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FEBRUARY 2017 / VOLUME 51 / NUMBER 4 Editor-in-Chief Errol Laborde Managing Editor Morgan Packard Art Director Tiffani Reding Amedeo Contributing Editor Liz Scott Monaghan Food Editor Dale Curry Dining Editor Jay Forman Wine and Spirits Editor Tim McNally Restaurant Reporter Robert Peyton Home Editor Bonnie Warren Web Editor Kelly Massicot Staff Writers Jessica DeBold, Melanie Warner Spencer Intern Marie Simoneaux Vice President of Sales Colleen Monaghan Sales Manager Kate Sanders Henry (504) 830-7216 / Kate@MyNewOrleans.com Senior Account Executive Lisa Picone Love Account Executives Claire Cummings, Jessica Marasco, Peyton Simms Director of Marketing and Events Cheryl Lemoine Event Coordinator Margaret Strahan Digital Media Associate Mallary Matherne For event information call (504) 830-7264 Production Manager Staci McCarty Senior Production Designer Ali Sullivan Production Designer Monique DiPietro Traffic Coordinator Terra Durio Chief Executive Officer Todd Matherne President Alan Campell Executive Vice President Errol Laborde Distribution Manager John Holzer Administrative Assistant Denise Dean Subscriptions Manager Sara Kelemencky Subscriptions Assistant Mallary Matherne WYES DIAL 12 STAFF (504) 486-5511 Executive Editor Beth Arroyo Utterback Managing Editor Aislinn Hinyup Associate Editor Robin Cooper Art Director Jenny Hronek NEW ORLEANS MAGAZINE
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New Orleans Magazine (ISSN 0897 8174) is published monthly by Renaissance Publishing, LLC., 110 Veterans Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005; (504) 828-1380. Subscription rates: one year $19.95; Mexico, South America and Canada $48; Europe, Asia and Australia $75. An associate subscription to New Orleans Magazine is available by a contribution of $40 or more to WYES-TV/Channel 12, $10.00 of which is used to offset the cost of publication. Also available electronically, on CD-ROM and on-line. Periodicals postage paid at Metairie, LA, and additional entry offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to New Orleans Magazine, 110 Veterans Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005. Copyright 2017 New Orleans Magazine. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the consent of the publisher. The trademark New Orleans and New Orleans Magazine are registered. New Orleans Magazine is not responsible for unsolicited manuscripts, photos and artwork even if accompanied by a selfaddressed stamped envelope. The opinions expressed in New Orleans Magazine are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the view of the magazine managers or owners.
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
IN EVERY ISSUE
Dancin’ In the Street
“Lundi Gras: Carnvial’s newest old phrase”
By Morgan Packard
Carnival: Some of Our Favorite Things
By Errol Laborde
Pun-filled groups bring parade entertainment up close
A totally random selection of the season’s best –among many
Spoil her on Valentine’s Day with a gift that will melt her heart.
By Lisa Tudor
Heart to Heart
By Brobson Lutz M.D.
Compiled by Morgan Packard
Conversation with a cardiologist
Patients’ picks of area facilities
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
Editorial, plus a Mike Luckovich cartoon
Questions and answers about our city
142 Try This
“Taking a Tour of Mardi Gras World”
“Custer at Mardi Gras”
ON THE COVER
Though they’re a more recent addition, Carnival’s dancing troupes have become eagerly anticipated attractions in their own right, with throws, themes and even cheering sections. These emerging social clubs have become stewards of Carnival’s racier traditions. Learn more about the Sirens (pictured above) and seven others starting on pg. 58. Photographed by Greg Miles
Modine’s New Orleans
King Zulu 2017 Adonis Expose
“Masking Like a Baby Cake”
“Three For the Tray: Appetizing appetizers”
The Bayou St. John
“What’s In a Name?: Ask First NBC”
“The Deeper Side of Mardi Gras”
“Desperately Seeking Sweet Stop”
Read & Spin
“The Longest Yard: Hope vs. the murder rate”
“Krewsin’ for a Brewisn’”
“Picturing Mardi Gras”
A look at the latest albums and books
“Meat: Two places that are smokin’”
News From the Kitchens: Marjie’s Grill, Petit Lion & Maypop
“Big Chiefs Coming”
“Looking Sharpe: Cassandra Sharpe and Rich Look’s ‘sister’ home”
DIAL 12, D1
Carnival’s royal conclusion, “The Rex Ball and the Meeting of the Courts of Rex and Comus,” can be easily viewed by both locals and viewers across the country by tuning into WYES-TV/Channel 12 or watching the live stream at WYES.org on Tues., Feb. 28 at 7:30 p.m.
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
Carnival’s newest old phrase
Thirty years ago, a new phrase became part of the local language. It was “Lundi Gras.” Previously the phrase existed, though it was hardly spoken, as a French way of saying “Fat Monday” in the same way that “Mardi Gras” means “Fat Tuesday.” There was no reason for the phrase to be spoken. The day before Mardi Gras was known simply as Monday. But then something new happened. As a byproduct of the 1984 World’s Fair, what had been the International Pavilion was redeveloped into the Rouse Company’s New Orleans Riverwalk Festive Marketplace. For all the hoopla of Mardi Gras, not much happened on the day before, so some folks prevailed on Rex to revise the custom of arriving by river. (The transition had stopped in 1917 because of World War I.) Rex agreed, but for that to work Riverwalk had to agree to host the event on the adjacent stage at Spanish Plaza. There would be music before and after, followed by Rex and the mayor pushing down a plunger to symbolically ignite a fireworks show. Meanwhile, the Krewe of Proteus, which paraded that night, would take a right at Poydras Avenue and make a loop to be near the Riverwalk crowds. And then, someone suggested, the whole package would be known as “Lundi Gras.” What? “Lundi Gras, like Fat Monday – get it?” Mmmmmnm. And so, as of that Mon., March 2, 1987, the day before Mardi Gras came to forever be known in the chronicles of Carnival as Lundi Gras. What was unexpected was how quickly the phrase took off. By the next year events by that name were taking place up and down the river. Soon Zulu joined in and adapted the name. Wherever Carnival was held there would be Lundi Gras-related events, even in Mobile, which stages the nation’s second biggest Carnival. There is a certain fog that often envelops Carnival history. It wasn’t long before people identified Lundi Gras as an old custom linked to the early Rex landings. (Not so, Rex just landed.) Some would say that Zulu founded Lundi Gras – also not so. In fact, once Zulu began staging its own arrivals Rex even helped the group secure a Coast Guard craft similar to the one it had been using. For whatever was said, the truth was Lundi Gras as a popular phrase originated on the day before Mardi Gras 1987. So, happy name day anniversary “Lundi Gras!” May you always be a cause of celebration and a reminder that the truth can be elusive, any day of the week. 14
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
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2016 Press Club of New Orleans Winners
Lifetime Achievement Award: Errol Laborde Cartoon: Mike Luckovich Column: “Me Again,” Chris Rose Special Section – Writing: “People to Watch,” Tiffani Reding Amedeo and Morgan Packard 16
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
meet our sales team
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Sales Manager (504) 830-7216 Kate@myneworleans.com
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FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
The Mobile Connection You hear it said every year during Carnival time. Someone will tease that Mardi Gras, the celebration for which New Orleans takes so much pride, originated in Mobile, Alabama. At its birth, the argument would imply, Carnival was nourished not by the Mississippi River but by Mobile Bay. Is it true? The easy answer is “no” because Mardi Gras is a European invention that neither New Orleans nor Mobile originated. However, if the question is really about the American style of Mardi Gras celebrations, the answer is a cautious one that needs explanation. What did originate out of Mobile was a tradition of masked marches, originally at New Year’s that then moved to Mardi Gras. The most notable was the Cowbellians, who first hit the streets near midnight on New Year’s Eve 1831. It was from the Cowbellians that the Mobilebased tradition of masked parades grew.
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
Switch the scene to New Orleans and the year to 1857, when the Mistick Krewe of Comus originated. We know that there were some expatriate Cowbellians involved in Comus’ planning, and that for its first parade the krewe borrowed scenery and costumes from the Mobile group. We also know that Mobile established the idea of Carnival organizations being structured as secretive men’s clubs. The Alabama city has even been referred to as “The Mother of Mystics.” Once the seed was planted in New Orleans, however, it developed its own characteristics and style and, like a wild weed, spread rapidly. From the Comus adaptation came the word “krewe,” as well as the template for all Carnival parades that would follow from 1857 through the present. Twenty-five years later the Rex organization, with help from Comus, would begin. The newly
anointed King of Carnival selected purple, green and gold as the season’s colors and “If Ever I Cease to Love” as its anthem. Through the years Rex, it’s believed, would be the first to introduce the custom of throws tossed from floats, and most certainly originated the doubloon. New Orleans was a big and busy port with lots of tourism. It would see its Carnival copied and imitated elsewhere. Today, just about everywhere that celebrates Mardi Gras – certainly in North America – borrows from the New Orleans celebration, including the colors, throws, the word “krewe” and even King Cakes, which were a French invention but popularized and given their own style in this city. Much of the Mobile Mardi Gras today borrows from New Orleans. The parades are similar and the flags wave with purple, green and gold. New Orleans float builders have even built some of the Mobile parades. So what can truly be said of the relationship between Mobile and New Orleans? Mobile was father of the early Carnival. New Orleans is father of Carnival as it would evolve. Each was father of the other. It is a bizarre relationship perhaps best understood by mothers of mystics. n
AN ORIGINAL ©MIKE LUCKOVICH CARTOON FOR NEW ORLEANS MAGAZINE
julia street | WITH POYDRAS THE PARROT THE PURSUIT TO ANSWER ETERNAL QUESTIONS
Saint Joseph’s Parochial School, 417 South Roman St.
Dear Julia, In the late 1940s, I was in elementary school at St. Joseph’s on S. Roman Street. In my class (eighth grade) was a girl by the name of Mary Ann Nami. She had dark hair and eyes and a great sense of humor, but kept to herself. I believe she mentioned a brother named Philip. Every time I pass by the former jewelry store, I’m reminded of Mary Ann. It is nice to hear that some of the family still exists. I often wonder what happened to some of the girls in my class. We would all be in our 80s now. P.S. The Nami letter in the November 2016 issue of New Orleans Magazine prompted this note. Thank you for bringing back some of the memories, Wilmae Spedale New Orleans Thank you for writing. I may not know what has happened to each of your classmates, but I do know the fate of your elementary school. Sadly, the school you and Mary Ann attended
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
and that you fondly remember is itself a longvanished part of the local streetscape. Built in 1903, St. Joseph’s Parochial School closed in ’75 and was demolished shortly thereafter following the Congregation of the Mission’s sale of the school and other properties to LSU. Julia and Poydras, I may be off my rocker, but when I read in this column about Laura Miller’s quest for a restaurant on Canal Street with a spiral staircase, I immediately thought of Walgreens – I think that was the name of the drugstore on Canal Street. I can’t remember the side street, but my feeble memory tells me that there was a restaurant on an upper level at the drugstore and you needed to climb a spiral staircase. Joy van Meerveld Pass Christian, Miss. You are most certainly not off your rocker. You are correct that the Walgreen’s at the
corner of Canal and Baronne streets had a mezzanine-level restaurant overlooking Canal Street. Although I haven’t seen any pictures of it, it appears to have operated from late 1938, when the drug store first opened at 900 Canal St., well into the ’70s. When the mezzanine-level restaurant first opened, its double-scoop ice cream sodas cost 15 cents and banana splits cost just a nickel more. Walgreen’s also served more substantial fare, such as its 45-cent Sunday Dinner, which included a choice of five entrées with beverage and other accompaniments. Adjusted for inflation, that meal would now cost about $7.70 – still quite a bargain!
photograph courtesy of The Charles L. Franck Studio Collection at The Historic New Orleans Collection
Walgreen’s dining area was apparently quite successful. In the early 1940s, the store frequently advertised to encourage women between the ages of 20 and 35 to enroll in its own waitress school under the direction of Mrs. Cooper. Following a major renovation in late 1962, Walgreen’s actively promoted its cafeteria overlooking Canal Street as a place where one could “dine in gracious atmosphere.” At the time, a baked chicken breast with dressing cost just 67 cents; adjusted for inflation, that’s about $5.35 in today’s money. Dear Julia, As you go up River Road (LA 18) on the west bank in Jefferson Parish, about 1.5 miles past Avondale Shipyard is the community of Waggaman. Almost as soon as you enter Waggaman, you pass by the Cedar Grove Tchoupitoulas Plantation, which is now a wedding location. Just before you get to that, there begins a line of six very old oak trees at about a 30-degree angle from River Road. Judging by the size of the trunks, I think the trees are at least 200 years old. The first couple of trees in this line are actually in the yards of houses next to the plantation house, and I’m guessing that that land was originally part of the plantation. The other four continue into what’s now the front yard of the plantation. The current house appears relatively newish, and I assume isn’t the original house for the plantation. Did these oaks line a driveway or other sort of entrance to the original house there? Thanks, Dave Denson New Orleans The Cedar Grove Tchoupitoulas plantation home is
the original residence, but much has changed since Jean Baptiste Drouet had it built in the late 18th century. For one thing, the levee that now fronts the property wasn’t there in late Colonial times. For another the river changed course, cutting into the bank, threatening Cedar Grove and necessitating the home’s relocation further inland on no fewer than four occasions. When Cedar Grove made its final move to its present location, the main house’s columns and ground story were taken off and the building attained its current appearance. Although I’m unsure precisely how the oaks were oriented with regard to Cedar Grove’s main house’s original location, it’s quite clear that all six surviving trees stand on land that was originally part of the Cedar Grove plantation. Assessors’ records show both the plantation and its residential neighbors are located in the Cedar Grove Plant subdivision of Jefferson Parish. n
Win a restaurant gift certificate t
Here is a chance to eat, drink and have your curiosity satiated all at once. Send Julia a question. If we use it, you’ll be eligible for a monthly drawing for a Jazz Brunch for two at The Court of Two Sisters. To take part, send your question to: Julia Street, c/o New Orleans Magazine, 110 Veterans Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005 or email: Errol@MyNewOrleans. com. This month’s winners are Dave Denson, New Orleans; and Wilmae Spedale, New Orleans. myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
The Beat MARQU E E | P E RSONA | B I Z | E DUCATION | H E A L T H | CRIM E F I G H TIN G | C H RONIC L E S
SPOTLIGHT, PG. 27
Cirque du Soleil’s latest show, TORUK: The First Flight, is inspired by James Cameron’s blockbuster film AVATAR. Louisianians can see it Feb. 1-5 at the Smoothie King Center.
Errisson Lawrence Costumes: Kym Barrett © 2015 Cirque du Soleil
THE BEAT | marquee
February Events By Fritz Esker
TOP PICKS cheryl gerber photo
NBA All-Star Celebrity Game
Cookies & Cocktails Gala
The NBA All-Star Game is great. But one of the fun and underrated events of the NBA All-Star weekend (recently moved to New Orleans in protest of North Carolina’s transgender bathroom law) is the all-star celebrity game. Here, you’ll get to watch some of your favorite actors and singers show you what they have (or don’t have) on the basketball court. It is Feb. 17 at 6 p.m. at the Smoothie King Center. Tickets run $27-235. Information, AllStarWeekendNewOrleans2017.com
If you wake up on Lundi Gras (Feb. 27 this year) and want something to do before the evening’s parades, check out Zulu’s Lundi Gras Festival. It is at Woldenberg Park and is free and open to the public. Revelers can enjoy live music from such local luminaries as DJ Jubliee and the Rebirth Brass Band 10 a.m.-6:30 p.m. There will also be food, arts and crafts. Then head upriver to the nearby Riverwalk to watch the arrival of Rex, King of Carnival, followed by fireworks. Information, LundiGrasFestival.com
Who doesn’t love Girl Scout Cookies? Fans of the classic snacks can enjoy Girl Scout Cookie-inspired dishes and drinks at the Cookies & Cocktails Gala on Feb. 4 at the XLIV Club. Twenty local chefs and bartenders will participate. Guests can also enjoy live music, a photo booth and a silent auction. Proceeds benefit Girl Scouts Louisiana East. Tickets are $75; for gala and patron access, it’s $100. Information, 355-5885.
Jan 27-Feb 12 Jelly’s Last Jam, Le Petit Theatre. Information, LePetitTheatre.com Feb 1-Apr 9 “Goods of Every Description: Shopping in New Orleans,” Historic New Orleans Collection. Information, HNOC.org Feb 3 Beethoven’s “Pastoral” Symphony, Orpheum Theater. Information, OrpheumNOLA.com Feb 4 Dancing with the Stars: LIVE! - We Came to Dance, Saenger Theater. Information, SaengerNOLA.com Feb 5 New Orleans Rock ’n’ Roll Marathon, Superdome. Information,
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
Feb 10 Billy Joel, Smoothie King Center. Information, SmoothieKingCenter.com Feb 10 & 12 Sweeney Todd, Mahalia Jackson Theater. Information, MahaliaJacksonTheater.com Feb 11 Valentine’s Music Festival, Lakefront Arena. Information, Arena.UNO.edu Feb 12 Recycled Fashion Show, Rock ‘N’ Bowl. Information, 821-7288
buster film AVATAR. Louisianians can see it Feb. 1-5 at the Smoothie King Center.
TORUK: The First Flight
Laura Silverman, Cirque du Soleil publicist, discusses the company’s new show at the Smoothie King Center. For those unfamiliar with Cirque du Soleil, it’s an international entertainment company whose shows combine dance, acrobatics, live music and costumes. Their latest show, TORUK: The First Flight, is inspired by James Cameron’s block-
Feb 15 Uniquely New Orleans: The Classical Tradition and Jazz, location TBD. Information, LPOmusic.org Feb 16 Yonder Mountain String Band and G. Love Special Sauce, Joy Theater. Information, TheJoyTheater.com Feb 17 NBA All-Star Rising Stars Challenge, Smoothie King Center. Information, SmoothieKingCenter.com Feb 17 Festival of Laughs, Lakefront Arena. Information, Arena.UNO.edu Feb 18 NBA D-League All-Star Game, Smoothie King Center. Information,
Youssef Shoufan Costumes: Kym Barrett © 2015 Cirque du Soleil
How much training and rehearsal goes into such an intricate performance? The creation process … included training and rehearsing for six days a week for about four months leading up to the first performance. … They learned the Na’vi language from Paul Frommer, creator of the language. They studied Na’vi movement with Julene Renee, an actress involved in AVATAR. And they worked with the designers and the show creators, Michel Lemieux and Victor Pilon, to become their Na’vi characters. … Once the show had its premiere, the cast and crew continued to train and tweak some elements. Does someone have to be familiar with AVATAR to enjoy the show? It is a completely new, independent
story, taking place 3,000 years before the events in the film. … If you’ve seen AVATAR before, you’ll recognize some elements – the blue Na’vi humanoids, some of the creatures, a few common themes – but if you haven’t seen AVATAR, it’s a great opportunity to be introduced to Pandora. What is your favorite part of the show? The use of projections, storytelling and what we call an acrobatic narrative is unlike any other show I’ve worked on or witnessed as a patron.
Is it recommended for all ages? This is an excellent show for kids of all ages – adults, grandparents, anyone! The colors are really mesmerizing, the story simple enough for kids to follow … It’s an opportunity to escape into another world and experience a show unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. n
Feb 19 NBA All-Star Game, Smoothie King Center. Information, SmoothieKingCenter.com Feb 22 Sting, Lakefront Arena. Information, Arena.UNO.edu Feb 25 Endymion Extravaganza, Mercedes Benz Superdome. Information, Endymion.org Feb 27 Orpheuscapade, Ernest Morial Convention Center. Information, KreweOfOrpheus.com
myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
THE BEAT | PERSONA
at a glance
Age: 48 Profession: Regional Transit Authority, Procurement and Contracts; co-owner of event management firm Funkshuns, LLC, with his 2017 Queen, Donna Glapion Resides: New Orleans East Born/raised: 7th Ward, then Upper 9th Family: Three brothers and two sisters Education: University of Southwestern Louisiana Favorite book: Grandma’s Hands by Dr. Calvin Mackey Favorite movie: The Color Purple Favorite TV show: Good Times Favorite food: Mexican Favorite restaurant: Drago’s Hobby: Singing and entertaining
Q: Of what parts of Zulu’s history are
Adonis Expose King Zulu 2017 By Lucie Monk Carter
There is a limit on how many Facebook friends a user is allowed. Adonis Expose has learned that: “So that’s how many I have.” Expose’s 5,000 online friends aren’t the typical far-flung former classmates and second cousins. He just saw 750 of them on Dec. 14 at his annual birthday extravaganza, which doubles as a Christmas toy drive. And he expects to see a few thousand more on Feb. 28, when he takes his seat as the 2017 King Zulu.
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
you most proud? The history of giving back to the community. Some people see Zulu as more of a parade organization, but there’s more to that. They have bicycle giveaways, they have the toy drive in which we get over 1,500 toys during Christmastime and probably 1,000 bicycles. And we have food and basket giveaways during Thanksgiving and Christmas. We have a mentoring program through Zulu, too. Back in the day, I was the president of First Friday [a monthly mixer for black professionals in New Orleans]. We would highlight different AfricanAmerican businesses every month, and we’d have a social at their business to let the community know they were there. In my current fraternity, Omega Psi Phi, we do highway cleanup. We do toy drives. We do any sort of drive. So, I’ve got a good background of helping the community. When I saw that with Zulu, outside of the parade aspect, that really caught my attention. greg miles PHOTOGRAPH
Q: What are you looking
most forward to this year as King? At this point, I have 25 to 30 elementary, junior high and senior high schools where I’ll go talk to the kids. I didn’t think as a kid when I’d go see a Mardi Gras parade that ever in my wildest dreams, “OK, I’m going to be up there one day as King Zulu.” I’ve had some barriers along the way, and never would I have imagined that I’d become King Zulu. That’s my role to these kids. “This is possible. You can achieve this.” They see a positive role model, and they know this can happen. If you don’t see it, you don’t know it can happen. But you see it, and you know.
Q: How did your birthday
party become a toy drive? I’m 48, and I started this when I was 30. The first few parties I had at Sweet Lorraine’s on St. Claude. It was an every-year event, and at some point it was hundreds of people. After about three or four years, I thought, “I can start doing something with this. People are coming out, and I’m not charging.” My birthday’s Dec. 14, so it’s right near Christmas. I said, “You know what? I’ll do a toy drive. I won’t charge admission, but you can bring a toy.” So, that’s how it started. In the past two years, since we’ve had our new building, I actually charged a $5 admission or a toy. The money and the toys go to Zulu. The money we collected would go to purchasing bikes, because we’re always in need of bikes. We always have an abundance of toys, but we always need more bikes. You have people who don’t normally go out, but for them this is an an-
nual event. They’re going to come out for that. It’s like a reunion. People who don’t normally go out throughout the year? They’re going to come out in December for my party and see everybody they haven’t seen in a long time. It’s become a tradition.
Q: What were your Mardi
Gras traditions growing up? The Zulu parade would start at 8 a.m. As a kid, I’d think, “OK, I’ll get up at 5 in the morning.” I’d say, “We gotta go! We gotta go! We’re gonna miss the parade!” Now I know that the parade starts at 8, so we won’t even see it until 10 or 11. But as a kid, you get so excited. You wanna be there early. So the thing I remember is fixing hot dogs at 5 a.m., wrapping them up and eating them cold later on. And asking for a coconut.
Q: What do you love about
New Orleans? People know me as Mr. I Love My City. There’s always something to do here. After Katrina, I moved to Houston for six months. I hated it. It was too big for me. In New Orleans, I socialize a lot. They call me a New Orleans socialite. I could go to four parties in a night. In Houston, if I even knew about four parties, I couldn’t get to them in one night because one party would be 45 minutes from the other. n
A lot of people that see me nowadays don’t know I was 315 pounds back in 1991. I don’t eat red meat and I do a low-carb diet. myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
THE BEAT | BIZ
What’s In a Name? Ask First NBC By Kathy Finn
New Orleans businesses have long recognized the role that a trusted corporate name can play in developing a following. Consider, for instance, the thousands of local consumers who for decades proudly carried the signature shopping bags of stores such as Schwegmann and K&B. Though neither name remains in operation today, many locals remember them with fondness and a sense of trust. The value of having a strong local identity, embraced by retailers, wasn’t lost on bankers either. Recently, two names worn for
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
many years by the city’s largest banks resurfaced in local business news. First National Bank of Commerce, founded in New Orleans in 1971, grew into a $9 billion institution before agreeing to be acquired by Banc One Corp. in ’98. During that time, the company – commonly known by its abbreviated moniker First NBC – built a loyal following that held up well, even through the challenging years of the savings and loan crisis, which eventually spread to banks. One of First NBC’s longtime executives, Ashton Ryan, paid tribute to the bank’s solid reputation by hearkening back to its name when, in 2006, he and a group of local investors launched a new institution and dubbed it First NBC Bank. They even plopped their corporate headquarters in the same downtown New Orleans space that had formerly housed the main lobby of First National Bank of Commerce. Ryan touted the First NBC name as he aggressively sought deposits and chased business throughout the local area. In a relatively short time he built the bank into bustling institution noted for a focus
on local business lending and supporting local real estate development projects. In 2013, First NBC Bank went public, raising $100 million from investors who bought shares in the company. But in time, First NBC Bank began to stumble. It appeared that the institution had leaned too heavily on business generated by a slew of federal and state tax credits that had been put to work to help New Orleans recover from Hurricane Katrina. First NBC Bank drew investors to local construction projects by linking them with low-income housing and historical rehabilitation tax credits, among other incentive programs, and by putting a substantial amount of the bank’s own resources into the developments. First NBC Bank amassed nearly $5 billion in assets as it grew its business and acquired several smaller banks. The company’s physical footprint came to include almost 40 branch offices. But the bank’s growing reliance on tax credit-fed business became problematic when regulators issued new rules regarding such business, causing the value of the
cheryl gerber photograph
Making a Statement
First NBC Bank 210 Baronne St. New Orleans Founded: 2006 Number of branches: 38 Interim CEO: Hermann “Buck” Moyse III Statements issued by First NBC management suggest that proceeds from the sale of nine of its branches and certain other assets will improve the bank’s liquidity and put it in a better position to resume growth. First NBC Chairman Shiva Govindan said the deal with Hancock Holding/Whitney helps position the bank “for long-term success.”
credits to be diminished. At the same time, First NBC ran into problems with some of its activities in the troubled oil and gas sector that forced the bank to write down the value of some assets and set aside large sums to cover potential future losses in the sector. Last year the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. slapped limits on the kinds of deposits First NBC Bank can take in, and state and federal regulators declared the bank to be in “troubled condition.” Under pressure from regulators, the bank signed an agreement to review its management and its loan and accounting processes, and develop a plan to shore up capital. As its condition darkened, the bank’s stock price plunged from about $40 a share to as low as $6 a share. Despite its venerable name, trust in First NBC Bank began to erode and Ryan was forced to step down as its CEO,
though he remained a member of the board and retained the title of president. It was at this point that another banking name from the past re-surfaced in the news. Until 2010, when it was sold to Mississippi-based Hancock Holding Co, Whitney National Bank was the oldest banking institution in Louisiana. It had survived not only recent banking crises, but also the Great Depression on its way to becoming one of New Orleans’ biggest banks. Recognizing the value of the Whitney name, Hancock Holding chose not to put its own name on the Louisiana offices it acquired. Instead, Hancock left the Whitney name, as well as Whitney’s signature clocks, on all the newly acquired Louisiana banking properties. In a twist, recently it appeared that Hancock – under the Whitney moniker – would come to the aid of First NBC Bank. In late December, the two companies announced that First NBC Bank would sell nine of its branches and $1.3 billion in loans to Whitney. Assuming that regulators sign off on the deal, Whitney, a subsidiary of Hancock Holding, will put its name on bank branches in New Orleans, Metairie, Terrytown, Slidell, Pearl River, Houma and Amite. While a possible sale of the entirety of First NBC Bank has been rumored for months, at press time, Hancock officials had so far avoided any talk of taking over the New Orleans-based institution. More definitive news likely will surface in coming weeks. Whatever the boards of the two institutions should decide, it’s likely that the value of a name and the importance of brand loyalty will weigh heavily in their discussions. n
myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
THE BEAT | education
The Deeper Side of Mardi Gras Walker Percy’s search for meaning By Dawn Ruth
Mardi Gras appears frequently in contemporary fiction, particularly in popular novels as a colorful backdrop for criminality, but its purpose in the Catholic tradition from which it springs is rarely acknowledged. A writer who connects this bacchanal celebration to its original religious conclusion was a man one scholar called “the last Catholic novelist.” Mardi Gras and New Orleans provide the setting for Walker Percy’s The Moviegoer, which won the National Book Award and established Percy’s reputation as an important contemporary writer. As a Catholic convert, The Moviegoer is the first of Percy’s published novels developing characters searching for meaning in an increasingly secularized culture. New Orleans’ neighborhoods and its Carnival serves Percy well in telling the story of protagonist Binx Bolling’s spiritual journey from melancholic loner to loving caretaker. Percy defies publishing dictates about being too specific in setting. Name dropping such locations as Galatoire’s and Pirates Alley is 32
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risky, so says the logic. It is like trying to sell a house with a portrait of Aunt Mildred hanging over the mantel – too personal, too alienating. Yet for New Orleans readers, references to St. Charles Avenue and the krewe of Rex creates home sweet home. Percy, however, had another agenda: the name dropping served a thematic purpose. Bolling’s transformation occurs in the late 1950s in the week leading up to Fat Tuesday, a time of parades, parties and nowadays a good deal of debauchery. It is a week that represents the previous four years of his life: seeing movies, making money as a stockbroker and chasing women, mostly his own secretaries. Not by coincidence, Percy places Bolling’s office and apartment on Elysian Fields Avenue. Like Adam in the biblical book of Genesis, Bolling exiles himself from his own Garden of Eden in the Garden District, where his motherly Aunt Emily lives, sometime after returning from the Korean War. In mythology, the Elysian Fields is a pleasant
sector of Hades reserved for heroes. It is a fitting home base for Bolling, who appears to be following in the footsteps of his dead father, his namesake. John Bickerson Bolling served as a flight surgeon in Great Britain’s RCAF and died in Crete before America entered World War II. Much of Bolling’s depression is linked to his father’s early death. He believes his troubled father went to war as an act of suicide. A philosophical sort, much like his creator Percy, Bolling muses on big ideas. The novel opens with Bolling reminded of his near death in Korea, and how he had vowed, if he lived, that he would pursue “the search.” What he seeks isn’t specified, but the search is a way out of “everydayness,” Bolling says. He raises the question of Joseph Fiedler illustration
perhaps seeking God, but dances around the subject, refusing to answer. In the week leading up to Mardi Gras, Bolling pursues his newest secretary, Sharon Kincaid, and obliges a request to watch over his aunt’s step daughter, Kate Cutrer. Like Bolling, Cutrer survived a near-death experience that shadows her life. Because the car accident killed her fiancé, her step mother believes Cutrer is suicidal. Soon enough, it becomes clear that Cutrer and Bolling have far more in common than Bolling and his secretary. Kincaid reads Peyton Place, a steamy popular novel published in 1956. She also has a comical way of saying “Are you kidding?” to any question that appears to have an obvious answer. Cutrer, a Sarah Lawrence College graduate, speaks of her visits with a psychiatrist and offers analysis of Bolling’s behavior. She sees what others do not. She knows that Bolling’s self-exile to Gentilly, living in an apartment fronted by an aluminum seagull on the screen door, indicates that he’s like her “only worse. Much worse.” She tells him that the car accident enriched her life because it scared her into consciousness. “That’s my secret,” she tells him, “just as the war is your secret.” These two share neardeath experiences and depression and live double lives. Bolling’ internal voice is sardonic, but he presents a charming façade. He describes himself as quiet and not very smart, but to others he’s brilliant, humorous and, as his aunt says, a “young scamp.”
