Jun 14, 201207:00 AM
Our weekly blog on the New Orleans fine dining scene
An Old Lady, a Signing and Something Involving Bon Appetit Magazine For Which I Have No Pithy Term
Photo by Robert Peyton
I have three items for your amusement today. That's two more than I am contractually obligated to provide, but I do it because I love each and every one of you.
Antoine's is one of the city's classic Creole restaurants. I used to love the place, but after a few bad experiences, I more or less gave up on it. I don't normally return to a place where I haven't had a good meal, or where I've had bad service, or both; but Antoine's is different, and lately I'd heard some fairly good reports from people I trust (and for that matter, from people I don't, but that's another story).
Anyway, I had lunch at Antoine's the other day, and it was excellent. There's a three-course lunch special at the moment that costs $20.12, and includes a pretty good selection for each course; starters include vichyssois, and charbroiled oysters, and chicken Clemenceau and trout amandine are available as entrées. Combined with a dessert and the option of 25-cent martinis, it's a pretty good deal. I didn't have time for three courses, so I ordered from the lunch menu. Both of the dishes I ate were outstanding; the crawfish bisque was rich and slightly spicy. My entrée, soft-shell crab amandine, was equally good. Two smallish fried buster crabs garnished with sliced almonds and sauced with butter and lemon. There's not much better than a properly fried soft-shell crab, and these were fried properly.
Service was really good as well. Antoine's is one of those restaurants where you benefit from knowing a waiter, and can request someone if you want. Again, one experience may not be representative, but you could do worse than Brandon Charles, and I'll likely request him the next time I'm there.
I'm not sure I'm ready to call Antoine's one of my favorite restaurants again, but I'll definitely be back before long. Antoine's is located at 713 St. Louis St., and you can call (504) 581-4422 to make a reservation.
John T. Edge is a nice dude. I've met him, though I doubt he'd remember me. I'm not important or anything. There's no reason for a man like John T. Edge to remember me. I'm nothing; I'm a worm not fit to shine his shoes. Who does this John T. Edge think he is, anyway? What, just because he's a James Beard Award-winning writer who has been published in multiple national magazines he think's his shit don't stink? Asshole.
Anyway, here's the relevant part of the press release I got recently:
John T. Edge, a well-known food culture chronicler, has watched this fast growing trend with enthusiasm and excitement. And his enthusiasm has taken him around the country in order to capture the food truck scene. Which he does in The Food Truck Cookbook: 150 Recipes and Ramblings from America’s Best Restaurants on Wheels (Workman; May 2012) —a country-wide collection of today’s most imaginative dishes from some of the most creative chefs pedaling their wares curbside rather than inside. Visiting hundreds of restaurants on wheels, John T. has collected the very best recipes—and interviewed the proprietors, customers, and small business supporters who helped make the trend happen.
John T. Edge will be in New Orleans for an event at Garden District Book Shop (2727 Prytania St.) on Tuesday, June 19th at 6:00 p.m. to talk about the book and the New Orleans street food scene; Taceaux Loceaux will be there.
So there you have it.
Bon Appétit Magazine is putting on a three-day event called the “Grub Crawl”. Here, once more, is the relevant portion of the press release:
Bon Appétit Grub Crawl–New Orleans, an on-the-move food event, will take place in New Orleans this summer from June 22 to 24 and will feature an incredible lineup of restaurants, bars, chefs, and musical talent over the course of the weekend.
The second event in a series of three, BonAppétit Grub Crawl–New Orleans follows its counterpart in Brooklyn and precedes Bon Appétit Grub Crawl–Los Angeles. All three events offer consumers a food-lifestyle experience that they can’t get anywhere else. In New Orleans, guests will take part in a roving, forward-thinking lineup of programming as they explore different neighborhoods and interact with culinary talent at each stop along this movable feast. Bon Appétit Grub Crawl–New Orleans not only provides access to the city’s hottest venues; it’s also a customizable experience. And it gives restaurateurs a chance to showcase the stories behind their eateries in an authentic and nontraditional way.
