a la carte - Fall 2022

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Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022



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Letter from the Chair Dear LRA Members, This year has been an incredible opportunity to serve the industry that has given me my career and livelihood. In our family business, we reopened our flagship Juban’s Restaurant that closed early during the Covid crisis. While the effects of the pandemic still linger, this year saw the return of many LRA activities in person. With the Louisiana ProStart Invitational, the NRA Public Affairs Conference, LRA Day at the Capitol, the LRA Showcase, and an array of chapter fundraisers, just looking at the calendar makes me feel grateful we’re coming out on the other side with a positive approach to our future. Although we still face supply chain disruptions, worker shortages and inflation, we are heading into a holiday season full of many wonderful features about the resilience of LRA members. We paused the LRA industry awards during 2020 and 2201, so I asked Past Chairs Peter Sclafani (2020) and Keith Bond (2021), to join me in planning a multi-year recognition celebration. Inside this issue, I invite you to read, watch and listen to the stories of our members who have done remarkable work throughout their careers and responding to the pandemic. We are pleased to include more original content than ever before. You’ll learn about the people whose drive and determination have made Louisiana cuisine world-recognized. My membership in the LRA helped to make me the businessperson I am today. It’s the relationships with my peers, knowledge and advocacy that continue to serve my restaurants. I want to remind you to take advantage of what your membership offers – LRA Workers’ Comp designed just for restaurants and hospitality businesses; ServSafe suite of mandated and voluntary training products; weekly industry news you can use in the SnapShot e-newsletter; and advocacy at the local, state and federal levels. It’s been a privilege to serve this year as the LRA Chair and I look forward to supporting our incoming leadership in the new year. Thank you for your trust and membership in the Louisiana Restaurant Association. Sincerely,

Michael Boudreaux Juban’s and SoLou Restaurants, Baton Rouge 2022 LRA Chair

Follow the LRA on social media for updates on the restaurant industry, advocacy issues, and news about YOU, our members!





Louisiana Restaurant Association


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


Letters to the Editor Dear Stan, Thanks so much for your generous contribution of $2,500 from the LRA Hospitality PAC. With your help, I believe our campaign is in a strong position for my reelection as Louisiana’s Insurance Commissioner next year. This has certainly been a challenging time with insurance issues, starting last year with the COVID-19 pandemic and continuing through two legislative sessions focused on tort reform, followed by Hurricanes Laura, Delta, Zeta and Ida. I issued appropriate emergency rules at the outbreak of COVID-19 and in the aftermath of Hurricanes Laura and Ida to include mid-term audits on business insurance to lower premiums due to new risk levels, temporary bans on cancellations and non-renewals, requiring coverage for temporary housing expenses even without an evacuation order, and mandating coverage for patients who can utilize telemedicine services, amongst other protections. The devastation caused by hurricanes to the Lake Charles, New Orleans and the Bayou areas, as well as throughout our state, has kept the Louisiana Insurance Department busy, helping insurance consumers and their agents face a multitude of challenging issues. It is an honor to be able to serve our state’s citizens and businesses, especially in these challenging times. Without loyal supporters like you, I might not be where I am and have the opportunity to help our state. As always, I appreciate your generosity and friendship, and I look forward to continuing to work with you for a better Louisiana. With best wishes, I remain, gratefully yours, Jim Donelon Commissioner of Insurance

Good afternoon Wendy & Will, On behalf of Councilmember Freddie King, III we thank you for your support in uplifting & encouraging the NOPD (Districts: 1st, 4th, 5th & 8th) in City Council District C. The Officers enjoyed Central City BBQ’s delicious 5 star award winning wood smoked BBQ. Each evening, as you faithfully delivered hot dinners in beautifully packaged containers to each location, your presence will always have a longer lasting savor on the deserving Officers. Councilman King looks forward to the continued partnership with the LRA in contributing to successful events that impact lives for the greater good. Again, we appreciate and thank you. Sincerely, Councilmember Freddie King, III


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

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Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


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Codey’s Nola Food entrepreneurs in New Orleans find a new home at Codey’s Nola, a co-op and commissary kitchen in the Hoffman Triangle dedicated to nurturing their start-up food businesses.

Louisiana Restaurant Association 2700 N. Arnoult Rd. Metairie, LA 70002 Tel: (504) 454-2277 or (800) 256-4572 Fax: (504) 454-2299 www.LRA.org President & CEO: Stan Harris Editor-In-Chief: Wendy Waren wwaren@LRA.org Marketing Manager: Ethan Housen ehousen@LRA.org

14 On the Cover: Restaurateurs of the Year Emery Whalen and Chef Brian Landry, Co-owners of QED Hospitality receive LRA’s highest honor of Restaurateurs of the Year.

Multimedia Specialist: Brian Rome brome@LRA.org Social & Digital Media Coordinator: Nicole Koster nkoster@LRA.org à la carte (USPS 1920) is the official publication of the Louisiana Restaurant Association. Published quarterly by the Louisiana Restaurant Association.


Chapter Happenings 2022 saw a return to in-person chapter events to benefit culinary & hospitality education and the LRA Education Foundation.

Advertising: Want to reach restaurants to use your products or services? Inquire about advertising in à la carte. Call Ethan Housen at (504) 636-6516. Subscriptions: Rates are $25 per year. LRA members: $25 of your membership dues goes toward your yearly subscription.

Cover Photo by Brian Rome, Multimedia Specialist

Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


Finding the Right Support, in the Right Place by Nicole Koster

NOCHI and Industry Leaders Open Ben’s Friends Chapter Ben’s Friends is a national support group for the F&B professionals who struggle with consumption and addiction. Every Monday at 11 a.m., they hold meetings in New Orleans at the New Orleans Culinary & Hospitality Institute (NOCHI). Steve Palmer and Mickey Bakst founded Ben’s Friends after their friend—Ben Chef Alex Harrell Murray took his own life in 2016 due to his addiction. All foodservice professionals who have found sobriety, or are seeking sobriety are encouraged to join the meetings each week. Chef Liam Doran is now the Event Coordinator for NOCHI, and leads the group each week through a discussion about the challenges they’ve faced during their workweek. Now 11 years sober, he himself was once in recovery. Doran has always loved cooking and being in the kitchen, carrying that love with him throughout his 15-year career. A graduate of the Delgado Culinary & Hospitality Management program, Doran started as an apprentice through the American Culinary Federation (ACF) Apprenticeship program. After graduating, he worked at the former Metro Bistro in the Pelham Hotel, and then at Emeril’s as the pastry supervisor. Then, he embarked on his journey to Europe. “After Emeril’s, I moved to Ireland and became sous-chef at the famous O’Connell’s in Ballsbridge Dublin, Ireland,” said Doran. “The following year I moved to France and found a job as a chef tournant at Hotel Cap D’Ail on the Riviera.” Upon returning home to New Orleans, Doran went on at Martin’s Wine Cellar and met Chef Shawn Whalen, the Executive Chef at the time. Chef Whalen passed away in 2019 at the age of 43 due to his struggle with alcohol addiction.


