Page 1


Endymion Founder/ Captain Ed Muniz



February 2013 VOLUME 47 NUMBER 5 Editor Errol Laborde Managing Editor Morgan Packard Art Director Eric Gernhauser Associate Editors Haley Adams and

Sarah Ravits Contributing Editor Liz Scott Monaghan Food Edit­or Dale Curry Dining Edit­or Jay Forman Wine and Spirits Edit­or Tim McNally Restaurant Reporter Robert Peyton Home and Garden Editor Bonnie Warren Intern Johanna Gretschel

SALES MANAGER Shannon Smith Senior Account Executive Jonée Daigle Ferrand Account Executives Erica Northcott Adams,

Shelley Duran, Maegan O’Brien Sales Assistant Erin Maher Azar Web/Production Manager Staci Woodward McCarty Production Designers Jenny Dascenzo Hronek and

Sarah George Web Editor Haley Adams Chief Executive Officer Todd Matherne President Alan Campell Executive VICE PRESIDENT/Editor-in-Chief Errol Laborde Executive Assistant Kristi Ferrante Distribution Manager Christian Coombs

WYES DIAL 12 STAFF (504) 486-5511 Executive Editor Beth Arroyo Utterback Managing Editor Aislinn Hinyup Associate Editor Robin Cooper Art Director Jenny Dascenzo Hronek

NEW ORLEANS MAGAZINE Printed in USA A Publication of Renaissance Publishing 110 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Suite 123 Metairie, LA 70005 (504) 828-1380 Subscription Hotline:

(504) 828-1380 ext. 251 or fax: (504) 828-1385

Online at

New Orleans Magazine (ISSN 0897 8174) is published monthly by Renaissance Publishing, LLC., 110 Veterans Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005; (504) 8281380. 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 2012 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 self-addressed 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.


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76 The Business of big: Myths and realities of super krewes by Kathy Finn

81 the return of Fat Harry’s Uptown’s favorite Carnival hangout by Johanna Gretschel

84 Shades of gray From oyster pearls to platinum, this season’s jewelry trend by Tracee Dundas

90 Atrial Fibrillation Getting the irregular problem regular by Dr. Brobson Lutz

94 Top Hospitals 29 picks from patients’ survey compiled by Morgan Packard

IN EVERY ISSUE 6 10 12 127 128

INSIDE “XXXXX” speaking out Editorial, plus a Mike Luckovich cartoon JULIA STREET Questions and answers about our city Try This “Help a Mardi Gras First-Timer” STREETCAR “Marching Order: Mardi Gras and the military”

THE BEAT 18 20 23 24 27 28 30



32 34

MARQUEE Entertainment calendar PERSONA Cedric George Givens, King Zulu 2013 newsbeat “Reborn on the Bayou” Biz “Aging Gracefully: Mercedes-Benz Superdome shows that youth isn’t everything.” newsbeat “Theater Boom Means More Than Popcorn” Education “Top of the Class: Yes, it’s true – New Orleans has become the model for school reform.” HEALTHBEAT The latest news in health from New Orleans and beyond Crime fighting “‘If You Really Knew Me ...’: Student reveal their inner selves.” newsbeat “Leah Chase: The Foundation”

LOCAL COLOR 6 THE SCOOP “Carnival Post Super Bowl” 40 music “Visions of Early Rampart Street: The photographs of Florestine Perrault Collins”

41 Read & Spin A look at the latest CDs and books 44 CAST OF CHARACTERS “Soldiering On: Don Weil is at ease paying attention to his armies.””

46 MODINE’S NEW ORLEANS “Coastal Carnival: Why it ain’t right”

48 Joie d’Eve “Sousaphones Versus the Suburbs” 50 CHRONICLES “Feet On the Street: Mardi Gras walking clubs”

52 HOME “Donna and Robert Taylor’s Metairie home comPERSONA





bines dignity with leisure.”



ON THE COVER Krewe of Endymion founder Ed Muniz G R E G M I L E S P hotograph


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58 60 62 66 68


table talk “Curb Appeal: ‘Street food’ worth the stop” restaurant insider “Premiere Places” FOOD “A Warm Feeling: Hearty dishes for a winter day” LAST CALL “As Grand As Grand Can Be” DINING GUIDE

DIAL 12 D1 For an insider’s look at Mardi Gras, WYES is the television station to watch! “Steppin’ Out: It’s Carnival Time” gives updates on 2013 Carnival. Bringing a glittery close to the fun-filled Mardi Gras season is the highly anticipated live broadcast of “The Rex Ball and the Meeting of the Courts of Rex and Comus.” Nostalgic programs on WYES, such as ”Mardi Gras Memories,” “All On a Mardi Gras Day” and “While We Danced: The Music of Mardi Gras,” among others, keep Carnival tradition alive. For a full view of upcoming Carnival programming on WYES, visit


C A R N I V A L ’1 3

Ash Wednesday W ednesday



N ew


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Orleans more than in most places because of the way we live the day before. There would be less purpose in saying “farewell to flesh” were we not previously so consumed by flesh of all forms. The simplicity of an ash spot on foreheads is a counterpoint to vividly painted faces. On Ash Wednesday morning in the French Quarter, merchants sweep their sidewalks. Where on the day before, the air was permeated with the smell of fast food, the smell the morning after is of pine oil, chasing stains. Beads, which for the previous two weeks had been flying through the air, bouncing off buildings and crash-landing on trees as revelers leaped to snag them, are now humbled on Ash Wednesday, coiled in the gutter awaiting the man with the broom and shovel. A few escaped doubloons and blinky items, having lost their flicker, join the pile. Necks, that on the previous day were piled high with those beads, are now adorned with just a simple tie, necklace or open collar. Suddenly we have landed in the middle of the work week. Reality sets in. City buses now travel what was the path of kings in the days before. Commerce returns to where abandonment reigned. We are told to fast on the day after Mardi Gras though there’s still leftover party food. Yet there’s relief in being spared more Moon Pie with wine. By Ash Wednesday simplicity is welcomed. It is the tonic we need, so that one day we can return to the flesh and then say farewell again.

On the web Check out the new has received a big makeover! We’ve redesigned our website to make it easier to read on your tablet, smartphone and desktop computer. Read the latest blog posts, find top events and search lists of New Orleans’ top doctors, dentists and more. Keep checking the website this month for Super Bowl and Mardi Gras content. To receive a daily update from MyNewOrleans. com, sign up for our Daily Newsletter. You can do all this at Have a question about the new website? Email all comments to Web Editor Haley Adams at

Exclusively Online: Award-Winning Daily Blogs Mondays:

The Editor’s Room: Editor-in-Chief Errol Laborde, three-time winner of the Alex Waller Award for print journalism, offers his take on the Big Easy, the state of Louisiana and the changing times. Named “Best Local Blog” by the Press Club of New Orleans. Tuesdays:

Morgan Packard, managing editor for New Orleans Magazine, and Annie Drummond, whom stole from Ohio, tagteam weekly columns on the different ways to enjoy life our city.


After Hours: Nightlife savant and New Orleans Press Club award-winner Ian McNulty gives us the scoop on what to do when the sun goes down. You know, when he can get out of bed to write about it. Also... Nola Newbie:’s new web editor, Haley Adams, chronicles her adventures as a New Orleans resident. Thursdays:

Haute Plates: Our very own gastronome, Robert Peyton, offers the real dish on local dining. Also … Happy Hour: The yang to Mr. Peyton’s yin, Tim McNally, acclaimed wine judge and food writer, expounds on wine, cocktails and other draughts. Fridays:

Joie d’Eve: Editor Eve Kidd Crawford, who has won awards from the Press Club of New Orleans and the Society of Professional Journalists, writes about what it means to be a family in New Orleans.

Visit to see photographs and articles, even before they hit the newsstands. Enjoy our archived articles, leave us a comment or sign up for our newsletter.


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S P E A K IN G   O U T

Carnival’s Most Irresponsible Act


ecently there was an active email discussion

between Carnival krewe captains and the police about a proposal by one captain to put a float in parades designed as a target for spectators to throw beads. This reasoning was not to exercise arms but to try to exorcise harm. A growing concern among parade krewes has been the practice of parade-goers flinging beads back at the floats. Doing so is dangerous. There have been instances of float riders, whose mobility and sight lines are often limited by their position on the float, being severely injured by errant throws returned in their direction. Throwing at floats is illegal, but it’s a law that many parade-goers, especially those from out of town, are not aware of. We do not think that most people who fling objects back at floats are being malicious. (Well, maybe a few.) More often it’s people caught up in the excitement of the moment as objects whiz through the air. As strange as the throwback float idea sounds, it has been done before – though always on floats without personnel. At least one krewe has already pulled such a float. Also, Bacchus’ Baby Kong float has historically been bombarded with beads. The problem is that allowing the practice for one float creates the perception that it’s OK for all floats. That is where the danger comes in. (That sentiment was held by most of the participants in the email discussion.) As parade-goers we need to watch out for those who are throwing back. If you see someone throwing at a float, alert a police officer. Remember that not only are the flingers breaking the law, but also they could hurt someone. We must add that the krewes have contributed to the problem by tossing bigger beads. We have seen people throwing beads back at floats as a means of rejecting a smaller pair in hopes for something larger. Sometimes the big beads get thrown back, too, and they can be lethal. At some point krewes may need to establish their own moratorium on bead size. Enjoy the parades. And if throws come your way, just think of them as a gift that should not be returned.

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Since New Orleans lacks the hilly terrain necessary to run the gravity-powered Soap Box Derby cars, races were held on area overpasses such as the Wisner Boulevard one pictured here.

Dear Julia, I am a native New Orleanian, age 71. I can recall, as a child, watching the Soap Box Derby car races held at the overpass on Wisner Boulevard near City Park. Can you tell me anything about these races? What years were they held? Who sponsored them and what were the criteria for entering into the races? What kind of prizes were awarded to the winners? Were there regional and national races? If so, did a New Orleans entrant ever place or win in the nationals? Can you describe a typical soap box car? The cars were not powered with engines, but depended on gravity for speed. With the flat terrain in New Orleans, it seems the races would have been limited to overpasses where there would be enough slope to make 12

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the race exciting. Beatrice Daspit Slidell

Racing of gravity-propelled homemade race cars originated in Ohio in the early 1930s but took a while to catch on in New Orleans. From the ’50s to the ’70s, New Orleans’ annual Soap Box Derby was a major annual event sponsored by local Chevrolet dealerships, the New Orleans Recreation Department (NORD), the New Orleans Item newspaper (and its successor, the StatesItem). Both a national cheating scandal and the loss, in ’72, of Chevrolet’s corporate sponsorship, contributed to a sharp decline the sport experienced after the early ’70s. The name “soap box derby” hails back to the time when the homemade racers were

cobbled together from used detergent crates. Starting in 1950, NORD, Chevrolet and the Item newspaper sponsored an annual Soap Box Derby. Since New Orleans lacks the hilly terrain necessary to run the gravitypowered cars, the races were initially held on the Franklin Avenue and Broad Street overpasses until finding a permanent home, in ’56, on the recently completed Wisner Drive overpass along Bayou St. John. Initially open only to male participants between the ages of 11 and 15, the event later permitted girls to compete. The teens were required to build their own cars, using kits they obtained from Chevy dealers. Adults could offer advice but were strictly forbidden to partake in the actual construction process. The local 1956 Soap

Win a Court of Two Sisters Jazz Brunch or Lunch at the Rib Room Here is a chance to eat, drink and listen to music, 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 one of two Jazz Brunch gift certificates for two at The Court of Two Sisters in the Vieux Carré. 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@ This month’s winners are: M. L. Cooper, New Orleans; and Bea Daspit, Slidell.


