Don’t let the plaid-shirted wait staff and beer-bottle chandeliers fool you. You are about to have a superlative dining experience.
The Parker Garage (so named because it inhabits the original “Parker Garage,” complete with its turn-of-the-century trusses, interior brick and repurposed tables made from the original floor boards) is destined to become THE culinary destination for epicureans everywhere.
Sourcing only the best local produce and meat, (recently purchasing a farm on which the chef himself lives), the Parker Garage elevates the “farm to table” concept beyond something quaint to something extraordinary.
Chef Duy (pronounced “Dewey”) Pham, classically trained in French cuisine, masterfully prepares a range of dishes, from the elegant salmon appetizer to the rustic Philly cheesesteak.
These past 20 years, I have been on a search for the perfect cheesesteak, after tasting the real thing in the City of Brotherly Love. My quest recently hit a new low when I was served a supposed cheesesteak that was 95% bun and 5% processed lunchmeat. But the Parker Garage cheesesteak far surpassed any other cheesesteak I have ever eaten. The generous portion of beef was expertly cooked to optimum tenderness with no off-putting chewy pieces of fat. The mushrooms, cheese, and red peppers rounded out the perfect combination. The French fries that accompanied the sandwich were pleasantly crisp without being greasy.
Most surprising and delightful was the Truffle Potato Gnocchi. Miniature gnocchi (hand-crafted in a process that takes 48 hours) is surrounded by fresh zucchini cooked to tender-crisp perfection, crunchy snap peas, and soft artichoke hearts. All this mingles atop an unassuming bed of pea puree, which provides a whisper of sweetness to this masterful symphony of flavors and textures.
Our dessert samplings, a flour-free chocolate torte and vanilla custard provided the flawless finale to our exemplary meal. Fudgy and dense, the chocolate torte was decadence incarnate (that’s a good thing). The custard was accompanied by a surprisingly crunchy dollop of cooked meringue which provided the perfect foil for the impossibly silky custard.
The Parker Garage appeals to everyone, although you should be prepared to pay for the pricier fare. They do have a kids menu, but I would recommend this restaurant as a great place for a date night, or to impress business clients. The casual, almost industrial feel of the repurposed garage belies the excellence of its food, which could be found in the finest of French restaurants. The wait staff was friendly, professional, attentive, and extremely knowledgeable. Whether you wanted to know about the origins of their extensive beer and wine offerings or how any given food item was prepared, they knew the answer.
And if you’re looking for your new favorite restaurant, now you have your answer.
The Parker Garage is located at 19420 E. Mainstreet, Parker, CO 80138
Menu items change seasonally. For current menus, visit the Parker Garage website.