He drives an MG, a red convertible he bought to overcome malaise and to seduce his secretaries. The novel is so tightly drawn around the Catholic tradition of Mardi Gras as allowed indulgence before Lent begins, one can’t help but wonder if Percy chose the MG because of its initials. The “search” begins a week before Mardi Gras and ends on Ash Wednesday, the day after Mardi Gras, Bolling’s 30th birthday. Ash Wednesday, a holy day that begins Lent’s fasting and prayer, marks the end of Bolling’s search for good reason. Even though he doesn’t acknowledge that the search has ended because he has found what he sought, this holy day represents the redemption brought about his engagement to Cutrer. His marriage bonds him to family, a cottage in the Garden District and a decision to go to medical school. Bolling’s surrender to a life of service is the outcome of the search. In his devotion to caring for a frail wife and his half siblings, he finds a cure for his despair. After publication of The Moviegoer, Percy became dismayed that critics misinterpreted his intent and suggested that Bolling suffered a psychological disorder rather than spiritual alienation, says Kieran Quinlan in The Last Catholic Novelist, an analysis of Percy’s work. “The ironic voice that pervades the novel had prevented critics from giving it a religious interpretation,” Quinlan writes. “Percy intended that his next production would be less ambiguous.”n
myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
THE BEAT | HEALTHBEAT
Libation Situation Health and Mardi Gras By Kelly Massicot
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
“Laissez les bon temp rouler” … and the good times will be had by all when the Mardi Gras season gets rolling this month. But that doesn’t mean the revelry of the season needs to completely take center stage over our health and wellness, right? Keeping that in mind, I wanted to look into alternatives. I first thought of the biggest vice of the season: alcohol. For anyone with specific health issues, like my inflammatory disease, alcohol can be a huge factor in flare-ups. So how can we make this Mardi Gras a little easier on our body? Especially when the most popular consumptions are a 32-ounce daiquiri picked up from the drive thru or a six-pack you got at the corner store before walking to the parade route? I immediately sought the help of New Orleans Magazine “Last Call” columnist, and knower of all things libation, Tim McNally. With his foray into the New Orleans drink scene and vast knowledge of wine and spirits, I knew he was the right person to contact. McNally, pointing out that
alcohol can’t exactly be considered “healthy,” made some great suggestions on which areas of your Carnival beverages to substitute for better options. Some fast facts: • “Clear” alcohol is better than “brown,” while white wine is better than red • Try adding fresh fruit, which is always healthier than refined sugar • Choose a wine spritzer over a thick daiquiri • Soda is bad, tonic (or a mixer without sugar) is good • Toddies are always a good choice because hot water is a main ingredient • Sangria isn’t “low-cal,” but can be full of antioxidants and different fresh fruits • Use fresh ingredients, never bottled or frozen Keeping these tips in mind before heading out to the parade route has a multitude of benefits. However, when you break it down quantity matters, and whether you’re consuming a six-pack or four martinis, they’re all equally as bad. Moderation is key, fun is necessary and always keep the good times rolling. Happy Mardi Gras! n
myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
THE BEAT | CRIME FIGHTING
The Longest Yard Hope vs. the murder rate By Allen Johnson Jr.
Seven years ago this month, the city of New Orleans came together like never before. On Feb. 7, 2010, Sunday worship services citywide ended early. Carnival krewes changed their parade schedules. In perhaps their most unprecedented move, the strippers on Bourbon Street stopped dancing – upstaged by Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints’ first (and only) appearance in the Super Bowl. “Holly,” a hostess at one nightclub, said: “Everybody’s watching the game. The Saints are a really good reason to rally around the city.” Five years after Hurricane Katrina’s floodwaters nearly destroyed New Orleans, a weary city turned to live television broadcasts of the Super Bowl at Miami. The underdog Saints upset superstar Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts, 31-17. The French Quarter exploded with a joyous noise. People of every description poured out of the barrooms, restaurants (and strip clubs), chanting in unison: “Who Dat!”
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WDSU-TV carried a live broadcast of the mostly peaceful street party into the wee hours. Veteran anchorman Norman Robinson surveyed the giddy scene from the station’s studio, concluding: “Everybody loves everybody.” The previous night, New Orleans voters elected thenLieutenant Governor Mitch Landrieu to replace Ray Nagin as mayor. On the morning of the Super Bowl, Mayor-elect Landrieu met reporters at the Fairmont Roosevelt Hotel. Before yielding the limelight to the city’s delirium over the Saints and Carnival, Landrieu said reducing the city’s notorious violent crime rate would be his top priority as mayor – ahead of rebuilding flood damaged streets, infrastructure, jobs and businesses. “If we’re not safe, nothing else matters.” Those words ring true today, seven years later. Mayor Landrieu’s NOLA for Life crime reduction strategy is coming under fire amid two consecutive years of rebounding murder rates, anemic responses to NOPD recruiters and high-profile crimes, such as the “road rage” killings of two former New Orleans Saints players in separate incidents. Criminologist Peter Scharf says NOLA for Life is a “kitchen sink” collection of initiatives and programs that hasn’t worked since its unveiling in 2012. “If something doesn’t work, try something different!” The administration says it’s doubling down on NOLA for Life, an array of law enforcement initiatives and social programs. A year ago this month, I said time was getting short for the
Mayor to secure his legacy as the leader who transformed the NOPD and made the city safe. (“Fighting Time,” February 2016). The political reality is that the Mayor may have less time to institutionalize his crime fighting plans than I first thought. The mayor started 2017 with less than 18 months left in office. Orleans Parish voters will elect Landrieu’s replacement in the Oct. 14 primary, or no later than the general election, Nov. 18, 2017. Qualifying for mayor and other offices affecting the local criminal justice system, including all seven city council seats, Sheriff, Clerk of Criminal District Court and Coroner, is set for July 12-14. By this summer we may hear ideas on crime fighting from declared candidates for mayor, sheriff and the city council who think they can do those jobs just as well, if not better. The Legislature rescheduled New Orleans elections to the fall of 2017 – a long-standing request of the League of Women Voters. A Landrieu ally in the Legislature tried unsuccessfully to postpone the election changes until ’21. The league had long urged that city elections be rescheduled to autumn to increase voter participation and reduce distractions: Christmas, New Year’s Day, Carnival parades and pro sports, to name a few. The old system favored incumbents and politicos with name recognition. In short, 2017 is an election year. Crime will still be a challenge in New Orleans, as Mayor Landrieu can attest. n
brian hubble illustration
10 Times the National Average
In July 2010, Mayor Landrieu gave his first State of the City address. He alleged a $30 million deficit in the operating budget left by the Nagin Administration. Rather than erase the red ink by mass layoffs or implementation of a four-day workweek, Landrieu would order a hiring freeze that resulted in the force losing hundreds of cops. The NOPD is still struggling to re-boot its staff levels. In 2010, Landrieu also announced he had invited the U.S. Department of Justice to “partner in the complete transformation of the New Orleans Department.” The administration and the feds would later sign a pact, detailing 490 reforms the NOPD must enact under court supervision. (U.S. v. City of New Orleans, 2:12-cv-1924). After a national search, he appointed Ronal Serpas as police superintendent – “the Drew Brees of police chiefs.” Landrieu also announced New Orleans had the nation’s highest per capita murder rate – 10 times the national average. “Ten times. And there have been 35 murders since I took office 67 days ago. (May 3, 2010)” In May 2012, Landrieu unveiled NOLA for Life, which he billed as a “comprehensive murder reduction strategy.” The 34-page plan states that since 1979 New Orleans has recorded murder rates “seven to eight times higher” than the national average. In 2011, 199 people were slain, making New Orleans the nation’s “murder capital” of cities with a population of more than 100,000. The year 2011 also marked the sixth time the city became the nation’s murder capital, 1985-2012, according to a study by the PEW Research Center. The city saw the murder total dip down to 193 by the end of 2012; then fall to 156 in ’13 and 150 in ’14. Landrieu cited the falling murder totals, during his re-election campaign in 2014. By the end of 2015, murders spiked upward to 164, or 41.7 killings per 100,000 people. The national average is 4.9 murders. In other words, the New Orleans murder rate for 2015 was eight times the national average – the same historic trend Mayor Landrieu team has worked for seven years to reverse. The Mayor’s last day in office is May 6, 2018.
myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
THE BEAT | CHRONICLES
Picturing Mardi Gras Photo me something By Carolyn Kolb
On Carnival Day this year the parade route will be filled with raised hands – and not all of them will be grasping for beads. Those with cellphones and digital cameras will be snapping photos of the parade or taking selfies – and what more photogenic occasion could a camera-buff ask for than Mardi Gras? The first photographs shown in New Orleans were daguerreotypes (the invention of the Frenchman Louis Daguerre) displayed in 1840 and taken by Jules Lion, a free man of color whose local photography studio was operating until 1843. However, there are no known Carnival-related pictures in his work. Even before Mardi Gras as we know it began with Comus’ first parade in 1857, it was obvious that taking pictures of the event would be a good idea. Since there were already annual street celebrations on Mardi Gras Day, the Picayune recognized the opportunity in a March 4, 1840 editorial note: “We had our daguerreotype reflectors ready to take a proof of the procession as it passed our office, but our devil ran away to look at the show and we saw him a few minutes later with his arm around Queen Victoria in a barouche.” The first possible parade photo is a stereopticon card in the Louisiana State Museum that may be of gentlemen on horseback in the first Rex Parade in 1872. A stereopticon had a lens for each eye and a sliding stick at the end of which a card with two photos
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of the same scene was placed. The photos are set different angles so viewing through the lens gives a 3-D effect. Wayne Phillips, curator of costumes and textiles at the state museum, notes that most early photographs were studio portraits. Outdoor photography was less common, especially of a moving procession. “The earliest photograph that we can exactly date is extremely rare: The Rex Parade of 1887.” The first photograph of a night parade he knows of is one of Comus in 1898. A treasure trove of early Mardi Gras photos can be found in Arthur Burton La Cour and Stuart O. Landry’s book New Orleans Masquerade: Chronicles of Carnival first published in 1952. The book includes the first Rex photographed in his costume, 1874 monarch W. S. Pike. Collecting Mardi Gras pictures and postcards was always popular. Pike’s photo was being advertised for sale in a Jan. 2, 1877 ad in the Picayune at “Harrington’s, 118 Canal Street.” Photos can document krewe history. Zulu historian Clarence Becknell’s oldest krewe photo is of Arnold Moss, King Zulu 1927. Becknell has set up an annual Zulu display for 25 years at Lakeside Shopping Center; this year Zulu will also have an exhibit at the New Orleans Public Library main branch. Interested photo collectors can start on the internet. Mardi Gras collector and architect Robbie Cangelosi has found cards and photos online, even on eBay. He also purchases “albums – so-andso’s trip to New Orleans, going
to parades, seeing people in costumes.” Cangelosi has given digitized versions of his photos to Dr. Stephen Hales, historian of Rex. Photos can tell unusual Mardi Gras stories. A series of photos in Tulane University’s Louisiana Collection are labelled: “Rex floats being loaded at the river for shipping to Cuba.” Hales points out that after the parade, Rex and other krewes might sell or auction off floats for shipment to other cities. “Ogden, Utah was in a real estate boom in 1890 – to celebrate, they got in touch with the Rex organization and set up a second Rocky Mountain Carnival Kingdom. Rex I went up there and crowned Rex II.” Hales noted that the event wasn’’t repeated, but a similar outing to Portland, Oregon evolved into the Portland Rose Festival, still going strong over a century later. A Carnival photograph can even solve a mystery. Bonnie Boyd was able to use a photo of her grandmother, Edna May Hart, Comus Queen in 1909, to prove that jewelry items on display at an entertainment venue near Gallier Hall didn’t include a Storyville madam’s chastity belt, but were the pansydecorated jewelry set worn in the regal photograph. And if you’re in the mood for some Mardi Gras photo detective work yourself, visit loc.gov/pictures/resource/ pan.6a27381. See if you can spot the photographer on a ladder in the middle of this early 1900s panoramic view of Rex on Canal Street, from the Library of Congress collection. n
photo Courtesy of the Louisiana State Museum
myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
Local Color C HRIS ROS E | MODIN E G U N C H | J OI E D ’ E V E | i n t u n e | R E A D + SPIN | J A Z Z LI F E | HOM E
in tune, PG. 48
In September of last year, Angel Olsen released her third studio album, My Woman, to widespread critical acclaim. The album was in the top 10 of nearly every critic’s best of list for 2016. Olsen will visit us on Feb. 4 with a night of music at Republic.
Amanda Marsallis photograph
LOCAL COLOR | CHRIS ROSE
Krewesin’ for a Brewsin’ Adventures along the route By Chris Rose
I realize it’s treading dangerous ground to make broad judgments about groups of people. Particularly large groups of people. Like ... a million or so? But the Endymion thing. I mean, have you been lately? It is insane. Triple bonkers. The crowds. The rowdiness. The turmoil and hedging over spaces and places and ladders and yellow tape and tarps and old brown living room couches. And then there’s always that guy – always! – who ends up in some kind of brawl or scuffle and ruins the night for everyone. And yes, I realize it’s a tad unfair to single out one crowd – Endymion’s crowd – and certainly the krewe itself for the sins of Mardi Gras. I mean, what an Uptown thing to do, right? But there’s always been to me something a little unsettling – even menacing – about the Saturday night before Mardi Gras along Orleans Avenue, Carrollton Avenue and Canal Street. Do not get me wrong: The floats are absolutely, mind-blowingly
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awesome. Spectacular achievements of light and sound. And the krewe members throw like mad. But here’s the thing. Last year was the first year I went to see Endymion without my kids in decades. I was just hanging out with some friends, chilling. The crowd was surely 15 deep and I was in the back, on the streetcar tracks. I am pretty much over the bead thing and hadn’t as much as raised my arms and shouted “T’row me sumpin,’ mister!” even once. And as the last float rolled by, a big bag of stuff landed at my feet. I knew it wasn’t intended for me. But it landed directly at my feet and I was pretty much standing alone – my group having rushed to the curb for their last chance throws. So, I stooped over and picked it up. Before I even raised myself to an upright position, a woman had bumrushed me and was grabbing the bag from me, screaming incoherently and incomprehensibly at me. I am guessing the bag was intended for her. And I certainly had no
interest in its contents, but in the chaos of the moment and noise and flashing lights and the intensity of the revelers, I instinctively resisted her aggression. I was fine with giving the bag to her, but the ferocity of her approach – her claimsmanship – startled me. And before I had the opportunity to attempt to engage in civil discourse over parade etiquette, some guy I never saw coming sucker punched me out of the blue. Dropped me. She grabbed the loot and disappeared. He stood his ground, sensing, it seemed, that since this was the last float, this was his last chance to do what he apparently came to the parade to do: Fight. (Aside: You want to know the first sign that you are way too old to get into a street fight? It is when you pick yourself up off the ground after getting dropped and instead of swinging back – defending your manhood and masculinity – you start fumbling around on the ground, arms akimbo, asking the stunned and frozen standers-by: “I lost my glasses! Can anyone see my glasses?”) A kind gentlemen handed them to me. I put them in my pocket, shook the cobwebs out of my head to regain my
equilibrium and then turned to the guy glaring at me with hate in his eyes. He was at least 20, maybe 30 years younger than me. And at least 20, maybe 30 pounds larger than me. I sized up my chances here. They didn’t appear favorable. And then I threw the hardest punch of my life straight into his chin. He stumbled back. The crowd closed in between us, separated us. There was lots of screaming and chaos. Turmoil. A night ruined, I’m sure, for many around us. A friend grabbed my arm and said, “Let’s get out of here,” and off we went. A tad later, still dazed and somewhat confused, it suddenly occurred to me: I’m that guy. The guy at Endymion who gets in a brawl and ruins everyone’s night. (Although “brawl” might be stretching the term.) I wondered: Was this some sort of rite of passage; some claim to tradition? Had I joined an elite club? Or had I just become the guy I can’t stand every year on the big parade routes? Hell, the thing is, I don’t even know what was in that bag. But it better have been nice stuff: Glow sticks, blinky beads, teddy bears and all that. Otherwise, what a waste, no? n jason raish illustration
myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
LOCAL COLOR | MODINE’S NEW ORLEANS
Masking Like a Baby Cake
Even if you don’t understand it By Modine Gunch
Last Mardi Gras, nobody ever heard of a Baby Cake. This year, that’s what everybody is going to dress like. That is how we think in New Orleans: If it don’t make sense, it’ll make a good Mardi Gras costume. When my sister-in-law Larva heard they were changing the New Orleans baseball team’s name to Baby Cakes, she was confused – like everybody else. Then she realized that by “baby cakes,” they meant King Cakes, and she got very upset. She said it’s sacrilegious, because the King Cake baby represents the baby Jesus. “Which goes to show I wasted my money sending you to Catholic school,” her mother Ms. Larda told her. “The King Cake baby got nothing to do with baby Jesus. It got to do with old man Entringer getting a good deal on a shipment of plastic babies.” Ms. Larda ought to know. She used to work at McKenzie’s, which Mr. Entringer owned. (McKenzie’s, if you ain’t from here, was the chain of pastry shops where you used to get your birthday cakes and your King Cakes and your doughnuts and your buttermilk drops. They are mostly gone now. I blame Weight Watchers.)
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So “baby cake” ain’t sacrilegious. But, like I said, it don’t make sense. Anyway, the new mascot is this bald cartoon baby with a crown and baseball bat. He is exploding out of a purple, green and gold King Cake. Now, my other sister-in-law, Gloriosa, always pushes for the family to dress alike at Mardi Gras. Which is nice, except the costume always got to be something that Gloriosa looks sexy in. This rules out, say, moss-covered gorillas or Donald Trump. Her idea of the Baby Cakes costume includes a tutu and a tiara. Gloriosa loves to flounce around in a tutu and a tiara. The tutu would be purple, green and gold, and represent the King Cake. And she could show off her legs in matching tights. And carry a little child’s bat. It sounds adorable, but it don’t go over with the men in the family. They put all their feet down. No tutu. No tights. No tiara. They want a manly King Cake baby. And to be fair, the Baby Cake mascot does look like a tough little baby. And he’s as bald as the mayor. Gloriosa don’t see no reason to carry it that far. She ain’t going to shave her head. Then she comes up with a brilliant idea. Make fun of the name. Let the Gunch ladies be Baby Cakes, and the men be Baby Snakes. She goes online and finds some fake boa constrictors for them to wrap around themselves. This boa constrictor is made of a hollow plastic tube and you can even carry a flask inside it. With it they can wear camo shirts and pants in snakey colors and carry
baby pacifiers. Ms. Larda will embroider everybody’s shirts: “Baby Cakes” or “Baby Snakes.” They will probably win a prize. My brothers-in-law Lurch and Leech were so proud of these costumes, they wore them to the streetcar parade Phunny Phorty Phellows on Jan. 6. They even carried their flasks. And that’s when they discovered the fatal flaw. Because of the way the snake wrapped around them, they couldn’t drink and then do what a man’s got to do. The pressure got so bad, they had to leave early. This is serious. They had to figure out how to rearrange the snakes. Finally, they do – but Gloriosa don’t approve. Because the snake’s head comes out from between their legs, and they’ll use the mouth to ... “No!” says Gloriosa. “We are going to be on St. Charles Avenue. We can’t have no snake coming out your crotch on St. Charles Avenue. Too many kids.” So they compromise. The Baby Snakes and Cakes will walk together down the first half of St. Charles, with the Snakes wearing their costumes the way God intended. Then, after the costume judging, the Snakes will find a bathroom, rearrange their costumes and go to the French Quarter. The Cakes will stay on St. Charles to watch the parade. If I had to predict, I would say the Snakes will enter a less family friendly contest in the Quarter – and win. And the Cakes will lose to another Baby Cake, probably a bald guy who looks like the mayor. But I’m just guessing. This I do know: Mr. Entringer is rolling over in his grave. n LORI OSIECKI ILLUSTRATION
myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
LOCAL COLOR | JOIE D’EVE
Desperately Seeking Sweet Stop Finding the desired toy is no game
By Eve Crawford Peyton
It wasn’t even on her list to begin with. Having a Dec. 21 birthday, Ruby knows the drill: one big birthday present and one big Christmas present, along with smaller items for both occasions. She has had her list made up since Halloween. The big birthday present was a real working microscope. We researched it together for weeks; I ordered the one we settled on in early December and when it came, I wrapped it in birthday paper (not Christmas paper, that’s one of the big rules) even though she knew what it was. The big Christmas present was the American Girl Doll of the Year, which she accepted wouldn’t be available in time for Christmas. Then, somewhere in those four days between her birthday and Christmas, she started obsessing over the Our Generation Sweet Stop Truck. “Hannah has it, and it’s so cool,” she told me. “It’s $109.99 at Target. I really want it. Like a lot.” “More than you want the Doll of the Year?” I asked. “I can get it for you instead of that, but at $110, it would have to cancel out one of your big presents – and you already opened the microscope.” “Nah,” she said. “But maybe if I get enough money for my birthday and Christmas combined and add it to what I already have, maybe I can buy it for myself.” “Maybe,” I said – and forgot about it.
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But then, after her grandparents, my mom, several great-aunts and -uncles and my dad all hooked her up with cold hard cash on Christmas Day, she made her case again. “Can we go to Target tomorrow?” she asked. “Please please please?” “Sure,” I said casually. (My casual tone should be noted as foreshadowing because it’s the last time in this story that anyone was casual.) But Target on Vets was out of stock. Target in Kenner was out of stock. Target in Harvey was out of stock. Amazon had it – for $280. eBay had it for less, but at $189 plus $30 shipping, it was still out of Ruby’s price range. Then I had a stroke of inspiration. I searched for the truck in St. Louis, where Ruby would be spending New Year’s, and found it at a Target in Town & Country, Mo. A quick call to her St. Louis grandparents confirmed that they’d be happy to pick it up, so I took Ruby’s money, put it in my wallet, charged the Sweet Stop truck on my debit card, and sent the pickup information on to St. Louis. Boom. Done. Ruby twined herself around me, cooing that I was the best mom ever. For the next few days, Ruby excitedly planned what she’d do with her new ice cream truck. When a belated birthday card from her godfather arrived with $25, she immediately spent it on accessories for the ice cream truck.
She made flyers for ice creamrelated promotions and brainstormed ice cream flavors. Then her grandparents called. They had gone to get the truck only to find that they hadn’t picked it up in time, and it had been restocked and sold. They had a niece who was working at Target; there were no Sweet Stop trucks, she bleakly reported several hours later, available in the entire state of Missouri. So then I searched, again, for anything within 100 miles of me, and found one 80 miles away in D’Iberville, Miss. “Only one left in stock,” the website told me urgently, which is how the last Thursday in December found me – the former haughty teen who scoffed at the Tickle-Me-Elmo insanity, the mom who buys everything on Amazon because shopping at a real store is too inconvenient, the sensible planner who researched a microscope for weeks before buying it – hopping in my minivan on a whim and driving 160 miles round-trip to get what seems like the last Sweet Stop ice cream truck in the Lower 48. I know it’s part of life, that I shouldn’t try to protect her from most of those things even if I could. There is so much in the world that I can’t fix, can’t control. But this. This was a pain in the ass, but it was ultimately pretty easy for me to do. It was a problem that I could solve with just a tank of gas and a few hours. And so I did it. And it felt pretty great. n t
Excerpted from Eve Crawford Peyton’s blog, Joie d’Eve, which appears each Friday on MyNewOrleans.com. jane sanders ILLUSTRATION
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LOCAL COLOR | in tune t
Musical Mardi Gras
As usual there are several great musical events related to Carnival. Zulu’s Lundi Gras Festival has a fantastic lineup at Woldenberg Park on Feb. 27. This year they’re featuring Rebirth Brass Band, Dwayne Dopsie, The Revealers and Amanda Shaw. On the 25th and the 27th Galactic will be at Tipitina’s with their usual array of guests. Of course, don’t forget about the music in the street. The best parts of Mardi Gras are often the spontaneous moments of dancing as the marching bands pass by. The Carver will have a Lundi Gras Blues Party as well, featuring Dick Deluxe, JuJu Child, Washboard Chaz and SMB. The NOTS
Carnival Clash Strutting through February By Mike Griffith
Between the imminent arrival of spring and the onset of Carnival, February is almost always a good month for celebration in New Orleans. This is also a great time because many of the national tours are starting up again after the holidays. We have several chances to see bands who made some of the best music of 2016 this month, which begins with the outstanding Memphis-based noise punks, the NOTS on Feb. 1 at Gasa Gasa. The NOTS released their sophomore record Cosmetic back in September, and it was one of the highlights of last year. If you’re looking for something a bit weirder that night, the Deen Ween Group will be rolling into Tipitina’s. Mickey “Deen Ween” Melchiondo is consistently unique and surprising live. The next night, Feb. 2, offers two outstanding electronic options. At Gasa Gasa Katie Stelmanis will bring her Austra project to the stage. Stelmanis composes all the music herself, but plays with a full band live. Over at the Hi-Ho later that evening, Ben Davis will be performing under his electro-soul moniker Vibe Street.