Box Derby, held in mid-July, attracted 130 participants and an audience of 10,000 onloookers. Otto Poitier, age 15, won the competition and the opportunity to compete in the national Soap Box Derby finals in Akron, Ohio; his prizes included a trophy, a tool kit, a camera and a cake. Youngsters who progressed to the national championship competed for academic scholarships. Dear Julia, My cat William, aka The Judge, would like to know about a building on Euterpe Street near Carondelet Street. It somewhat resembles the old synagogue around the corner. Do you know anything about its history or original use? M. L. Cooper N ew O rlea ns

Sorry M. L., but we have a strict editorial policy against responding to questions from


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cats. If we answer one cat’s question than we’ll have to answer all cats’ questions. Then what happens when the dogs start kicking in? In addition, Poydras has many inquisitive parrot friends plus a nosey cockatoo or two. We just can’t do it. However, since you seem like a nice person we’ll answer the question, but just this once. Congregation Beth Israel, an Orthodox synagogue established in 1904, found its first permanent home when, two years later, it moved into a mansion at 1616 Carondelet St. Last owned by New Orleans mayor Joseph Shakespeare and once home of the Sylvester Larned Institute, an acclaimed institution for the education of young women, the building soon proved too small for the growing congregation and was demolished in the early ’20s. A new sanctuary, designed by architect Emil

Weil, was erected on the site. Congregation Beth Israel’s new synagogue was formally dedicated in September ’24. In 1926, Congregation Beth Israel erected an annex around the corner at 1629 Euterpe St. Known as the Menorah Institute it was, like the synagogue, designed by Emil Weil. The new addition was a multi-purpose social and educational center, containing a social hall, classrooms and offices. Dear Julia, I remember the neutral ground along Canal Boulevard used to be far more elaborately landscaped than it is now. Do you remember the old sunken gardens or know when they were first installed? Fred Haig New Orleans

Extending from Weiblen Place to the Lake, the oncemagnificent sunken gardens

began as a $1 million Works Projects Administration (WPA) project, the first phase of which – a section near the Homedale intersection – was completed in 1937. Albrizza mimosas lined the sides while yellow iris adorned the low parts in the middle. As Lakeview developed on recently drained reclaimed land, the sunken gardens were seen as a practical and attractive solution alternative to continually draining or filling in the drainage canal that once ran down the middle of the thoroughfare. Rose gardens, which the New Orleans Floral Trail, Inc. planted in the sunken gardens, further enhanced aesthetic appeal of these public plantings, which were maintained by the New Orleans Parkway Commission. Within five years of their dedication, Canal Boulevard’s sunken gardens were actively promoted as part of the New


Orleans Floral Trail. Municipal budget woes and neglect took a heavy toll on the sunken gardens, which fell into ruin by the early 1970s. In ’86, the city undertook a partial renovation, restoring a portion of the Sunken Gardens between Polk and Kenilworth streets. Unfortunately, for those of us who remember the original sunken gardens, their replacements pale in comparison. Dear Julia, How long has Lundi Gras been part of the local traditional Mardi Gras scene? I grew up in New Orleans, but I can’t recall the Monday before Mardi Gras being anything other than a pretty dead day as we geared up for the main event on Tuesday. My parents and grandparents say the same thing. Kelcy Handler M a n d ev ille

Your memory is right,


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Lundi Gras as we know it today isn’t an old-time tradition, but a very modern one. In 1987, New Orleans Magazine’s own Errol Laborde, John Charbonnet and other members of the city’s Mardi Gras Task Force introduced the celebration as a way to bring Carnival activity to the riverfront and give people an excuse to remain downtown between Bacchus and Mardi Gras. Combining Rex’s traditional arrival by river with a day full of free concerts, the Lundi Gras experiment was a rousing success that not only caught on but also has endured for more than a quarter-century. Initially just a place-keeper for more popular carnival attractions, Lundi Gras has grown to attract its own merrymakers. Dear Julia and Poydras, During a recent visit to your fair city, I was somewhat star-

tled to see an immense statue of St. Jude looming over the wall next to the chapel of Our Lady of Guadeloupe. I know the chapel is also the International Shrine of St. Jude, but the statue is totally out of scale with its surroundings and surely wasn’t designed for its present cramped surroundings. Just how big is that thing anyway and where did it come from? Martha Sylvester

the statue stands 15 feet 8 inches tall. When the hospital went bankrupt and changed hands in ’95, the statue was donated to the Archdiocese of New Orleans. It soon found a new home outside its namesake’s international shrine, at the corner of North Rampart and Conti streets.

New Orleans

Brothers John and Robert Liljeberg, both of whom were intensely devoted to St. Jude, purchased the statue in Rome during the summer of 1985 and had it shipped to Louisiana. The work of sculptor Gaetano Dal Monte, the statue was dedicated in late October ’86 as decoration in front of the Liljeberg brothers’ new hospital, the St. Jude Medical Complex located in Kenner at 200 W. Esplanade Ave. Made of solid bronze,

Julia on TV

Look for the Julia Street question on “Steppin’ Out,” every Friday at 6:30 p.m. on WYES/Channel 12. The show features reviews, news and features about the New Orleans entertainment scene. Viewers who can answer Julia’s weekly question can call in for prizes. Tell ’em you read about the show in New Orleans Magazine.








The Mercedes-Benz Superdome, formerly known as the Louisiana Superdome, shown under construction in 1974.


Aging Gracefully PAGE 24


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T O P   P I C K S   O F   T H E   M O N T H’S   E V E N T S BY



Celebrating 200 Years Through Feb. 17, the George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts Scholarship Art Contest exhibition will be on display at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art. All works are by high school juniors and seniors who participated in the Foundation’s visual arts contest, themed “Louisiana’s Bicentennial,” which celebrates 200 years of statehood. Katie Atkins won the contest. Information, The Boswell Sisters

In a new exhibit at the Presbytere called “They Call Me Baby Doll: A Mardi Gras Tradition,” the Louisiana State Museum explores the 100-year historical and cultural significance of black women in New Orleans who mask as “Baby Dolls.” Dating back to the early 1900s, the tradition both embraces and mocks stereotypes of women as “babies” or “dolls” in popular culture. Early groups like the Million Dollar Baby Dolls paraded in scandalously short dresses, stockings with garters and frilly baby bonnets. The tradition has passed to a new generation of African-American women and is still a highlight of the city’s Carnival culture. The exhibit features photographs, costumes and artifacts, including many items on loan by baby doll members. Guest curators are Kim Marie Vaz, associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Xavier University, and Millisia White, founder and artistic director of the Baby Doll Ladies. The show will run through 2013 with the permanent exhibition “Mardi Gras: It’s Carnival Time in Louisiana!” Information,


Through Feb. 20. “Better Dead than Red”; Jonathan Ferrara Gallery. Information, Through Feb. 24.

“Jim Richard: Make Yourself at Home”; New Orleans Museum of Art.

Girl Power

Celebrating women in jazz music and dance, a three-day festival called NOLA Girl Jam takes place March 1-3, with highlights including community activities that explore the history of the female voice in American jazz culture. Several local dance troupes will perform, and concerts, costume contests, cocktail parties, classes and seminars will be held. Information,

Information, Feb. 2. Annual Radical

Faerie Ball; AllWays Lounge. Information, Feb. 2, 16. The New

Megaphone Show; New Movement

Jim Richard: Make Yourself at Home,” through Feb. 24

Theater. Information NewMovementTheater. com

Feb. 6, 13, 19, 22, 24, 26. New Orleans

Hornets home games; New Orleans Arena. Information,

Feb. 3. Super Bowl

XLVII; Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Information,

Feb. 8. Krewe de Lune

New Orleans Hornets, Feb. 6, 13, 19, 22, 24, 26




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Interview with Tom Mossbrucker, Artistic Director of Aspen Santa Fe Ballet

but also because of our long relationship with NOBA,” he says. Information, What kind of dance will it be?

Everything we do is contemporary ballet. All of our dancers are classically trained, but the repertoire is all by living choreographers who are very forwardthinking. It’s innovative and really reflects today’s aesthetic.

Aspen Ballet

Who choreographed it? Like a museum,

we curate the works we present. The existing choreographers

Artistic Director Tom Mossbrucker

Space Ball; Café Istanbul. Information, krewedelune Krewe of Rocckus with Better than Ezra and Sister Hazel; The Joy Theater. Information,

are at three different stages in their careers: [“Square None” is by] Norbert De La Cruz. He recently graduated from Juilliard, and we commissioned him to do this ballet. The piece that he did for us is gaining lots of attention, and he just won the Princess Grace Award. Jiri Kylián (“Return to a Strange Land”) is one of the greatest choreographers of the century, so we are very excited to have his work on our program. Virtually every dancer wants to dance his work. This is the oldest work in the program, from 1975. It’s still considered

new and fresh and will be danced en pointe. Jorma Elo (“OVERGLOW”) is at the height of his career as a choreographer.

NotSoSuperSuperHeros. com,

feat. Corey Glover of Living Color plus Red Baraat; Tipitina’s Uptown. Information,


This month, as we all know, is filled with performances of all kinds – Carnival parades will entertain the masses until Fat Tuesday, on Feb. 12, and there are a variety of concerts going on. Toward the end of the month, another notable cultural event to check out is the Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, hosted by the New Orleans Ballet Association on Feb. 23 at the Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts. Artistic Director Tom Mossbrucker has been with the company since 1996 and answers a few questions about the troupe’s upcoming performances, “Return to a Strange Land”; “OVERGLOW” and “Square None.” “We are very excited about the performance. [New Orleans] is one of our favorite tour stops, not only because of the obvious charms of the city,

Morning 40 Federation concert; One Eyed Jack’s. Information,

The xx featuring Austra; House of Blues. Information,

Not So Super Super Hero party; AllWays Lounge. Information,

Feb. 11. Galactic

How many dancers are in this and how experienced are they? We

have 11 dancers. We’re in our 17th season, and one of the things that’s helped define the company is that we’ve had dancers who’ve been with us for a long time. We have some newer dancers as well. What do you hope the audience gains from this? When you come

to see us, you’re seeing works you can’t see anywhere else. We’ve commissioned about 25 ballets. We’re

Feb. 21. Kid Rock in

crafting new works all the time. I hope the audience leaves feeling inspired. Visually, the performance is very beautiful. It’s very abstract – so I don’t want anyone to come in and figure out what the ‘story’ is. It’s much like an abstract painting, you don’t know what [the choreographers] were thinking, but you’re moved by what you see. Additionally, we’ve known Jenny [Hamilton, executive director of NOBA] for many years and we’ve always felt like it was a really good match … it’s always great to come to New Orleans.

Feb. 26-March 3.

Flashdance; Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts. Information,

concert; New Orleans Arena. Information,

FlashDance, Feb. 26-Mar. 3 Kid Rock, Feb. 21














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At a Glance Name: Cedric George Givens Age: 46 Profession: Director of Transportation for Intercontinental Private Equity Born/ raised: New Orleans, La. Resides: Algiers Family: Wife, Monica; two children, Ryan Williams Givens and Rayna Brantley Givens Education: Graduated from Alcee Fortier High School; degree in management from University of Louisiana– Lafayette Favorite book: The Scarlet Letter Favorite movie: The Professional Favorite TV show: “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” Favorite restaurant: Crescent City

Steak House Favorite food: Rib-eye steak Favorite musician:

Freddy Jackson Hobby: Baseball, shooting pool, play ping pong and bowling Favorite vacation spot: Orlando, Fla. I love the Magic Kingdom.

