I finally had the opportunity to dine at Tipsy Parson located in Chelsea – I guess the opportunity had always been available I just hadn’t taken advantage. The restaurant is in close proximity of an art gallery I frequent and last night I insisted on booking a table after the opening party. Accompanied by my equally eager companion who I will refer to as ‘Fudge’, we slipped into the delightfully cozy, but exquisitely designed restaurant on a frigid Saturday night.
I was prepared for the market fresh modern interpretation of homey Southern dishes. (The restaurant’s moniker is a Dixieland dessert comprised of stale bread, eggs, seasonal fruit etc topped off with alcohol to mask the lack of fresh ingredients. This intoxicating trifle frequently made the rounds at post-church potlucks eventually earning the title Tipsy Parson.)
What I hadn’t expected was how cleverly and enchanting the décor would be. When I originally conceived what the focus of each of the Jeanie brand blogs would be, I did not consider including restaurant reviews, although Tipsy Parson’s smart and accessible design begs to be told. From the darling craft project of a Christmas wreath comprised of a string of white lights punctuating various size white paper dollies to the hand stamped toe tag business card (just like apartmentjeanie’s!) – this restaurant mixes thrifty with fabulous.
The unisex bathroom is papered in vintage floral wallpaper with a space efficient pocket door accessing the entrance to the shared washroom. The fixtures in the room are brimming with vintage flair. Of course one should not spend more time than absolutely necessary in the loo, so I will refrain from expanding on the details of the hardware.
The back dining room where the charming hostess seated us was tricked out in John Derian reverse decoupage plates artistically arranged on the walls. Even the silverware was grand and timeless. The front bar appeared to be chock–a-block full of interesting flea market finds, although the dim lighting prevented me from thoroughly examining the cubbyhole vignettes. I guess a trip for further exploration is required – lunch seems like an excellent opportunity. This is design research, of course.
Although I was enthralled with the restaurant’s aesthetic, I would be remiss if I failed to mention the tasty treats we sampled (that verb is far more demure than the actual voracious consumption that occurred.) The shrimp & grits appetizer was Southern comfort on a plate featuring beyond light and fluffy buttery grits – that should be served by the bowl full. The winter citrus salad was super fresh and a clean balance to the fried pickles, baby brussel sprouts specked with spicy pecans and fat scallops cradled by a bed of creamy parsnip puree. And if that seems like a lot of food, it was, but my intrepid diner (she didn’t earn the name Fudge for her discipline eating habits) and I proceeded onto the 5th and final course of the feast – dessert.
Recently I find it difficult to resist the pull of Sticky English Toffee Pudding –even spying it in print I am unable to refuse the allure. Tipsy Parson callstheirs ‘Salted Toffee Date Cake’ which is all the same to me – delicious.
So next time you are doing the gallery rounds or promenading the Highline tuck into this absolutely divine dining destination. Your waistband might regret it, but your pucker and peepers certainly won’t.
Until my nutritionist reads this…
ps Urbanspoon rocks!