State Park just opened 3 weeks ago. It is brought to you from the same folks at Hungry Mother. Situated in a lower lever space, it feels like is a yuppie/hipster version of a dive bar. There’s a jukebox, pool table and arcade pinball games. There are only 4 beers on tap, but they serve food till midnight. I convinced my post bridge crowd to try it out last night. It was hopping at 10pm, but we managed to grab a booth. The menu (Southern snack food) is really limited; my vegetarian friend had the choice between salad ($8.25), collards ($5) or fried okra ($6). He chose the latter. There wasn’t much that Steve was interested in either; he finally settled on a fried pork cutlet sandwich ($10). I was excited to try the cornmeal catfish ($12.50). I was served 3 filets and 2 hush puppies. The filets were too thin; the ratio of cornmeal to fish was off. However, they were crispy and not greasy. I still remember the first time I tried hush puppies; it was during a BBQ road trip through the south when I was 18 years old. They were globes of tender creamy cornmeal batter encased in a crunchy exterior - I have yet to find its equal. These were good, but not great.
Steve seemed to enjoy his sandwich; he thought it was a “nice piece of pork.” Akhil’s okra was pickled before it was fried and I’m not sure I liked the aftertaste. It occurs to me as I write this that everything we ordered was fried, so it is not the healthiest of menus. That said, I want to go back to try the fried chicken.