Cedric George Givens King Zulu 2013 BY SUE STRACHAN

CAR N IVAL ’1 3 20

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ne of the most coveted throws of the N ew

Orleans Carnival season is the famous coconut. As a Carnival tradition dating back to about 1910, the coconut has had a storied history: Not only is it a cult favorite (people collect them), it was almost banned due to possible lawsuits but saved by a 1988 law passed by the Louisiana Legislature, informally called the “Coconut Bill.”


It excluded the coconut from liability for alleged injuries caused when it was handed from the float. These mysterious coconuts only make their appearances one time a year – Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday) – and are given out in one parade: Zulu. The group, more formally known as the Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club, was founded in 1909 by laborers who originally called themselves “The Tramps.” In 1915, Zulu added floats to their parade, and in 1920 they selected their first Queen, who is traditionally the wife of the King. In addition to the King – this year’s is Cedric George Givens – there is other royalty in the entourage called “Characters”: Big Shot, Witch Doctor, Ambassador, Mayor, Province Prince, Governor and Mr. Big Stuff. Each plays a roll in the parade that is both serious and humorous. For example, Mr. Big Stuff always tries to outshine the King. (A better coconut, perhaps?) Based in their clubhouse on North Broad Street, Zulu does more than organize a parade for Mardi Gras: They are active in the community. For example, they have a Toys for Tots in December. In 2012, they distributed toys (including 400 bicycles) to about 1,500 children. King Givens, whose election celebration was captured on a YouTube video, is an enthusiastic member of Zulu and a fan of Carnival, overall. So, this year’s parade is bound to be as fun and raucous as in years past. Be sure to be up bright and early on Tues., Feb. 12, as the parade starts at 8 a.m. Now, Zulu does have the reputation of taking its time on its Uptown route, but remember: The early bird gets the coconut. How long have you been a member of Zulu? Since 1999

(14 years). What positions have you 22

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held in the Zulu organization?

I have been on the Board of Directors, 2008-2012; I have been the Anniversary Chairman for four years; and assistant chairman for the Christmas events and Zulu picnic. Do you have any other family members who have been part of Zulu? My uncle, Charles

Givens, was King Zulu in 1982. Why did you become a member of Zulu? I love every

part of Carnival. I originally became involved with the Crescent City Trucks parade, then became a member of Zulu in 1999. What is one of your favorite things about Zulu? Involvement

with the community. [For example,] the Christmas party – with the holiday baskets we hand out, we make children and their families happy. It’s a great feeling. Why did you run for King?

Back in 2000, some members came together whose ambition was to become King Zulu. Called “A Group of Kings,” I have been the second one of the group to become King Zulu. The first one was Tyrone Mathieu (King Zulu in 2009). Have you been other Zulu parade characters? I was

Governor in 2005. Who is your Queen? My wife,

Monica Veal Givens. What is your slogan for this year’s parade? “Let’s Make it

Happen.” Are you involved in any other Carnival organizations?

Endymion. I’ve been a member for three years. Are you going to ride in Endymion as well this year? Not

this year. Not enough time! What is your favorite parade other than Zulu? Endymion! True confession: My favorite

ride at Disney World is “It’s a Small World.” I also like “Splash Mountain.” Note: This year’s official Zulu poster was designed by artist Terrance Osborne. For more information about it and Zulu, visit

NE WS B E A T it, Gaudé says, the dam “became redundant then obsolete then counterproductive.” Eventually only one of its three gates was operable, and the structure essentially blocked significant water flow from the lake, decimating the ecosystem in the bayou and the lush lagoon system in City Park that it feeds. Now, controlled releases of water through the modern floodgates should reduce salinity levels and allow a great diversity of marine life to thrive in the bayou. “Most of the things that will change will be invisible to the eye,” Gaudé says. “But people who use the bayou for fishing will start seeing a big difference. What people used to see in (the bayou), speckled trout, tarpon, redfish, even manatees – they all could be returning.” Plans to remove the old dam had long been on the books, but not the money. Funding recently arrived through a federal program designed to free historic water flows from outdated dams. Gaudé says the same program could be applied to other hampered waterways in the area, including Bayou Sauvage. “This could essentially be the poster child for a new way of having flood protection but still having the uncompromised steams (these water bodies) have had historically,” he says.

Reborn on the Bayou Bayou St. John played a crucial role in the founding and growth of New Orleans, providing faster access for early settlers and traders to the nascent city. It served as a commercial waterway for many generations thereafter, and today it’s a scenic, recreational and sometimes even spiritual resource for a string of neighborhoods along its banks. Now, this hardworking urban waterway is finally catching a break. A dam that had severely constricted the water exchange between Lake Pontchartrain and the bayou is being removed after half a century. Scientists say that by managing the second, much more modern flood control structure between the two water bodies, Bayou St. John is poised for rejuvenation. “It’s a success story of patience, stamina and believing in a win-win solution,” says Rusty Gaudé, a fisheries scientist with the LSU AgCenter and the Louisiana Sea Grant program. Built in the 1950s, the dam was situated in the Spanish Fort area and was originally used to control flooding. But as the more sophisticated floodgates were installed just beyond

– I an M c N u l ty



Aging Gracefully Mercedes-Benz Superdome shows that youth isn’t everything. B y K athy F inn


s big - league football stadiums go , the domed

structure along Poydras Street in downtown New Orleans has probably reached late middle age. Some might even term it elderly had it not undergone a substantial revitalization during the past decade. Yet this workhorse of a stadium keeps delivering on the promise it showed when its doors first opened nearly 38 years ago. This month the Mercedes-Benz Superdome hosts the NFL Super Bowl for the seventh time and becomes the centerpiece for the national and international media attention the big game brings to the city. Super Bowl XLVII comes in the middle of a string of major sports events that will continue into 2014 and help ensure that New Orleans remains front and center in the eyes of sports and tourism marketers. Doug Thornton sees a satisfying symmetry in the building’s evolution. The regional vice president of the Dome’s management company SMG, Thornton says events of recent years represent the second time that the building has served as the launching pad for a critical economic leap forward by New Orleans. “If you look at the history of sports and tourism in New Orleans, you can trace the roots back to the construction of the Superdome in 1975,” he says. Noting that the Dome predated the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center’s construction by nearly 10 years, Thornton points out that the stadium allowed New Orleans to host a Republican National Convention, a visit by the pope and events that put the city on the big-league sports map, including big boxing matches and multiple Super Bowls and Final Fours. Those events sparked growth in visitor numbers that produced a surge of hotel construction and hospitality expansion. “We saw a real increase in the popularity of New Orleans as a destination that began with the construction of the Superdome,” Thornton says. Jump ahead to 2005 and the agonizing months that followed Hurricane Katrina. The devastation was so extensive and severe that many people questioned whether New Orleans could survive. Again, says Thornton, the Superdome became a focal point. “We have spent the last seven years rebuilding the infrastructure, stimulated once again by the Superdome,” he says. “Just as the Dome was the forerunner in 1975 to our modern-day tourism era, it was the first public building to reopen


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against unthinkable odds after Katrina with the goal of doing the very same thing.” The $330 million renovation of the Dome, aided by a hefty injection of Federal Emergency Management Agency and state funds, gave the building an almost totally new interior that enabled it to welcome back the Saints and to bid future events. With the crucial support of the Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation, the Dome and the next-door New Orleans Arena landed two BCS Championship football matchups, an NCAA Men’s Final Four and a Super Bowl; continued the annual Allstate Sugar Bowl; remained hosting the annual Essence Music Festival; and scheduled an NBA AllStar game, all while staging major conventions and trade shows between sports seasons. “There’s no city in America that has hosted the string of major events in the compressed time frame that we’ve had over the last two-and-a-half years,” Thornton says. “It’s an unprecedented run.” The city’s success in drawing big events also attracted the attention of powerful business interests who previously may not have given much thought to New Orleans. In October 2011, German automaker Mercedes-Benz announced it had bought naming rights to the Superdome. “One of the most recognizable brands in the world chose to put its name on this facility,” Thornton says. “It’s a validation of all the work that has been done here to bring the Superdome back.” From the standpoint of Mercedes-Benz USA CEO Stephen Cannon, the company’s decision to buy naming rights to the Dome was practically a no-brainer. For one thing, the luxury automaker was lookCHERYL GERBER PHOTOGRAPH

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ing to expand its customer base into younger age groups and B George H.W. Bush is nominated for re-election at Here are some of the significant dates and was preparing to introduce its Republican National Convention, August 1988. events during the history of New Orleans’ famous first model with a starting price B New Orleans Saints defeat Atlanta Falcons in first return domed stadium: below $36,000. The company B Construction authorized by law in November 1966. to the Dome after Hurricane Katrina, September 2006. saw sports-related promotions as B  Saints beat Eagles to advance to NFC championship B  Construction begins in August 1971. an excellent way to snag young B  Superdome opens in August 1975. game for the first time, January 2007. car buyers’ attention. B  LSU beats Ohio State to win BCS Championship, B  First Sugar Bowl game held in Dome in 1976 (with “We saw a huge opportunity January 2008. 35 more to follow). in New Orleans, knowing that B  Saints defeat Vikings in overtime to win first-ever B  Pistol Pete Maravich and New Orleans Jazz draw the Super Bowl would be comhome NFC Championship game and advance to Super crowd of 35,000 in 1977. ing there in a couple of years B  Sugar Ray Leonard defeats Roberto Duran in “no Bowl, Jan. 2010. and we’d have this brand new B Hosted five NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Fours (latest mas” fight, November 1980. vehicle launching,” Cannon says. B  Dome sets world record for indoor concert attenin 2012). Cannon, who previously B  Hosted three BCS College Football Championships dance when 87,500 people gather for a Rolling headed Mercedes-Benz’s margames (latest in 2012) Stones concert, December 1981. keting division, says he “quarB  Hosted seven Super Bowls, with the first in 1978 and B  Pope John Paul II addresses 80,000 school chilterbacked” the 10-year naming the latest in 2013. dren, September 1987. rights deal, which some reports valued at more than $100 milcast singer Usher and super model Kate Upton in scenes showcaslion. He says the company’s signage and branding inside and ing the new CLA model Mercedes-Benz on local streets. outside the Superdome “is the best in the business.” He adds “How often do you have an ad in a Super Bowl that’s taking that Mercedes-Benz has leveraged that branding with advertising place in your house at a time when you’re launching a new in televised sports events in the Dome, including of course, the vehicle like this?” Cannon says. “All that aligned perfectly.” Super Bowl. Thornton terms the relationship among Mercedes-Benz, the Mercedes-Benz advertised in the big game for only the second Saints, the state and New Orleans “a great partnership.” And he time when it anteed up millions of dollars for a 60-second comcan’t help circling back to the Superdome when he’s looking to mercial in the fourth quarter of Super Bowl XLVII. Building on its bestow credit. connection with New Orleans and the New Orleans Saints – team “It’s all pretty remarkable for a stadium that’s soon to be 38 owner Tom Benson also owns Mercedes dealerships – the comyears old,” Thornton says. pany filmed its splashy commercial in the French Quarter and

