I return to my blog to find it dusty and cobwebbed, but I'm back, for now, to turn you on to some brand new hotness in Las Vegas. And where else would the the coolest new bar in Sin City open but in the increasingly awesome Fremont East District, where Insert Coins, Commonwealth, Backstage Bar and Billiards, The Griffin, The Downtown Cocktail Room, The Beat Coffeehouse, .. you get the idea. It's an awesome neighborhood.
The newest spot to eat quirky food and get drunk on crafty cocktails and beers, Park on Fremont, stands out from the other hipster bars, unique restaurants, and coffee shops in the area through pure whimsy and color. Approach the front of the place and dig the rustic wooden vibe on the front patio, then step inside and admire the patterned wall papers, wildlife paintings, iron door knockers, Victorian Chandeliers, (fake, I think) stuffed animal heads and birds, quirky neon signs, exposed brick walls, and comfy booths. But where this gastropub truly steps up into the world of awesome is on its back patio.
Oh, Park on Fremont's back patio, how I love you. The place takes it name from the fact that back patio is basically a whimsical park, complete with colorfully lush plants, trees covered in Christmas lights, mosaic tile art, an archangel statue, a carriage perched above the roof, a fireplace, board-games, Victorian-ish chairs around picnic tables, and even an iron seesaw. All of these childlike elements are made even more fun by the fact that there are no actual children at the bar (at least at night), and the mini-Central Park meets Alice in Wonderland vibe is helped along considerably by quality tunes.
The food is awesome, if you like delicious yet terrible-for-you fare like stuffed Burgers or the hugely indulgent and incredibly worth it Chicken and Waffle Sandwich. They have a great selection of beers on tap or sold by the bottle (including the increasingly popular Wells' Banana Bread Beer) and refreshing cocktails with names like The Unicorn that fit into the aesthetic and Bloody Mary's made with hard-boiled eggs and bacon served in Mason Jars.
Is this place perfect? Not quite yet, as all brand new places have kinks to work out, obviously, and I've heard a few complaints from locals who have Parked it on Fremont a few times. If you get a table on the patio during a hot Vegas afternoon, try to avoid getting seated near the back corner... the patio leads out into an alleyway where other bars dump their garbage and the smell can be a bit strong in the blazing sun (according to other people who had this experience). And the place does get super busy, which means getting the attention of your server can be a bit a tricky... but do try to cut your harried and frazzled waiter or waitress a little slack as they're still trying to figure things out at a popular and hyped new restaurant and bar in an up and coming neighborhood.
Park on Fremont is a colorful, lush, quirky, whimsical and fun new gastropub that manages to stand out and make some noise with its unique voice in a neighborhood that's becoming increasingly packed with cool local businesses that cater to the smart and connected locals beginning to occupy the area as much as to the tourists that make Las Vegas tick. It might still be going through some growing pains, but even in its earliest inception, the Victorian/ fairy-tale garden vibes of this place really create a magical atmosphere that have convinced me this one place that's sure to live happily ever after.