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Angel Olsen will visit us on Feb. 4 with a night of music at Republic (see box). Olsen is touring on her record My Woman, which was one of my top 10 records for 2016. On Feb. 7, Atlanta-based punks The Coathangers will roll into Siberia. If you missed this band last time they were through town, don’t repeat that mistake. Their latest release, Nosebleed Week, is fantastic. They have a punk sound that has been missing from the soundscape for quite a while. If you’re looking for something a bit mellower, the indie folk ensemble Blind Pilot will be at One Eyed Jacks on Feb. 14. Their 2016 release And Then Like Lions was one of the most critically acclaimed records of last year. If you want something a bit harder, emo ensemble Joyce Manor will be at Gasa Gasa that night as well. Like many of the other bands through town this month, Joyce Manor have released a critically acclaimed album last year as well. Cody was on many critics’ top lists of the year and marks a development of the group’s sound and ethos.
On Feb. 18, the legendary dream pop ensemble The Radio Dept. will be playing at Gasa Gasa. After a lengthy legal battle with their label, the band was able to release their latest record Running Out of Love in October. This is one of the absolute can’t miss shows of the month. If dream pop doesn’t do it for you, Detroit punks Tyvek will be at the Circle Bar that night as well. This is an easy twofer; catch the parades at Lee Circle and then you’re right there for the show. In the legends department, we have a couple passing through town this month. On Feb. 10 you can catch Billy Joel at the Smoothie King Center, and on the 22nd we’ll be in the presence of Sting at the UNO Lakefront Arena. Both musicians are experts at filling an arena space and holding the attention of massive audiences. Part of the joy of these larger shows is the spectacle itself, and these will both be massive. Note: Dates are subject to change. Playlist of mentioned bands available at: bit.ly/ InTune2-17 n
To contact Mike about music news, upcoming performances and recordings, email Mike@MyNewOrleans.com or contact him through Twitter @Minima. photo courtesy of the nots
Angel Olsen on My Woman
In September of last year, Angel Olsen released her third studio album, My Woman, to widespread critical acclaim. The album was in the top 10 of nearly every critic’s best of list for 2016 and came in at No. 8 on my list as well. The strength of this record is in the careful construction of its songs. Olsen has a poet’s ear for verse that’s accompanied by an empathic streak, which makes the insights of herself and her characters more universal than they might be otherwise. I recently had the opportunity to speak with Olsen about her thoughts on the record and the creative process. There is a loose theme of the power of love or the strength non-romantic relationships on this record, and I asked Olsen to speak a bit about how that theme came together. “I feel like they’re all kind of vignettes of different ideas. Looking back at other records that I’ve made, especially the last one, I feel like it’s kind of a similar vibe,” she says. “There’s always a loud song and then there’s a quiet song. There’s different styles. For me, I guess those are kind of the main focuses. Maybe I’m talking about romantic love, but maybe I’m talking about a different kind of love, like a friendship.” Interestingly, the first half of the tracks are large pop numbers that explore the visceral side of these feelings while the second half of the record is more introspective. In Olsen’s words, “There were a few reasons why I split everything up. One, it was just easier to fit everything that way, but also I thought it would be cool to put the songs together in different groups based on if you wanted to listen to all upbeat visceral songs all at once, then you could flip the record and just listen to them all at once. If you wanted to hang out and have a quiet day with me and my friends, on the other side of the record, then that’s fine too.” There is an effortless serendipity that accompanies Olsen’s work. The songs and videos feel right because of the way they came together. For this record, Olsen has also taken a turn behind the camera directing three videos so far. She told me a great story about the end of the shoot that perfectly illustrates this feeling, “We wanted to do a time lapse of the boulders and then they were just walking me walk around on these boulders and I was like, come on. This is boring. Come up here. It’s really beautiful. They left the camera rolling, and we just walked around and later on … we just looked at the end of the day footage and we saw that the moon was rising out of the frame, and just as it left the frame the footage was over. It was done. It was like the camera had died just after that, and so it was like this secret that we had. It was, I don’t know how you show anyone that, because that’s what just happened, but that was really cool. It was just a really wonderful time.” She continues, “It didn’t seem like work. It seemed like we were, yes, I was the subject of this video. We’re trying to get these shots and cover all this ground, and trying to do these different styles, me lip-syncing and some of it me just wandering, me being reflective and it was very esoteric, the whole plot of this video.” This wonderfully effortless serendipity extends to her live performances as well. You can see Olsen in person on Feb. 4 at Republic. There will be an extended version of this interview online at MyNewOrleans.com the week of the show. myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
LOCAL COLOR | READ+SPIN
NON-FICTION: As a New Orleans transplant I’ve always said that one of my biggest draws to the city is the music. Since my arrival seven years ago I’ve made it a mission to explore the various locations in and just outside New Orleans. Until I read The New Orleans Jazz Scene Today: A Guide to the Musicians, Live Jazz Venues, and More by Thomas Jacobsen, I hadn’t realized the sheer number of places left to discover. Offering a peek into nearly every nook and cranny of both the past and present day jazz scene, Jacobsen reveals the city’s up-andcoming artists as well as established ones. After Hurricane Katrina, many believed New Orleans, along with its music, was lost. Jacobsen’s book gives insight to just how far the city has come, and the talent that continues to flow from its riverbanks. His local observances and passion for jazz makes this an informative read and a captivating guide to venues across the city.
COFFEE TABLE BOOK: I first opened this book on a rainy day while sitting in my Mid-City shotgun-style living room with the doors open and hot tea in hand. It was honestly the perfect setting and added to the experience of reading an already compelling book. This revised edition of New Orleans Then and Now by Sharon Keating is riddled with gorgeous photography and insight to some of the most notable of the city’s sites. The comparative photos prove how much New Orleans has preserved and persevered in the face of several wars, hurricanes and massive fires. The book also documents how much has changed not just in recent history, but in the last 300 years. Some interesting bits from the book include the St. Louis Hotel once held slave auctions; Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop survived the French Quarter fires in the late 1700s due to its slate roof; and Café Du Monde has been serving coffee and beignets since 1862. Pick up this novelty coffee table book for yourself to enjoy on a rainy day.
JAZZ: Seva Venet, New Orleans Banjo Vol. 1, “Musieu Bainjo” is high-energy and will inspire you to get up and rolling this Mardi Gras season, even on the dreariest of days. Venet has been performing, teaching and recording in New Orleans for nearly a decade, and leads his own band called The Storyville Stringband. Venet’s banjo jams are reminiscent of musical legend, Danny Barker. Crank out Venet’s newest CD while mixing your on-the-route drinks to remind yourself just what makes New Orleans’ diverse music scene so great, whether it’s 1927 or 2017. t
By Jessica DeBold, Please send submissions for consideration, attention: Jessica DeBold, 110 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005. 50
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LOCAL COLOR | Jazz Life
Big Chiefs Coming Origins of the Mardi Gras Indians By Jason Berry
Black Indians who parade at Mardi Gras and several other times of the year are driven by a mythic sense of origins. Indian gangs pay homage to Native Americans who harbored fugitive African slaves and helped them seek freedom. The beaded patches and sewn illustrations on costumes celebrate a warrior myth of red men enacted by black men, and in recent years, black women as Indian queens. Origins of the tradition, which most accounts date to the 1880s, became a disputed issue following Maurice Martinez’s 1976 documentary, Black Indians of New Orleans. The film melded riveting street footage to a narrative thread by the director, a 7th Ward Creole scholar, who held that intermarriage of African-Americans and Native Americans spawned the tradition. Blacks began “maskin’ Injun” because many of them were Indians, at least partially, already. In the decade after Louisiana’s grisly Reconstruction, in which violent white supremacists recaptured government, Carnival provided a ritual stage for parading in costumes steeped in symbolism of rebellion and freedom. In defending his thesis, Martinez pointed to “griffon,” a Colonial word in Louisiana denoting “black Indian,” a sign of genetic interweavings – what the French called “un metissage culturel” or mingled bloodlines. But a genetic root for a tradition steeped in West African music and dance patterns is no easy sell. Moreover, most 52
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Mardi Gras suits emulate costume styles of Midwestern Plains Indians. Interviews with various Indians find recurrent references abound to mixed kinlines, but not as argument for a singular seedbed. Choctaw and Chitimacha communities in south Louisiana haven’t embraced Black Indians as their own. Michael P. Smith, the photographer who spent decades in research and interviews for Mardi Gras Indians, argued that in the 1885 World Cotton Exposition in New Orleans, a world’s fair before the name, the Buffalo Bill Wild West Show had a major impact on the popular culture; Plains Indian performers paraded in Mardi Gras that year. Smith avoided pinpointing a single source behind the beauty and spectacle of the Indians we know today. We turn now to Chula Bungo! The Seminoles in New Orleans by Jerry Brock, hot off the press in The Jazz Archivist journal of Tulane’s Hogan Jazz Archive. (The online version has superb color illustrations.) A founder of WWOZ radio and historical researcher of laser-like intensity, Brock illuminates the Seminoles are, “made up from multiple Indian tribes, clans, Africans and people of mixed ethnicities who joined together for nearly a century (1763-1858) to revolt against aggressive southern expansionists, slavery and U.S. military forces.” Brock doesn’t posit the Seminoles as source of Mardi Gras Indians, though one tribe, the Creole Osceolas, takes the name of a famous Seminole chief. Rather, he traces a chain of events popularizing Indians as precursor of the Mardi Gras spectacle. The Seminoles visited New Orleans in
1838. Brock: “Ironically, while a majority of public reports on the Seminoles refer to the Africans and people of African descent as slaves, military records suggest that Blacks were often leading the Indians, or that the two groups at least shared a common bond.” Some newspapers treated them as exotic celebrities. From an account of a Seminole wedding in New Orleans: “At the other end of the train, were the blissful twain who were about to be consolidated into one – the ceremony being conducted upon the plan of a Free Mason’s march, where the most important personages bring up the rear.” In years ahead what became commonly known as “Mardi Gras Indians” would create their own music and set their own pace. Mardi Gras would be enriched because of it. n
Seminoles as Performer t
After the Civil War, the Carrollton Times ran an advertisement for a “Grand Exhibition” – the shape of things to come – at an Uptown hall, June 17, 1868. “FIFTEEN SEMINOLE INDIANS! The entertainment consists of INDIAN SCENES, SONGS, SPEECHES, And WILD INDIAN DANCES! Programme, Long Dance, or Journey Dance, Drunkards Dance, Regions Song – Tom Wildcat and squaw, Wild Buffalo Dance, Green Corn Dance, Chula Bungo Dance, Bull Dance, Tick Dance. To conclude with the SCALPING SCENE. Admission 50 cents; children 25 cents. Doors open at 7 o’clock P.M. performance Commences at 8. (sic)”
Photo: Micanopy, circa 1838. Lithograph by Thomas McKenney and James Hall, from painting by Charles Bird King. Florida Memory, State Library and Archives of Florida.
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LOCAL COLOR | home
An elegant “Sister” on Julia Street By Bonnie Warren
If you hung a banner across the 600 block of Julia Street proclaiming “Cassandra Sharpe Loves the Thirteen Sisters of Julia Street,” you would simply be understating the truth. Cassandra has been like John the Baptist crying out in the wilderness since she purchased her “sister” in 1993. “Can you imagine that in the early 1970s the city of New Orleans wanted to tear down The Thirteen Sisters and turn the vacant space into a surface parking lot?” she asks with dismay. “Yes, my building was basically not lived in for more than 50 years when I purchased it in ’93, but it was just waiting to be reclaimed as a grand single home. It was in complete disrepair but still had incredible marble fireplaces, wood floors, amazing ceiling heights, a second floor 26-foot balcony overlooking Julia Street and large doorways made of cypress that I knew I could bring back to life.” The purchase marked the beginning of the love affair that has lasted for almost 23 years. Today the home of Cassandra Sharpe and Rich Look is a grand 7,000 square foot mansion that includes a gallery and 54
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studio on the first floor and their 3,600-square foot living quarters on the second, third and fourth floors. They love living in this historic 1832 Georgian townhouse with four stories in the front and a three-story service wing she says, while Rich waxes poetically adding, “It is a very old and wise building with great, sturdy genes that’s very welcoming, warm and embracing.” Rich, a musician and Japanese translator, has been very much a part of the couple’s love affair with their Julia Street home since he walked through Cassandra’s front door in 1994 with friends from New York to attend a party during the second weekend of New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. “Cassandra had completed most of the restoration before we met,” Rich says. “The house immediately felt like home to me. It is spacious, but not too large. When you include the slave quarter/ service wing it rambles, and that’s a fun feeling. Speaking of rambling, with a house like this there’s no need to go to the gym. I’m up and down four flights of stairs dozens of times a day, so much so it’s second nature. It keeps us fit.” Photographed by Cheryl Gerber
Facing page: A comfortable guest bedroom with two beds is in the third-floor service wing. Top, left: A four-panel Japanese screen depicting the 10th century Heian Court has a place of honor over the couch, a portrait of Winston Churchill is displayed to the right of the screen and a Bay St. Louis seascape by George Schmidt is on the other side of the screen. Bottom, left: The rear part of the front parlor is used for the dining room, with original pocket doors dividing space from the back parlor. Right, Top: Rich Look and Cassandra Sharpe.
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Facing page: Top, left: A simple third-floor bathroom overlooks the courtyard and captures the morning sun. Top, right: A small, yet functional kitchen opens onto the front balcony on the second floor. Bottom: A third-floor bedroom features three Japanese prints over the bed, with Cassandra’s art to the left of the bed. Above: ; the portrait between the two windows is Margaretta Brooke Look, Rich’s paternal grandmother, and a landscape of the California Goviota Coast by Polly Look Lewis, Rich’s sister, hangs over the antique sideboard from Italy. A real estate broker for 30 years as well as a Heritage Club Member of the New Orleans Preservation Resource Center, Cassandra has always been involved in preservation. She has served as a Lafayette Square Association board member for the last 20 years. “Trying to preserve our precious architecture in New Orleans truly matters,” she says. “I believe it’s the city’s best asset. Visitors want to see what has been preserved from the past.” She is also quick to add Patty Gay, Director of the New Orleans Preservation Resource Center for 40 years, has also owned one of The Thirteen Sisters for many years. “We are encouraging individuals to purchase and convert these majestic buildings to single homes, with commercial spaces on the ground floor. I believe our buildings between St. Charles Avenue to Camp Street are the most significant grouping of buildings in New Orleans, if not the United States.” Artist Alex Beard and gallery director Jim Qualls are her ten-
ants for the first-floor gallery. Beard also has his studio where he paints on the second floor in the service wing. Both Cassandra and Rich work out of their home. “Rich’s studio is on the fourth floor and I run my corporate headquarters from the second floor. I love that Rich plays the piano in the second-floor parlor near the large walk-out windows many times during the day. In the morning when I have coffee I love to sit on the sofa and look out the front windows and see the sunlight shining down Julia Street.” He continues, “I also love our bedroom at night. I have cypress shutters that close and the light seems to just softly glow in the room. I also love to go out in the courtyard in the early morning. Even though we are in an urban area it almost feels like you are in the country; it is very peaceful” “Sitting at my piano with a view of Julia Street is one of my favorite places in our home,” Rich says. “I love my piano and its location provides a view of the comings and goings on Julia. Other places he enjoys are the transom window over the third-floor stairwell door where direct sunlight streams through it every morning, filling the stair chamber like liquid gold. His studio/ study on the top floor provides no interruptions and a view out over the rooftops of the city.” I also want to mention that when we entertain Cassandra pulls the most amazing meals out of the tiny kitchen and that’s when the dinner table is a best-liked place. Great food and drink, great company and I get to play for a well-primed and captive audience during the dessert.” n myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
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Molly Brackin from The Star-Steppin' Cosonaughties
ChristinaÂ McClasky Duggar, Rickey Lee Wingo, Luella Williams, Patty Lopez and Jennifer Wester Clark
NolaOrganGrinders.com Begun: June 2010 by Christina McClasky Duggar Parading in: Lyons Carnival Club Practice March, Mystic Krewe of Druids, Muses and Tucks Band/music: DJ Fayard Lindsey Look for: The support vehicle, made to look like an old-style organ, was designed by Brennan Steele and built and customized by float builder Richard Valadie. It has a big crank handle on the front, organ pipes on each side and beautiful multi-colored lights all over.Â Support Group: Monkey Spankers Outside Mardi Gras: Co-hosted a blood drive with the New Orleans Musicians Clinic and Assistance Foundation every year; volunteer work and time to the Jefferson Parish Christmas Tree Project; many nonprofit events throughout the year. For other philanthropic appearances and to book an appearance, contact through website. Joining: Auditions are every two years; learn more at website and Facebook page.
NOLA Cherry Bombs
NolaCherryBombs.com Begun: 2011 by Aniko Greger Parading in: King Arthur, Muses and Iris; in front of Le Bon Temps Roule between Mid-City and Thoth parades. Band/ music: Music with an edgy and fierce vibe; songs with femaledriven vocals that are empowering and positive. Support Groups: The Fly Girls and The Bomb Squad (genderneutral) Outside Mardi Gras: See them in several artists’ music videos, including The Red Hot Chili Peppers and Daria & the Hip Drops, Roar! and Water Seed. Various local and nonprofit events. Each year the group chooses a different nonprofit to benefit. For other philanthropic appearances and to book an appearance, contact through website. Joining: Auditions are held as needed; email nolacherrybombs@ gmail.com or message on Facebook page to be put on auditions list.
Jennifer Buuck, Alejandra SalinasErnst, Porscha Williams and Kathryn Rose Wood
Stephanie Stromath and Molly Brackin
Begun: Loosely organized in 2010 by Molly Reid; first parade in ’12 in Pygmailon. Parading in: Pygmalion and Nyx; Krewe de Lune Space Ball on Feb. 24; throughout French Quarter and Marigny on Carnival Day. Band/ music: The group favors pop, disco, New Orleans bounce and any tunes with interstellar sass. Look for: Imagery supporting this year’s theme: “Once Upon a Lunarland” Support Group: Satellites; also joined by the Krewe de Lune Revelers Outside Mardi Gras: Krewe of Boo, Molly’s on the Market St. Patrick’s Parade and Anbla Dlo. They host events throughout the year to support a variety of local causes; largest is Lunar Lagniappe (usually held in January). Each year the group chooses a different charity to support; this year 100 percent of funds raised will benefit the ACLU of Louisiana. For other philanthropic appearances and to book an appearance, contact through website. Joining: Must be a member of Krewe de Lune. Meet a member at several networking events throughout the year to learn more.
The Star-Steppin’ Cosmonaughties
SIRENS OF NEW ORLEANS
SirensOfNewOrleans.com Begun: 2010 by Jennifer Lee and Julie Barecki Brown Parading in: Cleopatra, Nyx and Krewe D’Etat Band/ music: An iPod, a rocking playlist created to entertain the crowd and a great sound system built into the Nereus. Also, look for small periphery boats. Look for: The main support vehicle: The Nereus. Various branded throws to hand out each year. Most coveted throw is the Message in a Bottle: originally created by Jennifer Lee, these are decorated bottles each created by a member. Support Group: Sailors Outside Mardi Gras: Last year’s main focus was benefiting The New Orleans Family Justice Center and Apex Community Center. For other philanthropic appearances and to book an appearance, contact board through website. Joining: Annual auditions in March/April; look to Facebook page and website after Mardi Gras for more information. Applications for the Sailor Corps open shortly thereafter; must be at least 18.
Jennifer Lee, Julie Barecki-Brown, Cara McCarthy and Danielle Richard
Monica Anderson, Lyndia Jones, Donielle Novak, Deb Ursin and Carmen Waring
Pussyfooters.org Begun: 2001 by Camille Baldassar Parading in: Thoth, Muses, Nyx and two others TBA Band/ music: A variety of recorded music including funk, disco, club and R&B; a signature song is Ernie K-Doe’s “Here come the Girls.” Look for: The “PussyWagon:” a decorated black Hummer support vehicle Support Group: Handlers Outside Mardi Gras: The Pussyfooters’ annual Blush Ball has raised over $100,000 for Metropolitan Center for Women and Children since 2009. For other philanthropic appearances and to book an appearance, contact through website. Joining: Nominations are made by members for available spots; names are picked in a random drawing.
Darrington “Pinot Noir” Anderson, Nick “Costanza” Maggio, Paul “The Long Board” Treuting, Matt “Sweet Baby J” Schiro and Alan “Emil Shabbawitz” Staub
610Stompers.com Begun: 2009 by Brett “Slab” Patron; first appearance was as part of the Buddy Diliberto memorial in Saints Super Bowl parade Parading in: Official 610 Stompers Debutante Ball on Feb. 3; Orion in Baton Rouge, Carrollton, Nyx, Hermes, Thoth and Orpheus Support Group: 610 Splits (mainly wives and guys of the Stompers) Outside Mardi Gras: The group appears in almost 100 events a year from parties to conventions, and has partnered with hundreds of charities over its lifetime and given away hundreds of thousands of dollars though their large events. For other philanthropic appearances and to book an appearance, contact through website. Joining: Any man over the age of 21 can audition; auditions are typically held yearly in August. Watch website and social media for details.
Ashley Shabankareh, Gia Monteleone, Katy Beh, Jamie MacDonald and Carolyn Lecaro
Begun: Halloween 2003 Parading in: Muses Band/music: The group always marches with a brass band, specifically the Stooges Brass Band. Support Group: Camelbacks Outside Mardi Gras: Krewe of Boo; Camel Toe Lady Steppers’ annual “Toe-Down” to benefit the Roots of Music each year. For other philanthropic appearances and to book an appearance, contact through website. Joining: Watch Facebook page and website for audition information (typically held in May).
Camel Toe Lady Steppers
TheMuffalottas.com Debuted: Mid-Summer Mardi Gras 2009 by founder Julia McNabb Kaufman Parading in: Pontchartrain, Cleopatra, Tucks and Nyx Band/music: A playlist including many New Orleans artists such as Ernie K-Doe, The Dixie Cups and Allen Toussaint. Look for: A larger-than-life seafoam-green vintage Cadillac. Throws include vintage sunglasses, neckties and medallions. Support Groups: Bun Warmers (general support); Po’Boys (major support); Leftovers (Muffies taking a break or who have retired); Seasoneds (Muffies who have been with the group for over a year); Hot Plates (small group of “Seasoneds” who lead) Outside Mardi Gras: The group performs at many private events and fundraisers throughout the year. For other philanthropic appearances and to book an appearance, contact through website. Joining: Contact muffalottas@ gmail.com for information on becoming a Bun Warmer after Mardi Gras.
Rebecca Sell, Kacie Gurney, Elizabeth Reyna, Jessi Taylor and Anita Oubre
Some of Our Favorite Things
A totally random selection of the season’s best – among many by errol labrode
photographs by cheryl gerber
This, the parade of the King of Carnival, does it right. It is a sharp, traditional New Orleans Mardi Gras parade with all original floats and designed costumes for the riders. The floats are neither too big nor too boxy.
Many parades form along Napoleon Avenue, but Sparta, which rolls on the first Saturday evening of the parade season, has extra spectacle as the mules are positioned to pull the King’s float. Nearby, flambeaux carriers await a flame carrier who ignites their torches. At the right moment the flambeaux fire makes the mule’s pupils seem white, as though staring into eternity. At this moment, truly the season has begun.
R&B Mardi Gras Standards
Le Krewe d’Etat and Chaos
Satire, once thought to be a lost technique in Carnival, has had a major revival in the last two decades. Visually, Le Krewe d’Etat does it best with clearly designed floats by float builder Richard Valadie. The krewe also has its own specialty marching groups and units, such as The Dictator’s Banana Wagon. And please, there’s no King, but rather a Dictator. Le Krewe parades on the Friday before Mardi Gras. That Thursday Chaos, the heir to the former Knights of Momus organization, does an old-style satirical parade just as Momus would have done. For laughs and for historic preservation, these are two of Carnival’s best parades.
These are the songs from the 1960s when the city had a tiny, but thriving, rhythm and blues recording industry. The Carnival music from that era is preserved in time including “Go To the Mardi Gras” (Professor Longhair), “Mardi Gras Mambo” (the Hawketts), “Carnival Time” (Al Johnson) and the Mardi Gras Indian-influenced songs including “Iko Iko” (Sugar Boy Crawford; the Dixie Cups) and “Big Chief” (Earl King). Good stuff and still infectious to want to dance to.
Society of Saint Anne
Making the journey from Marigny toward the French Quarter on Mardi Gras morning are hundreds, perhaps 1,000 or so, of Carnival’s best maskers. Other groups join in to form a confederacy of maskers. Watching Saint Anne and its disciples on their pilgrimage to Canal Street is one of Carnival’s most genuine moments.
Muses Walking & Dancing Groups
Between the floats of Muses is one of the best parades of all. Not only are there great, and sometime humorous, dancing groups, but also groups that roll as well, including the Rolling Elvi and the Laissez Boys – gentleman who relax while sprawled on mobile easy chairs. (See related story, pg. 58)
t t At some point during the day, the most passionate of the season’s participants seem to congregate at this spot, which is sacred not only in a biblical and a historic sense, but also in being a temple of the season’s spirit, which draws from the Romans' Saturnalia to the present. There is music, the beat of conga drums, people dancing. If you’re moved by it, you’ve inherited the spirit, too.
Between St. Louis Cathedral and Jackson Square on Mardi Gras Afternoon
In terms of musicianship and precision marching there’s no group that’s better. Not only does the group enliven parades, but it also provides dignity and melody to select Carnival balls.
Grillades and Grits
This is the traditional sustenance partaken late at night after a ball. Many debutantes, Kings, Dukes, ladies and gentlemen have gotten their last push of energy from this dish at the postball breakfast. No one should worry about late-night calories until Lent. Besides, there are biscuits on the side and King Cake for dessert.
Despite what you might have heard, “Lundi Gras” became part of the local language in 1987 when Rex brought back the custom of arriving by boat on the day before Mardi Gras. (Though lately he has been arriving by train.) At Riverwalk, Rex proclaims the Carnival season, as the mayor and Zulu join him to trigger Carnival’s only fireworks show.
t Proteus Then Orpheus
This is a smaller parade in comparison with the giants that prowl the streets, but its floats are totally original designs with bright foils perfect for dazzling reflections of the winter sun. Float builder Ricardo Pustanio carries on the traditions of a one-of-akind parade.
Alphabetically this should be listed first, but I put it last as a tribute to all that precedes it. This krewe is made up largely of people who organize other parades. It is like bosses getting the night off so they can play, too. Druids is a small but feisty parade with themes that can be provocative. See for yourself – and thank the riders for what they contribute to the rest of the season.
Lundi Gras night provides one of Carnival’s best parade doubleheaders. First there’s Proteus, an old-line krewe with an origin that traces back to 1882 and still keeps the look, design and style of the early parades. Then there’s Orpheus, a super krewe that’s the prettiest of the genre, which combines modern size and old-style elegance.
heartfelt Spoil her on Valentine’s Day with a gift that will melt her heart.
