Food News – February 2024

Hot off the press! . . . Before she graduated from the Nunez Community College culinary program, Chalmatian-born Aritza Garcia jumped right in and opened a Cuban food stall at St. Roch Market @aritzaskitchen. She’s brought her skills as the family cook to the Marigny food hall regaling all of us with signature Cuban cuisine from an “El Cubanito Sandwich” with pork, ham, Swiss, pickles and mustard to empanadas, yucca with chicharrón, and tres leches cake.
2381 St. Claude Ave.,, @aritzaskitchen

Gambling on the classics . . . Celebrity chef and restaurateur Emeril Lagasse recently opened his very first French restaurant. Emeril’s Brasserie opened inside New Orleans’s Harrah’s (soon-to-be Caesar’s) Casino downtown, a change of pace for both the chef and the casino. The brasserie’s kitchen is led by Chef Eric Ivy and though the property will still be under construction through 2024, the high-end restaurant is open for dinner, with plans in the works to include breakfast and lunch. The menu features a mix of French dishes and (of course) a few New Orleans favorites such as Gulf oyster artichoke soup, sweet onion tart with lardons (aka bacon) and crème fraîche, pan-fried Trout Meuniere, and roasted ratatouille.
228 Poydras St.,

Pump up the BAM! … Speaking of Emeril, the celebrity chef’s eponymous charitable organization recently granted nearly $200,000 spread out among four local programs that support the Foundation’s vision. “We support programs that provide mentorship to the most vulnerable youth in our communities. We help them to achieve life skills necessary to gain and sustain employment,” said Emeril Lagasse. “Teaching through food is at the core of what we do.” Based on their shared mission to support youth through “culinary, nutrition and arts education,” the Emeril Lagasse Foundation awarded grants to the Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation ProStart (LRAEF), New Orleans Culinary & Hospitality Institute (NOCHI), Reconcile New Orleans (RNO), and Youth Empowerment Project (YEP). Also, the Aarón Sánchez Impact Fund (ASIF), a program of Emeril Lagasse Foundation, will enable four Latino youth to receive culinary education in New Orleans through the Aarón Sánchez Scholarship. The students will gain hands-on industry experience, as the program works to diversify future kitchen leadership.

Down on da bayou … The Broad Street end of Bayou Road has been growing lately and it just got a little bigger with the recent opening of Nonno’s Cajun Cuisine & Pastries. Formerly located in the Marigny, the eatery made the move to the bayou when the owners saw the opportunity to have a larger space. Nonno’s offers lots of local comfort foods like Southern shrimp and grits with eggs and toast, breakfast burritos, po-boys, and “Rockafella Oysters” with cheese, crabmeat, shrimp and crawfish tails – just to name a few.
2517 Bayou Rd.,

So pretty! . . . What is a “loungerie,” you ask? Find out for yourself at Jolie, a cocktail lounge/restaurant that recently opened up in the Warehouse District. Located in the space that briefly held the World of Beer back in 2019, the new concept is an upscale cocktail lounge that’s trying not to take itself too seriously with a large array of cocktails, plus a menu of shared small plates for those who might be feeling peckish. Visitors can expect dishes such as shrimp beignets, tempura-fried frog legs, and tuna crudo, but the mixed drinks are really where it’s at.
324 Julia St.,

Who? . . . Porgy, that’s who! Porgy’s Seafood Market – part restaurant, part seafood market – opened recently in the space that formerly housed Bevi Seafood on N. Carrollton Avenue. The new market is a partnership between Christina and Dana Honn (the chefs who operate Carmo and Cafe Cour), and Caitlin Carney and her husband Chef Marcus Jacobs (Seafood Sally’s and the recently shuttered Marjie’s Grill). Like many New Orleans chefs and restaurateurs, the partners see a major disconnect between the massive seafood bounty in the Gulf and what is actually offered in local restaurants and retail markets. Along with gumbo, po-boys and other seafood favorites, Porgy’s has established connections with local fisheries to offer more goodies from the Gulf than ever before.
236 N. Carrollton Ave.,

*Article originally published in the February 2024 issue of Where Y’at Magazine

You may also like

Leave a Reply