Facts About the Mercedes-Benz Superdome


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C H R I S T P H E R A L L E N P hotograph


Theater Boom Means More Than Popcorn There is a renaissance afoot in downtown New Orleans for historic theaters. But as marquees snap back to light, their return promises more than just new entertainment options. They could prove important new anchors for the area’s long-term revitalization goals. “It’s playing a critical role,” says Kurt Weigle, executive director of the Downtown Development District. “Hospitality is our bread and butter downtown. We’re creating new industries here, but a key is still creating new attractions that draw more visitors.” The latest revival is the Civic Theatre, just off Poydras Street, which dates back to 1906 and reopened around New Year’s after sitting idle for some 30 years. A year earlier, New Orleans saw the return of the Joy Theater, which dates to ’47 but closed in 2003. Next in the pipeline is the Saenger Theatre, which has been closed since Hurricane Katrina but is expected to reopen this year following a $52 million restoration of its ornate, original ’27 design. Generations of New Orleanians knew these theaters as movie houses, though today they’re

coming back to life with more diverse business plans and broader potential bases of support. Movies may still be on the bill from time to time, but the theaters are also now sites for stage performances, concerts, corporate functions and receptions. The Saenger in particular is being reconfigured to accommodate large-scale touring Broadway productions. The boom is aided by new business incentive programs, especially the state’s Live Infrastructure Tax Credit, which is tailored to encourage performance locations. Business people have taken note and invested in properties that until recently had uncertain futures. “This is coming from people who see the new future for downtown that’s taking shape,” says Weigle. He ties the theater revival to other advances downtown, which has seen new and revived hotels, more residents and a greater diversity of service and retail businesses open in the past few years. Theaters in particular have a great potential to accelerate that development, he says, by providing another draw for people across the region. “It’s not just the 1.2 million people in our metro area,” he says. “It’s really people from Pensacola, Fla., all the way into Texas who want to come in, see a show that’s not coming to their town and stay for a few nights,” – I an M c N u l ty

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Top of the Class

Yes, it’s true – New Orleans has become the model for school reform. BY DAWN RUTH


f someone would ’ ve prophesied a decade ago that

New Orleans would one day provide the model that could save failing urban schools across the nation, no one would have believed it. Yet in less than a decade, policy scholars are beginning to predict just that. More and more states are watching and copying what David Osborne, international government consultant and coauthor of Reinventing Government, calls “The New Orleans Model.” In the late 1990s, Osborne participated in a commission that found that the majority of students attending the nation’s largest school systems couldn’t perform at even “basic” levels of academic skills. The commission recommended an overhaul of school governance focusing on school autonomy and a market-driven competition for students. As happens most of the time to such blue ribbon committees, the recommendations traveled no further than a few dusty desk drawers. Some states and districts experimented with varying models of autonomous schools that shifted decision making to the school level, but system-wide reforms didn’t materialize. Then the most devastating hurricane in American history hit the Gulf Coast. “Since then, New Orleans has conducted the nation’s first serious test of this proposition, and the results could well shake the foundations of American education,” Osborne wrote in a comprehensive study called “Born on the Bayou: A New Model for American Education.” In this comprehensive study of New Orleans’ transformation from school


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dummy to most improved district in the state and possibly the nation, Osborne outlines how the city’s 2005 hurricane disaster provided the circumstances that turned theory into practice and practice into documented success. The school system that once consistently tied with another Louisiana parish for dead last in academic achievement and ultimately one of the worst in the nation, now boasts double-digit improvements in test scores, graduation rates and national college entrance exams for black students. The magic formula for New Orleans contained a complicated set of circumstances that bold leaders and dozens of reformed-minded educators and activists turned to their advantage. Step by step, they have been breaking the bureaucratic chokehold that traditionalists and teachers unions have had on the New Orleans’ school system and still have on most of the nation’s public schools. The outcome is a network of semi-autonomous charter schools that have unprecedented control over budgets and hiring, but are subject to closure J oseph D aniel F iedler llustration

if they fail to produce students who can perform at grade level or above. More than 80 percent of New Orleans schools are now governed by their own independent boards. Within a few years, virtually all of the city’s 42,000 students will be enrolled in charter schools because the Recovery School District, which took over most of the schools after Hurricane Katrina, has been systematically divesting itself of direct-run schools. Osborne gives credit – rightly – to visionaries such as: Leslie Jacobs, a former member of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education; former Louisiana governors Mike Foster and Kathleen Blanco; Paul Pastorek, former state Superintendent of Education; and Paul Vallas, former superintendent of the RSD, for the system’s turnaround. The path started with a pre-Katrina constitutional amendment that set up the RSD, a state agency created to take over failing schools statewide. That amendment gave state officials a way to take over most of New Orleans’ schools after the storm. The Orleans Parish School Board, which was already under federal scrutiny for mismanagement and later corruption, was left with only a handful of successful schools. Most of the schools were flooded, and there was little money available to get them open. Many of today’s charter schools developed by necessity after Katrina because there was no other way to get schools opened fast. Osborne says that charters also got a foothold because U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu succeeded in acquiring $30 million of federal money that was designated for charter start-ups. Vallas, known as a school district turnover specialist, moved the trend along by giving as many failing schools as he could to successful charter operators before he moved on to another challenge. Fortified by empowered principals, an infusion of foundation grants and well-educated new teachers supplied by nonprofit teacher recruitment organizations such as Teach for America, these charters started showing results. By 2009, 37 percent of RSDeducated students were testing at grade level, an increase of 14 percent in two years. In 2012, the percentage had increased to 51 percent, according to Osborne’s report based on state education figures. In five years, the percentages of students scoring at grade level had increased by 28 percent. In an introduction to the Osborne’s study, Elaine C. Kamarck, of Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, and Jonathan Cowan, president of Third Way, a Washington D.C. think tank, said that New Orleans’ charter dominated school system is the nation’s “first system-wide experiment in public education reform.” Kamarck and Cowan said New Orleans’ “all charter model” provides a more effective system for the 21st century. “The lessons and principles contained in the charter experiment in New Orleans provide the greatest hope for every school district – rich, middle class or poor – to make their school far better,” they wrote. In the report’s final section, Osborne poses a question: will the New Orleans Model spread? Only the future will bring an answer to this question, but Osborne says that many are watching New Orleans and “a few are already emulating it.” He reports that Michigan, Tennessee and Hawaii have already set up systems like the RSD. The New Orleans model could spread, he says. “Because it harnesses the power of decentralPercentage Increases at ization, choice, competition, Grade Level or Above on All contestability and accountStandardized Tests, 2007-’12 ability for results, it’s simply a Recovery School District: 28% superior form of governance. Orleans Parish School Board: 16% As such, it is capable of proState-run: 8% ducing better results almost Source: Osborne, Louisiana State anywhere.” Department of Education

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HEALTHBEAT Ochsner Medical CenterKenner is, as of press time, the only hospital in Louisiana to be equipped with the Nanoknife. The surgical device – which is not actually a knife – is used to eliminate malignant tumors. The tool uses high electric voltage, dispensed in fractions of a second, at very low currents to destroy tumors. The procedure is painless, and patients’ recovery times are relatively quick. In a press release Dr. J. Philip

Boudreaux, Professor of Surgery at LSUHSC and surgeon at the combined LSU/Ochsner-Kenner’s Neuroendocrine Tumor Program, says, “This is an extremely unique device which we have used on about 50 patients. We have treated over 100 malignant tumors and have been extremely pleased by the results.” Prior to acquisition of the Nanoknife, the primary method for destroying most malignant tumors that could not be removed was a microwave energy device, which “cooked” tumors until they were dead.

February is a month to raise awareness for heart health, so on Feb. 22, the American Heart Association will host its annual Go Red for Women Luncheon, chaired by Kathleen Robert, who is supported by a committee of women passionate about heart health. The luncheon, held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, is part of the Go Red For

Women movement, which encourages local women to take charge of their heart health. Guests can participate in free health screenings, free educational seminars and a silent auction from 10-11:30 a.m. At 11:30 a.m., the heart-healthy luncheon program begins by revealing stories of local women affected personally by heart disease. For tickets or more information, call 830-2300.

The Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs has awarded accreditation to the LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans Human Research Protection Program. The organization promotes high-quality, ethically sound research through an accreditation process that ensures that human research programs meet rigor-

ous standards for quality and protection. To earn accreditation, organizations must provide evidence via its policies, procedures and practices – of their commitment to scientifically and ethically sound research and to continuous improvement. With private and public partners, 300 LSUHSC faculty members are conducting more than 900 human research studies on a broad range of health issues. – S arah R a v its


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‘‘If You Really Knew Me ...” Students reveal their inner selves. B y A LL E N J O H N S O N J R .


ov . B obby J indal has created a school violence

study group in the wake of the Newton, Conn., shootings. Co-chaired by Louisiana State Police superintendent Michael D. Edmonson and state corrections secretary James M. LeBlanc, the purpose of the task force is to develop recommendations for a “safe learning environment” on each of Louisiana’s 1,700 school campuses – kindergarten through college – according to the Governor’s executive order. At some point, the governor’s study group may take a school “field trip.” Warren Easton Charter High School – Louisiana’s oldest public high school – should be at the top of their New Orleans agenda. For four consecutive years, Warren Easton’s student council has hosted the Students Against Violence Everywhere (SAVE) & “No Place for Hate®” program, a unique, nationwide, student-led effort to stop bullying, bias and school violence. “We are the only program in Louisiana,” Easton student counselor Rozetta Millner says, proudly. On Nov. 30th, 2012, students from five local high schools – McMain, Sophie B. Wright, Xavier, Lusher and Easton – participated in a day-long agenda of activities such as “trust-building,” learning about teen “body images” and the “ABC’s of Bully Prevention.” For the final exercise, some 30 students sat in a solemn circle inside Easton’s Arthur Hardy Auditorium, named for the Mardi Gras historian. Most are black, female and well-dressed

No Place for Hate participants


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in school uniforms. “How many of you know what it feels like to judged?” 17-year-old De’Asya Ross, an Easton senior, begins. Nearly all raise their hands. “How many people like it?” Ross says, reading from a script. No hands go up. The students then take turns standing up and speaking out, sharing personal confidences. All start with the phrase: “If you really knew me ...” The session begins with some teenage angst. “If you really knew me,” says Brittney, “you’d know that I am not as confident as I appear to be. If you look at me, you wouldn’t know I cry myself to sleep every night.” “If you really knew me,” another girl, “Jamila,” says, “you’d know that I get really depressed because of my dad leaving two years ago.” Some darker thoughts surface. “If you really knew me,” a quiet petite girl with a McMain sweatshirt said, “you would know that I cut myself when I get angry.” “If you really knew me,” says the next speaker, “you’d know I come from a broken home; I have a hard time meeting new people.” One youth vows to find a silver lining in life’s dark clouds. A 17-year-old senior nicknamed “Slim,” from the Magnolia public housing development said: “If you really knew me, you’d know that I lost a lot of friends when I was really young,” including a girl killed in a drive-by shooting when Slim was only a boy, aged 11. “I lost my best friend last year,” Slim continues.

“If you take care of the physical and emotional needs, then you can educate a child.”

