In my job chasing the New Orleans restaurant scene I try to keep up with it all, so today I’m offering a quick round up of what’s been on my mind and in my notebook.
This time around, in the season of holiday parties and impromptu gatherings, I’m thinking of spots for big tables, shared meals – the creative workarounds for get togethers in a busy time of year.
Start with Jack Rose, a next-gen reinvigoration of the grand New Orleans restaurant in the Pontchartrain Hotel, where champagne corks pop, mile high pie is still in play and many visits end with a trip to the rooftop bar.
Speaking of champagne, if a cork popping is music to your ears, Effervescence should sound like an orchestra. This French Quarter bar is all about bubbly, with a menu built for social noshing in a loungy setting.
Group dining makes me think of Nine Roses, the longtime Vietnamese restaurant that recently revamped with big custom booths with tabletop grills for a lighter take on shared meals.
Sometimes the best feast is one you bring home, which is why the Central City take-out shop PeeWee Crabcakes on the Go is so clutch with loaded seafood platters the size of catering trays.
I have some new spots for you too. For modern Greek, check out Rockrose in the CBD and get the whole fish gleaming with golden olive oil, or find yourself a South American feast of grilled meats and arepas at Casa Leon in Covington.
And let’s end at the beginning with breakfast, sometimes the easiest meal to get people together in a busy season. Ruby Slipper Café was finally allowed to reopen its Canal Street location near the Hard Rock Hotel fiasco. You can go for Benedicts and let the crew there know you’ve got their backs.