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Apr 12, 201808:05 AM
Haute Plates

Our weekly blog on the New Orleans fine dining scene

Help Hollygrow(ve)!

And a Rant About Why We Can’t Have Nice Things



Hollygrove Market is no more. It was one of the first and best places in New Orleans to buy local produce, dairy and meat, and definitely inspired me to do more gardening. Some of the folks who were behind Hollygrove are trying to keep the space alive. The new outfit is Hollygrow, and they’re trying to raise funds to keep the lease on the property at 8301 Olive St. 

At the same time, there is a fundraising effort underway to pay off some debt that Hollygrove incurred to their farmers. You can read about it, and hopefully donate, here.

I love New Orleans, and I have no plans to leave. I know that in light of the other problems we have in New Orleans, the fact that a community market like Hollygrove that gave local farmers a place to sell their products seems silly. I know we have a school system that’s failing; I know we have streets that are barely passable in many places; I know we have to boil our water about once every three or four months and I know that we have a serious problem with crime. I know that’s not a comprehensive list, and I know that many of us take these things in stride because we love living here.

We love the atmosphere, the culture, the music, the people and we love the food. We love the way of life and some of you people love the hot, humid weather. So in the big scheme of things, it seems petty to complain about a local farmer’s market closing.

I guess it just feels like my love of New Orleans is sometimes balanced on a knife’s edge, and it would take just a little push to tip me from “love” to … something else. The next time I go to pay my insurance bill or choke down the bile that rises in my throat every time I pay off the utterly incompetent cretins at the S&WB so that I can continue to have water I don’t really trust is safe to consume without a filter, I wonder if it’ll be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

But of course the weather’s been great lately, and I have friends coming into town for Jazz Fest (the cost of which, SON OF A B*^&%!!!) and my garden is really starting to kick off. I am about to lease a new vehicle, and I’m going to pay more for it, but everybody I’ve talked to at local car dealerships sounds like they’re from New Orleans.

There’s really no place else where people sound like they’re from New Orleans, you know. I just wish we could live here and also have places like Hollygrove. Maybe if enough of us feel that way, Hollygrow will be successful, and then we can work on the streets, the schools, crime, affordable housing, clean water and reliable electricity.

One can dream.


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Haute Plates

Our weekly blog on the New Orleans fine dining scene


Robert D. Peyton was born at Ochsner Hospital and, apart from four years in Tennessee for college and three years in Baton Rouge for law school, has lived in New Orleans his entire life. He is a strong believer in the importance of food to our local culture and in the importance of our local food culture, generally. He has practiced law since 1994, and began writing about food on his website, www.appetites.us, in 1999. He mainly wrote about partying that year, obviously.

In 2006, New Orleans Magazine named Appetites the best food blog in New Orleans. The choice was made relatively easy due to the fact that Appetites was, at the time, the only food blog in New Orleans.

He began writing the Restaurant Insider column for New Orleans Magazine in 2007 and has been published in St. Charles Avenue, Louisiana Life and New Orleans Homes and Lifestyles magazines. He is the only person he knows personally who has been interviewed in GQ magazine, albeit for calling Alan Richman a nasty name. He is not proud of that, incidentally. (Yes, he is.)

Robert’s maternal grandmother is responsible for his love of good food, and he has never since had fried chicken or homemade biscuits as good as hers. He developed his curiosity about restaurant cooking in part from the venerable PBS cooking show "Great Chefs" and has an extensive collection of cookbooks, many of which do not require coloring, and some of which have not been defaced.

Robert lives in Mid-City with his wife Eve and their three children, and is fond of receiving comments and emails. Please humor him.




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