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

“He was such a great guy,” said Doran. “Deeply funny, creative, and very intelligent. Everyone knew Shawn drank at work, no one ever called him out on it.” Chef Whalen’s death awoke a feeling in Doran. He knew the New Orleans hospitality community needed a safe space addressing the issue of addiction. A special screening of the Anthony Bourdain documentary “Road Runner” exposed him to some groups already formed across the country, but, it was just last year when he came onto his position at NOCHI that Ben’s Friends fell on his radar. “I let my administrative team know that I was in recovery and that it was important to me to address the cohort about my experiences,” Doran said. “I gathered several sober chefs and we talked to the class about the pitfalls and coping strategies of our industry. At that meeting, I learned about Ben’s Friends.” Doran started engaging with the group online through Zoom and social media, and connected with co-founder Mickey Bakst. The two chatted about bringing Ben’s Friends to New Orleans, and, as luck would have it, Bakst was already on his way to The Big Easy to host meetings during Tales of the Cocktail. “For two days. I meet with him and a great group of sober liquor professionals/ bartenders at Tales and the seeds of our new local meeting were planted,” Doran said. The first meeting gathered 18 F&B professionals under one roof, and Doran says that is a major accomplishment. Along with Chef Frank Brigtsen of Chef Frank Brigtsen Brigtsen’s Restaurant, and Chef Alex Harrell, the Executive Chef at The Commons Club inside the Virgin Hotel, Doran welcomes hospitality employees to join the meetings. Throughout his career, he has faced challenges with many of his friends and

co-workers. With the support of his family, children and friends, Doran has been sober 11 years. The Ben’s Friends meetings at NOCHI “provide a safe space for hospitality professionals to connect and form better coping strategies while moving away from selfdestructive behaviors,” Doran said. To learn more about Ben’s Friends, visit their website and find them on social media. Contact Chef Alex Harrell (taharrell10@gmail.com) or Chef Liam Doran (liam.doran@nochi.org) for more information on the meetings.


“I let my administrative team know that I was in recovery and that it was important to me to address the cohort about my experiences. I gathered several sober chefs and we talked to the class about the pitfalls and coping strategies of our industry. At that meeting, I learned about Ben’s Friends.” Chef Liam Doran

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Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022



Kitchen to call HOME by Nicole Koster

You cannot have food without New Orleans, and you cannot have New Orleans without food. It’s a given. People entrenched in the city’s neighborhoods are passionate about not only food, but business too. The entrepreneurial spirit in New Orleans is alive 24/7, 365 days a year. It’s part of what makes New Orleans so unique. However, turning an idea into a full-fledged source of income is no easy feat. Education is the key entrepreneurs need to unlock the door to their success. Former educator turned food entrepreneur Sinnidra Taylor has opened a commissary kitchen in Central City that is Codey’s Nola. Taylor knows that feeling of having to learn it all, which inspired her to create Codey’s Nola, the first commissary kitchen and co-op of its kind. Codey’s Nola offers the space for local food entrepreneurs to connect and collaborate. They can learn the nitty gritty details of running a food business, like filing for the proper permits, and learn how to obtain safety and sanitation certifications. “At Codey’s, we are creating a safe space for passion-fueled entrepreneurs to learn and grow,” said Taylor. “We offer classroom and meeting space, opportunities to collaborate and commercial kitchen space.” Taylor has always been involved in education. She was once a math teacher, special educator and even an IEP Compliance Specialist. She also provided after school, out-of-school and summer programming through Infinity Educational Advantage (IEANOLA). “Education is dear to my heart,” Taylor said. It was the driving force for her to start Codey’s Nola, inspired by her late cousin, Codey Taylor, who “fell through the cracks of the mental health and juvenile justice systems,”


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

Taylor said. “It often troubles me that he never was able to reach his potential. He was an amazing, fun-loving person and artist. I wanted to honor him.” Located on Fourth Street in The Hoffman Triangle, the 1,800 square-foot space is under

construction due to roofing issues, but that hasn’t stopped Taylor and her food entrepreneurs. They are at 50% capacity in a rental space on Eve Street just five minutes from the original location. Codey’s Nola represents a renaissance of the neighborhood which has seen some much-needed improvement over the past few years. “We have cold/dry storage, ovens and mixers,” Taylor said. “Because we don’t have a hood system yet, we can [only] accommodate a few, but that’s better than being completely closed. We hope to be completely built out by the new year. The focus now is to bring tenants in and continue fundraising. I’m excited to see businesses and bodies in the building. That makes it real for me.” Taylor threw herself into the food industry on a passion, turning her love of the Hong Kong egg waffle into her fulltime day job with The Crazy Waffle Bar. Now, Codey’s Nola acts as the exclusive pop-up space for Crazy Waffle Bar. The mobile waffle boutique offers special catering for small groups and birthday parties. When formulating her business plan for Codey’s Nola, she knew she needed the proper support and education for

her fellow entrepreneurs, but also for herself. Signing up for a membership with the LRA gave her that network she had been searching for. Taylor wanted her entrepreneurs to have access to the same support system. “I joined the LRA for myself as a food entrepreneur,” Taylor said. “[The network] is designed to be connected to a larger ecosystem of support. Plus, I wanted to be a good steward to the food entrepreneurs that seek to establish sustainable businesses in the industry. It’s important to be a valuable connector that meets and exceeds industry standards.” Taylor’s membership has opened her eyes to so many factors of the foodservice business she didn’t know before. Attending the National Restaurant Association trade show helped her see that her goals are completely achievable. “I really enjoyed seeing and understanding what others are doing around the world,” said Taylor. “Opportunities that were slated for years down that line felt immediately attainable.” The restaurant and foodservice industries are pivoting more toward technology for better efficiency. Taylor soaked up all the stimuli of the trade show, impacted most by the chance to learn about equipment to better organize the Codey’s Nola kitchen, and help increase her capacity to house entrepreneurs. “From sliding shelving to wall-mounted organizers, I found pleasure in finding solutions to small problems with big impact,” said Taylor. The commissary kitchen is meant to break down road blocks and open doors to flourishing opportunities. Making a positive impact for her community and in the lives of New Orleans’ food entrepreneurs is top priority for Taylor. The main goal of Codey’s Nola is to support the advancement of culinary arts through a space that “embodies a culture of community, reciprocity and innovation.”