“He got shot. I made a promise to him that I would keep on living.” The group suddenly bursts into applause. Slim hurriedly adds, “His name was Nick. He was 6! He was the best friend I ever had!” before the ovation subsides. Another boy, Brendon, says: “If you really knew me, you’d know my uncle killed his self. I was really hurt by the fact that he did it.” A small girl with a plaid skirt stands up: “If you really knew me, you’d know I Alexina Medley, seen my dad got shot in front of my face.” Warren Easton Instead, of sitting back down, she steps principal away from the group and heads for the exit doors. She begins to cry. An older, larger girl wearing another uniform from another school quietly steps up. Slipping out the circle, she catches up with the younger student and wraps a right arm warmly around her tiny shoulders. The program ends minutes later – with a raffle. The students hug one another and amble out of the arena. Slim and De’Asya Ross stay behind to talk with a visitor. They lean on a piano. Slim found the program helpful. “Sometimes I get depressed, and it interferes with my school work,” he says. He sees a future in music and plans to attend New York University and the Berklee College of Music in Boston. “I told everyone I would achieve my dream for them,” Slim says , including his deceased friend, “Nick.” After graduating from Warren Easton, Ross says she plans to attend the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, join the U.S. Air Force Reserves and pursue a career as a registered nurse. Her ambitions are throttled by grief, however. She still mourns the death of a friend, Tirrell Jackson, 18, who was shot to death Feb. 12, 2012, in eastern New Orleans, police said. “I feel very incomplete without him,” Ross says. “He was supposed to graduate with us.” B



Easton development director Marcel McGee said the studentrun program helps educators better understand their young students. “If you give them an opportunity to express themselves and to do it their way – that’s where you definitely get the whole story.” “If you take care of the physical and emotional needs, then you can educate a child,” says Easton principal Alexina Medley. Students with obvious problems can get help at Children’s Hospital. Other students in the group need additional counseling that the school cannot provide. “Where do we go to find the resources?” Medley asks. She isn’t the only school principal asking that question today. Two weeks to the day after New Orleans students posted signs on classroom windows that read “No Place for Hate,” a darker drama unfolded in Newton, Conn. A 20-year-old gunman killed his mother, walked into an elementary school and fatally shot six adults and 20 children, before ending his own life. Much of the school violence prevention discussion since then has focused on the polemical debate of gun control. Students at Warren Easton seem to be taking a different approach to increase the peace at their school. The governor’s study group should visit, listen and report what they have learned. The students might be heading in the right direction. If so, their elders shouldn’t be afraid to follow.

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Leah Chase: The Foundation In her long and extraordinary career, Leah Chase has racked up many of the honors that chefs and restaurateurs covet from the culinary world. But the accolades have reached much farther than that, reflecting her contributions to civil rights, education, art and community-building. Now, a new charitable foundation has been established to continue her legacy. The Edgar “Dooky” Jr. & Leah Chase Family Foundation got its start early this year with fundraisers organized around the chef’s 90th birthday, which included a series of luncheons at her Dooky Chase Restaurant and a gala at the Hyatt Regency prepared by a slate of celebrity chefs. “Celebrating her birthday with this kind of revelry would not go over well with my grandmother if it weren’t designed to give back to the community,” said family member Tracie Griffin. “That’s why (the events were) the perfect moment to launch the foundation to continue the kindness, compassion and support that have surrounded my grandmother throughout her career.” The foundation will sup-

port causes ranging from social justice and inclusion to fine art and the culinary arts. Chase was born in Madisonville in 1923 and moved to New Orleans to attend high school. She later married Edgar “Dooky” Jr. and eventually took charge of the family restaurant her in-laws originally established on Orleans Avenue. As the civil rights movement began revving up, it became a meeting place for community organizers and a safe haven for people from the white and black communities to convene and plan. Chase also emerged as a patron of the arts and turned her restaurant walls into a veritable gallery of contemporary African-American art. “The average restaurant critic is misplaced here,” Leah Chase’s biographer, Carol Allen, wrote about the restaurant in her 2002 book Listen, I Say Like This. “To effectively critique the Dooky Chase Restaurant, one should know about food, history, human relationships, formal and informal politics, art, good manners and social justice, just for starters.” With their new foundation, the Chase family, left, is helping encourage those cornerstones of their heritage for a long time to come. For more on the foundation, see DookyAndLeah ChaseFoundation. org. – I an M c N u l ty


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O. Perry Walker High School performing in the 2012 Krewe of Muses.


Carnival Post Super Bowl PAGE 36


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T H E  S C O O P Krewe of Mid-City

Carnival Post Super Bowl And now the parades continue By ERROL LABORDE F or the rest of the nation the final pla y of

the Super Bowl means merely that football season is over. In New Orleans it means that we can return to having our parades. Here are our picks of the top remaining parades.

Day Parades 1. Rex. Look for a theme

admiring “All Creatures, Great and Small.” Rex is about tradition, style and elegance, a classic New Orleans-style Carnival parade. Mardi Gras, St. Charles Avenue, 10 a.m. 2. Thoth. Great Egyptian

motif among first few floats. In terms of size, this is becoming one of Carnival’s major parades – big and festive. The ambitious Uptown neighborhood route passes several health institutions. Sun., Feb. 10, St. Charles Avenue, Noon. 3. Mid-City. Forget about

the beads and admire one of Carnival’s prettiest parades. The parade is visually unique

C A R N I V A L ’1 3 36

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with Carnival’s only all-foil floats. On a sunny day floats can be dazzling. Sun., Feb. 10, St. Charles Avenue, 11:45 a.m. 4. Zulu. Now in its second

century, Zulu is big and brassy and lately, more on time. Look for the African motif on the early floats and the top-heavy hierarchy, including not just Zulu but the Big Shot, Witch Doctor and more. It is one of Carnival’s favorites. Mardi Gras, St. Charles Avenue, 8 a.m. 7. Tucks. This started as a

college parade and still has a fraternity house feel – and we mean that in a good way. Not fancy, highly satirical, a bit naughty, but lots of fun. Sat., Feb. 9, St. Charles Avenue, Noon. M I T C H E L O S B O R N E P H O T O G R A P H , this page ; s y nde y b y rd photograph , facing page

Krewe of Rex

8. Iris. This all-gals group is also one of Carnival’s largest. Troubled by rain in recent years, a new captain deserves sunshine. Theme is forced into available floats, nevertheless look for feathery maids costumes. Sat., Feb. 9, St.

can take away its place in Carnival history as the first of the super krewes. Still big and visually spectacular. Expect Bacchus to return to its total grandeur. Sun., Feb. 10, St.

Charles Avenue, 11 a.m. 9. Okeanos. Nothing flashy,

to march along Canal Street, the parade’s coming is a weekend long social event in Mid-City. Look for the debut of the new seven-part tandem float depicting the former Pontchartrain Beach amusement park. Carnival’s longest float will have 250 riders. (See related story on pg. 76) Sat.,

but a good, old fashioned, traditional parade. Sun., Feb. 10, St. Charles Avenue, 11 a.m.

Super Krewes A three-way tie. Endymion is the biggest. Orpheus is the prettiest. Bacchus has the history. Bacchus. This venerable krewe had some internal issues this year, but nothing

Charles Avenue, 5:15 p.m. Endymion. The only parade

Feb. 9, Canal Street, 4:15 p.m. Orpheus. This parade has

the size of a super krewe

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Krewe of Orpheus

and the design elements of the old-line groups. Look for Smokey Mary tandem float, Trojan horse and magnificent Leviathan. Great walking units, too. Lundi Gras, St. Charles Avenue, 6 p.m.

4. Muses. This witty allfemale krewe is a must-see. Look for the signature highheel shoe float. This is one of Carnival’s hottest groups with great marching groups between floats. Thurs., Feb. 7, St. Charles Avenue, 6:30 p.m.

Night Parades

5. Chaos. With deep roots to the old-line krewes, Chaos provides satire in the spirit of the former Momus parade. Take time to read what’s written on the floats. Thurs., Feb. 7, St. Charles Avenue, 6:30 p.m. 6. Babylon. This old-style

1. Proteus. Forget about

the throws, look at the floats – and the history. Nauticalthemed King’s float is one of Carnival’s best. Carnival’s only surviving nighttime 19th-century parade is something to behold, for its design and its tradition. Lundi Gras, St. Charles Avenue, 5:15 p.m. 2. Le Krewe d’Etat. The

throws are excellent, but pay attention to the humor, some of it biting, on this satirical parade. This is one of Carnival’s most popular krewes, with its good design and well presented satire. Fri., Feb. 8, St. Charles Avenue, 6 p.m. 3. Hermes. Visually exciting,

this is always one of Carnival’s most glamorous parades done in the tradition of the old-style krewes. This 1930s-era parade introduced neon lighting to floats. Fri., Feb. 8, St. Charles Avenue, 6 p.m. 38

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Krewe of Proteus

parade with smaller floats beds, like they used to be, and a theme that tells a story, is a Carnival classic. Look for the Captain riding in a buggy. Thurs., Feb. 7, St. Charles Avenue, 5:45 p.m. 7. Ancient Druids. This group,

made up of parade bosses from other krewes, can be very good. Riders are dressed like Druids. Instead of a King there’s a High Priest. Wed., Feb. 6, St. Charles Avenue, 6:30 p.m. 8. Morpheus. Anchors a long

parade night on the Friday evening before Mardi Gras. Fri., Feb. 8, St. Charles Avenue, 7 p.m. 9. Nyx. This all-female krewe

made its debut last year but had to dodge raindrops. The second year will be a good test of its future. Worth the experience. Wed., Feb. 6, St. Charles Avenue, 7 p.m.

Best Suburban Parade Zeus. Now in its 54th year, this is the krewe that began the suburban parading tradition. Mon., Feb. 11, Veterans Blvd., 6:30 p.m. Best date to remember: March 4:

Mardi Gras 2014.


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Visions of Early Rampart Street

and the country sank into the Great Depression, many of the best musicians had long since packed off. King Oliver left in ’17, Paul Barbarin in ’18, Louis Armstrong in ’22, Danny and Blue Barker in ’30 – the list runs much longer. The jazz diaspora was driven by economic realities yoked to the harsh segregation laws, poverty and poor schooling; yet in so many of the memoirs by musicians of that era, their recollections treat the people and mores of daily life rather sweetly. Life in the city at the bottom of America was, despite the enforced poverty, meaSelf portrait, early 1920’s surably better for black people than in most other parts of the South, particularly rural areas. Music abounded in streets and dancehalls with parades for the benevolent societies and church groups; the Storyville bordello district in present-day Tremé provided seamier locations as jazz flowered in the early 1900s. When the federal government closed the district in ’17 as a health threat to Navy sailors, much of the sexual traffic moved into the French Quarter. (Mayor Bob Maestri’s furniture store sold mattresses to madams for their joints in the French Quarter, the upper floor of what’s now Arnaud’s restaurant, among them.) But the financial impact came down hard on the musicians. Kid Ory the legendary trombonist fled a threatening mobster who owned a Storvyille joint for warm Los Angeles when Wilshire Boulevard wasn’t too far from pasture. South Rampart Street, starting at Canal Street and running Uptown past Howard Avenue into present-day Central City, burgeoned as a grassroots black entertainment zone in the 1930s, a quilt of honkytonks, theatres, eateries and small businesses on the main drag and side streets. Not much is left of the architecture today, at least in the CBD; but as an economy of scale, South Rampart Street had a staying power that outlasted Storyville. Florestine Perrault Collins set up shop on South Rampart Street in 1934 as a studio photographer. To make it as an

The photographs of Florestine Perrault Collins B Y  J A S O N   B E R R Y


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n the 1 9 3 0 s , when N ew O rleans

CD She has been called the Macy Gray of New Orleans, and when you hear her EP “OnlyElon,” you’ll understand why Elon Hornsby deserves the comparison. The Houma native and graduate of the Agnes Scott College in Atlanta writes all of her own music, which has already impressed some famous friends; Better Than Ezra’s Tom Drummond helped Hornsby with her EP.

