LSE Seniors turn to TikTok to Review Local Food

Members of Park Eats rate and review Lincoln restaurants


Graphic by: Zainib Al-Jayashi

Lilly Penner, Staff Writer

Seniors Hayden Byarlay, Rowan Johnson, Malachi Masten and Daniel Schafer have started reviewing local restaurants as a fun twist to getting food with friends. 

This journey was not initially documented, as they have been reviewing food for a few years.

However, when they asked themselves, “What if we made a TikTok [account]?” about a month ago, Park Eats was started.

Most of the time, they try to schedule Park Eat’s content once per week, but more realistically when everyone in the group has free time. 

One of Byarlay’s favorite places Park Eats has reviewed was High Peak Asian. 

 “The Pad Thai, that was good,” Byarlay said. “I tried some of that but then there’s some of that curry.” 

According to Byarlay, the group Park Eats will provide restaurant reviews based on a local competition as well.

“There was a local competition so people could vote for their favorite local place in Lincoln and there was like a bracket,” Byarlay said. 

It’s a controversial choice among the group, but Daffodil is his least favorite. 

“I would say try it because there are conflicting opinions,” Byarlay said, even though he admitted “it wasn’t really flavorful” and that “the chicken was dry and just wasn’t awesome.”

Byarlay shared that the groupo usually films in two different locations for their reviews.

“We get clips from the restaurants, and then make a little bit like an intro saying here’s where we are,” Byarlay said. “At the end, we give our good review in my basement.”

Schafer, another member of the group, provided insight into future hopes and their current thoughts on places they’ve visited. 

According to Schafer, the group wanted to try a variety of restaurants.

“There was a cheesesteak place we wanted to try… or Hoya,” Schafer said. “We’ve also thought about Ginger.”

His favorite place was High Peak Asian restaurant, where he ordered Pad Thai.

“It was really filling, pretty spicy, great flavor, all that stuff,” Schafer said.

Similar to Byarlay, his least favorite place was Daffodil, which serves Mediterranean cuisine. 

“I still really enjoyed the food but the other two places we went I liked them a lot more,” Schafer said. 

Ultimately this is just a fun get-together for the group. Schafer explains, “after that [filming their review] we always play pool and just have a good time.”

Currently, Park Eats is attempting to expand its following on TikTok.

“We’re trying to get more people in it, like having people comment and then we’ll go to that place with the person who comments, and try out stuff like that,” Byarlay said.

Go follow Byarlay, Johnson, Masten and Schafer on their food journey at @park_eats on TikTok.