Photos courtesy of Sinnidra Taylor Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


LRA Communications Evolves to Better Serve Members by Ethan Housen

In the last three years, the Louisiana Restaurant Association (LRA) communications channels have been upgraded, consolidated and expanded. Your membership in the LRA and the evolution of technology have resulted in this new approach to how, when and what we share. Our association’s greatest strength is you, your story and why you’re a member. We are the storytellers of our industry. From LRA.org to TikTok, YouTube to podcasting, we invite you to tune in and read on so we can tell you why.

LRA.org Gets a Reboot The goal of the redesign was to strengthen our website’s elements, consolidate the content and create a more userfriendly experience. In 2020, the LRA planned an upgrade, then the pandemic started and the content shifted entirely to what the restaurant industry (and the world) needed to survive. The new site will feature a media center, original member content and, of course, quicker access to the information you need the most. “COVID impacted the way the website looked,” said Brian Rome, LRA Multi-Media Specialist. “We needed to get the information out much faster, and we significantly simplified the landing page.” Our website is the communication hub of our Association. Launch date is aimed for early December.

“We needed to get the information out much faster, and we significantly simplified the landing page.” - Brian Rome, Multi-Media Specialist


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

Subscribe to the LRA YouTube Channel The amount of content that has been created and distributed by the LRA in that last five years has increased significantly. The LRA has added new capabilities, like in house production of videos and podcasts to stay relevant with changing technology. As those were produced, it was necessary to have a storage platform, YouTube and for podcasts, they were hosted on another platform. The communications team made the choice to move to YouTube and house the content on a singular platform. The LRA Workers’ Comp produces monthly safety topics for members. To further the month’s message, there is a library of LRA Safety Shorts. “It made sense to consolidate all of the video and audio resources over to the YouTube Channel,” said Ethan Housen, Marketing Manager. “All of the LRA’s shorts, podcasts and videos are now available on demand.”

TikTok Viral Video Platform Added to LRA Social Suite Facebook and Twitter were the main players in the social media space and where the LRA focused its content and monitoring. In recent years, Instagram has emerged as a reliable space for restaurants and chefs to share photos, reels and stories. TikTok has emerged as a powerhouse of trending and viral content, and in August 2022, the LRA launched its TikTok with content focused on the LRA Showcase and “tips you need to know before you go to the show” mini-series. What followed was behind the scenes of the show setup and during the event. Experimentation continued, and we began video documenting LRA events and LRA member dining experiences. There are nearly 40 Toks with hundreds, thousands and one with more than 50,000 views. “Our team has made a focused effort on promoting LRA members on social media,” said Nicole Koster, Social & Digital Media Coordinator. “Whether it be by sharing their daily specials on our Instagram stories, sharing news stories on Facebook or spotlighting membership testimonials, our social media channels have become a space to share the good news and successes of LRA restaurant and associate members. We also use it as a tool to share the history of the LRA, so the public understands the association’s place in Louisiana’s history, and the value our members have on tourism and the local economy.”

“We also use it as a tool to share the history of the LRA, so the public understands the association’s place in Louisiana’s history.” - Nicole Koster, Social & Digital Media Coordinator

“It made sense to consolidate all of the video and audio resources over to the YouTube Channel.” - Ethan Housen, Marketing Manager

MORE coming soon! The LRA will launch its We Live to Eat Podcast and its upgraded LRA App in the new year! Stay tuned.

Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022




ative New Orleanians Emery Whalen and Chef Brian Landry bring their unique industry experiences to QED Hospitality. The restaurant operations management group focuses on running national F&B operations in boutique hotels. The pair’s ability to adapt quickly, and their desire to pay homage to the city’s rich culinary traditions, have earned them the LRA’s highest honor as Restaurateurs of the Year.

Separate career trajectories intercept in a restaurant After graduating from Princeton, Whalen, now the CEO and Co-Owner of QED Hospitality, joined Teach NOLA to teach French and Spanish to high school students before becoming a hostess at Restaurant August in 2010. Landry grew up in Lakeview, and started at 14 bussing tables at Tony Angelo’s. What followed


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

was a long journey through many New Orleans restaurants, and culinary school in Charleston. It was after Hurricane Katrina that he had a six-year run as Galatiore’s Executive Chef. Following, he moved on to BRG to open Borgne, Willa Jean and the Caribbean Room (now transformed into Jack Rose at the Pontchartrain Hotel). Also, at BRG on a parallel track, Whalen was working her way up through various management positions. She was drawn to Landry for the intelligence he brought to the company. “We met about a decade ago and worked together for a long time,” said Whalen. “Brian was always my favorite chef to work with because he was open to our ideas.” His ideas are inspired by Louisiana’s sportsman’s paradise. Landry’s appreciation

Jack Rose Photo by Neil Alexander

While they try to stick to their core roles, “Emery works on the businesses and I work in the businesses,” Landry says. “It doesn’t always work out that way and you may have even seen Emery working a hostess stand at one of the restaurants and having input on the menus. Other times I may be the one to write a proforma and working on the P&L’s. We collaborate a lot.”

Photo by Brian Rome

for Louisiana seafood comes straight from the state’s bountiful waters. He loves to fish, and the joy of cooking what he’s caught is the ultimate reward. “Brian has been an advocate for Louisiana and Gulf seafood for years now,” said Stan Harris, LRA President and CEO. “He has an understanding of conservation and fisheries management, and is able to see the issues from a chef’s perspective, although recreational fishing is a favorite pastime.” On the plate is where Landry’s culinary acumen shines. He has served on the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board, as well as traveled and testified about the need for more local seafood for the restaurant industry.

Partnership emerges from supporting each other’s strengths It was those early days at BRG that laid the foundation for what the two would build together in QED Hospitality.

