Park & Co – A Fun “Some Place Else”

Situated uptown Denver on 17th, we stumbled upon (not the site- the physical activity) Park & Co when we were looking for a good place to have a light dinner. Of course, there are other fantastic restaurants in the same area, but we’d been to those – it was time to give some place else a chance.

It was love at first site – the patio Park & Co sports is more than legit – I would place this patio somewhere in the top 5 of awesome summer patios. There’s adequate seating and space so as not to feel cramped, and it’s a short walk right to the bar inside of the restaurant.

Although Park & Co is known for their award-winning burgers, I’m not much of a burger kind of gal. I know, not very patriotic of me, but I just like to try different dishes! And, that we did.

Image

Gorgonzola-stuffed dates wrapped in bacon, mmm mmmm good! Credit: Steve Mercer, SEPT 2013 Click on the picture to be re-directed to Park & Co’s food menu!

Our appetizer consisted of Gorgonzola-stuffed dates that were wrapped in juicy, delicious bacon; upon advising a friend where we were having dinner, he insisted we order these delicious treats. Thanks, Mitchell! We weren’t let down in the slightest. This appetizer is so rich and good – completely takes the edge off of starving individuals (like us).

Being a little over-zealous, we also decided to order the Moroccan Lamb Sliders with cucumber mint yogurt. The presentation was amazing, and the sliders were incredible! I’m a huge fan of anything remotely resembling greek cuisine, and had to try them out. Another amazing food journey, brought to us by Park & Co!

Image

Lamb Sliders from Park & Co. Credit: Steve Mercer, SEPT 2013. Click on the picture above to be taken to their Facebook page! Make sure you like ’em.

Both appetizers we ordered actually complimented each other well. I loved the uniqueness of all of the appetizers listed on their menu, and look forward to trying more. I was also surprised that they didn’t cost an arm and a leg; what incredible small plates for the buck. When you glance at the menu as a whole, you’ll notice it not only screams courage and creativity, but is priced incredibly well so that patrons have the ability to try multiple dishes. Great job, Park & Co! We applaud you.

Additionally impressive is their drink menu. Just sayin’. Not only do they have plenty of great brewskis on tap, but their cocktail creations are fantastic; the mules are right on the money, and the jalapeño-infused vodka watermelon cocktail I ordered was exactly what I needed – refreshingly sweet & spicy. Of course, seasonality is going to play a part when ordering cocktails, so stop in and see what they’re mixing up! Happy Hour is from 2 – 6 pm Monday through Friday, and 11 pm until close each night, creating plenty of opportunity for you, friends, and co-workers.

Image

Jalapeño-Infused Vodka with any sort of sweet, refreshing juice is an awesome summer cocktail. Credit: Steve Mercer, SEPT 2013

I’m incredibly happy we found this place – it’s such a nice, chill atmosphere with friendly people – all enjoying and partaking in the same trendy, unique, and DELICIOUS dining experience. I suggest riding your bike, taking a cab, or walking if possible as parking can be limited on popular nights and weekends. There are plenty of spots to lock up your bicycle!

Stop in and check it out – play a little foosball while you’re at it. (Yes, they totally have a table!). Hope to see you there.

Ace Eat Serve- Asian Comfort Food & Ping Pong

Image

Ace Restaurant, situated at 501 E 17th Ave in Denver, CO. This shot doesn’t come close to doing the incredible porch justice, but you can make out the mist pretty well! Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

You heard it right – Asian comfort food AND a dedicated Ping Pong (or Table Tennis) Hall reside at Ace Eat Serve Restaurant in Denver, CO. Add a bar and spacious outdoor patio with mist ducts along the rooftop edges, and you’ve got a feature-packed restaurant that’s perfect for numerous occasions such as hanging out, lunch with the family, or drinks after work.