By Lisa Tudor Photographed by Eugenia Uhl
Grandmother’s Buttons bracelet (buttons from top): 1900 brass openwork, antique hand-painted porcelain, new Czech luster glass, vintage dyed-pearl with butterfly and ’30s mirror-back brass; Victorian 46 carat amethyst and diamond ring from the estate collection at Symmetry Jewelers and Designers
Garnet, amethyst and pearl drop earrings at Fleur dâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Orleans; Raja Jewels 14 karat gold, opal and diamond necklace at Symmetry Jewelers and Designers
French silver and seed pearl hairpin at Yvonne LaFleur; â&#x20AC;&#x153;Eugenieâ&#x20AC;? large white baroque pearl earrings by Liz Sloss at Judy at the Rink
“Queen of Hearts” pendant necklace from the Cristy Cali Collection in the Boutique at Adler’s; "Love Link" Swarovski pearl and sterling silver bracelet with Cupid’s arrow toggle clasp at Mignon Faget
Heart to Heart
conversation with a cardiologist By Brobson Lutz M.D. Photograph by Craig Mulcahy
From childhood on an apple farm in upstate New York to medical school at LSU, Dr. Frank Wilklow has impressed teachers, mentors and colleagues. “In my 18 years of training cardiology fellows to do interventional procedures, Frank was the best. I found no faults. He is a hard worker, smart, likable, good with patients. People like him,” says Dr. O’Meallie. These sentiments are echoed by Dr. Edward St. Martin, another beloved and recently retired cardiologist: “Three things make a good doctor. Know your topic, know your patient, and show up in person to see them. Dr. Wilklow makes the trifecta. I recommend him most highly.”
This being National Heart Month, some questions and answers with Dr. Wilklow: Q: Heart attacks seem on the downswing; true or false? It depends on who does the counting and how. We heard in November that the incidence of both heart disease and heart attack has decreased at least 20 percent over the last 20 years. Most think this is due the decline of smoking, healthier diets, more effective medications and promotion of an active lifestyle. The physician from Duke who presented the data summed it up: “Coronary disease was once the size of a large pizza, but now it’s a medium pizza.”
Q: Are we seeing fewer heart attacks locally? Interestingly, a paper presented at the American Heart meeting showed hospital admissions for heart attacks in the years after Hurricane Katrina increased threefold at the Tulane Hospital. Reasons given were stress, substance abuse, poor diet and lack of continuity of medical care. The study compared hospital admissions to the Tulane hospital for two years prior to Katrina to 10 years after the storm. Whether statistics are skewed, given that several hospitals
did not re-open after Katrina, would take a city-wide study. In my practice, Katrina certainly seemed to have an effect on health, but mostly psychological. Patients seemed to have higher levels of anxiety and depression, which can affect health. It became a milestone in people’s lives. Often patients are unclear about when medical procedures or diagnoses occurred. I often ask, “Was that before Katrina or after?” and they seem to immediately organize their time lines. Q: New Orleans was Ground Zero for cardiologists from all over the world last November. What was going on? Some 18,000 professional attendees from more than 100 countries came to town to attend the annual meeting of the American Heart Association. It was dubbed the “premier cardiovascular research and instructional meeting in the world.”
Q: What impressed you most about the meeting? In addition to the research studies, meeting organizers took on contested topics in cardiology and presented evidence to help clinicians like me make decisions about common but controversial matters.
Q: What this thing called SPRINT that I read about? We know that high blood pressure is a risk factor for stroke, heart attack, heart failure and death, but how low is best and how low is too low? The National Institutes of Health sponsored the Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial, nickname SPRINT, to answer this question: “Will lower blood pressure reduce the risk of heart and kidney diseases, stroke or agerelated declines in memory and thinking?” SPRINT researchers enrolled some 9,300 patients 50 years old and older with diagnosed hypertension across the United States. The subjects, none of whom had diabetes, were randomly divided into two groups. One group continued with standard care, which meant keeping the systolic or top blood pressure number at 140 or lower. The second group received a more intensive drug regime targeting a systolic blood pressure of 120 or lower. The plan was to run the study five years or so, but researchers pulled the plug after just three years. Those subjects in the more intensely managed group with lower blood pressures had significantly fewer heart attacks, stroke, heart failure and cardiac deaths in general. Q: Any new drugs of interest either on the market or soon to be there? Two new medications to treat congestive heart failure are Entresto and Corlanor. Entresto is a combination of an older heart medication with a new drug that reduces fluid overload in the body. Such fluid overload leads to shortness of breath, difficulty lying flat and difficulty with exertion. Less fluid in the lungs and cardiovascular system leads to better breathing, better quality of life and ability to walk farther. An elevated heart rate can be a problem in patients with congestive heart failure. Corlanor can help in some of these difficult situations by reducing the heart rate and decreasing the work on the heart.
What is new in cholesterol reduction? Repatha and Praluent are monoclonal antibodies. They block a protein in the liver that slows down cholesterol metabolism. These antibodies rev up cholesterol metabolism causing an impressive drop in low density LDL cholesterol levels. Lower levels of LDL, aka as the bad cholesterol, lead to less plaque and blockages in the arteries of the brain, heart, and other vessels within the cardiovascular system. These medications can have dramatic results. We use them in our practice, and I’ve seen people come in with an LDL of 350, start on the new medication and in 2 to 3 months their LDL is less than 100. The downside to these medications is the cost of over $14,000 a year, and they must be injected like insulins. Q: Why is there increased heart disease in “food deserts?” Food deserts are areas where people cannot obtain quality healthy food due to affordability, distance or availability. Part of what has led to the decrease in the incidence of heart disease is the improvement in the diet that most of us have enjoyed; however, some people don’t have access to a healthy diet. Even in our city, poor neighborhoods may not have access to fresh fruits and vegetables because of cost or a lack of a large supermarket. Fresh fruits and vegetables have a short shelf life; unhealthy processed foods are cheaper and easier to stock. Inner cities have higher cardiovascular disease rates in part due poor diet. Public health initiatives such as farmers’ markets, neighborhood gardens and food preparation classes in schools are helping to alleviate this situation.
Q: Any new management tools for persons with atrial fibrillation and other irregular heart rates? Most of the new management tools for atrial fibrillation are device based. Most of the new pacemakers and implantable cardiac defibrillators are now MRI compatible. In the past, patients with pacemakers or defibrillators were unable to get MRIs because of the metal in the device. This is no longer the case with these newer devices; it makes it easier to get through airport security, too. We also have devices that can be placed on your cell phone to monitor your heart rhythm if you feel episodes of palpitations or a racing heart. These devices can be used to document heart irregularities as they happen. Dr. Lutz edited and condensed the interview for space and clarity. n
Q: What are some examples of those topics? Treatment recommendations for persons with peripheral arterial disease, the safety of arthritis medications like Celebrex and approaches to patients with both coronary artery disease and atrial fibrillation requiring multiple blood thinners. There was an interesting trial regarding whether controlling blood pressure and cholesterol translated to less dementia. This year an entire section was devoted to the use of technology in medicine and the pluses and pitfalls technology lends to the practice of medicine.
Part of what has led to the decrease in the incidence of heart disease is the improvement in the diet that most of us have enjoyed; however, some people don't have access to a healthy diet. Even in our city, poor neighborhoods may not have access to fresh fruits and vegetables because of cost or lack of a large supermarket.
TOP HOSPI TALS Patients’ picks of area facilities Compiled by Morgan Packard
Here is our attempt to identify the best local hospitals, at least from the patients’ perspective. There is only one source for patient evaluation of hospitals, and that’s Medicare. Using the agency’s data, we compiled a list of those hospitals within the region that when more than 100 patients were surveyed received a positive response from at least 50 percent when asked if they would “definitely recommend the hospital.” Listed here are those top-rated Louisiana hospitals within
New Orleans/Jefferson East Jefferson General Hospital 4200 Houma Blvd., Metairie, 454-4000, EJGH.org Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 70% Recommendation Percentage: 74%
a 100-mile radius of New Orleans, excluding Baton Rouge. • “Patient Rating” stands for percentage of “Patients who gave their hospital a rating of 9 or 10 on a scale from 0 (lowest) to 10 (highest).” •“Recommendation Percentage” represents “Patients who reported that “Yes,” they would definitely recommend the hospital.” For more information, visit Medicare.gov. List is limited to those hospitals that accept Medicare. Other hospitals may be worthy of consideration.
Ochsner Medical Center 1516 Jefferson Highway, 842-3000, Ochsner.org Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 72% Recommendation Percentage: 76%
Ochsner Medical Center-Kenner LLC 180 W. Esplanade Ave., Kenner, 468-8600, Ochsner.org/locations/ochsner-medicalcenter-kenner Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 66% Recommendation Percentage: 66%
Slidell Memorial Hospital 1001 Gause Blvd., Slidell, (985) 643-2200, SlidellMemorial.com Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 76% Recommendation Percentage: 79% Touro Infirmary 1401 Foucher St., 897-7011, Touro.com Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 73% Recommendation Percentage: 74% Tulane Medical Center 1415 Tulane Ave., 988-5263, TulaneHealthCare.com Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 72% Recommendation Percentage: 73% University Medical Center 2000 Canal St., 903-3000, UMCNo.org Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 67% Recommendation Percentage: 71% West Jefferson Medical Center 1101 Medical Center Blvd., Marrero, 347-5511, WJMC.org Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 71% Recommendation Percentage: 72% Regional Cypress Pointe Surgical Hospital 42570 S. Airport Road, Hammond, (985) 510-6200, CPSH.org Acute Care Hospital Patient Rating: 90% Recommendation Percentage: 85% Lady of the Sea General Hospital 200 W. 134th Place, Cut Off, (985) 632-6401, LOSGH.org Critical Access Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 90% Recommendation Percentage: 84% Leonard J. Chabert Medical Center 1978 Industrial Blvd., Houma, (985) 873-2200, Ochsner.org/locations/ leonard-j-chabert-medical-center/ Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services
Patient Rating: 78% Recommendation Percentage: 83% Louisiana Heart Hospital 64030 Highway 434, Lacombe, (985) 690-7500, LouisianaHeart.com Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 81% Recommendation Percentage: 83% Lakeview Regional Medical Center 95 Judge Tanner Blvd., Covington, (985) 867-3800, LakeviewRegional.com Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 74% Recommendation Percentage: 74% North Oaks Medical Center 15790 Paul Vega MD Drive, Hammond, (985) 345-2700, NorthOaks.org Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 64% Recommendation Percentage: 64% Ochsner Medical Center – Northshore, LLC 100 Medical Center Drive, Slidell, (985) 649-7070, Ochsner.org/locations/ ochsner-medical-center-north-shore Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 68% Recommendation Percentage: 68% Ochsner St. Anne General Hospital 4608 Highway 1, Raceland, (985) 537-6841, Ochsner.org/locations/ ochsner-st-anne Critical Access Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 79% Recommendation Percentage: 81% Our Lady of the Angels Hospital 433 Plaza St., Bougalusa, (985) 730-6700, OLOAH.org Critical Access Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 75% Recommendation Percentage: 75% St. Bernard Parish Hospital 8000 W. Judge Perez Drive, Chalmette, 826-9500, SBPH.net Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 71% Recommendation Percentage: 75%
St. Charles Parish Hospital 1057 Paul Maillard Road, Luling, (985) 785-6242 (3644), StCh.net Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 67% Recommendation Percentage: 70% St. Elizabeth Hospital 1125 W. Highway 30, Gonzales, (225) 647-5000, StEH.org Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 80% Recommendation Percentage: 77% St. Tammany Parish Hospital 1202 S. Tyler St., Covington, (985) 898-4000, STPH.org Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 77% Recommendation Percentage: 89% Southern Surgical Hospital 1700 W. Lindberg Drive, Slidell, (985) 641-0600, SSHLa.com Acute Care Hospital Patient Rating: 90% Recommendation Percentage: 92% Teche Regional Medical Center 1125 Marguerite St., Morgan City, (985) 384-2200, TecheRegional.com Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 68% Recommendation Percentage: 63% Terrebonne General Medical Center 8166 Main St., Houma, (985) 873-4141, TGMC.com Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 73% Recommendation Percentage: 71% Thibodaux Regional Medical Center 602 N. Acadia Road, Thibodaux, (985) 447-5500, Thibodaux.com Acute Care Hospital Provides Emergency Services Patient Rating: 83% Recommendation Percentage: 83% n
The Menu TABLE TALK | RESTAURANT INSIDER | FOOD | LAST CALL | DINING LISTINGS
TABLE TALK, PG. 84
Chef Issac Toups staked his carnivorous claim when he opened Toupsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Meatery in Mid-City. Then last fall he expanded into the Southern Food & Beverage Museum , opening Toups South (pictured here) in the spot formerly occupied by Purloo. The result is a match made in savory heaven.
jeffery johnston PHOTOGRAPH
THE MENU | TABLE TALK
BBQ Deckle Steak at ToupsSouth
Opening just as this magazine went to press is the highly anticipated Central City BBQ just off Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard. The pitmaster is Rob Bechtold of NOLA Smokehouse, which closed last year. This time around he’s partnered with Aaron Burgau to open this sprawling new shrine to smoked meats that has a huge fenced in yard with outdoor seating to boot. Now that Bechtold has a kitchen sized to match his talent, get ready for some serious eats.
Two places that are smokin’ By Jay Forman
This Feb. 28 caps the long pre-Lenten burn of progressive excesses. Before you go gently into those 40 days of cold turkey, might I suggest a few places to load up on meats, glorious meats, biscuits, slaws and cold brews? It just so happens that a griller’s clutch of smoky oases have recently opened. They are not all strictly barbecue, but smokecentric southern technique wends through them like a roux-hued Louisiana bayou. Enjoy y’all. Chef Isaac Toups staked his carnivorous claim when he opened Toups’ Meatery in Mid-City. Then last fall he expanded into the Southern Food & Beverage Museum, opening Toups South in the spot formerly occupied by Purloo. The result is match made in savory heaven. “I’m a Southern chef, so SOFAB just made for a great fit,” says Toups, who beat out the other contenders for the soaring contempo-
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
rary space on Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard, which features a huge open kitchen and a dining room cordoned off from SOFAB’s exhibition floor. Toups South distinguishes itself from Toups’ Meatery in that it has a southern focus, with a wide regional net that showcases dishes from east Texas through to Carolina Lowcountry. “We didn’t want to do the same thing twice,” Toups explains. “The Meatery is contemporary Cajun and Toups South is contemporary southern.” The menu also shifts a bit toward the fine dining end of the spectrum, with a refined selection of protein (Smoked lamb leg, anyone?) and heritage-sourced goods from outfits such as Home Place Pastures in Como, Mississippi. Still, this isn’t a fancy place, and be sure to come hungry because Toups remains Cajun and Cajuns, as we all know, are genetically predisposed to feed people until they cry.
Recommended dishes include the barbecue Beef Deckle Steak, a gargantuan portion of cured then smoked brisket atop a bed of baked beans with a garnish of pickled red onion and mustard to cut through the fat. Think of it like a regional take on red beans and rice. Another dish of Smoked Foie Gras Terrine has proven popular as well, marinated first in Japanese whiskey before being smoked over pecan wood. “That dish is one of my favorites,” Toups says. Look for thoughtful southern flourishes throughout, like the fried rice callas served with the Gulf Seafood Stew and the Crab Butter served with the sourdough biscuits. Cracklings, one of his signatures, accompany several of the dishes like pillowy savory Southern meringues. A compelling bar menu with local and regional jeffery johnston PHOTOGRAPH
spirits as well as a wine list curated by Toups’ wife and business partner, Amanda, adds to the appeal. Over in Mid-City, the Frey Smoked Meat Company opened its doors last December. Frey is the second restaurant by chef Ray Gruezke, who’s also the chef and owner of the nearby bistro Rue 127. Frey is a straight-up barbecue joint housed in the repurposed warehouse of the former Loubat Foodservice company. The quasi-industrial feel of the space is softened with wood tables and a large custom bar. Located just behind the strip mall sprawl on the corner of Carrollton and Bienville streets, Frey’s confident look and feels bring a welcome creative spark to the area. Gruezke got into smoking while competing in Hogs for the Cause. “About four years ago we started competing in Hogs. I was barbecuing about every weekend and just really enjoyed it. We started tossing around the idea for barbecue place, ideally close to where we were now with Rue 127. This space then just came on the market at the right time,” Gruezke says. Gruezke smokes with an Ole Hickory pit using a mixture of pecan and oak. About 60 percent of what he sells is straight-up barbecue, along with a selection of burgers and salads to assuage the non-barbecue folks who don’t know what they are missing. One compelling choice is his barbecue pork belly, done up with a rub of brown sugar, salt and chili pepper then smoked for up to eight hours. The low temp lets the belly maintain its integrity while the rub caramelizes, rendering the exterior a lacquered mahogany brown. Also notable are the beef ribs, less common in Louisi-
ana barbecue, which tends to favor the pig. “You don’t see a lot of that down here, and we have to charge a bit more for it because beef rib is expensive right now,” Gruezke says. Burgers weigh in at halfa-pound, with the “Fatties” comprised of one patty while the “Flatties” stack up a pair of quarter-pounders. Shake things up with the Half-andHalf, which features a quarter pound beef and a quarter pound hot sausage patty in the same sandwich. For sides, try the coleslaw, made with Napa cabbage for extra crunch and tossed in a light, vinegar-based dressing with black pepper and horseradish for bite – the perfect accompaniment for smoked meats. Kids or the very stoned will enjoy the Cookie Monster Shake – a gargantuan milkshake that comes garnished with a Cookie Monster cupcake. “Our shakes are a bit over-the-top,” Gruezke admits. Frey sells by the pound as well for off-site hoedowns, and also offers a “Festive Feast” dine-in option for groups of at least eight, that’s basically a prix fixe menu for barbecue lovers; the perfect no-hassle family meal. n
Toups South 1504 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd. 304-2147 ToupsSouth.com Lunch Wednesdays-Mondays, Dinner Wednesdays-Saturdays
Frey Smoked Meat Company 4141 Bienville St. 488-7427 FreysSmokedMeat.com Lunch and dinner daily myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
THE MENU | restaurant INSIDER
News From the Kitchens Marjie’s Grill, Petit Lion & Maypop By Robert Peyton
Marjie’s Grill Marjie’s Grill opened at the very end of 2016, at 320 S. Broad St. Chef Marcus Jacobs and co-owner Caitlin Carney met while both were working at Herbsaint. The space is casual, with seats for about 45, some at long communal tables. There are plans to expand seating into a patio behind the restaurant, adding another 30 or so spots. When I spoke recently with them, they told me they wanted the restaurant to be a welcoming, casual place, and that’s one reason they opted for counter service. They also told me that the menu at Marjie’s is, essentially, what they cook at home. It is a mix of Southern and Southeast Asian, influenced by a two-month trip the pair took to Thailand, Vietnam and Laos not long ago. The combination works remarkably well, particularly when you taste the fish, poultry, meat and vegetables that come off the Santa Maria-style grill Jacobs set up just outside the kitchen. The grill surface can be raised or lowered easily, and Jacobs most often employs it to cook slowly, with smoke and at low temperatures that leave more moisture in the finished product. Marjie’s grill is open Tuesdays-Fridays for lunch 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.; happy hour starts at 4:30 p.m.; and dinner runs 5:30-9 p.m.; they’re also open 12-9 p.m. on Saturdays. Call 603-2234 to learn more. 86
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
Chef Phillip Lopez, of Root and Square Root, has opened a bistro, Petit Lion, in the Troubador Hotel at 1111 Gravier St. It may seem an interesting concept for a chef best-known for inventive, modern cooking. And the restaurant’s décor is certainly sleeker than the sort of homey style you might expect. But Lopez has always been about more than surprising diners; he and his team consistently produce some of the finest charcuterie in town, and a lot of what he puts out has the soul of comfort food. The menus are fairly brief and full of standards, such as Lyonnaise salad, mussels with fries and steak au poivre, but the chef’s famous pickled shrimp and crab-stuffed deviled eggs are also options, and the scallop crudo with passion fruit, peppercorns and a light dashi broth may be one of the prettiest things you’ll be served all year. There is a large, U-shaped bar with seating for around 20. The list features wines from all over the world, and the selections have clearly been well thought out. Petit Lion is open for breakfast during the week 7-11 a.m.; for brunch on weekends 10 a.m.-2 p.m.; and for lunch Mondays-Fridays 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Dinner starts daily at 5 p.m. and goes until 11 Mondays-Fridays and until 10 p.m. on Sundays. You can reach the restaurant by calling 518-5500.
Chef Michael Gulotta has received a great deal of positive press, very well-deserved, for his modern Vietnamese restaurant MoPho; he branched out first with Tana at Trèo, where the menu looks toward the Mediterranean, then Rum & the Lash inside Finn McCool’s Irish Pub, which features upscale bar food. Maypop took over the space that was previously Ursa Major, in the Paramount complex at 611 O’Keefe Ave. The food is influenced by a broad spectrum of Asian nations; there’s a chicken vindaloo on the menu, for example, with a crispy rice cake and pickled mirliton, and a chilled buckwheat noodle salad with apple, crab and Szechuan peppercorns that generate a pleasantly warm numbness in the mouth after a half-dozen bites. The dining room is dominated on one wall by a huge mural that’s folded such that from one direction you see a map of the Mekong delta, and from the other the Mississippi. Gulotta and his co-owners (Gulotta’s brother Jeff and Jeffrey Bybee) expanded the storage behind the bar and brightened the space up with light wood panels and hanging plants. Maypop is open Sundays-Thursdays 11 a.m.-10 p.m., and until 11 p.m. FridaysSaturdays. Call 518-6345 to make a reservation, and visit MaypopRestaurant.com.
SARA ESSEX BRADLEY PHOTOGRAPHS
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
THE MENU | FOOD
Three For the Tray Appetizing appetizers By Dale Curry
PHOTOGRAPHed and styled EUGENIA UHL 88
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
1 pound lump crabmeat 1 pound whole mushrooms, white or baby portobello, about 1 ½ inches wide 4 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided 3 green onions, chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning 1 cup Panko bread crumbs, divided 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese plus more for topping 2 Tablespoons sherry Salt, freshly ground black pepper to taste ½ teaspoon Creole seasoning 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley 2 Tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces Pick over crabmeat, removing any shell. Be careful not to break up pieces of crab any more than necessary. Set aside. Wipe mushrooms with a damp paper towel to remove any debris. With a small, sharp knife, cut out the stems and trim off the tough ends. Chop the stems and set aside. Place 2 Tablespoons of olive oil in a medium bowl and add mushroom caps. Using a rubber spatula, toss the mushroom caps in the oil until the outside surfaces are coated. Set aside. Heat the other 2 Tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet and sauté the onions, garlic, mushroom stems and Italian seasoning for about 2 minutes over medium heat. Remove skillet from heat and add bread crumbs, 1/3-cup Parmesan, sherry, seasonings and parsley. Mix well. Add crabmeat and toss gently with a spatula. Spray a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Using a small spoon, stuff mushrooms caps with crab mixture, packing it gently into each cap and mounding stuffing about ½-inch above the mushroom surfaces. Place mushrooms in dish side by side. Lightly sprinkle more grated Parmesan over the mushrooms and top each one with a dot of butter. Cover and refrigerate. About 45 minutes before serving, heat oven to 375 degrees. Bake mushrooms for 30 minutes or until tender and beginning to brown on top. Makes about 2½ dozen
Finding the right appetizers for a party might be a Herculean task unless you settle on two or three extraordinary ones from your kitchen and then buy all the rest from Sam’s Club or Costco’s. What would we do without them? No matter how many chips and dips you serve, the hottest numbers at your party are sure to be the dishes you make yourself. And they don’t have to be difficult. For example, lovers of Caprese salad will enjoy theirs on a toothpick. No cooking to it. Just marinate grape tomatoes, add fresh mozzarella and basil leaves, splash with a balsamic vinaigrette and serve. To me, there’s no greater taste on earth than oysters Rockefeller. Why not soften it a bit and scoop it up as a dip? I tried it, and everybody loved it on toasted baguette slices. I also like to marry mushrooms with
crabmeat. The medium-size portobellos are just right, stuffed and shoved in the oven minutes before just guests arrive. When we wanted to make turtle soup for a party, we purchased a giant turtle from a supermarket in Tremé. We hadn’t a clue it would take almost a whole day to clean the bony reptile. There was hardly time to do anything else. I still regret that dressed turtle meat is hard to find in retail markets here. I guess that explains why some cooks settle for mock turtle soup made with beef, which isn’t the same to me. In New Orleans, we never quite party enough. Folks elsewhere are worn out and taking a break after the holidays, but we’re just getting cranked up. Being that Mardi Gras comes on the last day of the month, that means we’ve got all of February to party. Time to get started.