Jack Rose Photo by Sheila Tahvildari

“In the beginning, I had an idea of what I wanted QED to feel like,” said Landry. “But it was Emery who had the intuition to write it all down.” Landry attributes one of the keys to their success is the ability to communicate clearly and effectively. As CEO, Whalen is highly focused, and expertly tasked to convey their mission. “She keeps us all marching in the same direction,” Landry said. Whalen says, though they have distinctly different roles, “there isn’t as much of a front of house, back of house divide as you would imagine. He’s brilliant at some of the operations.”

Tony Abadie is a long-time friend and colleague of the QED pair and was the first person they brought into QED. Once a F&B executive himself, Abadie retired from the Hilton New Orleans Riverside after 34 years, and is now General Manager of Jack Rose Restaurant. It was Landry who talked him into returning to work just 32 days after retirement, but it was Whalen who needed to bless the move forward. He says it’s Whalen’s teaching experience that has helped lead QED, along with Landry’s culinary skills. “Brian is a culinary mad scientist and certainly elevates the cuisine,” Abadie said. “And, Emery’s skills as a teacher are extremely valuable. She’s really teaching us how to be successful in the QED business.” Melvin Rodrigue, Galatoire’s President and CEO, has followed the team since he worked with Landry and admires their special chemistry.

Continued on next page Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


“The yin and the yang of how they approach their partnership is really something special,” Rodrigue said. “They work hard at what they do, and put the time in. But, on top of it, sometimes that’s not enough, you’ve got to be calm, cool and collected, and they are certainly that.”

Concepts in New Orleans, Nashville and now The Birthplace of Bourbon Since they formed QED Hospitality, they’ve launched Jack Rose, Hot Tin and Bayou Bar at The Pontchartrain Hotel. The Thompson Hotel in Nashville is home to an upscale fine dining seafood restaurant Marsh House (named after Marsh House on Avery Island), a rooftop bar L.A . Jackson and a quaint coffee shop Killebrew. In November of 2021, they launched their newest venture The Kitchen Table, at the James B. Beam Distilling Co. in Clermont, Kentucky. The hustle and bustle of the restaurant world can be tough, but Landry loves the thrill of it all. The story of opening The Kitchen Table had somewhat of a snowball, some might say ‘barrel,’ effect. It started when Landry’s cousin, a Jim Beam Global Ambassador, offered him the two remaining barrels of his sales year. One was for The Pontchartrain and one for The Thompson. Landry accepted the barrels.

Whalen’s brother works in the hospital technology sector. The siblings put their heads together and hatched a symbiotic plan to serve both companies once inperson dining service came to a halt. “What they managed to do was ingenious,” said Harris. “They retrained their hospitality staff to work in the telehealth space at a time when the medical sector was experiencing their own restrictions.” Abadie touted the flex of Whalen’s level of ingenuity, and her ability to preserve what she and Brian had worked so hard to create. “It’s no wonder they were chosen as the Restaurateurs of the Year,” said Abadie.

Overcoming adversity earns LRA’s highest honor While COVID-19 paused the LRA’s industry awards, 2022 LRA Chair Michael Boudreaux, and Past Chairs Peter Sclafani and Keith Bond, teamed up to share in the deliberations for a new cycle. When reviewing Emery and Brian’s work together, especially through the last two plus years, it was unanimous.

That acceptance rolled right into a connection with Fred and Freddie Noe, the father-and-son Master Distiller team who are 7th and 8th generation of the Beam family. Before Landry knew it, he and his executive teams from each hotel were on their way to Clermont to handpick their barrels and tour the historic distillery. The Noe family welcomed everyone in with open arms, and next thing you know, QED was the F&B provider for the family’s new James B. Beam Distilling Co. Visitor Experience, and The Kitchen Table Restaurant was born. “It’s been 6 years since we opened a new restaurant,” Landry said. “It has been refreshing and incredibly difficult to get back into, but it’s an incredible opportunity to be part of the 8th generation long legacy of Bourbon.”

Pandemic pivot keeps QED staff working

Photos by Brian Rome


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

The pandemic forced the two to refocus their business efforts. They had spent several years building a strong momentum with a strong team, and then, like so many of their peers, the pandemic threatened their ability to keep everyone employed.

The Kitchen Table Photo by Mayter Scott

Silver Whistle Café Photo by Randy Schmidt

Hot Tin Photo by Christian Horan Bayou Bar Photo by Sienna Viette

Upon learning they were selected as the 2022 Restaurateurs of the Year, they both expressed gratitude and disbelief. “We’re just excited, it’s such an honor to be recognized by the family of the LRA,” said Whalen. Landry felt pure thanks, but also “shocked and surprised,” he said, “in a year when it feels like we’re working as hard as ever.” Harris admires the work they do to support the industry—Landry as a Gulf seafood advocate and Whalen as a volunteer leader on the LRA and LRA Education Foundation Boards. “The thing that I respect most about Emery is her positivity,” said Harris. “She’s upbeat, and when she enters the room she lights up and is ready to engage with her peers.” Landry knows being a part of the LRA enhances not only his restaurant’s prosperity, but the entire state. “The LRA helps remind you that you are not alone, and you are part of something that’s way bigger than yourself,” said Landry.

Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


Piano Bar


LRA names Pat O’Brien’s first recipient of Icon Award BY WENDY WAREN AND NICOLE KOSTER New Orleans’ history is tightly woven with the restaurant & hospitality industry, and Pat O’Brien’s is one of many strong threads holding that fabric together. It’s the iconic Hurricane cocktail, Dueling Piano Bar and lush patio with the flaming fountain that have all solidified Pat O’ Brien’s as an icon of New Orleans southern hospitality. Located in the heart of the French Quarter, it has been the outdoor place to visit to experience the joie de vivre. After all, their motto is simply to ‘Have Fun!’

