Service and Atmosphere
On West 58th in the Detroit Shoreway neighborhood lives a self-described “cool place for shady people.” A vintage neighborhood bar and grille, Parkview Nite Club is certainly not trying hard to impress anyone, yet welcomes everyone; and this place is just about as Cleveland as it gets. ParkView Nite Club isn’t a “Please Wait to Be Seated” kind of restaurant–just come on in and relax at the sprawled and worn wooden bar, or help yourself to one of the comfortable tables or booths situated cozily together in the dining area. And if you’re lucky, while you’re here you might just get treated to some live blues from a local band.
The service at ParkView Nite Club was far from perfect during my visit: upon sitting down, it took a server at least ten minutes to acknowledge us, wrong beers were delivered, and shortly after arriving, we heard the table next to us complain that they had been waiting over an hour for their food.
But it wasn’t all bad either: the two servers, working in tandem to tend the packed bar, were buzzing around as quickly as they could, our server was very apologetic and quickly rectified the beer mishap, and the restaurant offered to comp the meal for the family who had been waiting for so long. The rest of the night was issue-free; we received our food quickly, and the waitstaff was friendly and tentative.
ParkView Nite Club doesn’t boast an exceptional beer selection, but even the biggest of connoisseurs shouldn’t be too disappointed. Domestics include standards like Budweiser, Coors, PBR, and Miller Lite. For the more adventurous beer drinker: Great Lakes Dortmunder, Burning River, and usually a seasonal option; Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA; Victory Hop Devil; and Sam Adams Boston Lager are among the various options.
For a restaurant that’s been featured on Food Network’s Diners Drive-Ins and Dives, one would assume the food has got to be something pretty special. And, for the most part, it doesn’t disappoint.
The menu features traditional American pub fare–burgers; sandwiches; and a few larger entrees including a grilled strip steak, BBQ pork platter, and fish fry. Most of the dishes pack a rather tasty punch, homemade and well thought out, making ParkView Nite Club stand out among other bars in the area.
It was a chilly October evening when I visited, so I ignored the appetizer list and headed straight for a cup of their soup of the day, clam chowder ($2.00). For a two dollar cup of soup, I didn’t have the highest of expectations, so I found myself pleasantly surprised when the over-sized dish of creamy, well-seasoned, and obviously homemade chowder arrived. It was every bit as delicious as I had hoped it would be: thick and filling with the perfect blend of clam bits and potatoes and served with a side of oyster crackers.
Feeling more than a little full after the hearty cup of clam chowder, I decided to forgo an entree and instead ordered an intriguing appetizer, shrimp poppers ($6.25), a take on the bar food favorite. Battered and deep friend and served with a side of ranch, these sounded like a culmination of some of my favorite things. Unfortunately, they weren’t as good as I had hoped, and the combination of too much cream cheese; what seemed to be tiny, frozen shrimp; and a pepper that I’m not too sure was even a jalapeno, made for an overall pretty disappointing snack.
My co-diner, on the other hand, opted for a Hot Italian Club ($7.75) served with fries and a pickle, and said that it was perfectly fresh, simple, and delicious. With its thick layers of turkey, ham, and salami topped with provolone cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion and, of course, Italian dressing, it didn’t look far from a perfect sandwich.
Other ParkView favorites include the tasty chipotle pork tacos ($7.00), country fried asparagus ($6.75), and the smoked salmon BLT ($8.50).
And, if you’re looking for a Sunday brunch, be sure not to overlook this neighborhood bar and grille. Served from 11:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. every Sunday, Parkview boasts a menu full of brunch favorites including eggs benedict, eggs wellington, and the usual french toast and buttermilk pancake options.
What ParkView Nite Club lacked in food and service during my visit, it certainly made up for in personality, charm, and live music. I know I’ll be back in the very near future for more blues, another sampling of their menu, and, of course, Sunday brunch.
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