Oysters Rockefeller Dip
1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 dozen oysters
3 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
Salt, freshly ground black pepper and garlic powder to taste
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 10-ounce container grape tomatoes
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 8-ounce package fresh mozzarella cheese, preferably sliced 1½ dozen fresh basil leaves In a medium bowl, whisk together the vinegar, olive oil and seasonings. Add tomatoes and marinate for 30 minutes. Cut mozzarella slices into halves. If using whole packaged mozzarella, cut pieces into 1-inch squares. Cut basil leaves in half. Skewer the ingredients onto toothpicks: mozzarella, basil, tomato, basil, mozzarella. Place on serving plate and sprinkle lightly with remaining vinaigrette. Makes 3 dozen appetizers
4 Tablespoons butter 2 stalks celery, chopped 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 2 teaspoons lemon juice Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste ¼ cup Herbsaint ¼ teaspoon Tabasco ½ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped Panko or other bread crumbs, about ½ cup, divided 2 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese Check oysters for any shell. Roughly chop oysters and set aside. Strain and save oyster liquor. Drain spinach in a strainer, pressing liquid out. Set aside. Melt butter in a large skillet and sauté green onions and celery for 3 minutes. Add garlic and spinach and sauté for 2 more minutes. Add Worcestershire, lemon juice, seasonings, Herbsaint and Tabasco and cook for 2 minutes. In a food processor, pulse the spinach mixture until coarsely puréed. Return to skillet, mix in oysters and ¼-cup oyster liquor. Heat and simmer for 2 minutes. Add half the bread crumbs and cream cheese and mix to make a smooth dip. Place in a bake-proof serving dish and sprinkle with remaining bread crumbs. Top with Parmesan cheese, and bake for 30 minutes in a 350-degree oven. If oysters are bubbly but not browning on top, place under broiler until lightly brown. Serve with toasted ¼-inch French baguette slices, bagel chips or Melba rounds. Makes about 1 quart myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
THE MENU | Last Call
By Any Measurement
Bayou St. John – the drink By Tim McNally
It doesn’t matter how you gauge the success of a community, by any measurement New Orleans in February blows the lid off the calibration standard. Carnival will be in full swing for the entire month, culminating on the last day with Mardi Gras. Once again, the National Basketball Association brings to town one of their showcase events, The NBA All-Star Game, in the middle of Carnival craziness. Superstar Billy Joel puts on a show, and the Rock ’n’ Roll Marathon rolls. Those are merely the high points. Many communities would give up a suburb for a lineup like that. And keep in mind that in New Orleans, there’s no such thing as a “long winter’s nap.” You owe your body and your senses a bit of quiet time, a refresher. Head in the direction of Mid-City – Faubourg St. John specifically – and relax at Café Degas, a true French bistro in a French town. Linger under the mighty oaks. Gather your wits. Sip an original and delightful cocktail before jumping back into the madness that is New Orleans in February. t
Bayou St. John
2 ounces Hendrick’s Gin ¾ ounce Absentroux (herbal wine) 1½ ounce Lillet Rose ½ cup rose water Garnish: Cucumber slice Shake all ingredients together then strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with cucumber slice. As created by Nick Varisco, Bar Manager of Café Degas, 3127 Esplanade Ave., 945-5635, CafeDegas.com 90
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SARA ESSEX BRADLY PHOTOGRAPH
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
THE MENU | DINING GUIDE
H= New Orleans Magazine award winner | $ = Average entrée price | $ = $5-10
Zea’s Rotisserie and Grill Multiple Locations, ZeaRestaurants.com. L, D daily. Drawing from a wide range of worldly influences, this popular restaurant serves a variety of grilled items as well as appetizers, salads, side dishes, seafood, pasta and other entrées. Also offers catering services. $$$
Bywater Elizabeth’s 601 Gallier St., 944-9272, ElizabethsRestaurantNola.com. B, L MonFri, D Mon-Sat, Br Sat-Sun. This eclectic local restaurant draws rave reviews for its praline bacon and distinctive Southerninspired brunch specials. $$$
H Maurepas 3200 Burgundy St., 2670072, MaurepasFoods.com. L, D Thu-Tue, Br Sat-Sun. Pioneering farm-to-table restaurant with an ingredient-driven menu that changes daily. Clever cocktails a plus as well. $$ Satsuma Café 3218 Dauphine St., 3045962, SatsumaCafe.com. B, L daily (until 5 p.m.). Offers healthy, inspired breakfast and lunch fare, along with freshly squeezed juices. $
carrollton Bourré 1510 S. Carrollton Ave., 510-4040. L, D Tue-Sun. “Elevated” street food along with quality daiquiris and reconsidered wings are the draw at this newcomer from the team behind Boucherie. $$
enchant, with a kids’ menu to boot. $$
CBD/Warehouse District The Grill Room Windsor Court Hotel, 300 Gravier St., 522-6000, GrillRoomNewOrleans.com. B, L, D daily, Br Sun. Featuring modern American cuisine with a distinctive New Orleans flair, the adjacent Polo Club Lounge offers live music nightly. Jazz Brunch on Sunday. $$$$$ Manning’s 519 Fulton St., 593-8118. L, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. Born of a partnership between New Orleans’ First Family of Football and Harrah’s Casino, Manning’s offers sports bar fans a step up in terms of comfort and quality. With a menu that draws on both New Orleans and the Deep South, traditional dishes get punched up with inspired but accessible twists in surroundings accented by both memorabilia and local art. $$$ Pete’s Pub Intercontinental Hotel, 444 St. Charles Ave., 525-5566, IcNewOrleans.com/ dining/petes_pub. D Mon-Fri. Casual fare and adult beverages are served in this pub on the ground floor. $$ Q&C Hotel/Bar 344 Camp St., 587-9700, QandC.com. B, D daily, L Fri-Sun. Newly renovated boutique hotel offering a small plates menu with tempting choices such as a Short Rib Poor Boy and Lobster Mac and Cheese to complement their sophisticated craft cocktails. $$
H Root 21800 Magazine St., 309-7800,
Satsuma Maple 7901 Maple St., 309-5557, SatsumaCafe.com. B, L daily (until 5 p.m.). Offers healthy, inspired breakfast and lunch fare, along with freshly squeezed juices. $
RootNola.com. L, D Tue-Sat. Chef Philip Lopez opened Root in November 2011 and has garnered a loyal following for his modernist, eclectic cuisine. $$$$
H Restaurant August 301 Tchoupitoulas
Café NOMA 1 Collins Diboll Circle, NO Museum of Art, City Park, 482-1264, CafeNoma.com. L, (snacks) Tue-Sun. Sleek bar and café in the ground floor of museum offers a thoughtful array of snacks, sandwiches and small plates that are sure to
St., 299-9777, RestaurantAugust.com. L Fri, D daily. James Beard Award-winning chef John Besh’s menu is based on classical techniques of Louisiana cuisine and produce with a splash of European flavor set in an historic carriage warehouse. $$$$$
$$ = $11-15
$$$ = $16-20
Walk-On’s Bistreaux & Bar 1009 Poydras St., 309-6530, Walk-Ons.com. L, D, daily. Burger, sandwiches, wraps and more made distinctive with a Louisiana twist are served at this sports bar near the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. $$ Warehouse Grille, 869 Magazine St., 3222188, WarehouseGrille.com. L, D daily, Br Fri-Sat. Creative fare served in an art-filled environment. Try the lamb spring rolls. $$ Wolfe’s in the Warehouse 859 Convention Center Blvd., 613-2882. B, L, D daily. Chef Tom Wolfe brings his refined cuisine to the booming Fulton Street corridor. $$$
Downtown The Grill 540 Chartres St., 522-1800. B, L, D daily. A diner with local character staffed by local characters. $
Faubourg Marigny Langlois 1710 Pauger St., 934-1010, LangloisNola.com. L Fri-Sat, D Wed-Sun. *Reservations only Supper club and boutique cooking school in the Marigny serves up culturally informed, farm-to-table fare with the added bonus of instruction. Open kitchen and convivial atmosphere add up to a good time. $$$ The Marigny Brasserie 640 Frenchmen St., 945-4472, MarignyBrasserie.com. L, D daily. Chic neighborhood bistro with traditional dishes like the fried green tomatoes and innovative cocktails such as the cucumber Collins. $$$ Snug Harbor 626 Frenchman St., 9490696, SnugJazz.com. D daily. This jazz club serves cocktails and a dining menu loaded with steaks, seafood and meaty burgers served with loaded baked potatoes. $$$$
Angeline 1032 Chartres St., 308-3106, AngelineNola.com. B Mon-Thu, D daily, Br Sat-Sun,. Modern southern with a fine dining focus is the hallmark of this bistro
$$$$ = $21-25
$$$$$ = $25 and up
tucked away in a quiet end of the French Quarter. Southern Fried Quail and Duck Confit Ravoli represent the style. $$$ Continental Provisions 110 N Peters St., Stall 23, 407-3437. Open daily. Artisan purveyors including Bellegarde Bakery, St. James Cheese Co. and Cleaver & Company team up to reclaim a foothold for quality food in the tourist Ground Zero of the French Market. Sandwiches, breads, cheeses and more. $$ Hard Rock Café 125 Bourbon St., 5295617, HardRock.com. L, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. Local outpost of this global brand serves burgers, café fare and drinks in their rock memorabilia-themed environs. $$ The Pelican Club 312 Exchange Place, 523-1504, PelicanClub.com. D daily. Serves an eclectic mix of hip food, from the seafood “martini” to clay-pot barbecued shrimp and a trio of duck. Three dining rooms available. $$$$$ Rib Room Omni Royal Orleans Hotel, 621 St. Louis St., 529-7046, RibRoomNewOrleans.com. B, D daily, L Mon-Sat, Br Sun. Old World elegance and high ceilings, house classic cocktails and Anthony Spizale’s broad menu of prime rib, stunning seafood and on Sundays a jazz brunch. $$$
GARDEN DISTRICT Cheesecake Bistro by Copeland’s, 2001 St. Charles Ave., 593-9955, CopelandsCheesecakeBistro.com. L Mon-Fri, D daily, Br Sun. Shiny, contemporary bistro serves Cajun-fusion fare along with its signature decadent desserts. Good lunch value to boot. $$ District Donuts Sliders Brew, 2209 Magazine Street, 570-6945, DonutsAndSliders. com. B, L, D daily. Creative sliders (hello, pork belly) and super-creative donuts (think root beer float) are the hallmarks of this next-generation café. $
Café Sbisa Returns
Cafe Sbisa, 1011 Decatur St., 522-5565, CafeSbisaNola.com If you haven’t visited the third oldest restaurant in the French Quarter, Café Sbisa, since its recent re-opening, the location has been restored to its former glory, including the huge mural over the bar by the late local artist and regular, George Dureau. The kitchen and front of the house are back in the hands of Alfred Singleton and Craig Napoli respectively, and the menu boasts the French-Creole cuisine that made the original restaurant famous. Favorites such as Turtle Soup and Louisiana Blue Crab Cakes return alongside new dishes such as Duck Confit and Rack of Lamb. – By Mirella Cameran 92
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cheryl gerber photograph
Metairie Boulevard American Bistro 4241 Veterans Memorial Blvd., 889-2301. L, D daily. Classic American cuisine including steaks, chops and more is augmented by regional favorites like Boulevard Oysters at this Metairie bistro. $$$ café B 2700 Metairie Road, 934-4700, cafeB.com. D daily, L Mon-Fri. Br Sun. Ralph Brennan offers New American bistro fare with a Louisiana twist at this family-friendly neighborhood spot. $$$ Caffe! Caffe! 3547 N. Hullen St., 267-9190. B, L Mon-Sat. & 4301 Clearview Parkway, 885-4845. B, L daily; D Mon-Sat. CaffeCaffe. com Healthy, refreshing meal options combine with gourmet coffee and espresso drinks to create a tasteful retreat for Metairie diners at a reasonable price. Try the egg white spinach wrap. $ Heritage Grill 111 Veterans Memorial Blvd., 934-4900, HeritageGrillMetairie.com. L Mon-Fri. This lunch-only destination caters to the office crowd and offers a freshly squeezed juice menu to go along with its regular menu and express two-course lunch. $$ Martin Wine Cellar 714 Elmeer Ave., 8967300, MartinWineCellar.com. Wine by the glass or bottle to go with daily lunch specials, towering burgers, hearty soups and salads and giant, deli-style sandwiches. $ Vega Tapas Café 2051 Metairie Road,
836-2007, VegaTapasCafe.com. D Mon-Sat, Br Sun. Innovative establishment offers fresh seafood, grilled meats and vegetarian dishes in a chic environment. Daily chef specials showcase unique ingredients and make this place a popular destination for dates as well as groups of friends. $$
Mid-City Parkway Bakery and Tavern 538 Hagan Ave., 482-3047, ParkwayPoorBoys.com. L, D Wed-Mon. Featured on national TV and having served poor boys to presidents, it stakes a claim to some of the best sandwiches in town. Their french fry version with gravy and cheese is a classic at a great price. $
NORTHSHORE Dakota 629 N. Highway 190, (985) 8923712, TheDakotaRestaurant.com. L Tue-Fri, D Mon-Sat. A sophisticated dining experience with generous portions. $$$$$
Riverbend Carrollton Market 8132 Hampson St., 252-9928, CarrolltonMarket.com. L SatSun, D Tue-Sat. Modern Southern cuisine manages to be both fun and refined at this tasteful boîte. $$$
Uptown Audubon Clubhouse 6500 Magazine St., 212-5282, AudubonInstitute.org. B, L TueSat, Br Sun. A kid-friendly menu with local tweaks and a casually upscale sandwich and salad menu. $$
Camellia Grill 626 S. Carrollton Ave., 3092679. B, L, D daily. A venerable diner whose essential character has remained intact and many of the original waiters have returned. Credit cards are now accepted. $ GG’s Dine-O-Rama 3100 Magazine St., 373-6579, GGsNewOrleans.com. B, L TueSun. Upscale-casual restaurant serves a variety of specialty sandwiches, salads and wraps, like the Chicago-style hot dog and the St. Paddy’s Day Massacre, chef Gotter’s take on the Rueben. $$ Martin Wine Cellar 3827 Baronne St., 8997411, MartinWine.com. Wine by the glass or bottle with cheeses, salads, sandwiches and snacks. $ Slim Goodies 3322 Magazine St., 891 EGGS (3447), SlimGoodiesDiner.com. B, L daily. This diner offers an exhaustive menu heavily influenced by local cuisine. Try the Creole Slammer, a breakfast platter rounded out by crawfish étouffée. The laid-back vibe is best enjoyed on the patio out back. $ Stein’s Market and Deli 2207 Magazine St., 527-0771, SteinsDeli.net. B, L Tue-Sun. New York City meets New Orleans. The Reuben and Rachel sandwiches are the real deal and the half-sours and pickled tomatoes complete the deli experience. $ Surrey’s Café and Juice Bar 1418 Magazine St., 524-3828; 4807 Magazine St., 895-5757, SurreysCafeAndJuiceBar.com. B,
L daily. Laid-back café focuses on breakfast and brunch dishes to accompany freshly squeezed juice offerings. Health-food lovers will like it here, along with fans of favorites such as peanut butter and banana pancakes. $$ Tracey’s Irish Restaurant & Bar 2604 Magazine St., 897-5413, TraceysNola.com. L, D daily. A neighborhood bar with one of the best messy roast beef poor boys in town. The gumbo, cheeseburger poor boy and other sandwiches are also winners. Grab a local Abita beer to wash it all down. Also a great location to watch the game. $
H Upperline 1413 Upperline St., 891-9822, Upperline.com. D Wed-Sun. Consummate hostess JoAnn Clevenger and talented chef Dave Bridges make for a winning combination at this nationally heralded favorite. The oft-copied fried green tomatoes with shrimp remoulade originated here. $$$$
H Wayfare 4510 Freret St., 309-0069, WayfareNola.com. L, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. Creative sandwiches and southern-inspired small plates. $$ Ye Olde College Inn 3000 S. Carrollton Ave., 866-3683, CollegeInn1933.com. D TueSat. Serves up classic fare, albeit with a few upscale dishes peppering the menu. $$$
Asian Fusion/Pan Asian
Little Tokyo Multiple locations, LittleTo-
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
kyoNola.com. L, D daily. Multiple locations of this popular Japanese sushi and hibachi chain make sure that there’s always a specialty roll within easy reach. $$
Bywater Red’s Chinese 3048 St. Claude Ave., 304-6030, RedsChinese.com. L, D daily. Assertive, in-your-face Chinese fare by chef Tobias Womack, an alum of Danny Bowien’s Mission Chinese. The Kung Pao Pastrami and General’s Chicken are good options. $$
CBD/Warehouse District Rock-N-Sake 823 Fulton St., 581-7253, RockNSake.com. L Fri, D Tue-Sun, late night Fri-Sat. Fresh sushi and contemporary takes on Japanese favorites in an upbeat, casual setting. $$$
Faubourg Marigny Bao and Noodle 2700 Charters St., 2720004, BaoAndNoodle.com. L, D Tue-Sat. Housemade noodles and a more authentic take on Chinese fare sets this neighborhood startup apart. Try the soup dumplings if available $$
French Quarter V Sushi 821 Iberville St., 609-2291, VSushiMartini.com. D daily, late-night. Creative rolls and a huge list of fusion dishes keep party-lovers going late into the night at this
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
combination sushi and martini bar. $$$
Garden District Hoshun Restaurant 1601 St. Charles Ave., 302-9716, HoshunRestaurant.com. L, D daily. Offers a wide variety of Asian cuisines, primarily dishes culled from China, Japan, Thailand and Malaysia. Five-pepper calamari is a tasty way to begin the meal, and their creative sushi rolls are good. Private dining rooms available. $$
Gretna H Tan Dinh 1705 Lafayette St., 361-8008. B, L, D daily. Roasted quail and the beef pho rule at this Vietnamese outpost. $$
Kenner Little Chinatown 3800 Williams Blvd., 305-0580, LittleChinatown.net. L, D daily. One of the city’s best Chinese restaurants is secreted away on William’s Boulevard in Kenner. Try the roast duck or roast pork, either one is terrific, as well as their short menu of authentic dishes that (for the most part) avoid Americanized Chinese fare. $$
Lakeview Lakeview Pearl 6300 Canal St., 309-5711, LakeviewPearl.com. L, D Mon-Sat. A long list of specialty rolls rounds out the offerings of this Asian-Fusion restaurant. $$
CoNola Grill & Sushi 619 Pink St., 8370055, CoNolaGrillSushi.com. L, D Tue-Sun. Eclectic cafe with DNA from both Sun Ray Grill and Aloha Sushi Bar puts out southerninspired fare backed by an Americanized sushi menu, a kids menu and more. Along with a Sunday brunch, there’s something for everyone at this independent restaurant. $$$
H Royal China 600 Veterans Blvd., 831-9633. L daily, D Tue-Sun. Popular and family-friendly Chinese restaurant is one of the few places around that serves dim sum. $$
MARRERO Daiwa, 5033 Lapalco Blvd., 875-4203, DaiwaSushi.com. L, D daily. Japanese destination on the Westbank serves an impressive and far-ranging array of creative fusion fare. $$$
Mid-City H Café Minh 4139 Canal St., 482-6266, CafeMinh.com. L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Chef Minh Bui and Cynthia Vutran bring a fusion touch to Vietnamese cuisine with French accents and a contemporary flair. $$ Five Happiness 3605 S. Carrollton Ave., 482-3935, FiveHappiness.com. L, D daily. This longtime Chinese favorite offers up an extensive menu including its beloved mu
shu pork and house-baked duck. $$
H MoPho 514 City Park Ave., 482-6845, MoPhoNola.com. L, D Wed-Mon. Vietnamese cuisine meets southern Louisiana in this upscale casual hybrid by chef Michael Gulotta. Mix-and-match pho and an interesting poor boy menu rounds out the appeal. $$$
Riverbend H Ba Chi Canteen 7900 Maple St., 3735628. L, D Mon-Sat. The kitchen plays fast and loose with Vietnamese fare at this eclectic outpost on Maple Street. Try the caramelized pork “Baco”. $
H Chill Out Café 729 Burdette St., 872-9628. B, L daily, D Mon-Sat. Thai food and breakfast favorites like waffles and pancakes can both be had at this affordable college-friendly hangout. $
Uptown Chiba 8312 Oak St., 826-9119, Chiba-Nola. com. L Wed-Sat, D Mon-Sat. Contemporary restaurant features fresh, exotic fish from all over the world and fusion fare to go along with typical Japanese options. Extensive sake list and late night happy hours are a plus. $$$
H Jung’s Golden Dragon 3009 Magazine St., 891-8280, JungsChinese.com. L, D
daily. This Chinese destination is a real find. Along with the usual, you’ll find spicy cold noodle dishes and dumplings. One of the few local Chinese places that breaks the Americanized mold. $
H Magasin 4201 Magazine St., 896-7611, MagasinCafe.com. L, D Mon-Sat. Pho, banh mi and vegetarian options are offered at this attractive and budget-friendly Vietnamese restaurant. Café sua da is available as well. $
WEST BANK Nine Roses 1100 Stephen St., 366-7665, NineRosesResturant.com. L, D Sun-Tue, Thu-Sat. The extensive Vietnamese menu specializes in hot pots, noodles and dishes big enough for everyone to share. $$
Café du Monde Multiple Locations, CafeDuMonde.com. This New Orleans institution has been serving fresh café au lait, rich hot chocolate and positively addictive beignets since 1862 in the French Market 24/7. $ CC’s Coffee House Multiple locations in New Orleans, Metairie and Northshore, CCsCoffee.com. Coffeehouse specializing in coffee, espresso drinks and pastries. $
H Ruby Slipper Café 139 S. Cortez St.,
Gracious to Go 7220 Earhart Blvd., 3013709, GraciousBakery.com. B Mon-Fri. Quick-service outpost of Gracious Bakery + Café serves artisan pastries, locally roasted coffee and grab-and-go sandwiches to meet the needs of commuters. Onsite parking a plus. $
Breads on Oak, 8640 Oak St., 324-8271, BreadsOnOak.com. B, L Wed-Sun. Artisan bakeshop tucked away near the levee on Oak Street serves breads, sandwiches, gluten-free and vegan-friendly options. $
525-9355, TheRubySlipperCafe.net. B, L daily, Br Sun. Homegrown chain specializes in breakfast, lunch and brunch dishes with unique local twists such as bananas Foster French toast and barbecue shrimp and grits. $$
CBD/Warehouse District H Merchant 800 Common St., 571-9580, MerchantNewOrleans.com. B, L daily. Illy coffee and creative crêpes, sandwiches and more are served at this sleek and contemporary café on the ground floor of the Merchant Building. $ Red Gravy 4125 Camp St., 561-8844, RedGravy.com. B, Br, L, Wed-Mon. Farmto-table Italian restaurant offers a creative array of breakfast items such as Cannoli Pancakes and Skillet Cakes, as well as delectable sandwiches and more for lunch. Homemade pastas and authentic Tuscan specialties round out the menu. $$
H Ruby Slipper Café 200 Magazine St., 525-9355; 1005 Canal St., 525-9355, TheRubySlipperCafe.net. B, L daily, Br Sun. Homegrown chain specializes in breakfast, lunch and brunch dishes with unique local twists such as bananas Foster French toast and barbecue shrimp and grits. $$
City Park Morning Call 56 Dreyfous Drive, City Park, 885-4068, NewOrleansCityPark.com/ in-the-park/morning-call. 24 hours a day; cash-only. Chicory coffee and beignets coated with powdered sugar make this the quintessential New Orleans coffee shop. $
Faubourg Marigny H Ruby Slipper Café 2001 Burgundy St., 525-9355, TheRubySlipperCafe.net. B, L daily, Br Sun. Homegrown chain specializes in breakfast, lunch and brunch dishes with unique local twists such as bananas Foster French toast and barbecue shrimp and grits. $$
Mid-City Gracious Bakery + Café 1000 S. Jeff Davis Parkway, Suite 100, 301-3709, GraciousBakery.com. B, L daily. Boutique bakery on the ground floor of the Woodward Building offers small-batch coffee, baked goods, individual desserts and sandwiches on breads made in-house. Catering options available. $
The Joint 701 Mazant St., 949-3232, AlwaysSmokin.com. L, D Mon-Sat. Some of the city’s best barbecue can be had at this locally owned and operated favorite. $
French Quarter BB King’s Blues Club 1104 Decatur St., 934-5464, BBKings.com/new-orleans. L, D daily. New Orleans outpost of music club named for the famed blues musician features a menu loaded with BBQ and southern-inspired specialties. Live music and late hours are a big part of the fun. $$$
Lower Garden District Voodoo BBQ 1501 St. Charles Ave., 522-4647, VoodooBBQAndGrill.com. L, D daily. Diners are never too far from this homegrown barbecue chain that features an array of specialty sauces to accompany its smoked meats and seafood. $$
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
DINING GUIDE Metairie Voodoo BBQ 2740 Severn Ave., 353-4227, VoodooBBQAndGrill.com. L, D daily. Diners are never too far from this homegrown barbecue chain that features an array of specialty sauces to accompany its smoked meats and seafood. $$