FOOD If you’ve ever thought, “I sure wish I could make a dish like they do at Galatoire’s,” you need Lorin Gaudin’s New Orleans Chef’s Table. The local food writer’s new book is jam-packed with recipes from a variety of New Orleans’ favorite eateries including Commander’s Palace, Restaurant R’evolution, Creole Creamery and more. There is a little write-up about each spot followed by a recipe or two.

HISTORY In her new book Spectacular Wickedness: Sex, Race, and Memory in Storyville, New Orleans, author Emily Epstein Landau offers an extensive history of Storyville, New Orleans’ red light district from 1897 to 1917. Landau, a history professor at the University of Maryland at College Park, gives readers a detailed look at the women who worked in Storyville and the area’s music scene. The book also focuses on how racial issues of the time played a huge part in the history of the “nation’s most notorious red-light district.”

SOCIOLOGY Author Jill Ann Harrison is a sociology professor at the University of Oregon, but she developed an interest for Louisiana shrimpers after she worked on the Louisiana Bayou with AmeriCorps as a recent college grad. For Buoyancy on the Bayou: Shrimpers Face the Rising Tide of Globalization, Harrison talks to Louisiana fishers to see how the changes of the shrimp fishing industry has changed their lives. She includes personal stories from shrimp fishers throughout the book, which makes the broad and complicated topic of globalization easier to grasp and makes for an interesting read.

Please send submissions for consideration, attention: Haley Adams, 110 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005.

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independent photographer in those years was “It is a nice ambiguity that Catholics the mother of former New Orleans mayor hard, and to make it as a woman in a field have the least use for the very thing, if Sidney Barthelemy, said families made dominated by men was doubly difficult. But not the only thing, for which they are two stops following the birth of a baby – as the historian Arthé A. Anthony writes in admired, the artifacts, the accidentals the church and the photographer,” writes the biographical essay from Picturing Black of Catholicism, e.g., the buildings, folkAnthony, a professor of American studies New Orleans: A Creole Photographer’s View ways, music and so on. Thus, a trivial at Occidental College in Los Angeles, and of the Early Twentieth Century (published by by-product of New Orleans Catholicism, grand-niece of her subject. University Press of Florida), Collins cultivated Mardi Gras, has been seized on by tourSouth Rampart Street “was not all raunher market share. ists, appropriated by local Protestants, chiness,” Anthony continues, “and one “For blacks who were forced to wear unipromoted by the Chamber of Commerce, stretch was home to an annual Easter forms or other symbols of subservience on their as the major cultural attraction.” Parade. ... But the majority of the district’s jobs, dressing up symbolized the transformation – Walker Percy, Lost in the Cosmos businesses were owned by white men they underwent when they no longer were at catering to black men or black men renting work, when they were expected to be deferential to whites in manner from white landlords – Dix’s Barbershop, King’s Shoe Shine Parlor, and dress. Dressing up was also part of the preparation associated Tick Tock Tavern, Polmer Tailoring, Cohen’s Loan and Jewelry with having a photograph made.” Company, Reiner’s Pawn Shop and Pelican Billiard Hall, all located To secure her studio lease, she enlisted a girlfriend whose pale on the first six blocks south of Canal Street and waking walking complexion persuaded the owner to give the $40-a-month lease to distance of Collins’ studio.” a white woman. The book cover features a traveling entertainer Another photographer, and member of Florestine Collins’s named Neliska “Baby” Briscoe wearing a white tuxedo half-coat social circle, Arthur P. Bedou, produced important images of and black tie, holding a bandleader’s thin baton with a gleaming the parade culture in a time when brass bands still wore military grin. Among the other artifacts, a photograph of Duke Ellington in uniforms and drew upon a repertoire shaped by the marches a group pose, the bandleader grinning with the confidence of a and military drum rolls that had come out of the Battle of New man who got photographed everywhere, while the local Creoles Orleans, the Civil War and the Spanish-American War, which saw around him gaze at the camera with an intensity telegraphing less the Onward Brass Band travel to Cuba. self-assurance. Many more of the images in this alluring book capFlorestine Perrault Collins had the tenacity to establish a studio ture the genteel tone of downtown Creole life. Case in point: the business, against the odds of gender and race, before photografuture U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young, with his brother Walter, in phy acquired the aura of an art form. She was a lady more at home cowboy costumes with black hats for Mardi Gras 1938. with the downtown Carnival and debutante balls of the Creole Collins’s bread-and-butter work came from the studio portraits, elite than a Mardi Gras Indian parade or jazz funeral, yet a woman particularly photographs of babies and children. “Ruth Barthelemy, quite at home with music just the same.


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Soldiering On Don Weil is at ease paying attention to his armies B Y  G E O R G E   G U R T N E R


f a man ’ s home is indeed his castle to be enjo y ed

in comfort and safety as the poet’s opine, Don Weil is content, knowing his palace is well protected by soldiers, all manner of soldiers: American soldiers, Russian soldiers, Napoleonic soldiers, North Korean soldiers … you name it and it “lives” under Weil’s roof, always standing at the ready. In fact, Weil, a retired businessman who once sold furniture on Magazine Street, is commandant of a Lilliputian army of some 5,000 soldiers of every stripe. He swears with a wink that he knows each one by army, rank and name. And he should – he made them. Weil, at one time, was the owner of Le Petit Soldier, a “must stop” on Royal Street for collectors of miniature (please don’t call them “toy”) soldiers from all over the world. Weil’s business stood out in a neighborhood of strange and iconic businesses and attracted collectors just as Gen. George S. Patton was attracted to a battle – “Don’t argue with me, dammit, I can smell a battlefield!” And who knows how many serious collectors today got their start when they first stood peering into that window and wondering what all those little soldiers were all about. But what no man-made weapons could defeat withered in the face of Mother Nature. Just as Napoleon’s Grande Armée and Gen. Heinz Guderian’s Wehrmacht were defeated by cruel Russian winters centuries apart, Hurricane Katrina dealt a fatal blow to Le Petit Soldier, if not to Weir’s determination. Weir, a retired lieutenant colonel in the Marine Corps reserve, walks through


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his house, from room to room, as if leading an inspection. He stops to look around each room at the troops stationed at various points in his home. One almost expects the click of heels or a salute. “I missed World War II,” Weil says. “I was too young. But my brothers, my dad, my uncles, guys in the neighborhood … they all went. I finally joined in 1948. When the Korean War came I was attached to a NATO unit in the Mediterranean. Well …” After all these years, the disappointment in Weil’s voice is palpable. “I was stationed in Washington, D.C., in 1952,” he says. “As a kid, I had always built models and that’s where the bug for the miniatures first bit. I bought a kit and went home and built a soldier and painted it … and I was hooked. I came home and found a few other collectors and we started collecting together. I was hooked! I absolutely loved it from the beginning. One day it hit us, ‘Hey, these things will sell!’” He continues, “There were seven of us and we opened up a shop on Royal Street in ’62. In time, my partner, Dave Dugas, and I bought out the five other guys. Dave had been a pharmacist his whole life and he just got tired of people coming in a putting a gun to his face for narcotics. He loved the shop. And he knew his stuff. As for myself, Le Petit Soldier Shop wasn’t my primary source of income. I was in the furniture business. My collection just grew and grew. My wife, Betty, and I were living in a two-story house in Lakewood. Then Katrina hit. At the time, I had a collection of about 20,000 pieces, about 8,000 of which were downstairs. They were destroyed.” Like Weil, Dugas also lost his house in Katrina and had “just had enough.” Although Le Petit Soldier, like most buildings in the French Quarter, was damaged little if at all, the big loss was “the lack of customers,” according to Weil. “We sold out to a guy who really ran the business into the ground. You can’t run a business if you can’t pay your suppliers and you can’t pay your rent. Le Petit Soldier was padlocked, remaining only a memory in the minds of Weil, Dugas and an army of passionate collectors. Dugas moved to Pelican Pointe and Weil moved to Metairie. In the interim Weil and another partner FRANK METHE PHOTOGRAPH

opened Vision Plaza, a mega optometry outlet. They built the business into 10 outlets around New Orleans with 130 employees. But with competing optometry business seemingly opening on every corner each week, the now 85-year-old Weil and his partner sold the business in 2006 and the retired marine now spends all of his time building armies instead of building businesses. The tour through his home continues. “Betty lets me have soldiers everywhere in the house except the bathroom, the bedroom and the kitchen,” Weil says. “And right now, I’m thinking of making a move on the bedroom.” Betty playfully shakes a finger her husband’s way. “But really,” he says. “Betty has been a good soldier about it all. If I don’t get miniature soldiers on my birthday or Christmas, I pout. She always comes through. It’s all supposed to be a big secret. She gets together with some of the guys I collect with. They’ll be asking me throughout the year, ‘What do you want?’ The Internet is going like crazy.” One room opens to a large table holding the Battle of New Orleans. A sea of British redcoats is making its way through the swampy plains of Chalmette into the teeth of a rag-tag determined army led by Gen. Andrew Jackson. Weil points out the fallen British Gen. Sir Edward Michael Packenham. He also points out that the layout isn’t thrown together helter-skelter, but is laid out according to American and British battle plans of the time. “There is so much history to be learned with these soldiers, these battles,” he says. We all know how that British misadventure ended. Damn: At this point of Weil’s tour you can almost hear Johnny Horton singing that Top 40 ditty from the late 1950s: “Well, they ran through the briar and they ran through the bramble and they ran through the bushes where a rabbit wouldn’t go. They ran so fast that the hounds couldn’t catch ’em, down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico …” “A friend of mine who owns a funeral business was really impressed by the Battle of New Orleans exhibit,” Weil says. “He wanted to make a deal, he said, ‘I’ll give you $250 or a beautiful funeral for it.’” A visitor sidles over to a model of a German “Tiger Tank.” “No,” Weil says with all of the aplomb of a teacher correcting a student. “That’s a German Panther tank.” “Isn’t that Heinrich Himmler?” the visitor asks. “No,” says Weil, “That’s Herman Goering … and that’s Benito Mussolini right next to him.” Each piece is delicately and accurately hand painted. Past the Peloponnesian War; past the Nomonhan conflict of 1939 between Japanese and Soviet forces; past the Battle of Midway; all the way to the workshop in the little shed behind the Weil home where Don Weil builds his little men. There are a kiln and rolls of rubber molds representing unborn soldiers of just about any war or conflict one can imagine. Lead for the soldiers comes from discarded weights used in balancing tires. “When the shop (Le Petit Soldier) was running I’d make 100 maybe 125 soldiers a week,” he says. “We were selling that many. Now it’s sort of an on demand proposition. I’ll do maybe 20 or 30 at a time.” All of which gives Weil time to volunteer regularly at the National World War II Museum and prepare for and attend miniature solider conventions in Schaumburg Ill, and the occasional one in Atlanta. Still, Don Weil is impatient. He says he sleeps entirely too late in the mornings and needs to start volunteering more. He needs to do more. There are so many soldiers to be made; so many battles to be won.

