The York on York in Highland Park celebrated its third birthday yesterday (on the dot — it officially opened July 12th, 2007) by offering drink specials and passed apps well into the early morning of July 12th, 2010.
It’s nutty to read about this establishment’s history & and realize York’s menu actually came from Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo before they even opened Animal. Eater’s report tells us The York survived longer than Susan Tracht’s Tracht in Long Beach. And really, despite sporting the exact same ordering system as Father’s Office, everyone who visits The York enjoys its environ (though perhaps not its food) more so than FO. This is merely one of the reason why The York trudged through the economic downturn in a not-filthy-rich neighborhood, and survived. Coupled with late, and early, service from the kitchen, a healthy beer tap and industrially chic space, The York is perhaps one of the first self-proclaimed gastropubs in LA to actually serve its surroundings like a British gastropub.
With a doppelganger menu, driven by burgers downed with crafty beers, as well aforementioned half-service model, comparisons to Father’s Office are inevitable. After 3 years, it’s safe to say The York puts Father’s Office(s) to shame with its local vivaciousness, friendly bouncer, on-site bar owners/operators, and prices fit for the ‘hood. The eggs benedict at brunch may come with only 50% runny egg, the burger may be overcooked at times, but no where else are beer, well drinks (Irish car bombs, check!), wine and seasonal cocktails served with equal comfort, sans judgement, sans aloofness, sans hesitation, sans karaoke night.
This celebratory evening saw 3 cocktail specials: $5 for fresh watermelon martini, $5 watermelon tequila and $3 shot of “chocolate ecstasy” — the actual name eludes me after a 2 hour “saturnalia of beef”, shots of soju & glasses of Hite. The watermelon tequila with salted rim portrayed Asian flavor of salting juicy watermelons. This is a far better, and probably unintended, interpretation of Mexican-Asian fusion than say.. the recently minted “pho beef taco”. It’s a drink seemingly too obfuscating for the Highland Park natives who may simply clamor for a tall boy of PBR (ironically, and thankfully, not offered). Either way, The York is what every boozing food service establishment should strive to feel, with its reclaimed bar, and golden era cartoon mutely showing on the projector screen.
Happy birthday dude! (Do hipsters still use “dude”? Let us know in comments?)
5018 York Blvd
Highland Park, CA 90042