French Quarter Bayou Burger, 503 Bourbon St., 529-4256, SportsBarNewOrleans.com. L, D daily. Sports bar in the thick of Bourbon Street scene distinguishes its fare with choices like Crawfish Beignets and Gator Bites. $$ Port of Call 838 Esplanade Ave., 523-0120, PortOfCallNola.com. L, D daily. It is all about the big, meaty burgers and giant baked potatoes in this popular bar/restaurant – unless you’re cocktailing only, then it’s all about the Monsoons. $$
Lakeview Lakeview Harbor 911 Harrison Ave., 4864887. L, D daily. Burgers are the name of the game at this restaurant. Daily specials, pizza and steaks are offered as well. $
Riverbend H Cowbell 8801 Oak St., 298-8689, Cowbell-Nola.com. L, D Tue-Sat. Burgers and homemade sauces on potato rolls are the specialty here, along with other favorites like skirt steak. $$
Uptown H The Company Burger 4600 Freret St., 267-0320, TheCompanyBurger.com. L, D daily. Custom-baked butter-brushed buns and fresh-ground beef patties make all the difference at this excellent burger hotspot. Draft beer and craft cocktails round out the appeal. $
Faubourg St. John H Café Degas 3127 Esplanade Ave., 945-5635, CafeDegas.com. L, D Wed-Sat, Br Sun. Salad Niçoise, Hanger steak and frites are served in a lovely enclosed courtyard at this jewel of a French bistro. $$
Broussard’s, 819 Conti St., 581-3866, Broussards.com. D daily, Br Sun. CreoleFrench institution also offers beautiful courtyard seating. $$$$
H Marti’s 1041 Dumaine St., 522-5478, MartisNola.com. L Fri, D daily. Classic French cuisine, small plates and chilled seafood platters like Grand Plateau Fruits De Mer are the calling cards for this restaurant with an elegant “Old World” feel. $$$
Lacombe H La Provence 25020 Highway 190, (985) 626-7662, LaProvenceRestaurant. com. D Wed-Sun, Br Sun. Chef John Besh upholds time-honored Provençal cuisine and rewards his guests with a true farm-life experience, from house-made preserves, charcuterie, herbs, kitchen gardens and eggs cultivated on the property. $$$$$
Metairie Chateau du Lac 2037 Metairie Road, 8313773, ChateauduLacBistro.com. L Tue-Fri, D Mon-Sat. This casual French bistro, run by chef-owner Jacques Saleun, offers up classic dishes such as escargot, coq au vin and blanquette de veau. $$$$
Uptown Bistro Daisy 5831 Magazine St., 899-6987, BistroDaisy.com. D Tue-Sat. Chef Anton Schulte and his wife Diane’s bistro serves creative and contemporary bistro fare in a romantic setting. The signature Daisy Salad is a favorite. $$$$
H Coquette 2800 Magazine St., 265-0421, CoquetteNola.com. L Fri, D daily, Br Sun. The food is French in inspiration and technique, with added imagination from chef Michael and his partner Lillian Hubbard. $$$ Flaming Torch 737 Octavia St., 895-0900, FlamingTorchNola.com. L, D daily. French classics including a tasty onion soup and often a sought-after coq-au-vin. $$
H La Crêpe Nanou 1410 Robert St., 8992670, LaCrepeNanou.com. D daily, Br Sun. Classic French bistro fare, including terrific moules and decadent dessert crêpes, are served nightly at this neighborhood institution. $$$
La Petite Grocery 4238 Magazine St., 891-3377, LaPetiteGrocery.com. L Tue-Sat, D daily, Br Sun. Elegant dining in a convivial atmosphere. The menu is heavily French-inspired with an emphasis on technique. $$$ Lilette 3637 Magazine St., 895-1636, LiletteRestaurant.com. L Tue-Sat, D Mon-Sat. Chef John Harris’ innovative menu draws discerning diners to this highly regarded bistro. Desserts are wonderful as well. $$$$$
served as well. $$
Lower Garden District The Tasting Room 1906 Magazine St., 581-3880, TTRNewOrleans.com. D Tue-Sun. Flights of wine and sophisticated small plates are the calling cards for this wine bar near Coliseum Square. $$
Mid-City Trèo 3835 Tulane Ave., 304-4878, TreoNola.com. L Fri-Sat, D daily. Craft cocktail bar also serves a short but excellent small plates menu to accompany its artfully composed libations. $$
Abita Brew Pub 72011 Holly St., (985) 892-5837, AbitaBrewPub.com. L, D TueSun. Better-than-expected pub food in its namesake eatery. “Tasteful” tours available for visitors. $$
The Avenue Pub 1732 St. Charles Ave., 586-9243, TheAvenuePub.com. Kitchen open 24/7. With more than 43 rotating draft beers, this pub also offers food, including a cheese plate from St. James Cheese Co. and the “Pub Burger.” Counter service only. $
CBD/Warehouse District Gordon Biersch 200 Poydras St., 5522739, GordonBiersch.com. L, D daily. Local outpost of this popular chain serves specialty brews made on-site and crowdpleasing lunch and dinner fare. $$ Victory 339 Baronne St., 522-8664, VictoryNola.com. D daily. Craft cocktails served by owner and acclaimed bartender Daniel Victory, as well as refined small plates and gourmet pizza. $$
French Quarter H Cane & Table 1113 Decatur St., 581-1112, CaneAndTableNola.com. L Fri, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. Open late, this chefdriven rustic colonial cuisine and rum and “proto-Tiki” cocktails make this a fun place to gather. $$ Orleans Grapevine Wine Bar and Bistro 720 Orleans Ave., 523-1930, OrleansGrapevine.com. D daily. Wine is the muse at this beautifully renovated bistro, which offers vino by the flight, glass and bottle. A classic menu with an emphasis on local cuisine. $$$
H Patrick’s Bar Vin 730 Bienville St., 200-3180, PatricksBarVin.com. D daily. This oasis of a wine bar offers terrific selections by the bottle and glass. Small plates are
Bouligny Tavern 3641 Magazine St., 891-1810, BoulignyTavern.com. D Mon-Sat. Carefully curated small plates, inventive cocktails and select wines are the focus of this stylish offshoot of John Harris’s nationally acclaimed Lilette. $$ The Delachaise 3442 St. Charles Ave., 8950858, TheDelaichaise.com. D daily. Cuisine elevated to the standards of the libations is the draw at this lively wine bar and gastropub. Food is grounded in French bistro fare with eclectic twists. $$
Avondale H Mosca’s 4137 Highway 90 West, 4368950, MoscasRestaurant.com. D Tue-Sat. Italian institution dishes out massive portions of great food, family-style. Good bets are the shrimp Mosca and chicken à la grande. Cash only. $$$
Bywater H Mariza 2900 Charters St., 598-5700, MarizaNewOrleans.com. D Tue-Sat. An Italian-inspired restaurant by chef Ian Schnoebelen features a terrific raw bar, house-cured charcuterie and an array of
New Lunch at Balise
Balise, 640 Carondelet St., 459-4449, BaliseNola.com Balise, the Central-Business District restaurant run by awardwinning chef Justin Devillier and his wife Mia, is offering a new lunch menu served Tuesdays through Fridays. Lunch is a more casual affair than dinner, with sandwiches, a cheeseburger and several salads on offer. However, some of the most favored dishes from the dinner menu, such as Baked Rigatoni with Beef Cheek Ragu are also available. Devillier was named Best Chef: South in the 2016 James Beard Foundation Restaurant and Chef Awards, and the kitchen and bar in his CBD location continue to receive welldeserved national and international acclaim. – By Mirella Cameran 96
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refined adult beverages served in the industrial/contemporary setting on the ground floor of the Rice Mills lofts. $$$
CBD/Warehouse District H Domenica The Roosevelt Hotel, 123 Baronne St., 648-6020, DomenicaRestaurant.com. L, D daily. Chef Alon Shaya serves authentic, regional Italian cuisine. The menu of thin, lightly topped pizzas, artisanal salumi and cheese, and a carefully chosen selection of antipasti, pasta and entrées features locally raised products, some from chef John Besh’s Northshore farm. $$$$ Tommy’s Cuisine 746 Tchoupitoulas St., 581-1103, TommysNewOrleans.com. D daily. Classic Creole-Italian cuisine is the name of the game at this upscale eatery. Appetizers include the namesake oysters Tommy, baked in the shell with Romano cheese, pancetta and roasted red pepper. $$$$$
French Quarter Café Giovanni 117 Decatur St., 529-2154, CafeGiovanni.com. D daily. Live opera singers three nights a week. A selection of Italian specialties tweaked with a Creole influence and their Belli Baci happy hour adds to the atmosphere. $$$$ Chartres House, 601 Chartres St., 5868383, ChartresHouse.com. L, D daily. This iconic French Quarter bar serves terrific Mint Juleps and Gin Fizzes in its picturesque courtyard and balcony settings. Also
famous for its fried green tomatoes and other local favorite dishes. $$$
as barbecue oysters, blackened redfish and double-chocolate bread pudding. $$$$$
Irene’s Cuisine 539 St. Philip St., 5298881. D Mon-Sat. Long waits at the lively piano bar are part of the appeal of this Creole-Italian favorite beloved by locals. Try the oysters Irene and crabmeat gratin appetizers. $$$$
Arnaud’s Remoulade 309 Bourbon St., 523-0377, Remoulade.com. L, D daily. Granite-topped tables and an antique mahogany bar are home to the eclectic menu of famous shrimp Arnaud, red beans and rice and poor boys as well as specialty burgers, grilled all-beef hot dogs and thincrust pizza. $$
H Italian Barrel 430 Barracks St., 5690198, ItalianBarrel.com. L, D daily. Northern Italian dishes like Braciola di Maiale as well as an exhaustive pasta menu tempt here at this local favorite that also offers al fresco seating. $$$ Muriel’s Jackson Square 801 Chartres St., 568-1885, Muriels.com. L, D daily, Br SatSun. Enjoy pecan-crusted drum and other local classics while dining in the courtyard bar or any other room in this labyrinthine, rumored-to-be-haunted establishment. $$$$ Napoleon House 500 Chartres St., 5249752, NapoleonHouse.com. L Mon-Sat, D Tue-Sat. Originally built in 1797 as a respite for Napoleon, this family-owned Europeanstyle café serves local favorites gumbo, jambalaya and muffulettas, and for sipping, a Sazerac or lemony Pimm’s Cup are perfect accompaniments. $$ Ralph Brennan’s Red Fish Grill 115 Bourbon St., 598-1200, RedFishGrill.com. L, D daily. Chef Austin Kirzner cooks up a broad menu peppered with local favorites such
H R’evolution 777 Bienville St., 553-2277, RevolutionNola.com. L Fri, D daily, Br Sun. An opulent place that combines the local flavors of chef John Folse with the more cosmopolitan influence of chef Rick Tramonto. Chef de cuisine Chris Lusk and executive sous chef Erik Veney are in charge of day-to-day operations, which include house-made charcuterie, pastries, pastas and more. $$$$$
harahan Oak Oven 6625 Jefferson Highway, Harahan, 305-4039, OakOvenRestaurant.com. L, D Mon-Sat. Wood-fired pizza and seasonal Italian cuisine with a locavore philosophy brings respite to the burbs. Family friendly with patio seating to boot. $$
Metairie H Andrea’s Restaurant 3100 19th St., 834-8583, AndreasRestaurant.com. L MonSat, D daily, Br Sun. Osso buco and homemade pastas in a setting that’s both elegant and intimate; off-premise catering. $$$
Semolina 4436 Veterans Blvd., Suite 37, 454-7930, Semolina.com. L, D daily. This casual, contemporary pasta restaurant takes a bold approach to cooking Italian food, emphasizing flavors, texture and color. Many of the dishes feature a signature Louisiana twist, such as the muffuletta pasta and pasta jambalaya. $$ Vincent’s Italian Cuisine 4411 Chastant St., 885-2984, Metairie, VicentsItalianCuisine.com. L Tue-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Snug Italian boîte packs them in, yet manages to remain intimate at the same time. The cannelloni is a house specialty. $$$
Mid-City H Liuzza’s 3636 Bienville St., 482-9120, Liuzzas.com. L, D daily. Classic neighborhood joint serves favorites like the “Frenchuletta,” stuffed artichokes and andouille gumbo. Kid’s menu offered. $$ Ralph’s On The Park 900 City Park Ave., 488-1000, RalphsOnThePark.com. Br Sun, L Tue-Fri, D daily. A modern interior and contemporary Creole dishes such as City Park salad, turtle soup, barbecue Gulf shrimp and good cocktails. $$$$
NORTHSHORE H Del Porto Ristorante 501 E. Boston St., (985) 875-1006, DelPortoRistorante.com. L, D Tue-Sat. One of the Northshore’s premier fine dining destinations serving Italian food that makes use of locally sourced meats and produce. $$$
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
DINING GUIDE Uptown Amici 3218 Magazine St., 300-1250, AmiciNola.com. L, D daily. Coal-fired pizza is the calling card for this destination, but the menu offers an impressive list of authentic and Creole Italian specialties as well. $$ Pascal’s Manale 1838 Napoleon Ave., 895-4877, PascalsManale.com. L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Vintage neighborhood restaurant since 1913 and the place to go for the creation of barbecued shrimp. Its oyster bar serves icy cold, freshly shucked Louisiana oysters and the Italian specialties and steaks are also solid. $$$$ Vincent’s Italian Cuisine 7839 St. Charles Ave., 866-9313, VicentsItalianCuisine. com. L Tue-Fri, D Tue-Sun. Snug Italian boîte packs them in yet manages to remain intimate at the same time. The cannelloni is a house specialty. $$$
BaliseNola.com. L Tue-Fri, D daily, Br SatSun. Chef Justin Devillier turns back the clock at this turn-of-the-century inspired bistro in the CBD. Decidedly masculine fare – think beef tartare with horseradish and pumpernickel – is carefully crafted and fits well alongside the excellent cocktail and beer list. $$$ Bon Ton Cafe 401 Magazine St., 524-3386, TheBonTonCafe.com. L, D Mon-Fri. A local favorite for the old-school business lunch crowd specializing in local seafood and Cajun dishes. $$$$ Café Adelaide Loews New Orleans Hotel, 300 Poydras St., 595-3305, CafeAdelaide. com. B, L Mon-Fri, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. This offering from the Commander’s Palace family of restaurants has become a powerlunch favorite for business-people and politicos. Also features the Swizzle Stick Bar. $$$$
H Cochon 930 Tchoupitoulas St.,
568-0245, AnnunciationRestaurant.com. D Mon-Sat, Br Sun. Chef Steven Manning brings a refined sensibility to this refined Warehouse District oasis along with his famous fried oysters with melted brie. $$$
588-2123, CochonRestaurant.com. L, D, Mon-Sat. Chefs Donald Link and Stephen Stryjewski showcase Cajun and Southern cuisine at this hot spot. Boudin and other pork dishes reign supreme here, along with Louisiana seafood and real moonshine from the bar. Reservations strongly recommended. $$
Balise 640 Carondelet St., 459-4449,
Drago’s Hilton Riverside Hotel, 2 Poydras
CBD/Warehouse District H Annunciation 1016 Annunciation St.,
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
St., 584-3911, DragosRestaurant.com. L, D daily. This famous seafooder specializes in charbroiled oysters, a dish they invented. Great deals on fresh lobster as well. $$$$ Emeril’s 800 Tchoupitoulas St., 528-9393, EmerilsRestaurants.com. L Mon-Fri, D daily. The flagship of superstar chef Emeril Lagasse’s culinary empire, this landmark attracts pilgrims from all over the world. $$$$$
H Herbsaint 701 St. Charles Ave., 5244114, Herbsaint.com. L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Enjoy a sophisticated cocktail before sampling chef Donald Link’s menu that melds contemporary bistro fare with classic Louisiana cuisine. The banana brown butter tart is a favorite dessert. $$$$$ Mother’s 401 Poydras St., 523-9656, MothersRestaurant.net. B, L, D daily. Locals and tourists alike endure long queues and a confounding ordering system to enjoy iconic dishes such as the Ferdi poor boy and Jerry’s jambalaya. Come for a late lunch to avoid the rush. $$ Mulate’s 201 Julia St., 522-1492, Mulates. com. L, D daily. Live music and dancing add to the fun at this world-famous Cajun destination. $$
Central City Café Reconcile 1631 Oretha Castle Haley
Blvd., 568-1157, CafeReconcile.org. L Mon-Fri. Good food for a great cause, this nonprofit on the burgeoning OCH corridor helps train at-risk youth for careers in the food service industry. $$
Darrow Café Burnside Houmas House Plantation, 40136 Highway 942, (225) 473-9380, HoumasHouse.com. L daily, Br Sun. Historic plantation’s casual dining option features dishes such as seafood pasta, fried catfish, crawfish and shrimp, gumbo and red beans and rice. $$ Latil’s Landing Houmas House Plantation, 40136 Highway 942, (225) 473-9380, HoumasHouse.com. D Wed-Sun. Nouvelle Louisiane, plantation-style cooking served in an opulent setting features dishes like rack of lamb and plume de veau. $$$$$
Faubourg Marigny Feelings Cafe 2600 Chartres St., 446-0040, FeelingsCafe.com. D Tue-Sat, L Fri. Romantic ambiance and skillfully created dishes, such as veal d’aunoy, make dining here on the patio a memorable experience. A piano bar on Fridays adds to the atmosphere. Vegan menu offered. $$$$ Horn’s 1940 Dauphine St., Marigny, 4594676, HornsNola.com. B, L daily, D Thu-Sun. This casual, eclectic watering hole offers offbeat twists on classics (the Jewish Coon-
ass features latkes to go with the crawfish etouffée) as well as the usual breakfast and lunch diner fare. $ Praline Connection 542 Frenchmen St., 943-3934, PralineConnection.com. L, D daily. Down-home dishes of smothered pork chops, greens, beans and cornbread are on the menu at this Creole soul restaurant. $$
French Quarter Acme Oyster House 724 Iberville St., 5225973, AcmeOyster.com. L, D daily. Known as one of the best places to eat oysters. $$
H Arnaud’s 813 Bienville St., 523-5433, ArnaudsRestaurant.com. D daily, Br Sun. Waiters in tuxedos prepare Café Brûlot tableside at this storied Creole grande dame; live jazz during Sun. brunch. $$$$$ Antoine’s 713 St. Louis St., 581-4422, Antoines.com. L, D Mon-Sat, Br Sun. This pinnacle of haute cuisine and birthplace of oysters Rockefeller is New Orleans’ oldest restaurant. (Every item is à la carte, with an $11 minimum.) Private dining rooms available. $$$$$
H The Bistreaux New Orleans Maison Dupuy Hotel, 1001 Toulouse St., 586-8000, MaisonDupuy.com/dining.html. B, L, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. Dishes ranging from the casual (truffle mac and cheese) to the upscale (tuna tasting trio) are served in an elegant courtyard. $$ The Bombay Club Prince Conti Hotel, 830
Conti St., 577-2237, TheBombayClub.com. D daily. Popular martini bar with plush British décor features live music during the week and late dinner and drinks on weekends. Nouveau Creole menu includes items such as Bombay drum. $$$$
Tradition counts for everything here, and the crabmeat Sardou is delicious. Note: Jackets required for dinner and all day Sun. $$$$$
relaxing bar featuring an innovative menu with dishes like Crawfish, Jalapeno-andBacon Mac and Cheese garnished with fried oysters. Live music a plus. $$$
Café Maspero 601 Decatur St., 523-6250, CafeMaspero.com. L, D daily. Tourists line up for their generous portions of seafood and large deli sandwiches. $
House of Blues 225 Decatur St., 310-4999, HouseOfBlues.com/NewOrleans. L, D daily. Surprisingly good menu complements music in the main room. World-famous Gospel Brunch every Sunday. Patio seating available. $$
Court of Two Sisters 613 Royal St., 522-7261, CourtOfTwoSisters.com. Br, D daily. The historic environs make for a memorable outdoor dining experience. The famous daily Jazz Brunch buffet and classic Creole dishes sweeten the deal. $$$$$
Killer Poboys 811 Conti St., 252-6745, KillerPoboys.blogspot.com. L, D Wed-Mon. This quasi-popup operating out of the Erin Rose Bar serves some of the city’s best poor boys, including one featuring glazed pork belly. $
Royal House, 441 Royal St., 528-2601, RoyalHouseRestaurant.com. L, D daily. B Sat and Sun. Poor boys, jambalaya and shrimp Creole are some of the favorites served here. Weekend breakfast and an oyster bar add to the crowd-pleasing appeal. $$$
Criollo Hotel Monteleone, 214 Royal St., 681-4444, CriolloNola.com. B, L, D daily. Next to the famous Carousel Bar in the historic Monteleone Hotel, Criollo represents an amalgam of the various cultures reflected in Louisiana cooking and cuisine, often with a slight contemporary twist. $$$
K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen 416 Chartres St., 596-2530, ChefPaul.com/KPaul. L ThuSat, D Mon-Sat. Paul Prudhomme’s landmark restaurant helped introduce Cajun food to a grateful nation. Lots of seasoning and bountiful offerings, along with reserved seating, make this a destination for locals and tourists alike. $$$$
H Dickie Brennan’s Bourbon House 144 Bourbon St., 522-0111, BourbonHouse. com. B, L, D daily, Br Sun. Classic Creole dishes such as redfish on the halfshell and baked oysters served. Its extensive bourbon menu will please aficionados. $$$$
NOLA 534 St. Louis St., 522-6652, EmerilsRestaurants.com/Nola-Restaurant. L Thu-Mon, D daily. Emeril’s more affordable eatery, featuring cedar-plank-roasted redfish; private dining. $$$$$
Galatoire’s 209 Bourbon St., 525-2021, Galatoires.com. L, D Tue-Sun. Friday lunches are a New Orleans tradition at this world-famous French-Creole grand dame.
Richard Fiske’s Martini Bar & Restaurant, 301 Dauphine St., 586-0972, RichardFiskes.com. B, Bar Lunch daily. Just a few steps off of Bourbon Street you can find this
SoBou 310 Chartres St., 552-4095, SoBouNola.com. B, L, D daily. There is something for everyone at this “Modern Creole Saloon.” Decidedly unstuffy with an emphasis on craft cocktails and wines by the glass. Everything from $1 pork cracklins to an extravagant foie gras burger on accomplished yet eclectic menus. $$
H Tableau 616 S. Peter St., 934-3463, TableauFrenchQuarter.com. B Mon-Fri, L Mon-Sat, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. Gulf seafood such as trout amandine and classic Creole brunch dishes like eggs Sardou are the highlights of this Dickie Brennan restaurant that shares space with Le Petite Théâtre on the corner of Jackson Square. $$$
H Tujague’s 823 Decatur St., 525-8676, TujaguesRestaurant.com. L, D daily, Br SatSun. For more than 150 years this landmark restaurant has been offering Creole cuisine. Favorites include a nightly six-course table d’hôté menu featuring a unique beef brisket with Creole sauce. $$$$$
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Kenner Copeland’s 1319 W. Esplanade Ave., 6179146, CopelandsofNewOrleans.com. L, D daily, Br Sun. Al Copeland’s namesake chain includes favorites such as Shrimp Ducky. Popular for lunch. $$
Lakeview H Cava 789 Harrison Ave., 304-9034. D daily. Fine dining (and excellent wine list) at this high-end Cajun and Creole restaurant that makes customer service a big part of the experience. $$$
Metairie/Jefferson Acme Oyster House 3000 Veterans Blvd., 309-4056, AcmeOyster.com. L, D daily. Known as one of the best places to eat oysters. $$ Austin’s 5101 W. Esplanade Ave., 8885533, AustinsNo.com. D Mon-Sat. Mr. Ed’s upscale bistro serves contemporary Creole fare, including seafood and steaks. $$$ Copeland’s 1001 S. Clearview Parkway, 620-7800; 701 Veterans Blvd., 831-3437, CopelandsofNewOrleans.com. L, D daily, Br Sun. Al Copeland’s namesake chain includes favorites such as Shrimp Ducky. Popular for lunch. $$
Spot local and national politicos dining at this favored Creole soul restaurant known for homey classics like fried chicken and trout Baquet. $
H Mandina’s 3800 Canal St., 482-9179, MandinasRestaurant.com. L, D daily. Though the ambiance is more upscale, the food and seafood dishes make dining here a New Orleans experience. $$
H Toups’ Meatery 845 N. Carrollton Ave., 252-4999, ToupsMeatery.com. L, D Tue-Sat. Charcuterie, specialty cocktails and an exhaustive list of excellent à la carte sides make this restaurant a carnivore’s delight. $$$
Upper 9th Ward St. Roch Market 2381 St. Claude Ave., 615-6541, StRochMarket.com. B, L, D daily. Beautiful restoration of historic St. Claude Marketplace with open dining space houses a broad collection of independent eateries including craft cocktails and more. $$
NORTHSHORE Acme Oyster House 1202 N. Highway 190, Covington, (985) 246-6155, AcmeOyster. com. L, D daily. Known as one of the best places to eat oysters. $$
Crabby Jack’s 428 Jefferson Highway, 833-2722, CrabbyJacksNola.com. L Mon-Sat. Lunch outpost of Jacques-Imo’s. Famous for its fried seafood and poor boys including fried green tomatoes and roasted duck. $
Gallagher’s Grill 509 S. Tyler St., (985) 892-9992, GallaghersGrill.com. L, D TueSat. Chef Pat Gallagher’s destination restaurant offers al fresco seating to accompany classically inspired New Orleans fare. Event catering offered. $$$
Drago’s 3232 N. Arnoult Road, 888-9254, DragosRestaurant.com. L, D Mon-Sat. This famous seafooder specializes in charbroiled oysters, a dish they invented. Great deals on fresh lobster as well. $$$$
Riverbend H Boucherie 1506 S. Carrollton Ave.,
Mid-City H Katie’s Restaurant and Bar 3701 Iberville St., 488-6582, KatiesInMidCity.com. L, D Mon-Sat, Br Sun. Creative poor boys, local dishes such as gumbo and Sunday brunch make this a neighborhood favorite. $$ Lil’ Dizzy’s Café 1500 Esplanade Ave., 5698997, LilDizzysCafe.com. B, L daily, Br Sun.
