Not Jazzed About Parish
I will give Parish some props in that the building the restaurant is housed in is beautiful. Apparently, it goes back to the 1890's, though for the life of me, I can't remember what this place looked like before Amick and Company got their hands on it. The whole area has changed 1000% in the past 2 years, with condos, apartments, shops and restaurants lining both sides of Highland Avenue, which until recently was a barren wasteland.
So, back to the restaurant. First complaint, they cram too many tables and people in the space they have. Second, all those people account for a boatload of noise. Third, and most annoying, there are no menus! The food items are listed on several blackboards, and good luck if you don't have a decent viewing angle of them. Our waitress told us the menu would be a "verbal presentation". Her idea of "verbal presentation" was to say the "menu can be found on the blackboard" and "any questions?". When I asked about a tuna entree, something called ahi tuna tournedos, she gave me zero insight as to what it actually was. Turns out, it means cooked with pieces of ham and very salty. Who knew? Obviously not the waitress. Nice "verbal presentation". If they printed a damn menu, I may have ordered better. Fourth, the entire meal was way too rushed. The entire dinner took only 45 minutes, and this includes appetizers.
As for the food, mediocre to poor. First, don't be fooled, this isn't a cajun place. It may be Cajun themed, but don't think Paul Prudomme is back in the kitchen. The barbacue shrimp was nothing special. Not enough black pepper in sauce, and serving it with the baguette toasted made it difficult to mop up the broth. Wifey, a Louisiana native, had the Gumbo for starters, which was so chalky she needed to douse it with hot sauce to give it flavor. I already mentioned the tuna, which was neither cajun nor was it very good (and as explained, poorly communicated).
I am not one of those folks that has a thing against Concentrics restaurants. In fact, Two Urban Licks, as I have stated many times, is one of my favorite places in Atlanta. But they really missed the mark with Parish. Seems like they are trying to be different just for the sake of being different, without any thought to implementation. They have a nice theme, but lack the execution to deliver upon it.
But the night wasn't a total loss. First we strolled through the neighborhood and found Zaya, a promising looking Mediterranean place. Second, we stopped off at Cafe Intermezzo on the way home, and I still have half a piece of Oreo Cheesecake in the fridge for tonight!