroix was closed for renovations. So, we headed over to Rouge.... always one of our favorite spots that never disappoints. We were seated at the last table available outside, and although the nice hostess brought over a chair for our designer bags, there was an unfortunate odor coming from the outdoor mat that our table sat directly upon. With a sensitive sense of smell that we inherited from our mother, we decided to leave and go try out Parc.

Parc..... "Philly's new hot spot". Let's share with you our experience here....

We were seated at a cozy (almost too cozy... if you don't smell and like your neighbor) table outside. Great. Beautiful day to enjoy while dining. (But take note, no place to set your designer bag and no one brought over a chair for us to place them in! Nor was there any room for the purchases we acquired within the hours before lunch.) So we settle in and take a gander at the Wine by the Glass list. And although we found a Russian River Valley chardonnay to suffice, the list otherwise is very sparse in anything enjoyable. (Ask for the full wine list....the by the bottle selection is a step up, but confused by the feature of a local Pennsylvania wine. Don't get us wrong, we are all for local foods and wine, but the one Parc features is less than mediocre. And even more confusing because Parc is a French bistro.... or brasserie... or cafe.... Parc claims to be all of the above.)

Once the wine arrived (delayed and in a dirty glass), we anxiously awaited our food. I had ordered a mesclun salad to start and the onion soup. My sister ordered the Chicken Paillard salad with a side of the pomme frites. Our order came..... incorrectly. They had the wrong salad for my sister, and they brought out my salad and soup at the same time.... all for a table the size of a large coffee mug! We sent it all back, asking for a fresh soup to come out later with the correct salad. Once the food was corrected, it was edible. Good almost, but nothing amazing. (If you feel you must try out Parc, I suggest the Chicken Paillard..... it was pretty tasty.)

Another note: Our Evian water was mistakenly topped off with tap water!

While sitting there, we overheard a pedestrian say "Look at this beautiful feels just like you are in Paris". And yes, it does, if you get the same feeling when you dine in the French restaurant at Disney World's Epcot.

So let's look at the positives here: It was a beautiful day for lunch outside. The bathrooms inside were kinda cute. And any place you can sport sunglasses thru lunch is always a plus!

Parc Restaurant, 227 S. 18th St., Philadelphia, PA 19103 215-545-2262