It was just last August that we learned the former “Far East” Japanese restaurant was being taken over by Filipino BBQ spot The Park’s Finest. But the catering company turned restaurant needed some cash first – and it looks like they’ve raised the $20K (via a Kickstarter campaign) they needed to open its doors.
Midtown Lunch has a rave review about the new restaurant’s offerings – including pulled pork, tri tip, pork ribs, salmon, short ribs, hot links, and cornbread. Menu is ala carte for now, so you’ll want to share with a couple of people. And at $8-12 a plate, plus some extra for tasty side dishes, it looks affordable for BBQ lovers. Based on the review, it sounds like the Coconut Beef is the way to go.
The owners also gave that space a much-needed facelift – on the outside and one the inside, including fresh paint, new tables and chairs, a little floor rehab, and they got rid of that ugly ceiling. The outdoor rehab gives that strip next to the old Knights Inn and the now-defunct Dinner House M some much needed love.
The Park’s Finest is located at 1267 West Temple Street
Open Thursday through Sunday, lunch to dinner. Hours are:
Thursday : 11:00 am – 3:00 pm and 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Friday: 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm and 11:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Saturday: 12:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Sunday: 12:00 pm – 7:00 pm
The Park’s Finest has been in Echo Park for some time now, but as a mobile catering company. Owner Johneric Concordio grew up here, BBQing his way through the more turbulent times of Echo Park in the ’80s and ’90s. Now, the BBQ (with a Filipino twist) company is looking to establish itself in a physical location in what was formerly “The Far East” Japanese restaurant at 1267 West Temple Street.
Johneric has already started to demo (that space SOOO needs some love), but they’ve got a long way to go before opening hopefully in November. And they are looking toward the community to help them with the project – through a website called Indie GoGo, they are hoping to raise money for the kitchen remodel and equipment, furniture, city fees, signage and more. And to encourage you to donate, they offer a few perks from t-shirts to BBQ sauce and more for every extra bit you donate.
He’s hoping it will be more than a restaurant. According to the Pleasure Palate blog, “Johneric wants this restaurant to be a center for community, culture, art and of course, for fabulous food. By the way, when it comes to the food, it may be more than just BBQ, Johneric has talked about introducing more rustic Filipino dishes that aren’t normally found in stateside Filipino restaurants and believe me, that has definitely piqued my interest.”
Why should you donate? Their Indie GoGo page explains:
…The Park’s Finest, a mobile catering company based in Echo Park, has brought a distinct flavor to the LA food scene with our Filipino take on traditional American cuts of BBQ. We have blessed backyard boogies and community events all over the Southland, and have steadily gained popularity. To meet the rise in demand, as a community-oriented company, we aim to reinvigorate the blighted district of Historic Filipinotown in Echo Park. Our community fundraising campaign will build capital for a restaurant that offers a fulfilling dining experience, for families and friends to enjoy savory BBQ in an atmosphere where musicians and artists can showcase works that reflect and celebrate the intersections of the dynamic cultures and histories bridged by this vibrant area of LA.
We certainly wouldn’t mind some tasty BBQ action in the neighborhood, so we wish The Park’s Finest the best of luck!
Click here to donate to The Parks Finest, and check out the video below: