[Sept. 2016 Arts] Parker Mansion boasts fine river dining

By Megan Doyle ’18 Web Opinions Editor and Kaya Leitner

Parker Mansion claims their dishes “are known to impress and inspire” and that they are serving some of the “finest food in town, in a luxurious setting, for the best possible experience.” Fortunately, their food is at a much higher caliber than their modesty.

With a simplistic and rustic atmosphere, the restaurant feels casual yet sophisticated. Although a guest can indeed wear ripped jeans and casual attire, the quality of food is exceptional. Located in the Saugatuck area, Parker Mansion has a friendly and welcoming vibe that we immediately felt upon arrival.

After skimming the menu, some deliberation, and a few questions directed towards the waiter, we decided to order the crab cakes and the “Parker burger” with a handful of truffle fries on the side. According to our waiter, these were a few of the most popular dishes.

Before being presented with our main courses, a steel bucket was brought to the table containing three thin slices of gently toasted bread, accompanied by a dipping sauce, in which contained a creamy mixture. We were both underwhelmed by its mediocrity and tastelessness. It was no better than anything we could have prepared in our own kitchens.

Hopes were quickly lifted once our main dishes arrived.

The crab cakes were a delicious blend of creamy crab and a slight crunch of vegetables. The original thought was that the two cakes, approximately the size of an average person’s palm, wouldn’t be enough for our grumbling stomachs, but we were proven wrong. The crab cakes were filling and beautifully presented with a bit of lemon and spinach.

The Parker mansion speciality, “The Parker Burger,” certainly lived up to expectations. The perfectly done patty was amongst the best we have ever eaten. Served on a sourdough bun with tomato, lettuce, cheddar cheese, and a mayo mixture, the patty is large enough to feed two. Although, for those with bigger appetites, it is certainly manageable to finish as a party of one.

Arguably the best part of the meal were the french fries. Drenched in truffle oil and a sprinkling of parmesan cheese, the crispy fries were the perfect side. Even after being full from finishing our main course, we couldn’t help but take one more fry. (And maybe another one.)