862-5514, Boucherie-Nola.com. L Tue-Sat, D Mon-Sat, Br Sun. Serving contemporary Southern food with an international angle, chef Nathaniel Zimet offers excellent ingredients presented simply. $$ Brigtsen’s 723 Dante St., 861-7610, Brigtsens.com. D Tue-Sat. Chef Frank Brigtsen’s nationally famous Creole cuisine makes this cozy cottage a true foodie destination. $$$$$
Uptown H Apolline 4729 Magazine St., 894-8881,
ApollineRestaurant.com. D Tue-Sun, Br Sat-Sun. Cozy gem serves a refined menu of French and Creole classics peppered with Southern influences such as buttermilk fried quail with corn waffle. $$$ Casamento’s 4330 Magazine St., 895-9761, CasamentosRestaurant.com. L Thu-Sat, D Thu-Sun. The family-owned restaurant has shucked oysters and fried seafood since 1919; closed during summer and for all major holidays. $$ Clancy’s 6100 Annunciation St., 895-1111, ClancysNewOrleans.com. L Thu-Fri, D MonSat. Their Creole-inspired menu has been a favorite of locals for years. $$$ Commander’s Palace 1403 Washington Ave., 899-8221, CommandersPalace.com. L Mon-Fri, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. The grande dame is going strong under the auspices of James Beard Award-winner chef Tory McPhail. Jazz Brunch is a great deal. $$$$ Dick and Jenny’s 4501 Tchoupitoulas St., 894-9880, DickAndJennys.com. D Mon-Sat. A funky cottage serving Louisiana comfort food with flashes of innovation. $$$$ Domilise’s 5240 Annunciation St., 899912. L, D Mon-Sat. Local institution and riteof-passage for those wanting an initiation to the real New Orleans. Wonderful poor boys and a unique atmosphere make this a one-of-a-kind place. $
H Gautreau’s 1728 Soniat St., 899-7397, GautreausRestaurant.com. D Mon-Sat. Upscale destination serves refined interpretations of classics along with contemporary creations. $$$$$ Jacques-Imo’s Cafe 8324 Oak St., 8610886, Jacques-Imos.com. D Mon-Sat. Reinvented New Orleans cuisine served in a party atmosphere. The deep-fried roast beef poor boy is delicious. The lively bar scene offsets the long wait on weekends. $$$$ Joey K’s 3001 Magazine St., 891-0997, JoeyKsRestaurant.com. L, D Mon-Sat. A true neighborhood restaurant with daily lunch plates; red beans and rice are classic. $
Mahony’s 3454 Magazine St., 899-3374, MahonysPoBoys.com. L, D daily. Along with the usual poor boys, this sandwich shop serves up a grilled shrimp and fried green tomato version dressed with remoulade sauce. Sandwich offerings are augmented by a full bar. $ Mat & Naddie’s 937 Leonidas St., 8619600, MatAndNaddies.com. D Mon-Tue, Thu-Sat. Cozy converted house serves up creative and eclectic regionally inspired fare. Shrimp and crawfish croquettes make for a good appetizer and when the weather is right the romantic patio is the place to sit. $$$$
WEST BANK Copeland’s 2333 Manhattan Blvd., 3641575, CopelandsofNewOrleans.com. L, D daily, Br Sun. Al Copeland’s namesake chain includes favorites such as Shrimp Ducky. Popular for lunch. $$
Reginelli’s Pizzeria Multiple Locations, Reginellis.com. L, D daily. Pizzas, pastas, salads, fat calzones and lofty focaccia sandwiches are at locations all over town. $$ Theo’s Pizza Multiple Locations, TheosPizza.com. L, D daily. The crackercrisp crust pizzas are complemented by a broad assortment of toppings with a lot of local ingredients at cheap prices. $$
Bywater H Pizza Delicious 617 Piety St., 676-8482, PizzaDelicious.com. L, D Tue-Sun. Authentic New York-style thin crust pizza is the reason to come to this affordable restaurant that began as a pop-up, but they also offer excellent salads sourced from small farms and homemade pasta dishes as well. Outdoor seating a plus. $
Uptown H Ancora 4508 Freret St., 324-1636, AncoraPizza.com. D daily. Authentic Neapolitan-style pizza fired in an oven imported from Naples. The housemade charcuterie makes it a double-winner. $$
The New Feelings Marigny Café, Bar & Courtyard Lounge, 535 Franklin Ave., 446-0040, FeelingsCafeBar.com A true neighborhood bar is a place that captures the color and culture of its community. The New Feelings Café, Bar and Courtyard Lounge, located in the heart of Marigny, is one such treasure. Recently renovated by new owner and local Craig Trentecosta, its courtyard has been updated into a comfortable lounging environment and its restaurant has original local artwork. With new executive chef Scott Maki overseeing fresh bar and dining room menus, it’s ideal for a drink or dinner. It is also fast becoming popular with brides and bachelorettes. – By Mirella Cameran 100
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Pizza Domenica 4933 Magazine St., 301-4978, PizzaDomenica.com. L Fri-Sun, D daily. James Beard Award Winning Chef Alon Shaya’s pizza centric spinoff of his popular Restaurant Domenica brings Neapolitan-style pies to Uptown. Excellent salads and charcuterie boards are offered as well. $$ Slice 1513 St. Charles Ave., 525-PIES (7437); 5538 Magazine St., 897-4800; SlicePizzeria.com. L, D daily. Order up slices or whole pizza pies done in several styles (thin- and thick-crust) as well as pastas, seafood, panini and salads. $
Middendorf’s Interstate 55, Exit 15, 30160 Highway 51 South, (985) 386-6666, MiddendorfsRestaurant.com. L, D Wed-Sun. Historic seafood destination along the shores of Lake Maurepas is world-famous for its thin-fried catfish fillets. Open since 1934, it’s more than a restaurant, it’s a Sun. drive tradition. $$
CBD/Warehouse District H Borgne 601 Loyola Ave., 613-3860, BorgneRestaurant.com. L, D daily. Coastal Louisiana seafood with an emphasis on Isleños cuisine (descendants of Canary Islanders who settled in St. Bernard Parish) is the focus of this high-volume destination adjacent to the Superdome. $$$
H Pêche 800 Magazine St., 522-1744, PecheRestaurant.com. L, D Mon-Sat. Award-winning southern-inspired seafood destination by chef Donald Link serves whole roasted Gulf fish from its massive, wood-burning oven. An excellent raw bar is offered as well. $$$ Sac-A-Lait 1051 Annunciation St., 3243658, Sac-A-LaitRestaurant.com. D TueSat, L Fri. Cody and Sam Carroll’s shrine to Gulf Coast and Louisiana culinary heritage melds seafood, game, artisan produce, and craft libations in an ambitious menu that celebrates local and southern cuisine. The striking buildout in the Cotton Mill lofts adds to the appeal. $$$$
French Quarter Bourbon House 144 Bourbon St., 5220111, BourbonHouse.com. B, L, D daily, Br Sun. Local seafood, featured in both classic and contemporary dishes, is the focus of this New Orleans-centric destination. And yes, bourbon is offered as well. $$$ Crazy Lobster 500 Port of New Orleans Place, Suite 83, 569-3380, TheCrazyLobster.com. L, D daily. Boiled seafood and festive atmosphere come together at this seafood-centric destination overlooking the Mississippi River. Outdoor seating a plus. $$$ Creole Cookery 508 Toulouse St., Suite C110, 524-9632, NewOrleansCreoleCookery.com. L, D daily. Crowd-pleasing destination in the French Quarter offers
an expansive menu of Creole favorites and specialty cocktails served with New Orleans flair. $$$ Deanie’s Seafood 841 Iberville St., 5811316, Deanies.com. L, D daily. Louisiana seafood, baked, broiled, boiled and fried is the name of the game. Try the barbecue shrimp or towering seafood platters. $$$
H GW Fins 808 Bienville St., 581-FINS (3467), GWFins.com. D daily. Owners Gary Wollerman and twice chef of the year Tenney Flynn provide dishes at their seasonal peak. On a quest for unique variety, menu is printed daily. $$$$$
H Kingfish 337 Charters St., 598-5005, KingfishNewOrleans.com. L, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. Regionally inspired seafood dishes with carefully sourced ingredients and southern influence is the focus at this chefdriven French Quarter establishment. $$$
raw is part of the draw. $$$ Oceana Grill 739 Conti St., 525-6002, OceanaGrill.com. B, L, D daily. Gumbo, poor boys and barbecue shrimp are served at this kid-friendly seafood destination. $$ Pier 424, 424 Bourbon St., 309-1574, Pier424SeafoodMarket.com. L, D daily. Seafood-centric restaurant offers long menu of traditional New Orleans fare augmented by unusual twists like “CajunBoiled” Lobster prepared crawfish-style in spicy crab boil. $$$
Kenner Mr. Ed’s Seafood and Italian Restaurant 910 W. Esplanade Ave., Suite A, 463-3030, AustinsNo.com. L, D Mon-Sat. Neighborhood restaurant specializes in seafood and Italian offerings such as stuffed eggplant and bell pepper. Fried seafood and sandwiches make it a good stop for lunch. $$
Le Bayou 208 Bourbon St., 525-4755, LeBayouRestaurant.com. L, D daily. Blackened redfish and Shrimp Ya-Ya are a just a few of the choices at this seafood-centric destination on Bourbon Street. Fried alligator is available for the more daring diner. $$$
Mr. Ed’s Oyster Bar & Fish House 512 Bienville St., 309-4848, MrEdsRestaurants. com/oyster-bar. L, D daily. A seafood lover’s paradise offering an array of favorites like shrimp Creole, crawfish etouffée, blackened redfish and more. An elaborate raw bar featuring gulf oysters both charbroiled and
Mr. Ed’s Oyster Bar & Fish House 3117 21st St., 833-6310, MrEdsRestaurants.com/ oyster-bar. L, D Mon-Sat. Seafood-centric eatery specializes in favorites like whole flounder, crabmeat au gratin and more. An oyster bar offering an array of raw and broiled bivalves adds to the appeal. $$$
Deanie’s Seafood 1713 Lake Ave., 8314141, Deanies.com. L, D daily. Louisiana seafood, baked, broiled, boiled and fried, is the name of the game. Try the barbecue shrimp or towering seafood platters. $$$
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
DINING GUIDE Mr. Ed’s Seafood and Italian Restaurant 1001 Live Oak St., 838-0022, AustinsNo. com. L, D Mon-Sat. Neighborhood restaurant specializes in seafood and Italian offerings such as stuffed eggplant and bell pepper. Fried seafood and sandwiches make it a good stop for lunch. $$
Mid-City Mr. Ed’s Oyster Bar & Fish House 301. N. Carrollton Ave., 872-9975, MrEdsRestaurants.com/oyster-bar. L, D daily. Latest outpost of local seafood chain features char-broiled oysters, seafood poor boys and other favorites such fried chicken and red beans and rice in a casual setting in Mid-City Market. $$
Uptown Frankie & Johnny’s 321 Arabella St., 2431234, FrankieAndJohnnys.net. L, D daily. Serves fried and boiled seafood along with poor boys and daily lunch specials. Kidfriendly with a game room to boot. $$ Mr. Ed’s Oyster Bar & Fish House 1327 St. Charles Ave., 267-0169, MrEdsRestaurants. com/oyster-bar. L, D daily. Outpost of local seafood chain serves Cajun and Creole classics in the Maison St. Charles Hotel. Favorites include Redfish Maison St. Charles, which features blackened redfish topped with crawfish etouffée. $$$
West End Landry’s Seafood 8000 Lakeshore Drive, West End, 283-1010, LandrysSeafood.com. L, D daily. Kid-friendly and popular seafood spot serves of heaping platters of fried shrimp, Gulf oysters, catfish and more. $$
CBD/Warehouse District H Besh Steak Harrah’s Casino, 8 Canal St., 533-6111, HarrahsNewOrleans.com. D daily. Acclaimed chef John Besh reinterprets the classic steakhouse with his signature contemporary Louisiana flair. $$$$$ Chophouse New Orleans 322 Magazine St., 522-7902, ChophouseNola.com. D daily. In addition to USDA prime grade aged steaks prepared under a broiler that reaches 1,700 degrees, Chophouse offers lobster, redfish and classic steakhouse sides. $$$
H Desi Vega’s Steakhouse 628 St. Charles Ave., 523-7600, DesiVegaSteaks.com. L Mon-Fri, D Tue-Sat. USDA Prime steaks form the base of this Mr. John’s offshoot overlooking Lafayette Square, but Italian specialties and a smattering of locally inspired seafood dishes round out the appeal. $$$
H La Boca 870 Tchoupitoulas St., 5258205, LaBocaSteaks.com. D Mon-Sat. This Argentine steakhouse specializes in cuts of meat along with pastas and wines. Specials include the provoleta appetizer and the Vacio flank steak. $$$ Morton’s The Steakhouse 365 Canal St., One Canal Place, 566-0221, Mortons.com/
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
NewOrleans. D daily. Private elevator leads to the plush, wood-paneled environs of this local outpost of the famed Chicago steakhouse popular with politicians and celebrities. $$$$ Ruth’s Chris Steak House Harrah’s Hotel, 525 Fulton St., 587-7099, RuthsChris.com. D daily, Br Sat-Sun. Filet mignon, creamed spinach and potatoes au gratin are the most popular dishes at this area steak institution, but there are also great seafood choices and top-notch desserts. $$$$$
Garden District H Mr. John’s Steakhouse 2111 St. Charles Ave., 679-7697, MrJohnsSteakhouse.com. D Tue-Sat, L Fri-Sat. Wood paneling, white tile and USDA Prime Beef served sizzling in butter are the hallmarks of this classic New Orleans steakhouse. $$$
French Quarter Dickie Brennan’s Steakhouse 716 Iberville St., 522-2467, DickieBrennansSteakhouse.com. L Fri, D daily. Nationally recognized steakhouse serves USDA Prime steaks and local seafood. $$$$$
H Doris Metropolitan 620 Chartres St., 267-3500, DorisMetropolitan.com. L Fri-Sun, D daily. Innovative, genre-busting steakhouse plays with expectations and succeeds with modernist dishes like their Classified Cut and Beetroot Supreme. $$$$ Galatoire’s 33 Bar & Steak 215 Bourbon St., 335-3932, Galatoires33BarAndSteak. com. L Fri, D Sun-Thu. Steakhouse offshoot of the venerable Creole grande dame offers hand-crafted cocktails to accompany classic steakhouse fare as well as inspired dishes like the Gouté 33: horseradish-crusted bone marrow and deviled eggs with crab ravigote and smoked trout. Reservations accepted. $$$
Metairie Ruth’s Chris Steak House 3633 Veterans Blvd., 888-3600, RuthsChris.com. L Fri, D daily. Filet mignon, creamed spinach and potatoes au gratin are the most popular dishes at this area steak institution, but there are also great seafood choices and top-notch desserts. $$$$$
Mid-City H Crescent City Steaks 1001 N. Broad St., 821-3271, CrescentCitySteaks.com. L Tue-Fri & Sun, D Tue-Sun. One of the classic New Orleans steakhouses. Steaks, sides and drinks are what you get. $$$$
Uptown Charlie’s Steak House 4510 Dryades St., 895-9323, CharliesSteakHouseNola.com. D Tues-Sat. This quintessential New Orleans neighborhood steak house serves up carnivorous delights including its 32-ounce T-Bone in a relaxed and unpretentious atmosphere. An upstairs dining room accommodates larger parties with ease. $$$
Vegan/Vegetarian Lower Garden District
H The Green Fork 1400 Prytania St., 2677672, GreenForkNola.com. B, L Mon-Sat. Fresh juices, smoothies and vegetarianfriendly fare make The Green Fork a favorite for lovers of healthy food. Catering is offered as well. $$
Byblos Multiple Locations, ByblosRestaurants.com. L, D daily. Upscale Middle Eastern cuisine featuring traditional seafood, lamb and vegetarian options. $$
Bywater The Green Goddess 307 Exchange Place, 301-3347, GreenGoddessRestaurant.com. L, D Wed-Sun. One of the most imaginative local restaurants. The menu is constantly changing, and chef Paul Artigues always has ample vegetarian options. Combine all of that with a fantastic selection of drinks, wine and beer, and it’s the total (albeit small) package. $$
CBD/Warehouse District Johnny Sanchez 930 Poydras St., 3046615, JohnnySanchezRestaurant.com. L, D daily. Contemporary Mexican mecca offering celebrity chef cachet to go along with the locally sourced produce accompanying the Bistec a la Parilla. Popular happy hour and downtown locale next to South Market District add to the appeal. $$$
H Lüke 333 St. Charles Ave., 378-2840, LukeNewOrleans.com. B, L, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. Chef John Besh and executive chef Matt Regan serve Germanic specialties and French bistro classics, house-made pâtés and abundant plateaux of cold, fresh seafood. $$$ Palace Café 605 Canal St., 523-1661, PalaceCafe.com. B, L, D daily. Dickie Brennan-owned brasserie with Frenchstyle sidewalk seating and house-created specialties of chef Darrin Nesbit. Favorites here include crabmeat cheesecake, turtle soup, the Werlein salad with fried Louisiana oysters and pork “debris” studded Palace potato pie. $$$$$
Faubourg Marigny H Mona’s Café 504 Frenchmen St., 9494115. L, D daily. Middle Eastern specialties such as baba ganuj, tender-tangy beef or chicken shawarma, falafel and gyros, stuffed into pillowy pita bread or on platters. The lentil soup with crunchy pita chips and desserts, such as sticky sweet baklava, round out the menu. $
Faubourg St. John H 1000 Figs 3141 Ponce De Leon St., 301-0848, 1000Figs.com. L, D Tue-Sat. Vegetarian-friendly offshoot of the Fat Falafel Food Truck offers a healthy farm-totable alternative to cookie-cutter Middle Eastern places. $$
French Quarter Bayona 430 Dauphine St., 525-4455, Bayona.com. L Wed-Sat, D Mon-Sat. Chef Susan Spicer’s nationally acclaimed cuisine is served in this 200-year-old cottage. Ask
for a seat on the romantic patio, weather permitting. $$$$$ El Gato Negro 81 French Market Place, 525-9752, ElGatoNegroNola.com. L, D daily. Central Mexican cuisine along with handmuddled mojitos and margaritas made with freshly squeezed juice. A weekend breakfast menu is an additional plus. $$
Kenner H Fiesta Latina 1924 Airline Drive, 4695792, FiestaLatinaRestaurant.com. B, L, D daily. A big-screen TV normally shows a soccer match or MTV Latino at this home for authentic Central American food. Tacos include a charred carne asada. $$
Lakewood H Mizado 5080 Pontchartrain Blvd., 885-5555, MizadoCocina.com. L daily, D Mon-Sat. Sleek restaurant offers modern Mexican cuisine featuring pan-Latin flavors and influences. Small batch tequila and a ceviche bar make it a party. $$
Lakeview H Mondo 900 Harrison Ave., 224-2633, MondoNewOrleans.com. L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sat, Br Sun. Chef Susan Spicer’s take on world cuisine. Make sure to call ahead because the place has a deserved reputation for good food and good times. $$$
METAIRIE Vega Tapas Café 2051 Metairie Road, 8362007, VegaTapasCafe.com. D Mon-Sat, Br Sun. Fun, eclectic small plates destination offers creative fare keeps guests coming back with frequent regionally inspired specialty menus served with humor and whimsy. $$
Mid-City Juan’s Flying Burrito 4724 S. Carrollton Ave., 486-9950, JuansFlyingBurrito.com. L, D daily. Hard-core tacos and massive burritos are served in an edgy atmosphere. $ Lola’s 3312 Esplanade Ave., 488-6946, LolasNewOrleans.com. D daily. Garlicky Spanish dishes and great paella make this artsy boîte a hipster destination. $$$
H Mona’s Café 3901 Banks St., 482-7743. L, D daily. Middle Eastern specialties such as baba ganuj, tender-tangy beef or chicken shawarma, falafel and gyros, stuffed into pillowy pita bread or on platters. The lentil soup with crunchy pita chips and desserts, such as sticky sweet baklava, round out the menu. $
H Taqueria Guerrero 208 N. Carrollton Ave., 484-6959. B, L, D, Tue-Sat. Friendly staff and authentic Mexican cuisine make this affordable neighborhood restaurant a neighborhood favorite. BYOB $
Upper 9th Ward Kebab , 2315 Saint Claude Ave., 383-4328, KebabNola.com. L, D Wed-Mon. The menu is short and tasty at this kebab outpost along the revitalized St. Claude Avenue corridor. $
Uptown H Café Abyssinia 3511 Magazine St., 894-
6238. L, D daily. One of a just few authentic Ethiopian restaurants in the city, excellent injera and spicy vegetarian fare make this a local favorite. $$
H Irish House 1432 St. Charles Ave., 595-6755, TheIrishHouseNewOrleans.com. L Mon-Fri, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. Irish pub dishes such as shepherd’s pie and fish and chips are featured here, as well as creative cocktails like Irish iced coffee. Check the schedule of events for live music. $$ Jamila’s Mediterranean Tunisian Cuisine 7808 Maple St., 866-4366. D Tue-Sun. Intimate and exotic bistro serving Mediterranean and Tunisian cuisine. The Grilled Merguez is a Jazz Fest favorite and vegetarian options are offered. $$ Juan’s Flying Burrito 2018 Magazine St., 569-0000, JuansFlyingBurrito.com. L, D daily. Hard-core tacos and massive burritos are served in an edgy atmosphere. $
H Panchita’s 1434 S. Carrollton Ave., 2814127. L, D daily. Authentic, budget-friendly Mexican restaurant serves tamales, mole and offers free chips and salsa as well as sangria. $
H Patois 6078 Laurel St., 895-9441, PatoisNola.com. L Fri, D Wed-Sat, Br Sun. The food is French in technique, with influences from across the Mediterranean as well as
the American South, all filtered through the talent of chef Aaron Burgau. Reservations recommended. $$$
H Shaya 4213 Magazine St., 891-4213, ShayaRestaurant.com. L, D daily. James Beard Award-winning chef Alon Shaya pays homage to his native Israel with this contemporary Israeli hotspot. Cauliflower Hummus and Matzo Ball Soup made with slow-cooked duck are dishes to try. $$$
Warehouse District Lucy’s 710 Tchoupitoulas St., 523-8995, LucysRetiredSurfers.com. L, D daily. the focus is on fun at this island-themed oasis with a menu that cherry-picks tempting dishes from across the globe’s tropical latitudes. Popular for lunch, and the after-work crowds stay well into the wee hours at this late-night hangout. $
Antoines.com/Antoines-Annex. Open daily. Serves French pastries, including individual baked Alaskas, ice cream and gelato, as well as panini, salads and coffee. Delivery available.
Metairie Sucré 3301 Veterans Blvd., 834-2277, ShopSucre.com. Desserts daily. Open late weekends. Chocolates, pastry and gelato draw rave reviews at this dessert destination. Beautiful packaging makes this a great place to shop for gifts. Catering available.
cheese specials every Friday. Sucré 3025 Magazine St., 520-8311, ShopSucre.com. Desserts daily & nightly. Open late weekends. Chocolates, pastry and gelato draw rave reviews at this dessert destination. Beautiful packaging makes this a great place to shop for gifts. Catering available. n
Mid-City H Blue Dot Donuts 4301 Canal St., 2184866, BlueDotDonuts.com. B, L Tue-Sun. The Bacon Maple Long John gets all the press, but returning customers are happy with the classics as well as twists like peanut butter and jelly.
CBD/Warehouse District Calcasieu 930 Tchoupitoulas St., 5882188, CalcasieuRooms.com. For gatherings both large and small, the catering menus feature modern Louisiana cooking and the Cajun cuisine for which chef Donald Link is justifiably famous.
French Quarter Antoine’s Annex 513 Royal St., 525-8045,
Blue Frog Chocolates 5707 Magazine St., 269-5707, BlueFrogChocolates.com. Open daily, closed Sundays in summer. French and Belgian chocolate truffles and Italian candy flowers make this a great place for gifts. St. James Cheese Company 5004 Prytania St., 899-4737, StJamesCheese. com. Open daily. Specialty shop offers a selection of fine cheeses, wines, beers and related accouterments. Look for wine and
If you feel that a restaurant has been misplaced, please email Managing Editor Morgan Packard at Morgan@ MyNewOrleans.com.
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
Dining & Entertainment
Amici Ristorante & Bar
Balise Bar & Parlour
AmiciNola.com 3218 Magazine St. 504-300-1250
ArnaudsRestaurant.com 813 Bienville Ave. 504-523-5433
BaliseNola.com 640 Carondelet St. 504-459-4449
In addition to delicious Italian food, pizzas and steaks, Amici serves brunch every Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Enjoy bottomless mimosas and bloody Marys with your favorite brunch dishes, such as Crab Cake Benedict served with jalapeno cheese grits.
Arnaud’s has been a New Orleans classic since 1918. Fourteen beautifully restored turn-of-the-century dining rooms and two private balconies can hold intimate gatherings to grand receptions (up to 220 guests). And the world-renowned French 75 Bar is the perfect meeting place before and after. Whatever the occasion, Arnaud’s delivers a quintessential New Orleans dining experience.
Balise is a tavern in the Central Business District, helmed by James Beard Award winner chef Justin Devillier. Set in a Creole townhouse, Balise evokes the bygone era with an old-world, New Orleans feel, featuring a menu and beverage program inspired by traditional Louisiana cuisine.
Boulevard American Bistro
Breads on Oak
BoulevardBistro.com 4241 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 504-889-2301
Broussards.com 819 Rue Conti St. 504-581-3866
BreadsOnOak.com 8640 Oak St. 504-324-8271
Boulevard is a Classic American Bistro offering simple, well composed dishes. General Manager Robert Hardie welcomes you to the casual yet sophisticated dining room with an all-day, à la carte menu. The large bar imparts the feeling of a favorite neighborhood bar, with an extensive wine list and handcrafted, specialty cocktails.
In a city that joyously celebrates fine dining as an art form, Broussard's has been a New Orleans fixture for nearly a century. Located in the heart of New Orleans’ venerable French Quarter, Broussard's offers chef Neal Swidler's creative contemporary renditions of classic Creole cuisine in a timeless historic setting.
Offering vegan treats, savory specials, and gluten-free options, Breads on Oak makes everything by hand from scratch, using only the best organic flours and non-GMO, non-dairy ingredients. Shipping is available for both traditional, adult and filled vegan King Cakes until Feb. 20.
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
The Court of Two Sisters
CafeBeignet.com 334 Royal St. 311 Bourbon St.
CaffeCaffe.com 4301 Clearview Pkwy. 504-885-4845 3547 North Hullen St. 504-267-9190
CourtOfTwoSisters.com 613 Royal St. 504-522-7261
Hot jazz and cool libations! Casual Cafes in the heart of the French Quarter serve made-to-order beignets and creole favorites. Live music. Sandwiches to pastries, these cafes cater to locals and visitors. New location opening late February at 600 Decatur St.
You love their delicious salads, sandwiches and soups for lunch – don’t forget to stop in for breakfast, too, at both Metairie locations of Caffe! Caffe! Enjoy bacon and egg breakfast sandwiches, creamy grits made from scratch daily, a variety of breakfast pastries and all of your favorite espresso beverages.
DINING & ENTERTAINMENT
The Court of Two Sisters, known for its large dining courtyard, serves a lavish daily Jazz Brunch buffet. Now serving appetizers at the Carriageway Bar. Enjoy Blackened Alligator or BBQ Shrimp while sipping cocktails at the bar! At night, choose from its à la carte dinner menu or a four- course dinner. Reservations recommended.
Dickie Brennan’s Tableau
TheCrazyLobster.com 500 Port of New Orleans Pl., Suite 83 504-569-3380
TableauFrenchQuarter.com 616 St. Peter St. 504-934-3463
HoshunRestaurant.com 1601 St. Charles Ave. 504-302-9717
Enjoy Riverside dining on the banks of the Mississippi River. Their signature dish is the Bounty of Sea, featuring a twopound Maine lobster, shrimp, crawfish, snow crab, clams, mussels, corn and potatoes. Listen to the sounds of live music featuring the best entertainment straight off Frenchmen Street. Visit them for Lundi Gras!
Tableau is excited to celebrate another Carnival season! Enjoy our King Cake Paris-Brest with praline cream cheese filling and happy hour daily 2-6 p.m. Join us as we kick off parades with Krewe du Vieux and throughout Mardi Gras!
Chinese or Japanese? Can’t decide? Hoshun is your answer! They offer an extensive menu from classic Chinese dishes to Japanese sushi and everything in between (like Vietnamese pho or pad Thai). Stick with one cuisine or mix and match! Open daily until 2 a.m.
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
Dining & Entertainment
New Orleans Creole Cookery
Crescent City Steakhouse
KatiesInMidCity.com 3701 Iberville St. 504-488-6582
NewOrleansCreoleCookery.com 510 Toulouse St. 504-524-9632
CrescentCitySteaks.com 1001 N. Broad St. 504-821-3271
A hollowed out Gendusa French loaf (the original New Orleans French bread), “the Legend” is stuffed with BBQ Shrimp and Cochon de Lait. Come in during Carnival and enjoy King Cake Doberge! Open for lunch and dinner Monday-Saturday and Sunday brunch.
Savor authentic Creole dishes prepared by chef John Trinh, formerly of Eleven 79. Delight in traditional dishes such as Gumbo, Shrimp Creole and Crawfish Etouffée as well as oysters grilled and raw, boiled seafood and more. Enjoy handcrafted cocktails and signature drinks in the historic French Quarter.
Crescent City Steakhouse is proud to serve seven generations of New Orleanians over the past 83 years serving only the finest aged prime beef cut in-house daily by chef Benard. Open for lunch and dinner Tuesday-Sunday, come see where the tourists meet the locals. Reservations recommended.
The All New Feelings Marigny Café & Courtyard Bar
Lafitte's Landing Seafood House
FeelingsCafeBar.com 535 Franklin Ave. 504-446-0040 The All New Feelings Marigny is a complete relaunch of the much beloved "Feelings Cafe." Under the guidance of new ownership and Executive Chef Scott Maki, everything has been completely transformed into one of the most absolutely charming neighborhood restaurants in the area. Chef Maki's emphasis on contemporary Creole-Louisiana fare is winning diners over from near and far. 106
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
FiveHappiness.com 3605 S. Carrollton Ave. 504-482-3935 Come to Five Happiness and let the ambience and friendly staff take you to a new level of dining experience. This award-winning restaurant always strives to achieve its best. Private party and banquet rooms are available.
LafittesLandingSeafoodHouse.com 1700 Lapalco Blvd., Harvey 504-252-9613 Now open until 10 p.m., seven days a week! Visit them on Saturday night for Steak Night, 12-ounce Ribeye with Loaded Baked Potato for $19.99! They are the home of the steamed seafood bucket and feature steamed seafood, fried seafood, pasta, steaks, fresh fish, soft shell crabs, duck and a pork porterhouse. You can also download their app for specials, deals and rewards!
Manning’s Eat - Drink - Cheer
LaPetiteGrocery.com 4238 Magazine St. 504-891-3377
ManningsNewOrleans.com 519 Fulton St. 504-593-8118
Located in a century-old building, La Petite Grocery is an Uptown restaurant with a storied history. Led by James Beard Award winner chef Justin Devillier, the restaurant’s menu features a creative spin on New Orleans cuisine with dishes like Turtle Bolognese and Blue Crab Beignets.
Manning’s Eat – Drink – Cheer offers a mouth-watering menu featuring the Classic Archie Burger made from 100% Louisiana ground beef and brisket – approved by Archie himself. Enjoy a cold beer from a selection of 24 draught beers. Located on Fulton Street minutes from the French Quarter. Lush courtyard.
Mulate's, The Original Cajun Restaurant
New Orleans Paddlewheels, Inc.
Orleans Grapevine Wine Bar & Bistro
Mulates.com 201 Julia St. 504-522-1492
CreoleQueen.com 365 Canal St., Suite 2350 504-529-4567 or 800-445-4109
OrleansGrapevine.com 720 Orleans Ave. 504-523-1930
Mulate's is famous for preserving and celebrating the food, music and culture found in the small towns and along the bayous of South Louisiana. Enjoy fresh seafood and local brews. Open at 11 a.m. daily and live Cajun music nightly.
Step back into the glamour and romance of the riverboat era with a cruise aboard the Paddlewheeler Creole Queen! Experience the lively sounds of the amazing Sullivan Dabney, Jr. and the Muzik Jazz Band while enjoying a lavish Creole Buffet in their elegantly appointed dining rooms.
Enjoy true New Orleans atmosphere in a beautiful, tropical courtyard. Serving high quality cuisine and one of the largest selections of wine by the bottle or by the glass. Don’t miss the popular Bacon Happy Hour, where you’ll enjoy free bacon with your cocktails and wine. 4-6 p.m. and 10 p.m.-midnight daily.
DINING & ENTERTAINMENT
La Petite Grocery
Mr. Ed's Oyster Bar & Fish House MrEdsRestaurants.com 301 N. Carrollton Ave. 504-872-9975 Lunch and dinner Monday-Sunday. Mr. Ed's Oyster Bar & Fish House is NOW OPEN in Mid-City on the corner of Carrollton and Bienville. Fried and grilled oyster favorites can also be found at the Metairie, French Quarter and St. Charles locations.
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
Dining & Entertainment
Parkway Bakery & Tavern
Ralph Brennan Catering
ParkwayPoorBoys.com 538 Hagan Ave. 504-482-3047
PascalsManale.com 1838 Napoleon Ave. 504-895-4877
Voted "Best Po’ Boy in Louisiana" by USA Today’s 10 Best, Parkway Bakery & Tavern is the oldest poor boy shop in New Orleans, overlooking the historic Bayou St. John in Mid-City. Come enjoy one of Parkway’s legendary poor boys in the restaurant, covered patio or classic New Orleans bar.
This famous restaurant has been family-owned and operated since 1913. Pascal’s Manale is the origin of the well known Bar-B-Que Shrimp. The old-time oyster and cocktail bars offer raw oysters on the half shell and all types of cocktails, as well as a great selection of fine wines. Fresh seafood, Italian dishes and delicious steaks are featured.
The Ruby Slipper
RedGravyCafe.com 125 Camp St. 504-561-8844
TheRubySlipperCafe.net Mid-City, Marigny, CBD, French Quarter, Uptown, Pensacola, FL, Orange Beach, AL 504-525-9355
Red Gravy is Open Table’s 2016 No. 1 Best Brunch spot in New Orleans! Try the Skillet Cake of the day or any of their other scratch-made dishes made with local, fresh ingredients. Open WednesdayMonday 8 a.m.-2 p.m.
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
The Ruby Slipper adds New Orleans flair to Southern breakfast standards, brunch classics and fresh lunch specials. The Ruby Slipper Mimosa and award-winning Bacon Bloody Mary are perfect complements to Eggs Cochon, Bananas Foster Pain Perdu or BBQ Shrimp & Grits. Named Best New Restaurant, Best Sunday Brunch and Best Bloody Mary in the Pensacola News Journal.
New Orleans' premier caterer for groups from 100 to 1,200 people! Let them match your palate, theme and budget in your home, restaurant, or venue of your choice. They are dedicated to servicing a seamless, professional and above all memorable experience.
South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival SoWalWine.com Grand Boulevard at Sandestin, Miramar Beach, FL April 27-30, 2017: South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival offers a dazzling array of more than 800 wines, on-going wine tastings with dozens of celebrity winemakers on hand to talk about their wines, food tastings, tasting seminars, live entertainment and special features including Spirits Row and Champagne Lane. Where wine, charity and fun converge!
