Who gives a fork?

I suppose you could say John does …

I’m going to let you in on a little secret. You know all of these fabulous amateur food pictures I post? Well, my endlessly talented and artistic boyfriend is responsible for approximately half of them.

When we go out to eat and the food arrives, I will take a bunch of pictures and then John will, or vice versa. Sometimes his are better and sometimes mine are. Sometimes we compete to see who can get the best shot and sometimes, to be perfectly honest, we are simply far too hungry to care.

The Copper Vine

Why am I telling you this? Well, quite often John will take out the camera almost as soon as we sit down and start taking random shots of the dining room, or the flowers on our table, or the bug crawling on the window sill or a cool light fixture. Though I like to tease that he does this to avoid unnecessary conversation (John is not a man who enjoys small talk), I honestly believe that his inner artist enjoys playing with the camera, its settings and the available light to occasionally achieve some fascinating shots.

Santa Fe Restaurant

Whenever we get home from dining out together, we go over the pictures we just took, discuss their merits (or lack thereof) and pick out our favorites. One thing that John almost always gets a shot of is the restaurant’s cutlery. Whether it’s a fork and spoon, a steak knife or chopsticks, he always manages to snap an interesting shot of them. After almost eight years of writing about and taking pictures of food, you can probably imagine how many of these utensil images I have.

Noodle & Pie

Quite often he takes these shots just to get an idea of the light level in the restaurant. But sometimes he does it to be silly and see if he can capture a reflection of me, him, or even the server. Generally though, I think it’s about eye-catching textures and capturing different colors and effects.

Can you see John sticking out his tongue in this soup spoon from Coquette?

For a long time, I had no idea what I should do with these images. I toyed around with the idea of posting one and asking folks to guess where this particular cutlery came from, but I finally came to the decision to post them as they are … which is art.

MiLa

My boyfriend, or let’s face it, my husband (we’ve been together for 14 years this April) is one extremely talented individual. He studied fine art at LSU before we fell in love and for a bit he pursued a career as a graphic designer. But, unfortunately, he tired of employers wanting his work to be quick and dirty instead of artistic and unique, so he backed out and followed an alternate route.

Bao & Noodle

Thankfully, we still can appreciate his intrinsic gift through photography, even if it is only a bunch of pictures of flatware.

Palace Cafe … obviously!

Which is your favorite?

House of the Week: Side Hall Cottage on Constance St.

This past Saturday, my friend and real estate agent Zuheily from NOLA Living Realty invited me to her first solo listing. She knew there was no way I could afford this particular property, but she also knew how smitten I am with classic New Orleans architecture and the open house offered an opportunity for me to step inside a private building that was nearly 140 years old.

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Bitch Sessions: Oxlot 9

Quite often, I can be almost too optimistic when it comes to dining experiences. I wave off inconveniences that would definitely have other diners reducing tips, taking their problems to the manager or worse, giving an ugly review on Yelp. But for me, if the food was incredible, I could overlook almost anything.

The times they are a-changin’.

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Like a fat girl loves cake …

Over the past several years I have formed a somewhat unhealthy addiction to king cake. It’s an affliction you can chalk up to loving “all things New Orleans,” but I think it also goes deeper than that. The mammoth brioche-like rolls heavily iced with purple, green and gold seem to embody this extraordinary time of year, a holiday that I have taken into my heart and held closer than Christmas, Easter and Halloween combined. It is a sugary-sweet representation of all that’s wondrous about New Orleans and the multitudes of variation only expound that fact. More than anything, king cake is about ritual, from waiting till January 6th for that first annual bite to the obligation one inevitably feels when the baby is discovered in their slice. Continue reading

Looking back on 2017

Since 2013, Eater New Orleans (or should I say editor/writer extraordinaire Gwendolyn Knapp) would hit me up for dining reflections of the past year and predictions for the next. This year, I was not asked and I have to confess, I was a little bummed. Perhaps it was because the new editor, Stephanie Carter, doesn’t know me from Adam or perhaps my recent slump in food blogging deterred her from seeing me as a reputable source … whatever the reason, I still feel the need to share. Whether or not this information is valuable is for you to decide …

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Changes

I’m not quite sure what drove me to login and post today. As I hit “add” I noticed it’s been over a year since I’ve last blogged. I could say it’s been a rough year, emotionally and creatively, for me but I am sure it has been no more difficult than most others’. Early September of last year, right around now, John’s mother passed away after a year-long battle with lung cancer at the age of 53. We were at her bedside when she took her last breath and it shook me. It rattled me down to my bones. Continue reading

Always blown away at Boucherie

FBBoucherieReuben
Corned Pork Belly … be still my heart!

By now, I imagine I don’t have to tell anyone living within a 300 mile radius of New Orleans how good the eating is at Boucherie. Hell, I’m positive its reach is quite a bit further considering I no longer am surprised when out-of-towners seeking restaurant recommendations already have the Carrollton neighborhood restaurant on their “to-eat” list. ┬áKeeping this in mind, it can’t hurt to offer up reminders every now and again, can it? Continue reading

Mini-vacation at Angeline

Best okra ever!
Best okra ever!

Far too long ago, John and I ventured into the French Quarter to enjoy brunch at what has become one of the city’s most popular restaurants, Angeline. I don’t know about you, but whenever I go into the Quarter, especially on a sunshine-filled day, I like to pretend I’m on vacation. I imagine that my suitcase filled with summer clothes is stashed in an elegant room in the Hotel Monteleone or the Ritz Carlton while John and I explore the beauty of the city with no worries, no deadlines, no work … just a day of unadulterated fun. Continue reading

House of the week: Victorian on Belleville St.

The things I could do with this house!
The things I could do with this house!

The more I look at houses for sale, the more I am disappointed by the culture-eradicating renovations I discover. Developers and contractors are tearing the heart and soul out of New Orleans’ architecture and it honestly makes me want to weep. While I appreciate some new design, there’s a lot to be said for the creativity and elegance of the past. Don’t rip out transoms and dividing walls for an “open floor plan.” Go live in a suburban tract house if that’s what you’re looking for. Continue reading