Pina Colada

Storm’s abrewin’ in the Vieux Carré The Pat O’Brien’s bar known today began in prohibition as a speakeasy on the corner of St. Peter and Royal Streets, known as Mr. Pat O’Brien’s Club Tipperary, owned and operated by Benson Harrison “Pat” O’Brien. The Tennessee native met Charlie Cantrell, a native of North Carolina. The two became fast friends and started running Club Tipperary together. If guests wanted to partake in the good stuff they had to say the password, ‘storm’s abrewin.’ Pat O’Brien’s went legit on December 3, 1933. The pair wanted to do things bigger. Eventually, O’Brien and Cantrell purchased a building down the block at 718 St. Peter Street. Built in 1791, 718 St. Peter Street was once known as the St. Peter Street Theatre, first to open once Spain took rule over New Orleans. This was the site of the first ever opera performed in America, Sylvain, by André Ernest Grétry. Over the years, it changed hands and became a private family residence of the Deflechie family. O’Brien and Cantrell purchased the property in 1942, and the rest is history. Live Entertainment and Original Cocktails Come Ashore The new location offered space to go bigger and better with two baby grand pianos. Thus, the original Dueling Piano Show was born. Shelly Waguespack, the 3rd generation Owner and President of Pat O’Brien’s, says it’s the piano bar which placed Pat O’s on the map for top notch live entertainment.

The Skylab Photos provided by Pat O’Brien’s Facebook page


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

“Dueling pianos are as important to Pat O’Brien’s success as the hurricane,” said Waguespack. “Our performers are fantastic and have been with us for decades.” Together, pianist Vicki Amato and percussionist Alvin Babineaux have been entertaining the crowds for over 40 years. Amato began as a pianist there in 1980. For both musicians, Pat O’s is a second home. “They have brought all of us in and treated us as family,” said Amato. “From the stage point of view, it’s a really gratifying experience to know that we are able to bring happiness to other people.” Babineaux has a musical background as a drum player; his mother Mickey Graza was a famed Pat O’s entertainer for 18 years. He started at the bar in 1970 first as a porter, then bartender, then to the legendary tray. He’s been faithfully playing the tray since 1973. “One of the best compliments I ever got,” Babineaux says, “was a man came in here, and he said ‘I’ve never been to New Orleans but when I walked through the door and saw what you were doing, that’s exactly what I expected New Orleans to be.’” Waguespack says the piano bar embodies their mission to always have fun. Paired with one of their classic cocktails like the hurricane, singing along with the musicians will release endorphins. “My favorite song to sing along with is Sweet Caroline,” said Waguespack. “Have a hurricane and sing your heart out. It’s good for the soul.” An estimated half a million of those hurricanes are served from Pat O’Brien’s every year. The hurricane cocktail itself is a captured moment in time. When whiskey and other domestic spirits were in short supply during World War II, there was a high surplus of rum. You could only have the whiskey if you purchased a case of rum too. As luck would have it for bartenders everywhere, Americans did not have a taste for the spiced spirit. They had to get creative. The story goes that O’Brien and Cantrell had to move rum fast, so the two of them, with their General Manager (Waguespack’s grandfather) George Oechsner Jr., started messing around with ways to make rum taste better. Originally, the recipe was aged Jamaican rum, lemon juice and a passionfruit syrup called fassionola. They served the dark red drink in a curved glass shaped like a hurricane oil lamp, and it was a smashing hit. George and his son Sonny bought the bar from O’Brien in 1978. They have stuck to the bar’s beginnings and have moved it into the future. Now, you can purchase Pat O’ Brien’s drink mixes online and have them shipped across the U.S. and to Canada. One can even partake in the French Quarter fun at either their Orlando or San Antonio locations. Waguespack and VP of Operations Charlie Bateman have worked very hard to keep Pat O’Brien’s authentic, and preserve the elements which make the place so special for both tourists and locals. Not just for tourists There is something for everyone at Pat O’Brien’s. Beyond the expansive patio and the piano bar, there’s a main bar that immerses patrons into what looks and feels like a neighborhood bar. The L-shaped patio is the perfect spot to soak up the sun. “I’ve been to Pat O’Brien’s countless times,” said Stan Harris, President and CEO of the LRA . “Pat O’Brien’s is the place to kick off the weekend festivities when we have people in town to entertain.” As a younger man, Harris recalls hanging out at Pat O’Brien’s with his friends as the lead up to a night out bar hopping along Bourbon Street. As an adult, he uses the venue to impress upon visitors an authentic experience only New Orleans can offer.

Patio Fountain

“I love hosting groups at Pat O’Brien’s,” added Harris. “It’s the casual party vibe, open to the sky, with the flaming fountain that provides a subtle soundtrack accompanied by the sounds of laughter, chatter and cheers.” If only that fountain could talk, and share stories of all the fun had in that courtyard. Bateman remembers a time when someone climbed into the fountain, only one memory among the thousands that must be in his head. “He sat in there for a good few hours,” said Bateman. “Finally, he got out. We didn’t bother him. We have a lot of kindness for our customers. We don’t put up with unruly behavior, but we know how to handle it when we see it.” Every day, Bateman wonders what he and his staff can do to make the guest experience at Pat O’Brien’s even better. That challenge is what has kept him around, since 1976. It was Bateman’s father who was a good friend of Sonny, whom offered him a job after college. Through the decades, the local crowd has fizzled but there are still the local New Orleans loyalists of Pat O’s who always come back for more. “We’ve paid for ubers and cabs to get our locals home,” said Bateman. “We work very closely with our local clients because they’re very important to us.” Waguespack loves the French Quarter and stands behind her family’s business as her platform to “help New Orleans along,” she says. The changes and obstacles brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic were things she never thought would ever happen but she and her team were able to adapt, and pivot to where they are now. “You can’t take anything for granted,” said Waguespack. “No matter how successful you are, how much money you have in the bank. Especially with the last two years, things can happen.” There is so much history packed into the property, which expanded in the 1990s when they purchased 624 Bourbon street to add a restaurant and space for special events. This also greatly expanded the courtyard to a full patio bar, and patrons can enter through either street. The 4,000 square foot L-shaped patio wows guests every time, and still wows Waguespack everyday she walks through the doors. Waguespack attributes the fanfare and patronage to an outstanding team and improved efficiency. The team takes pride in welcoming everyone who walks into the bar. “Just the feelings—the ambiance, and the passion and the dedication that customers and our employees have to this place,” Waguespack said. “Then, it kind of dawned on me, whether I was working as a cashier, bartender, host in my late twenties, how cool this place is.” Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


The Louisiana Restaurant Association held its LRA Industry Awards November 7 at Juban’s Restaurant in Baton Rouge. With the last two years of awards paused due to the pandemic, this year, Past Chairs Peter Sclafani (’20), Keith Bond (’21), and current chair Michael Boudreaux formed a committee to determine who among their peers in the industry were to be the ones to spotlight. While there were many standouts, the LRA is pleased to announce the Restaurateurs of the Year, Hall of Fame Inductees, Associate Member of the Year and the Advocates of the Year.