Chase Sapphire is a presenting sponsor of Bon Appétit Grub Crawl–New Orleans, as is Belvedere Lemon Tea Vodka, launching this summer. Chase Sapphire card-members will have exclusive access to interactive experiences with chefs and learn to make their own culinary creations, including wood-fire pizza at Domenica and artisan gelato at La Divina Gelateria. For tickets and pricing, please visit: bagrubcrawl.com/neworleans.
Bon Appétit Grub Crawl–New Orleans: Friday, June 22: Warehouse District. Begins at 6 p.m. • Mike’s on the Avenue: Sample sake cocktail shot flights as chef Mike Fennelly demonstrates how to roll sushi in three different styles: the New Orleans roll, the Hawaiian sweet crab roll, and the traditional veggie roll. • Hotel Modern, Bellocq, and Tamarind: Learn the secret to Bellocq’s delicious signature cocktail, the Cobbler, through an exclusive demo, then indulge in Tamarind’s French-Vietnamese fusion cuisine from chef Dominique Macquet. • Borgne: Enjoy family-style appetizers and pitchers of spiked iced tea in Borgne’s private dining room. *Chase Sapphire cardmembers will experience a hands-on cooking class in the kitchen with Executive Chef Brian Landry where they’ll learn to make crawfish croquetas and enjoy specialty tastings of the chef's favorite spirit, Canary Island Rum. Saturday, June 23: The French Quarter. Begins at 4 p.m. • Domenica: Sample platters of assorted salumi, cheeses, and standout pizzas (cooked in a wood-fired oven) at this Italian mainstay. *Following the group pairing, Chase Sapphire cardmembers will enjoy an exclusive private pizza-making class in the restaurant's kitchen with Chef Alon Shava where they will learn the trade secrets to making the perfect pie. • Sylvain: Try crispy pork shoulder, Coosa Valley grits, pickled collards, and mustard jus while Liam Deegan (a certified Cicerone) serves beer cocktails, and learn about the building’s rich history, its connection to William Faulkner, and how it survived Hurricane Katrina. • Stanley: Taste the venue’s Stanley Screamer cocktail and its Breaux Bridget Benedict, which consists of house-made boudin, a poached egg, American cheese, smokedham, and Creole hollandaise sauce served on toasted French bread. • Stella!: Enjoy Stella!’s open-face egg salad sandwich with toasted brioche, American caviar, and dill crème fraîche. • Napoleon House: Tour the restaurant with owner Salvatore Impastato and discover the building’s importance as a historic landmark while you sample a Pimm’s Cup and mini muffuletta sandwiches. Sunday, June 24: The Garden District. Begins at 11:30 a.m. • La Petite Grocery: Savor Champagne and “Louisiana caviar” hors d’oeuvres as chef Justin Devillier explains the reasoning behind the drink and food pairing, then join him on a tour of a nearby garden where some of the hors d’oeuvre ingredients are grown. • Lilette: Take part in a seated meal featuring crudo and braised short rib, with wine pairings to complement each dish. • Bouligny Tavern: Try burrata bruschetta with tomato andpesto, pigs in a blanket, and gougères,also with wine pairings to complement each dish. • La Divina Gelateria: Indulge in a dessert flight that includes four courses of sorbeto/gelato pairings. *Chase Sapphire cardmembers will be able go behind the counter at La Divina Gelateria's kitchen to blend their own artisan gelato flavor – name it, and take a scoop to go! • Apolline: Accompany general manager Jenny Smith as she demos how to make the restaurant’s “Bend That Elbow” Champagne cocktail and chef Matt Farmer as he cooks corn maque choux.
There you have it, kids. Hope you have a good weekend, and remember, I love each and every one of you, and mostly not in a creepy way.