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Coastal Carnival – Why It Ain’t Right B Y  M O D I N E   G U N C H


ome things should sta y where G od put them .

They just don’t do so good transplanted. Like polar bears. And banana trees. And Mardi Gras. I am not talking about the Mardi Gras like in Rio, because that’s a whole other thing. From what I can tell, them Rio people parade around naked as jaybirds – and they look good that way. Now, we got plenty of naked skin parading around in the French Quarter, don’t get me wrong. But the ugly truth is the majority of us who live in New Orleans look a whole lot better with clothes on, this being the world’s fattest city. If we tried to compete with Rio in stark nakedness, people would be paying not to come here for Mardi Gras. So we focus on the beads. Which, like the colors of the rainbows, are free. It don’t get no better than that. Once I left town for Mardi Gras. Now, I know there are people who do this all the time. They go to Disney World and pay money and watch the Disney Mardi Gras parade of golf carts. Or they go somewhere freezing cold to ski. I myself have never actually seen a ski, but I can tell you that if I’m going to freeze my patootie off, I will do it right here at home, where I can catch some beads. What happened was, my mother-in-law, Ms. Larda, has got this rich Aunt Chlorine, who’s in real estate. This particular year she put out the word to her customers up North that if anybody wanted to rent lodgings for Mardi Gras, to come to her. When she got a couple of takers – it turned out to be a band of street preachers with signs saying “The End is Near” and a troupe of belly dancers from Oregon – she talked Ms. Larda into renting them her house, which is a double, and splitting the profits. Aunt Chlorine also offered Ms. Larda one of her larger beach condos – she owns a string of them on the Gulf Coast – to stay in while the preachers and the belly dancers lived in her house. My brother-in-laws Lurch and Leech live on the other side of this double, so they got to go to Florida, too. No sooner do they all get there than Ms. Larda calls me up and begs me to come for Mardi Gras day, so she can talk to somebody sane. Now my gentleman friend, Lust, owns the Sloth Lounge in the French Quarter, and this is his busiest season, so he got no time for anything else whatsoever. I lead walking tours in the French Quarter, but it’s hard to lead them politely through crowds of crazy people – and some of them really believe “what happens in New Orleans stays in New Orleans” and they forget their manners. So I’m tempted. “They got Mardi Gras here too, Modine,” Ms. Larda tells me. “They say it’s real nice.” “Nice.” That should have tipped me off. Sunday school picnics are “nice.” Baby showers are “nice.” Mardi Gras ain’t “nice” – that’s the beauty of it. But I don’t think of this, and I leave for the beach. Now, I don’t want to tell you the name of the beach town where this particular Mardi Gras is because I don’t want to hurt no feelings. On Mardi Gras day, we got out early and set out in lawn chairs, surrounded by no one. We see clumps of people up and down the route in other lawn chairs, but there’s a lot of distance between them. There ain’t a ladder seat in sight, and no need for them. There are gift shops, coffee shops and C A R N I V A L ’1 3 McDonald’s, all open, with no bathroom lines. So there are 46

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plenty of places to pee. And that’s sad. I also notice people have bought beads – paid good money for them – at them little gift shops. They are wearing them to the parade. I want to tell them you never buy beads. God made them to be free. And you never wear beads to a parade. You catch them and stash them out of sight so the parade riders will feel bad for you and throw you some more. I get into a conversation with this one family, and we chit and chat, and then I say to the mama, “About the beads ...” and the lady says, “Beads? You mean these parade necklaces?” I give up. We got a language barrier here. The parade don’t have what I consider floats, but it has a dozen pick-up trucks and convertibles, all decked out in purple, green and gold crepe paper, and the riders throw plenty of parade necklaces plus some homemade cookies in zippered bags. Just like Ms. Larda said, it’s very nice. Thank God Ms. Larda’s cell phone rings. It is the sheriff’s office back home, calling about a disturbance of the peace on her property. They tell her some people who are claiming to be her house guests got into a altercation. Finally, some excitement. We all jump in our cars and go roaring back. We get there in time to see the belly dancers about to climb into a cab for the airport. They tell us they came back exhausted after bellying their way through a couple parades, met up with the preachers on the porch and didn’t appreciate being called wanton sluts, on bullhorns, no less. So they called the cops, who didn’t appreciate being told they were going to hell – even though the preachers probably meant it as prophesy, not an insult. Now the preachers are cooling their heels in jail. And we missed it all. At least we got home in time to watch the meeting of Rex and Comus on TV. And we got homemade cookies in zippered bags. Ain’t that nice. LORI OSIECKI ILLUSTRATION

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Sousaphones Versus the Suburbs B Y  E V E K idd C ra w f ord


y dad is , b y default reall y , the patriarch

of our tiny, crazy Southern family, and, as such, he dispenses a lot of advice. Some of it is good. Some of it is questionable. These days, he prefaces his advice to me with: “But listen, I had three kids, and two of them are dead. So what do I know?” But when I was growing up, my dad gave me two pieces of advice that have always stuck with me. No. 1: “New Orleans will always be home. Nowhere else will ever feel quite the same. You might go away for awhile, but you will come back. Trust me on this one.” No. 2: “No matter how poor you are, always tip the street musicians.” I am trying to live this advice every day with Ruby, and so far, I think I’m doing OK. That kid is crazy about live music. In fact, aside from St. Aug at Bacchus when she was 9 weeks old, Ruby has loved any and all live music she has ever heard. This past winter, just before Carnival, Ruby and I were sharing a lazy Saturday morning on the sofa. We had both just taken baths and then promptly gotten back into our pajamas, and I was carefully combing out her snarly wet curls when we heard music outside. We jumped up and ran to the porch just in time to see the Pierre Capdau band marching past ­– and without stopping to dry our hair, put on shoes, change into real clothes, we took off after them. We followed them, barefoot and wetheaded, around Mid-City in our PJs for at least half an hour. Now it might sound, from the above, like Ruby and I have some idyllic mother-daughter relationship, but I rush to assure you that that’s not true. We adore each other, but she is still a 5-year-old girl, and she very often just likes to screw with me. Usually this takes the form of her saying, right after I buy an enormous bag of chicken nuggets from Sam’s, “Oh, I forgot to tell you: I don’t like chicken nuggets anymore.” Sometimes it’s a bit darker, with her saying things like, “I don’t think I’m actually pretty or smart at all, Mom” or “You love the baby more than me” or “Why didn’t you give me a better name, like Victoria of the Valley?” And sometimes it’s even more insidious. Last week, just before she left for Thanksgiving with her dad’s family in St. Louis, she told me, thoughtfully, “I don’t think I belong here in New Orleans. I belong in St. Louis.” “Of course you belong here,” I told her shortly. “You like parades, don’t you? St. Louis has crappy parades.”


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But considering all of the hand wringing I did (and still do) over moving her from safe, wholesome, bland Middle America down here to neverboring NOLA, this chewed at me all day. St. Louis, where Ruby’s dad grew up, has nice suburbs, good schools, a free zoo – and most of all, a huge loving family that embraces Ruby fully. “I took that away from her,” I thought. “I took it away and replaced it with parades.” Later that night, I was driving the girls downtown to see Santa. I was stuck in traffic again in that godawful Canal Street construction, and the baby was howling again, and I was in a terrible mood again. Ruby, in the backseat, started rolling her window down, and without thinking, I immediately snapped at her, “What are you doing? Leave the window alone!” “But Mom,” she said in the tone of the deeply aggrieved, “I saw a guy out there with a sousaphone – and, yes, I do mean a sousaphone and not a saxophone, and yes, I do know the difference – and I was rolling down my window because I thought it might be nice to hear some live music.” I looked slowly to my right. There was a guy with a sousaphone on the corner. I laughed and let her keep her window down. I suddenly felt a whole lot better.  “Ruby might not know it,” I thought to myself, “just like she doesn’t know about the extra vegetables that I sometimes hide in meatloaf, but just as I know vegetables nourish the body, I know that New Orleans nourishes the soul. And no matter what she thinks, she absolutely belongs here. So there!” “What are you laughing about?” she demanded. “Oh, nothing,” I said. “It’s just that New Orleans will always be home. Nowhere else will ever feel quite the same. You might go away for awhile, but you will come back. Trust me on this one.” Excerpted from Eve Kidd Crawford’s blog, Joie d’Eve, which appears each Friday on For comments: KIM WELSH PHOTOGRAPH

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Feet on the Street Mardi Gras walking clubs B Y  C A R O L Y N   K O L B



t ’ s the neglected part of M ardi G ras , ” M aril y n

Nonenmacher insists, “but it’s wonderful!” Nonenmacher is talking about the clubs that walk a route on Mardi Gras Day. She doesn’t actually march with a walking club for Carnival, but for the last half century she has been a formidable force in keeping one of the remaining Carnival Clubs on the street: Pete Fountain’s Half-Fast Walking Club. Fountain’s group, for which Fountain himself still plays music, nowadays from a small streetcar float with his group, was founded in 1961, which makes it a youngster in the small world of men’s walking clubs. Starting around 7 a.m. Mardi Gras morning, the clubs, accompanied by their bands, will wander through Uptown neighborhoods, between Magazine Street and the river, finally converging on Washington Avenue (where the Half-Fast joins up from their later route start at Commander’s Palace). From there, they turn onto St. Charles Avenue and proceed in front of Zulu. Oldest of the groups is the Jefferson City Buzzards, founded in 1890, and supposedly named for the birds that frequented the area slaughterhouses near the river Uptown. Like the other clubs, the members walk or dance along with canes, decorated with paper flowers to give to parade C A R N I V A L ’1 3 goers (with a kiss for ladies). Members also give out beads

and doubloons. The longest marching veteran Buzzard is George Luft – who plans to be on the route again this year. “I joined the Buzzards in 1949,” he recalls. “The U.S. Army needed me in Korea in ’51 and ’52, and, when I was working at The Times-Picayune, I was going to have work Carnival Day in ’56, and when I finally got the day off, it was too late to get the costume so I didn’t march. In ’99, I had broken my leg, so I only marched about eight blocks.” The Buzzards (like other groups) have long had a “rehearsal parade” a few weeks before Mardi

The Jefferson City Buzzards, founded in 1890, make their way down St. Charles Avenue. Pete Fountain leads his Half-Fast Walking Club in 1966, top.


