date night at Parc

Husband and I did a lot of cleaning and organizing last weekend, and decided to reward ourselves with a date night at a fancy restaurant. (In case you are wondering, fancy restaurant = any place other than our 2 staple restaurants that are a 5 minute drive away.)

A few weeks ago, we saw Parc mentioned on Food Network's "Best Thing I Ever Ate" show. Chef Robert Irvine was raving about their mashed potatoes, of all things. Since we are only an hour's drive to downtown Philadelphia, we decided we needed to try it out.

Parc is a French-style bistro, right on the edge of Rittenhouse Square. The decor is phenomenal. I have never been to France, so I can't vow that it was authentic. But I felt as if I had stepped into exactly what I imagine a French bistro to be. Every last detail was well planned and true to their theme. It was like dining on a movie set. Unfortunately, my camera situation that night was less than ideal, as you are about to see. The photos don't do it justice. It's ok though, we've already decided we need to go back (during daylight hours).

We started with cocktails. Husband tried a basil, cucumber, and citrus vodka concoction that our server enthusiastically recommended.

I stuck with a nice pino noir. Please also note that Husband can't 
hold a camera still. I mentioned this to him and asked for a re-take. 
He told me "beggars can't be choosers." Ah, love.

 The French bread loaf was -surprise, surprise- to die for.

I started with the salade verte. I love dishes like this that are so simple yet so delicious. The greens were crisp and buttery, and the dressing was tangy, and the green beans added the perfect little bite of texture.

Husband had the onion soup gratinee. Otherwise known as French onion soup.
I was only able to steal a few spoonfuls, but it was delish. Not too salty like some soups can be. The sweetness of the onions really came through in the broth.

I ordered the beef bourguignon... figured I couldn't go wrong with a classic.
I wasn't dissapointed! The beef was so tender it just fell apart. The carrots were perfectly done. The turnips... ok so I don't like turnips. I pushed them to the side of my plate and ate everything else instead.

Husband opted for the 1/2 roast chicken, the dish Chef Irvine was raving about.
He shared a few bites with me and wow! It was tender, and well-seasoned, 
and (Chef was right) the mashed potatoes were out of this world! They were smooth
and creamy, and delightfully buttery. Husband refused to wait for me to take
a picture before he dug in (hence the blurry hand/fork on the right)

Unfortunately, we were too full for dessert. Just another reason to go back!
Everything was delightful... from the food, to the decor to our enthusiastic server.
All in all, date night at Parc was a delicious success!


  1. YUM! I love Parc, one of my favorite places to eat in center city. Have you ever been to any other Steven Starr restaurants?

  2. I've been to Pod quite a few times... my Husband went to grad school at UPenn and literally lived across the street from it! I also love love love Pizza Stella, everything there is amazing! That's all so far, but I've been wanting to try Buddakan and Morimoto for a while.