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
1. Cristy's Collection CristyCali.com 504-407-5041 The Fleur de Knot Collection is a symbol of the complicated and interwinding love between two people, with a local twist. Literally. The fleur de lis represents New Orleans and the lily flower. And love blossoms just like flowers do. What better representation of love than the Fleur de Knot?
2. Yvonne LaFleur YvonneLaFleur.com 8131 Hampson St. 504-866–9666 Yvonne LaFleur has gifts for every woman on your holiday list. Each year she extends special shopping evenings from 6 to 8 on Thursdays between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Enjoy champagne, models and expert assistance in selecting gowns and presents complimentary gift-wrapped. Gift selections include Yvonne LaFleur signature fragrance products, furs, cashmere sweaters, lingerie, formal gowns, jewelry, handbags and scarves
3. Good Feet® OrleansShoes.com 539 Bienville St., French Quarter 504-875-2929 2109 Magazine St., Uptown 504-309-7702 3000 Severn Ave., Metairie 504-888-7080 Find relief from foot, leg and back pain this holiday season with Good Feet® orthotics and popular comfort shoe brands such as Naot, Birkenstock, Brooks, New Balance, Dansko, KEEN, Vionic and more. Complimentary personal consultations seven days a week.
4. Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort Sandestin.com/NOM 9300 Emerald Coast Parkway, Miramar Beach, FL 855-252-0570 From sunrise to sunset enjoy endless events and activities this spring at the No. 1 Resort on Florida’s Emerald Coast, Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort. Beach yoga, luaus, fireworks, concerts and more. Plan your Sandestin spring getaway and enjoy a free night! Visit Sandestin.com/NOM or call 855252-0570. 4
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
5. NOLA Boards NolaBoards.com 4304 Magazine St. 504-516-2601
This year give a gift that is handmade right here in New Orleans! NOLA Boards is now open at 4304 Magazine St., or visit them online. Pictured is The Carnival Board. All natural colors including Purple Heart, rare Yellow Heart and LA Sinker Cypress woods, no stains, only $80.
6. Fleur D’ Orleans FleurDOrleans.com 3701a Magazine St., 504-899-5585 818 Chartres St., 504-475-5254 Fleur D’ Orleans precious gemstone stone jewelry is unique: diamonds, tourmaline, rubies, blue sapphires, all in one-of-a-kind settings. Perfect for Valentines. Pictured here pink tourmaline and rose cut diamonds set in sterling and vermeil: $170 to $1,800.
7. Dr. Burkenstock’s Skin Body Health SkinBodyHealth.com 3841 Veterans Blvd., Metairie 2040 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville 504-208-9052 Be kissable! Luscious Lips by Dr. B! Enjoy naturallooking fuller lips with a quick office visit and no down time. Dr. Burkenstock PERSONALLY performs all injections. February Special: Lip filler and complimentary teeth whitening $349. (Value: $600)
8. QUEORK Queork.com 838 Chartres St., French Quarter 3005 Magazine St., Garden District 504-481-4910
This bag is function as much as it is form! Finally, a single strap Hobo style bag with a braided leather strap for slinging around your shoulder one handed! The interior features a wall zippered pocket and two open side pockets. $219.
9. Le Visage LeVisageDaySpaNola.com 8110 Hampson St. 504-265-8018
Osmosis is a holistic beauty and skin care line designed to optimize the skin and bodies rejuvenation process. Holistically taking aim at the origin of imbalances to impart real change by taking a multi-tiered approach, partnering with the skin to remodel without causing inflammation.
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
ADVERTISING SECTION 10. Natchitoches Convention & Visitors Bureau Natchitoches.com 780 Front St., Suite 100, Natchitoches 800-259-1714 Plan your Valentine's Getaway in one of the "Cutest Towns in the South!" Shop, play, eat and stay in Louisiana's oldest city. Boasting 25 B&Bs and 11 hotels, filled with charming historic sites, shopping, dining and a most romantic Mainstreet, Natchitoches is Louisiana's premiere couples escape!
11. AURALUZ ShopAuraluz.com 4408 Shores Drive, Metairie 504-888-3313 LAMPE BERGER ... the perfect Valentine's gift! It's both decorative and functional. Made in France for over 119 years, each Lampe Berger cleanses, purifies and fragrances the air with over 50 fragrances to choose from ... all available at AURALUZ.
12. R | D Home RazzleDazzle.com 2014 Magazine St. 504-523-9525 The Kristina Collection jewelry line is designed by artists from the US and the Czech Republic. It features handmade Czech and German glass beads and an open, floating memory wire design. The line includes a series of elegant necklaces, earrings, bracelets, rings and pins, which are available in a variety of colors.
13. Jaci Blue JaciBlue.com 2111 Magazine St. 504-603-2929 Jaci Blue specializes in difficult to find bra sizes with bra fitting experts always available. This hot raspberry bra set featuring contrasting sheer mesh with embroidery will spice up any Valentineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s plans. Bra $79 sizes 36DD-42HH brief $34 sizes M-3X.
14. Town & Country Bridal TownandCountryBridal.com 1514 St. Charles Ave. 504-523-7027
Town & Country offers a collection of fully customizable evening and cocktail jewelry by Los Gatos, CA design studio Haute Bride. Featuring all Swarovski elements, the personalization options are endless. Perfect for bridal, Carnival, date night, debutantes and more. Rose gold art deco post, $124.
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15. Symmetry Jewelers and Designers SymmetryJewelers.com 8138 Hampson St. 504-861-9925 Gallery artist at Symmetry since the early 1990s, James Carter's enamel work is award-winning and has influenced dozens of young artisans who have studied under him at his studios in Florida and North Carolina. His cloisonné enameled hearts make for special Valentine’s gifts.
16. The Gallery Salon and Spa (formerly My Spa By the Park) MySpaBythePark.com 6312 Argonne Blvd. 504-482-2219 Treat your partner to a full spa day or to any service for skin, hair and nails; or come in together for a romantic and relaxing couples massage with complimentary champagne, chocolates and your own private steam shower. Couples package starts at $220 for 50 minutes.
17. Newman-Dailey Resort Properties
DestinVacation.com Miramar Beach, FL 800-225-7652 Rekindle romance with a trip to the beach. Newman-Dailey Resort Properties is offering the Be Mine Valentine’s Day Package. Available with select Destin or South Walton vacation rentals, guests receive a bottle of champagne and onehour horseback ride for two at Arnette’s Gulfside Trail Rides.
18. Sugar Mountain SeeSugar.com Give the sweetest Valentine's Day gift of all with a trip to Sugar Mountain, North Carolina! Skiing, tubing, ice skating and cozy accommodations perfect for an evening by the fire with the one you love. 18
19. Trashy Diva TrashyDiva.com 2048 Magazine St. 504-299-8777 Chic and romantic, the Emerson Bodysuit from Bluebella ($64) is sure to turn up the heat in the boudoir! Trashy Diva Intimates carries an extensive selection of scarlet negligees, including some bold, strappy pieces for adventurous lovers. Drop by and slip into something a little more sensual!
20. A Renée Boutique AReneeBoutique.com 824 Chartres St. 504-418-1448 A Renée Boutique, a French Quarter standout, carrying a smoking hot fashion palette “For Women Who Dress to Kill.” This adorable boutique carries the most unique fashions and shoes with a lagniappe of personal stylist services to compliment your shipping experience. From fashion rebel to career minded; youthful to mature; funky to sexy, A. Renée Boutique is the store or all women who want to look astounding and feel amazing.
21. Premier Island Management Group PremierIsland.com 2200 Via de Luna Drive, Pensacola Beach 866-935-7741 Situated along the Gulf of Mexico on Pensacola Beach, Portofino Island Resort is Northwest Florida’s premier beach vacation experience. A playground for guests of all ages, the property features luxurious two and three-bedroom skyhomes, active amenities, fabulous dining, spas, and more. PortofinoIsland.com
22. Scarlet's Steaks and Seafood at Scarlet Pearl Casino Resort ScarletPearlCasino.com 9380 Central Ave., D’Iberville, MS 228-392-1889 Join Scarlet Pearl Casino Resort February 13 or 14 for Scarlet’s Sweet Heart Special for two for $109! Enjoy a bottle of Champagne or Wine, Scarlet’s Steaks & Seafood three course meal for two, chocolate covered strawberries and a long stem rose. 116
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
Hospital Buzz While area nurses and physicians count beats per minute with a literal finger on the pulse of their patients, we strive to always have a finger on the pulse of healthcare and medical news, especially as it pertains to local providers. From hospital partnerships to department expansions and technological additions, the New Orleans medical landscape continues to shift in new directions while maintaining a steadfast commitment to providing optimal care for patients across South Louisiana and the Gulf Coast. As a dedicated pediatric emergency room opens on the Westbank, a distinguished cancer program is changing lives with quality care on the Eastbank and hospice patients in Jefferson Parish have a new option for inpatient care. Greater New Orleans hospitals are buzzing with news aimed at improving care for you.
Greater New Orleans Hospital News West Jefferson Medical Center (WJMC) in partnership with Children’s Hospital is proud to announce the opening of a dedicated pediatric emergency room within WJMC. The emergency room is conveniently located across from the West Jefferson adult ER and just off the main lobby. This new alliance will provide care close to home for the West Bank community with convenient, quick access to emergency care for the whole family from birth through adulthood. The Pediatric Emergency Room at WJMC offers 24/7 emergency care with pediatric specific equipment, seven exam rooms, and physicians and nurses who are specially trained to work with children. Children’s Hospital and WJMC are proud members of LCMC Health, a Louisiana-based, not-for-profit hospital system serving the healthcare needs of the Gulf Coast region. LCMC Health currently manages award-winning community hospitals including Touro, University Medical Center New Orleans, New Orleans East Hospital, Children’s Hospital and West Jefferson Medical Center. For more information, visit CHNola.org/emergency or call 504-349-1555.
Touro Infirmary operates on the belief that no one should fight cancer alone. From diagnosis through treatment and into survivorship, Touro physicians and staff are committed 118
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to providing highly personalized and quality care to patients. Touro has earned accreditation in radiation oncology from the American College of Radiology (ACR). This accreditation is widely recognized as a benchmark measure of image quality and patient safety. It is awarded only to facilities meeting ACR Practice Guidelines and Technical Standards after a peer-review evaluation by board-certified physicians and medical physicists who are experts in the field. Touro’s cancer program has also been recognized by the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons as offering the very best in cancer care. This elite designation reflects the quality of the hospital’s comprehensive, multidisciplinary patient care. Touro’s expert surgeons and specialists provide you with the latest medical treatment as well as mental, emotional and spiritual support throughout your cancer journey. Learn more at Touro.com/cancer.
Hospice Care Anyone seeking compassionate and dignified care for their terminally ill loved ones should consider the outstanding services offered by Canon Hospice. Canon Hospice is dedicated to helping patients and families accept terminal illness positively and resourcefully, to preserve dignity and to endure the challenges that accompany this critical time of life. Their stated goal is to “allow our patients to live each day to the fullest and enjoy their time with family and friends.” With special expertise in pain management and symptom control, Canon Hospice designs individualized plans of care for each patient based on their unique needs. Home Based Services provide doctors, nurse practitioners, nurses, social workers, pastoral care and volunteers. For patients with more intensive symptom management needs, Canon has an Inpatient Hospice Unit located on the 4th floor of the Ochsner Elmwood Medical Center. This unit provides 24-hour care in a home-like environment where patients are permitted to receive visits at any hour. Canon is excited to now offer private rooms. For more information, visit CanonHospice.com or call 504-818-2723. •
Life is Why. Go Red is How. For 90 years, heart disease has been the #1 reason we lose our loved ones. Changing the rank of heart disease is closer than ever. At the American Heart Association, we want people to experience more of life’s precious moments. It’s why we’ve made better heart and brain health our mission. And together with the community, our volunteers and donors, we’ve made an extraordinary impact. Until there’s a world free of heart disease and stroke, the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association will be here, working to make a healthier, longer life possible for everyone. Now is the time to change the rank of heart disease and its impact on our lives forever. Let’s rally to get one done. Why? Because life is why. Everyone has a reason to live a healthier, longer life. So, what is your reason? Each person’s why is different. Maybe it’s walking your daughter down the aisle. Watching that perfect sunset with your spouse. Or simply giving your grandchild a big hug. Ask yourself this, what are those moments, people or experiences that you live for? What brings you joy, wonder and happiness? What is your why in life? Whatever your why is, hold it close to your heart. When you think about that moment in your life, let it drive you to share the message that heart disease is the number one killer with someone you know. 80% of heart disease is preventable, but if women don’t know it is their biggest threat, they cannot seek preventative care. Help save a life and become a catalyst for healthy living and change. WHY GO RED? The Go Red for Women campaign is more than a message. It’s a nationwide movement that celebrates the energy, passion and power we have as woman to band together to wipe out the No. 1 killer. Over 10 years ago when the campaign started, many were stunned to learn just how many women are effected by heart disease. Grandmothers, mothers, daughters, sisters and friends are dying at the rate of one per minute, because they didn’t know that heart disease kills. Go Red for Women raises awareness of the danger heart disease poses to women and helps them make choices to reduce their personal risk. Believing you are low risk for heart disease is not enough for a killer that does not discriminate against age, race, social status, neighborhood or gender.
Recently Monica Ernst was a nonbeliever. At 39 years old, she had finished participating in a triathlon just days before her life was about to take a turn. But for this Madisonville wife and mom to an 11 year-old daughter, Madelyn, and 10 year-old son, Kristian, being physically active and eating healthy were not enough. On June 3, 2014, she was attending a body combat class at Franco’s with a friend, Gillian Reardon, when the left side of her body went heavy. “If I was at home I would have just gone back to bed. But it is a good thing instead I was around a friend who took action,” says Ernst. Just before the class started, Ernst started feeling poorly. Confused and with her vision blacking out, she turned to leave the class. Her worried friend, followed her noticing that she was not acting in character. “I called my husband, Blaise, to come and get me and Gillian waited by my side. By the time he arrived my face was drooping. He didn’t know what was wrong but he knew it wasn’t good and we headed straight for the emergency room,” added Ernst.
Once at the emergency room, Ernst was diagnosed with a migraine. But her husband pushed for more answers. A neurologist decided to run additional tests. It was from his persistence for additional testing that she received her correct diagnosis of a stroke as a result of an undetected heart defect known as patent foramen ovale or PFO. PFO occurs after birth when the foramen ovale in the heart fails to close. The foramen ovale is a hole in the wall between the left and right atria of every human fetus. This hole allows blood to bypass the fetal lungs, which cannot work until they are exposed
to air. When a newborn enters the world and takes its first breath, the foramen ovale closes, and within a few months it has sealed completely. When it remains open, it is called a patent foramen ovale, patent meaning open. Problems can arise when that blood contains a blood clot which is what happen in Ernst’s case. But through research and a better understanding of the heart, doctors were able to close Ernst’s heart and repair the defect. Did you know that more than 2,200 Americans die of heart disease every single day? That’s one death every 39 seconds. And on average, someone in the United States suffers a stroke every 40 seconds, while a stroke-related death occurs about every four minutes. Such an aggressive disease requires an equally aggressive response. That’s why The American Heart Association has spent more than $3.3 billion on research, ever increasing our knowledge and understanding about heart disease and stroke – also making AHA the largest funder of heart disease research, second only to the U.S. government. The AHA’s mission can be summed up in one challenging 10year goal: To improve the cardiovascular health of all Americans by 20 percent while reducing deaths from cardiovascular diseases and stroke by 20 percent by 2020.
JOIN THE FIGHT The New Orleans American Heart Association will host the annual Go Red for Women luncheon on Thursday, February 2, 2017 at the Hyatt Regency New Orleans. The luncheon is chaired by Valerie Englade and Colleen Monaghan.
Heart Attack Symptoms Specific to Women • SHORTNESS OF BREATH
• PRESSURE OR PAIN IN THE LOWER CHEST OR UPPER ABDOMEN • DIZZINESS • LIGHTHEADEDNESS OR FAINTING • UPPER BACK PRESSURE • EXTREME FATIGUE
grown into a vibrant national movement as more women, men, celebrities, healthcare professionals and philanthropist embrace and elevate the cause of women and heart disease. The yearlong movement is celebrated at a cornerstone event – New Orleans’ Go Red for Women Luncheon on February 26, 2016. This provides women of all generations with tips and information on healthy eating, exercise and risk factor reduction.
CIRCLE OF RED
The luncheon will be a rally for awareness and prevention for heart disease. Heart disease has already touched you or someone you love, so help us save a woman’s life and be a part of Go Red for Women New Orleans.
The Circle of Red and Men Go Red are a dynamic, committed and passionate group of women and men who have the resources to significantly impact the community by providing a personal commitment to help find a cure for heart disease.
Go Red for Woman is nationally sponsored by Macy’s and locally sponsored by East Jefferson General Hospital, Peoples Health, LCMC Health, LAMMICO, Cardio DX, UnitedHealthcare, Tulane Health System, Steady Med, Hub International, Postlewaite & Netterville, St. Charles Avenue Magazine and New Orleans Magazine.
The Circle of Red and Men Go Red members are champions for reducing the impact that heart disease has in our lives.
National Wear Red Day National Wear Red Day® — February 3, 2017 — is our special day to bring attention to heart disease in our community. We encourage everyone to wear red, raise their voices, know their cardiovascular risk and take action to live longer, healthier lives. Wear Red Day is part of the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women campaign to increase awareness of heart disease — the leading cause of death for women — and to inspire women to take charge of their heart health. With your help, we can end the No.1 killer of our mothers, sisters, daughters and friends. The grassroots campaign has since
The 2016-2017 Circle of Red and Men Go Red members include: Sarah Abrusley, Christine Albert, Christine Briede, Dr. Kelly Burkenstock, Annette Dowdle, Valerie Englade, Monica Ernst, Holley Haag, Nadine Hampton Brown, Essence HarrisBanks, Molly Kimball, Natasha Lamarque, Beverly Matheney, Colleen Monaghan, Gloria Moore, Rebecca Nordgren, Cindy Nuesslein, Christine O’Brien, Hiral Patel, Ingrid Rinck, Shelby Sanderford, Patricia Vaccari, Nicole Webre, Suzanne Whitaker, Barbara Turner Windhorst and Michele Wink.
n early February, hearts are front and center. From boxes of chocolates and sweet tarts with flirty messages to glittery cards and cookies, Valentine’s Day unleashes a flood of heart-shaped goodies into stores, schools and workplaces. While many welcome the romance-centered holiday and its oft-sweet trappings, there’s a common tendency to ignore concern for the most important heart of all – your own. According to the American Heart Association, cardiovascular disease is the leading global cause of death, accounting for more than 17.3 million deaths a year. Improving one’s heart health can mean a longer, more fulfilling life and more time spent laughing and making memories with loved ones. From tweaking your daily diet to introducing more exercise and heart-health checkups, small adjustments can impact your heart in big ways.
Nutrition & Meal Planning You may be surprised to hear that one of the latest weight loss breakthroughs isn’t a surgery or a diet – it’s the cutting-edge meal plan service from health and fitness expert Ingrid Rinck. Once a Mandeville personal trainer, Rinck is a natural entrepreneur leading the largest and fastest-growing meal prep program in the nation. Sensible Portions prepared meals service is a smart, simple and effective way to consume flavorful, fresh foods and see fast results. For a mere $80-$120 week, depending on meal plan, clients receive 15 complete meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner for each five-day week. “After five days on the meal plan, the appetite shrinks, and when you eat restaurant- or home-prepared food, the desire for smaller portions remains,” explains Rinck. “It’s like a non-invasive stomach stapling.” Sensible Portions ships nationally to thousands of clients with free local pickup in 10 cities. For helpful videos, client testimonials – including local “before and after” photos – visit Sensible Portions’ Facebook page (Sensible Portions Meals). For additional information, visit SensiblePortionsMeals.com or text “I’m Ready” to 985-290-9757.
FEBRUARY 2017 / myneworleans.com
Nola Pilates & Xtend Barre is Lakeview’s premier Pilates and barre studio. The studio’s extensive class schedule features over 65 group classes per week, including Pilates Reformer, Tower, Mat, yoga, TRX, spin and Xtend Barre. If you prefer a private setting, one-on-one sessions are available in the private equipment studio seven days per week. Classes range in focus and intensity from open-level Pilates Mat and yoga classes to muscle-sculpting, calorietorching classes like Xtend Barre and spin. Whether you’re looking for a gentle transition back to exercise or a way to kick up your workout regimen, visit us at NOLAPilates. com to schedule your first session! “We are eternally grateful for the opportunity to help you meet your goals, and restore your mind, body and spirit,” says Owner Kim Munoz. For more information, call 504-483-8880.
East Jefferson General Hospital is proud to be changing the way some cardiac procedures are performed. Dr. James Perrien is just one East Jefferson General Hospital cardiologist performing some cardiac procedures through the arms’ Radial Artery. This allows the patient to be treated without having to spend the night in the hospital – just one more way EJGH is providing more patient centered care. Visit EJGH.org for more information. •
myneworleans.com / FEBRUARY 2017
Laissez Les Bon Temps Roulez! Taking a tour of Mardi Gras World By Jessica DeBold
The first Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans was held on Feb. 24, 1857, and 160 years later they continue to grow. In my seven years spent celebrating Mardi Gras, not once has a local urged me to take a tour of Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World. I took it upon myself to make a trip of it this year, just in time to kick off the parade season. “As a native New Orleanian, I was shocked that I’ve never experienced the tour at Mardi Gras World. It really gives you an in-depth view of what it takes to create a parade,” said Kelly Massicot, a New Orleans native and “Health Beat” columnist for New Orleans Magazine. “I learned so much more about Mardi Gras in one hour.” Tours at Mardi Gras World are held daily and begin every 30 minutes. By the time we made it into the studio located in the Port of New Orleans, the tour was stalled by a few moments to accommodate for those held up by a passing freight train. Despite the slight tardiness, the smiling faces greeting us at the desk clued us into the facility’s unwavering hospitality.
FEBRUARY 2017 myneworleans.com
Our tour began with a game of dress-up. In their large, black theater room, colorful, glittering costumes and hats were neatly hung up for us to try on to our liking. Around the room were some character props to take cheesy pictures with — which we did — including a statue of Louis Armstrong playing his trumpet, a sparkling tiger and wide-mouthed busts of jesters, kings and queens. After the dress-up session, we enjoyed a short film on the history of Carnival in New Orleans. We learned about the origin of super krewes, Blaine Kern’s introduction to working with the parades and the beginning of some of the city’s most popular parades, like Zulu and Muses. After the short and sweet history lesson, we were treated to slices of King Cake. Our friendly guide then led us to the warehouse, which is where all of the true Mardi Gras magic happens. The artists at Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World have just 365 days (and often even less) to create thousands of props and hundreds of floats. Each year the floats’ themes and color schemes are differ-
ent from the last, and while we learned that many of the materials are recycled, there’s still a ton of work to be done. Not to mention, the studio is also contracted to create props and floats for Disney in Orlando, as well as the NFL. Step-by-step we were able to preview some of this season’s star props creation. We witnessed the Styrofoam sculpting, the papier-maché lining, priming and painting, and walked down a massive aisle of nearly completed flowery floats for the Krewe of Orpheus. “It’s amazing what they can do with a huge piece of Styrofoam. They take this plain block of Styrofoam and turn it into something truly magical. I will appreciate the floats a lot more this Carnival season,” said Massicot. Be sure to take a tour with Mardi Gras World this season for a new appreciation of the festivities. Visit MardiGrasWorld.com to purchase tickets. n
cheryl gerber PHOTOGRAPH
A New Beau Maison
Peristyle Residences, 517-3273, PeristyleResidences.com Peristyle residences, offering assisted living homes, has a new residence in Metairie. Beau Maison Memory Care Assisted Living is located on Cleary Avenue and comprises private and semiprivate rooms with well-appointed common areas. Peristyle provides an alternative approach to senior living aimed at seniors who seek assistance with day-to-day living in a more private, homelike setting than traditional assisted living communities. Exclusive amenities include a noteworthy music therapy program and an on-site chapel.
Cristy Caliâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s New Design
Cristy Cali, CristyCali.com Cristy Cali, a New Orleans native and jewelry designer, is well known for jewelry that embraces the culture and spirit of the Crescent City. Cali has recently launched a new collection called Queen of Hearts. Featuring 26 pieces in silver and gold, the collection includes bracelets, necklaces, rings and earrings. The design incorporates elements of a heart and a crown and is proving extremely popular. Some of the pendants include precious garnet stones, which are said to provide protective energy. Cristy Cali Jewelry is available online through her website and through the notable New Orleans-based jewelry store, Adlerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Fine Jewelry. By Mirella Cameran
myneworleans.com FEBRUARY 2017
Custer at Mardi Gras By Errol Laborde
Mardi Gras 145 years ago: The year 1872 was that of the first Rex parade. Also causing buzz was the arrival of real royalty, the Russian Grand Duke Alexis Alexandrovich. By then, on the last leg of his Untied States tour, Alexis’ presence at the first Rex parade, though coincidental, would add a touch of legitimate royalty to the day. Of those in his entourage, however, the one whose name would become the best known over time was his military escort, General George Armstrong Custer. New Orleans was where the Grand Duke’s visit would be best remembered. From Nebraska, where Custer and the Duke hunted buffalo, the entourage took a steamboat down the Mississippi River to New Orleans, arriving at a dock near what’s now the intersection of S. Carrollton and St. Charles avenues. For Custer, returning to New Orleans must have been a treat. He had visited the city before, most notably in May 1865, escorted by his wife Libbie. Here he was to meet with Army General Philip Sheridan. Author Kevin Sullivan in his book, Custer’s Road to Disaster: The Path to Little Bighorn, would write that New Orleans held “a great deal of fascination for the Custers.” After dining in some of the city’s restaurants, Libbie wrote that “we saw eating made a fine art.” Custer, a Union General, was enamored of the local coffee, saying that even the best northern blend was “almost equal to the French Market.” By 1872, when Custer returned to New Orleans with the Grand
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Duke, he had some celebrity status as a hero of the Civil War Battle of Bull Run. (Though New Orleans had been a Confederate city, Union officers were part of the landscape in this town that was still under Federal occupation.) Mardi Gras that year was Feb. 13, a historic day in the festival’s history because of Rex’s debut parade. The Grand Duke and his group saw the parade from box seats at Gallier Hall. Earlier that week the visitors were entertained with a dinner at the posh Jockey Club located near the site of the Fair Grounds racetrack that would open that year. Horse racing was a topic that interested Custer. He owned several racehorses including one, Frogtown, which would race at the Fair Grounds later that season. Since the most information was written about the Grand Duke’s schedule, we can assume that it also applied to Custer. They would have stayed at the St. Charles Hotel, which was the city’s most elegant place to stay. On Mardi Gras night they would have moved to a series of parties and balls. Both were witness to Rex’s nativity. From there, Alexis would return to Russia and obscurity; Custer would achieve immortal-
ity, ironically, because of his mortality. America should have been a happier place in the summer of 1876. The nation, now united after the Civil War, was only nine days away from celebrating the centennial of its Declaration of Independence, but on July 25 the country suffered a loss. General Custer’s army was entirely eliminated by a union of Indian tribes led by chiefs Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull. News of the massacre created national outrage. Also receiving the message, though from a distance, was the Grand Duke, now 26. He, too, would have a military career, though his would befit someone whose dad was the Czar. He would eventually be put in charge of the Russian Navy, for which he was given credit for modernization. He was later blamed, however, for a key naval defeat. His last years were spent in Paris, away from the Russian revolution. Curiously, though French in origin, Mardi Gras was never an extravagant celebration in the French capitol. Most likely it was New Orleans that provided the Grand Duke the best Carnival he had ever seen. Perhaps his friend General Custer also taught him to appreciate really good coffee. n
ARTHUR NEAD ILLUSTRATION