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

Restaurateurs of the Year Emery Whalen & Chef Brian Landry QED Hospitality The LRA named Emery Whalen and Brian Landry of QED Hospitality as its 2022 Restaurateurs of the Year. Whalen serves as CEO of the food and beverage management company and Landry as co-owner and chef. They operate Jack Rose, Hot Tin, Bayou Bar and Silver Whistle at the Pontchartrain Hotel and another suite of concepts at the Thompson Hotel in Nashville. The two recently partnered with the James B. Beam Distilling Company as the food and beverage provider with the Kitchen Table in Clermont, Kentucky.

Click here to see a special video about the pair.

LRA Icon Award Shelly Waguespack Pat O’Brien’s In 2022, the LRA introduced a new award which recognizes LRA Members who can only be described as ICONIC. The award recognizes an establishment that has truly encapsulated the spirit of hospitality and the joie de vivre that is life in Louisiana. Dating to the days of prohibition and still serving their famed Hurricane cocktail every day—Pat O’Brien’s! The first LRA Icon Award went to Shelly Waguespack, third generation owner of Pat O’Brien’s!

Click here to see a special video about the story of Pat O’Brien’s.

Opposite page, clockwise from top left Chef Brian Landry; 2022 LRA Chair Michael Boudreaux; Bartender at Juban’s Restaurant; Randy Stein; John O’Meara and Past Chair Keith Bond; LRA Awards Emcee Greg Reggio; Shelly Waguespack and her daughter with Tammy Smitherman; Dwight Prudhomme with Mickey Freiberg and LRAEF Executive Director Jonathan Baynham.

Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


LRA inducts four into its Hall of Fame one posthumously One of the LRA’s longtime traditions is to recognize members, who throughout their careers, have had a significant impact on our industry and the LRA. Some have served in volunteer roles, represented the industry locally, nationally and even internationally. These members were presented Hall of Fame medals at the November 7 dinner at Juban’s Restaurant in Baton Rouge.

Chef Susan Spicer Chef Susan Spicer is a longtime LRA member who gained acclaim for her culinary talents with her first restaurant Bayona in the French Quarter. Following, she opened Mondo in the New Orleans Lakeview neighborhood, which is now located in the new airport, and her most recent creation – Rosedale Restaurant. She was recognized as the LRA Restaurateur of the Year in 2004 and is a newly inducted member of the LRA Hall of Fame.

Click here to see a special video about Chef Spicer’s career.

Cindy Brennan Davis & Randy Stein Cindy Brennan Davis and Randy Stein have operated Mr. B’s Bistro in the French Quarter for over 40 years, which continues to provide innovative presentation of classic Louisiana and Creole cuisine. Davis and Stein were inducted into the LRA Hall of Fame. Davis is a strong advocate for the industry and especially our New Orleans restaurants in the state’s number one tourism destination. Stein is the General Manager and represents Mr. B’s on the LRA Board of Directors. Posthumously inducted into the LRA Hall of Fame was the late Michelle McRainey, who was the executive chef for 25 years.

Click here to see a special video about the pair.

Frank Randol For 50 years, Frank Randol has illustrated his commitment to the restaurant, seafood and tourism industries. Randol traveled the country in the 80s to promote Louisiana and Cajun culture as a tourism destination. He’s advocated in DC and Baton Rouge for our local fisherman and seafood processors. Among his many roles was operating Randol’s Restaurant for 40 years and his crawfish processing plant. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame for his tireless efforts.

Click here to see a special video about Frank’s career.


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

Advocates of the Year The Honorable Patrick Page Cortez & The Honorable Clay Schexnayder In 2022, there are two Advocates of the Year—The Honorable Patrick Page Cortez, Senate President and The Honorable Clay Schexnayder, Speaker of the House. In their respective legislative leadership roles, they continue to represent their home districts, and serve as ex-officios on the committees of which they have appointed chairpersons.

Click here to see a special video about the pair. * Not pictured Senate President, Patrick Page Cortez

Associate Member of the Year Jason Jones Sysco The 2022 Associate Member of the Year is Jason Jones, Region Vice President of Sales for Sysco. Jones is the 2023 Chair-Elect for the LRA Education Foundation and has been on the LRA Board of Directors for several years, serving as the Associates Committee Chair.

Click here to see a special video about Jason’s career. Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


LRA CHAPTERS BACK IN ACTION with Fall Lineup of Events by Ethan Housen

Quizine Quarters

Bayou Culinary Showcase In August, the LRA Bayou Chapter hosted its 8th Annual Bayou Culinary Showcase at The Cypress Columns in Gray, LA. Cinclare Restaurant and Chef Logan Boudreaux won the People’s Choice award with their Alligator and Andouille Rangoon. Some other highlights of the night included a soft shell shrimp honey siracha taco from Spahr’s Seafood, and an incredible Cajun Bruschetta from Grady V’s. A huge thank you to all of the LRA members who participated: Cinclare, Sphar’s Seafood, Walk-On’s, Big Mike’s BBQ, Bourgeois Meat Market, New Orleans Roast, Fremin’s, Flanagan’s, Cypress Columns, Grady V’s, Nicholas Catering and Dominique’s Wine Boutique. The event raised $14,000 for the LRA and the LRA Education Foundation.

Grady V’s cajun bruschetta

Two guests discuss auction items

Kalena DeHart, ProStart® Educator at LaFourche Parish Career Magnet Center, leads a ProStart student during a cooking demo.


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

Northshore’s Taco Takeover

Salmen High ProStart student prepares tacos.

The Northshore Chapter hosted its 3rd Annual Taco Takeover presented by Jose Cuervo on September 27th at Benedict’s in Mandeville. The event featured local LRA member restaurants who signed up to compete for the title of best taco on the Northshore; dishes included decadently-stuffed tortillas, tequila tastings and beautiful margaritas. There was even a s’mores taco and a margarita mousse prepared by Mandeville High School ProStart! Congratulations to the winning taco, Colombia Street Taproom’s braised shredded beef tacos; the winning Jose Cuervo cocktail, Meribo’s Honey Habanero Margarita; and to the winning ProStart team, Mandeville High School’s Churro Margarita Mousse. A big thank you to the LRA members: Acme Oyster House, Benedict’s, Meribo, Pyre BBQ, The Anchor, Sarita’s, Columbia Street Taproom, and the ProStart students at Pearl River, Hammond and Mandeville High Schools for participating! The event raised over $11,000 for the LRA and the LRA Education Foundation.

