After attending the Los Angeles Travel & Adventure Show, being held at the Long Beach Convention Center, we moved on to Parkers' Lighthouse at nearby Shoreline Village. At the Show we studied destinations everywhere from Cambodia to Romania to India.
At Parkers'' Lighthouse we settled into its delightful location with scenic views in every direction, and while the calendar read February it was a sunny, windless day with the temperature in the middle seventies. We decided, once again, that Southern California is a hard place to leave.
Besides its wonderful location there is much to like about Parkers' Lighthouse. Its ambiance, besides its scenic location, offers a sense of Long Beach history with its many historic photographs that grace the walls of the dining room. Actually there are two distinct dining rooms with the Queens Room on the third level offering a decor and ambiance all its own.
We met with David Maskello, general manager, and he suggested our party of three should taste small portions of the many specialties that have earned the restaurant its reputation for an creative seafood cuisine. We opened with huge prawn cocktails, then a seafood platter that included calamari, fried shrimp, crab cake, lobster wraps of tortilla and guacamole. The crab cake was memorable, full of crab meat and no fillers, the calamari with a distinctive dipping sauce. Next we had a cup of clam chowder accompanied with a house baked cracker, the chowder thick with minced clams.
We had two of the most popular fish entrees, one the seabass in a teriyaki sauce and the salmon also with its own special sauce.
Parkers' has received national recognition for its wine list with hundred of labels and a two story climate controlled wine room that graces the center of the restaurant.
After such an impressive array of well prepared food we had to meet the man responsible, Executive Chef Jim Tate IV. Jim has an impressive background and has been at the Lighthouse five years. We noted a hint of Pacific Rim cuisine in many of the seafood dishes we tried and liked Jim Tate's style.
We love looking at old photographs and so left our table to admire the many photographs of Long Beach's earlier times that surround the lower dining room. There are photos of The Pike, the seaside amusement park that achieved fame with World War ll sailors, bathing beauties of earlier eras, and much more.
Considering what the Lighthouse shows both in ambiance and cuisine and the quality of the wines we thought prices modest and Parkers' offering true value.
Parkers' Lighthouse is located at 435 Shoreline Village Drive #1, Long Beach, Telephone 562 432-6500, web www.parkerslighthouse.com. Open daily from 11 a.m.
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