Image

With so many faves, it’s so hard to choose just one! Or, two… or five. Click on the pic for Ace’s menu! Shawna Jones, pictured. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

draaank

Pictured is the drink Ms. Shawna Jones ordered: Ace’s blackcherry soda and vodka. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

My friend, Shawna Jones, and I biked the 5 miles (roundtrip) to Ace on one of the hottest days we’ve had this summer, and sat out on the patio for lunch. First thing on our mind: cooling off. The falling mist was glorious, and checked that issue right off our list. Second thing on our mind: cocktails – that bike ride in the heat kind of wore us out, so in addition to water, we thought it best to order a tasty adult beverage.

While Shawna ordered a Vodka and ACE Blackcherry Soda (delicious, by the way- pictured right), I grabbed a Shiner Ruby, my favorite summer seasonal brewski that mixes grapefruit with ginger; also, what a great beer pairing for our upcoming feast.

The menu features a ton of Asian-style food favorites – dumplings, pork ramen, bibimbap, you name it. There are so many favorites listed that both Shawna and I ordered a total of five items to share – it’s THAT HARD TO CHOOSE. I had been to Ace one time previously and had an idea from that experience of what I just had to order: steamed vegetables (only $3 bucks for a heaping plateful of garlic- and ginger-infused, steamed veggies – that’s a steal!) and a Pork Bao Bun. Shawna ordered the Kalbi (Korean BBQ short beef ribs) and chicken dumplings. We both decided that since we were there, we really needed to just go for it, and ordered the vegetable potstickers as well – it was necessary. So, as mentioned earlier, a feast was had.

condiments

Table sauces pictured: Black Bean Sauce (left) and Crisp Chili Oil (right). Click on the picture for a link to Ace’s Menu! Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

We waited probably about 20 minutes, which is such great timing. Although Ace‘s dishes appear to be so simple, each dish has crazy, complex flavor. Paired with their two signature table sauces, you can’t go wrong: the Crisp Chili Oil sauce (my favorite – I dump it on everything) consists of dried red chilies, sesame oil, and textured vegetable Protein while the Black Bean Sauce consists fermented soy beans, chilies, dark soy, and garlic (info gathered from Ace’s Official Website).

Pictured top, and clockwise: Veggie potstickers, steamed veggies, and Pork Bao Bun. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

Of everything we ordered, I honestly can’t pick a favorite – everything was amazing, and adding the Crisp Chili Oil sauce adds a whole new twist, bringing out flavors of the dish you would not otherwise notice as well as serving as a great enhancement for very lightly marinated, steamed veggies. If I had to guess though, I would think that the short ribs have found an irreplaceable spot in Shawna’s heart. In addition to the amazing food, the ambience is so incredible – there’s a very large hall within the restaurant dedicated for Ping Pong enthusiasts everywhere. On their website, you can view the rules of the game, as well as spot openings for when you and your friend can grab a table. The outside patio is perfect for these summer months, with the cool mist making it incredibly refreshing and comfortable to sit in the partial sun. The menu is built for all ages – kids menu, drink menu with happy hour specials, dessert menu, and juice bar in addition to the lunch and dinner menus, of course. There’s no way to peg what type of person to bring, and for what type of occasion – Ace Restaurant is so versatile yet welcoming that it’s the perfect location for business lunches as well as a stop during your night on the town.

Pictured above: Korean Short Ribs (left) and Chicken Dumplings (right). Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

There are plenty of places to park on the street, as well as bike racks available (remember your Ulock!). An extra bonus is being able to see your bike from the patio!

I hope you have the opportunity to stop and check out this great place; Ace Eat Serve is such a cool place to eat and hang out, and I can’t wait to go for my third time! There are so many places to eat in Denver, but sometimes you just find places that really resonate with you – Ace is definitely one of them. Go check them out! NOW.

menu table

The amazing menu of Ace Restaurant. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013 Click the picture to be taken to Ace’s menu!

 

Check out DenverSpeax on Facebook to receive real-time updates of what’s good in Denver.