Louisiana ProStart Educator Allison Armand stands with her class from Pearl River High School.

Katherine of Proximo Spirits shares tequila during a tasting.

Hammond High ProStart Educator works with a Salmen High ProStart

Ecolab shows up in support of the LRAEF.

student during Taco Takeover. Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


Greater Baton Rouge Chapter Board members.

LSU students enjoy Baton Rouge’s first Oktoberfest at Pointe Marie

Baton Rouge’s Oktoberfest

ProStart students from Tara High School.

The LRA Greater Baton Rouge Chapter hosted its inaugural Oktoberfest presented by Mockler Beverage and Anheuser Busch at Pointe-Marie on October 14. The event featured an array of German beers for tasting, and 10 LRA member restaurants served their Germaninspired cuisine. The ProStart students from Tara High School assisted the chefs on-site to provide support and gain experience. During the event, there was a wave of rave reviews for Cecelia Creole Bistro’s Streuselkuchen. Chef Mark Reilly’s take on the German-style crumb cake came out crumbly on the outside and moist on the inside, topped with caramel and whipped cream. The Tara ProStart students fell in love with the dessert, and it’s no wonder it won the People’s Choice Award. The Oktoberfest was a huge success generating nearly $18,000 for the LRA and the LRA Education Foundation. Attendees enjoyed participating in the costume, stein holding, and barrel rolling contests. Two attendees enter the costume contest.


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

Chef Chris Motto of Juban’s.

Sinnidra Taylor (left) brings Crazy Waffle Bar to the course.

Golfers stop for a quick taco at Lucy’s food truck.

Pour House and friends stop for a photo.

It was all smiles at the Lakewood Golf Club.

GNO Golf Tournament The LRA Greater New Orleans Chapter hosted its 37th annual Golf Tournament on November 3rd at Lakewood Gold Club. Hundreds of members gathered for epic drives, ice-cold cocktails and some great local fare. Acme Oyster placed first, congratulations to Mike and Tony Rodrigue, Paul Rotner and Jake Palmer. The event was an outstanding success, raising over $67,000 for LRA Programs including the Education Foundation and our Hospitality PAC. Mike Maenza (center) and Greg Reggio (far right) share a beer with friends.

Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022




MAKE TIME for Safety

Robberies account for 25 % of all violent crimes

Robberies increase during the holiday season, specifically between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day.

Businesses most likely to be robbed include:


Businesses with delivery operations

Retail establishments

Apartment buildings, leasing offices

Banks and credit unions

Farmers markets/ small vendors operating with cash

How to Prevent the Likelihood of Robberies Physical Controls Maintain adequate lighting in work and parking areas • Provide surveillance cameras Provide “panic” buttons or silent alarms • Install Control Access • Ensure exterior door and access locks work properly Remove clutter from the windows • Post signs indicating presense of surveillance cameras

Administrative Controls Implement cash handling policies • Prohibit employees from counting cash in front of customers Have two employees open/close business • Check all restrooms and other areas before closing Be observant of suspicous persons/vehicles • Work with local law enforcement

Employee Training An overview of potential risks of robbery • Your company’s phyiscal security measures Instructions on what to do in the event of a robbery • Instructions on what to do immediately following a robbery


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

(800) 256-4572 | (504) 454-2277 | lossprevention@lra.org

Great American

Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


Springfield High School

West Saint John- Runner Up

Woodlawn High School Hammond High Magnet School


Ascension Parish ProStart - Runner Up

# B LU E R UNNERW EEK Louisiana ProStart students let their culinary skills shine bright during the LRAEF’s first #BlueRunnerWeek. For one week, Louisiana ProStart students were cooking and learning about beans, and sharing their creativity with us on Facebook. Congratulations to Louisiana ProStart Educator Stephanie White and her students at Plaquemine Senior High School for having their recipe for thyme & white bean pot pie chosen to be featured on Blue Runner Foods’ website. For more photos, click here to see the Facebook album.

Plaquemine Senior High School - WINNER!

Plaquemine Senior High School

South Beauregard High School


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

East St. John High School

BRES gifts $50k to Baton Rouge ProStart The LRA Education Foundation accepted a $50,000 check from the Baton Rouge Epicurean Society (BRES) on November 14 at a gathering at Rouj Creole. LRAEF Incoming Chair Jason Jones and Executive Director Johnathan Baynham received the check with BRES Board members Jeff Meyers of Sysco, Chef Jeremy Langlois of Houmas House Plantation’s Latil’s Landing Restaurant, and Kelly Firesheets of Heartland. Currently, Baton Rouge has nearly 20 ProStart programs, which is the most of any other city in Louisiana.

“The mission of the Baton Rouge Epicurean Society is to raise awareness of childhood health and nutrition in our community,” said Stephen Hightower, President-Elect for BRES. “That certainly fits with the ProStart program.”




Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


Are you taking full advantage of your membership? The LRA and the NRA offer a number of benefits designed to save you time and money. Members who are actively involved in the programs offered by both organizations get the most for their membership dollars. We’re committed to making your membership work for you! For more information about these programs, contact the individual listed below, visit www.LRA.org or call Pam St. Pierre, VP of Member Services at (800) 256-4572.

Exclusive Programs, Discounts & Services for LRA Members

Business Legal Questions Johnson, Yacoubian & Paysse Alan Yacoubian (504) 528-3001 www.jyplawfirm.com

Labor & Employment Questions Fisher Phillips, LLP Steve Cupp or Michelle Anderson (504) 522-3303 www.laborlawyers.com

Accounting & Tax Questions Bourgeois Bennett, LLC Eric Fullmer (504) 831-4949

LRA Workers’ Comp Debbie Cuccia (800) 256-4572 www.LRASIF.org

OFFICE SUPPLIES Office Depot Receive discounts at Office Depot and Office Max stores! Text LRASPC to #555888 and you’ll get a discount card sent right to your phone.

Workers’ Compensation Claims Hotline LRA Self Insurer’s Fund (877) 257-2743

PAYMENT SYSTEMS & PAYROLL Heartland Payment Systems John Reynolds john.reynolds@e-hps.com Heartlandpaymentsystems.com HEALTH INSURANCE Association Health Plan Plan for hospitality businesses with 0-99 employees. Contact your insurance broker and ask for your LRA member UnitedHealthcare quote. For more info, contact Amy Hathaway, (269) 792-1207 or amyhathaway@uhg.com

Large Group Insurance Contact your insurance broker and ask for your LRA member UnitedHealthcare quote. For more info, contact Amy Hathaway, (269) 792-1207 or amyhathaway@uhg.com Pharmacy Discount Card Free program (not insurance) with discounts on most FDA-approved prescription medication. For more info, contact Amy Hathaway, (269) 792-1207 or amyhathaway@uhg.com

Food Safety Certification ServSafe® | 8-hour food safety and sanitation course www.LRA.org to register (504) 454-2277 ServSafe Alcohol Online Training (504) 454-2277 www.LRA.org www.laserverpermit.com

MUSIC LICENSING BMI | BMI.com Save 20% off licensing fees by paying online. Rob Conrad (615) 401-2908 ADA RESOURCES ADA Toolkit Free to Members Call the LRA Communications Dept. (504) 454-2277

Affordable Care Act Get the facts and how the federal healthcare law affects you. restaurant.org/healthcare

Workforce Development RESTAURANT READY AND APPRENTICESHIPS Contact: David Emond Workforce Program Coordinator Louisiana Restaurant Association Educational Foundation davide@lra.org 504-920-4998


WORKFORCE PROGRAMS Contact: Jonathan Baynham Executive Director Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation jbaynham@lra.org 504-454-2277

Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

LOUISIANA PROSTART Contact: Mistica Maples-Adams Program Manager Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation mmaples-adams@lra.org 504-454-2277

INCUMBENT WORKER TRAINING PROGRAM Contact: Melinda Carter Program Manager, Incumbent Worker Training Program Louisiana Workforce Commission mcarter@lwc.la.gov 225-342-8980

Contact: bernie.kaelin@e-hps.com

Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


Fisher Phillips

A National Labor and Employment Law Firm Serving U.S. Restaurants The attorneys at Fisher Phillips are ready to help you with all of your labor and employment legal issues. We help prevent legal problems by auditing payroll and personnel records to assure compliance with applicable laws, reviewing I-9 forms and procedures to assure compliance before a surprise government inspection, training managers on effective techniques for hiring and firing employees, ADA compliance and avoiding harassment claims. In addition, we draft and review effective employee handbooks and provide day-to-day advice and consultation to hospitality employers on every aspect of labor and employment laws. Fisher Phillips is a national labor and employment law firm representing employers in labor, employment, civil rights, employee benefits, and immigration matters. Our lawyers are joined by more than 500 attorneys in 37 offices and we are continuing to expand. Our range of experience enables us to bring efficient and practical solutions to today’s labor and employment problems.


Michelle Anderson

Steven R. Cupp



504.529.3839 manderson@fisherphillips.com

504.522.3303 scupp@fisherphillips.com

201 St. Charles Avenue | Suite 3710 | New Orleans, LA 70170 | Phone: 504.522.3303 | Fax: 504.529.3850 Atlanta | Baltimore | Boston | Charlotte | Chicago | Cleveland | Columbia | Columbus | Dallas | Denver | Detroit Fort Lauderdale | Gulfport | Houston | Irvine | Kansas City | Las Vegas | Los Angeles | Louisville | Memphis | Minneapolis Nashville | New Jersey | New Orleans | New York | Orlando | Philadelphia | Phoenix | Pittsburgh | Portland | Sacramento San Diego | San Francisco | Seattle | Tampa | Washington, DC Metro | Woodland Hills


Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


Advertising Index BMI..........................................................................................31 www.bmi.com (404) 261-5151 FISHER PHILLIPS..............................................................34 www.fisherphillips.com (504) 522-3303 HEARTLAND PAYMENT SYSTEMS.............................33 www.heartlandpaymentsystems.com (888) 963-3600 LOUISIANA SEAFOOD.....................................................5 www.louisianaseafood.com (225) 342-0552 LRA WORKERS’ COMP..................................................29 www.lrasif.org (504) 454-2277

For advertising information, please contact Ethan Housen, Marketing Manager: Phone: (504) 636-6516 Email: ehousen@LRA.org Online: www.LRA.org

Do you have good news to share about your company? Want a “Shout Out” for your employees’ hard work? Send an email to communications@lra.org with the subject “Shout Out” for a chance to be featured in our weekly newsletter sent out to members! Do you have an exemplary employee who’s been with you for 20 or more years? Do they go above and beyond the call of duty? Are they a shining example for young employees to emulate? If you’ve answered yes, then you have a LRA Restaurant Legend! Nominate your employees today! Email communications@lra.org for more information.

ODP BUSINESS SOLUTIONS......................................31 www.odpbusiness.com (888) 263-3423 PERFORMANCE FOODSERVICE..............................35 www.performancefoodservice.com (504) 733-5200 SERVSAFE..........................................................................6 www.servsafe.com SYSCO FOODSERVICE..................................................IFC www.sysco.com (504) 731-1015 THOMPSON PACKERS...................................................OBC www.thompack.com (985) 641-6640 UNITEDHEALTHCARE...................................................9 www.uhc.com (866) 414-1959

National Reach,


We understand what it means to be on the front lines of foodservice, and we’re here to help you find the best products to meet your individual needs. We don’t just help feed people, we feed dreams. For more information, visit PerformanceFoodservice.com today. PERFORMANCE – NEW ORLEANS 918 Edwards Ave., Harahan, LA 70123 800-488-3988

Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022


For more than 40 years, Thompson Packers, Inc. has proudly catered to the food service industry. Hotels, restaurants and other institutions have continuously turned to Thompson for their “center-of-the-plate” meat products. They know Thompson has the knowledge and the capability to provide them with the right items to satisfy their customers.


Thompson’s professional yet customized service is like having a personal butcher at your disposal. What’s more, Thompson’s state of the art packaging affords consistency and “just cut” freshness on every item. Let us be your butcher. We’ve got the ideal cuts of beef, veal, lamb and pork — no matter what your needs might be.

Slidell, Louisiana

Louisiana Restaurant Association | a la carte | Fall 2022

1.800.989.6328 www.thompack.com