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S Y N D E Y B Y R D P H O T O G R A P H , B ottom ; P hotograph C ourtes y M aril y n N onemacher , top

Gras. Buzzards also parade in the St. Patrick’s or the Irish-Italian parades in Jefferson Parish, where many members now live. Their band now rides, but they still have live music. “We’ve been around since 1890,” Luft notes. “We must be doing something right.” Second in age to the Buzzards is the Corner Club, formed in 1918 on the corner of Third and Rousseau streets. Seann Halligan’s great-grandfather Edward Gallagher was one of the founders, and his grandfather, 90 year-old John “Bubby” Gallagher, helped start it up again in ’47 after World War II. Their clubhouse is now on Annunciation Street where they have their monthly meetings. Although the Corner Club marches on Mardi Gras Day, they also take part in the Krewe of Thoth Parade and the Irish Channel St. Patrick’s Day Parade. “The St. Patrick’s Day Parade is really big now,” Halligan says. “With our inactive members added, it gets up to around 300 members.” The Corner Club will have a marching brass band with them for Thoth and St. Patrick’s Day, but on Carnival they’ll have a sound system this year to provide music. The Corner Club still has canes. “We have two ladies, Rosary and Pam, who make them,” Halligan explains. Members are costumed to match the club’s annual theme, and the marchers are always preceded by the Corner Club Banner held aloft. “This is our third banner since 1918, we retired the second one three years ago but it’s still hanging up in the clubhouse,” Halligan says. Roch Peterson was elected president of the Lyons Carnival Club in March of this year. “I’ve been marching since the late 1980s, and served as Grand Marshall in 2002,” Peterson says. The Lyons Club starts its parade at Grit’s Bar on Lyons Street. “We roll out with a lot of lieutenant-type costumes, tunics and plumes, and we have regular float rider costumes – satin top and pants. And, we definitely have a cane with flowers: that’s the tool of choice for marchers,” he laughs. Lyons likes to have a brass band, preferably with young musicians, riding on Mardi Gras and on foot with them in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade. “Those bands are magnificent – at some point they hit the zone totally free styling – modern stuff you hear in the clubs!” Peterson reports. The Half-Fast Walking Club may be the youngest, but its tuxedo-clad members will be about 230 strong when they march out Washington Avenue Carnival morning. Pete Fountain’s son-inlaw, Benny Harrell, is co-captain along with Elmo Spellman, and Fountain and his music still inspires the group. “Pete is the whole thing. He is just wonderful. He comes in, they all stand up. He is just such a good, giving man!” says Nonenmacher. Nonenmacher has spent the last 10 or so years as the Half-Fast executive director. “I pick what they’re going to wear. Last year the tuxes were yellow, for ‘Follow the Yellow Brick Road.’ This year we’re going to ‘Paint the Town Red!’” Two hundred and thirty men in red tuxedos: Want to see that sight? Well, first you have to get up pretty early Mardi Gras morning …

A Neighborhood Tradition

Besides the Buzzards, Corner and Lyons, some years back there were two other active traditional Uptown neighborhood walking clubs, the Garden District and the Eleonore, both of which had clubhouses. The walking clubs have always been less expensive to join than krewes that paraded, and they bring Carnival, with music, right into residential areas on their early morning routes. Up until recently, walking clubs would visit the John Hainkel Home (once the Home for Incurables) and the old Marine Hospital. Clubs still try to route past nursing homes to bring a little Mardi Gras to shut-ins, even if it’s before breakfast time when they arrive.

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Formal,Updated,Comfortable Donna and Robert Taylor’s Metairie home combines dignity with leisure. B Y  B O N N I E  W A R R E N


p hotogra p hed b y c H E R Y L G E R B E R

he statel y home of D onna and R obert

Taylor is a circa-1940 classic Georgian-style house that was completely redone a few years ago. “We both immediately liked the house,” says Donna, because of its classic architecture and the setting on a quiet tree-lined, divided boulevard off Metairie Road. She is sitting in her cheerful breakfast room overlooking a rock waterfall and lush garden with her interior designer Curtis Herring, ASID (Curtis Herring Interior Design). “We could see that the house had potential, and it took the partnership of working with Curtis to make it the beautiful home it is today.” The Taylors gutted the main rooms at the front of the house and 52

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then reconfigured the large formal living room into two spaces. “Now we have a cozy living room and a separate study overlooking the side garden,” she says. “As it turns out, the new study is the favorite room in the house for both of us. It has wall-to-ceiling bookcases to accommodate Robert’s extensive collection of books, and it’s the perfect place for me to work at the desk in front of the large window that floods the space with light.” The collaboration of the Taylors with the eye for detail that Herring brought to the project repositioned the home as a gem of the period it was built. “I was careful to recreate and enhance the molding and trim throughout the house,” Herring says with pride. “I was always mindful that Donna and Robert wanted a formal

Facing page: The formal, serene living room features a comfortable couch and chairs covered in contemporary geometric fabrics to give the room an updated traditional look; draperies throughout the house were done by Donna Taylor’s brother, Neil Peyroux of Peyroux Custom Curtains. This page, top: The side garden offers a hidden peaceful spot in the large yard. This page, bottom: Built circa 1940, the stately Georgian-style home was gutted in 2010 and turned into an architectural and interior design gem.

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home that was updated and comfortable.” Neil Peyroux, Donna’s brother and owner of Neil Peyroux Custom Curtains, made all of the handsome window coverings in the home, using special highend fabrics selected by Herring and Donna. Herring addressed the latest in lighting throughout the house and boldly painted the entire den in an envelope of Benjamin Moore bone white. “Painting the dark-stained beams the same color as the rest of the room and designing an entirely new and unique fireplace renewed the character to the large den that adjoins the breakfast room and opens into the kitchen,” he says. Since Robert, the chief financial officer of Superior Energy Service, Inc., is the weekend chef in the Taylors’ home, Donna wanted a large kitchen with plenty of workspace for him and storage for her. “I love the marvelous wall of built-ins that Curtis designed,” she says. “I will never run out of storage space.” Herring adds that he wanted the entire wall to look like a piece of fine furniture. “I even added lighted display shelves with doors covered with bronze grillwork that I ordered from England.” His new design blends perfectly with the Wood-Mode cabinets selected for the kitchen. Upstairs, Curtis created a picture-perfect master suite, even designing a handsome balcony that overlooks the waterfall and pond below. “It is truly a special retreat


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for us,” Robert says. Laura, the Taylor’s 17-year-old daughter, who is a junior at Ursuline Academy, also has a handsome new space. The older Taylor children – Colin, 24, and Leslie, 27 – are settled in places of their own. Purchased in 2010, today the 4,400 square foot house is a gem of Georgian-style architecture and a truly unique home. “Our home in Lakeview was seriously flooded by Hurricane Katrina,” Donna says. “When we went shopping for this home, we knew we didn’t want another ‘cookie-cutter’ looking home, and thanks to Curtis everything about this house is beautiful and traditional in a fresh way.”

Facing page, top left: The elegant formal dining room adds charm to the Georgian-style home that was done by interior designer Curtis Herring, ASID (Curtis Herring Designs). Facing page top right: Robert and Donna Taylor. Facing page bottom: The comfortable den is wrapped in a neutral-colored envelope. This page top: The upstairs master bedroom is a quiet retreat for the couple; the French doors open onto a balcony overlooking the rear garden. Above left: The kitchen was designed with Robert in mind for his weekend chef duties; the built-in wall of storage was designed by Herring and features bronze grills in the doors that he ordered from England. Above right: A separate study was created to take full advantage of the side garden.

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Curb Appeal PAGE 58

J E F F E R Y J O H N S T on P H O T O G R A P H

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T A B L E  T A L K

technology journalist and filmmaker by trade, as well as a self-described street food geek. “It is just a fun way to eat, and we want to capture that here.” The space is sparse and contemporary. Originally a pharmacy, the 150-year-old building underwent a full renovation. The finished product gets softened by sanded lathe paneling on the walls and a striking pressed tin ceiling. It complements the feel of its neighbor Maurepas Foods just around the corner, but Booty’s cuisine takes flight whereas Maurepas hews close to home. The menu culls street-food favorites from around the globe. Chef Fonseca, formerly chef de cuisine at Rio Mar, is a great fit for the concept. His Thai Handroll offers lightly fried lemongrass shrimp over a tangle of green mango salad in a banana leaf cone. The Yucca Mofongo, a Puerto Rican-inspired yucca fritter stuffed with roasted pork and housepickled peppers, is a favorite of Vivion. Other good choices include the Kushiyaki-style options from Japan. Grilled on bamboo skewers, these include lightly marinated delicacies such as shrimp in a spicy chili glaze and a particularly good pork belly version – my personal favorite. Almost all items ring in at under $10, with several going for $6, but portions can be small and diners should be wary of the “Tapas Trap” in which those little plates can quickly add up. Diners looking to stretch their dollar might try the Banh Mi, a Vietnamese poor boy stuffed with pork belly, paté and meatballs around which you can build a filling meal. Drinks include a short list of 15 beers including Smithwick’s Red Irish Ale and specialty cocktails. “Street food is kind of made to be eaten with a drink,” Vivian points out. “A lot of the more assertive flavors go great with a beer.” They also make a terrific horchata, almost a dessert in itself, and are one of the few places in town to offer Booty’s Street Food in Bywater, above, gets its street food inspiration from around the world, such as the Kushiyaki-style shrimp, left.

Curb Appeal “Street food” worth the stop BY JAY FORMAN


arn i v a l season an d street - fr i en d l y foo d s w o u l d

seem to make natural partners. Yet generic carts selling Sysconian corn dogs and nachos dot our parade routes, leaving bad tastes in the mouths of a city that deserves better. But we can take heart from the burgeoning indie food truck movement, which continues to gain traction, and now we can also welcome two brick-and-mortar newcomers that offer up snack food favorites from around the globe. Booty’s Street Food in Bywater is one. Inspired by street foods from around the world, think of it as small plates with a street food focus. Owned by Nick Vivion and Kevin Farrell, with chef Greg Fonseca at the helm in the kitchen, Booty’s draws on the universal appeal of the stick, finger and cone-consumed edibles. “Street food is interesting, inexpensive and filling,” says Vivion, a travel and


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From Street to Shop

Stumptown coffee. If Booty’s takes you around the world, Mais Arepas in Central City takes you to Booty’s Street Food Colombia for some comfort food you won’t 800 Louisa St. find anywhere else in New Orleans. Owner 266-2887 David Mantilla, a former partner at Baru Bistro & Tapas, went back to his roots to open his “Colombian Creole” arepas destiB, L, D daily nation in late 2012. Mais Arepas “This is the kind of food I grew up eating 1200 Carondelet St. in Cali,” Mantilla says. “I wanted to bring 523-6247 this here because it was something that we L, D Tues.-Sat., D just didn’t have in New Orleans.” Sun., closed Mon. The focus is on arepas, a versatile dish that starts with a premise of white cornmeal cakes that can be stuffed with just about anything. “Colombians eat these all the time for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Go there and you will find little stands on the street. There are sweet arepas, there are savory ones – they can have just about anything in them.” Mantilla’s traditional versions include the Cerda, filled with pulled pork, ripe plantains, pickled onions and cotija, a firm cow’s milk cheese used as a garnish. The Chicharepa is stuffed with fried pork belly, lettuce, puréed avocado and aji – a flavorful hot pepper sauce that’s an essential condiment to Colombian cuisine. The Carnicera features grilled skirt steak, red bean spread, plantains and avocado, and meatless options include the Fanny, with sweet plantain, mozzarella and avocado. “Most of the arepas I have on the menu are traditional, but there are a few that I gave a personal twist,” Mantilla says. These include the Marinara, filled with grilled shrimp, a citrusy slaw and avocado, and the Buenaventura with sautéed shrimp and green and red peppers in a garlic and white wine sauce. Despite the essential component of the cornmeal cake, Mantilla takes pains to ensure that each arepas has its own personality. Meat prep is handled in a variety of ways – grilled, slow roasted and braised – to provide a range of textures. Extra condiments and homemade sauces served tableside allow diners to fine-tune them to their tastes. Also, Mantilla’s arepas are grilled rather than fried, making the flavor of the corn more pronounced. Along with arepas, there’s a list of appetizers including empanadas, yucca fritters and patacones – mashed green plantain cakes topped with grilled steak, chicken and shrimp. There are also a handful of traditional Colombian stews and entrées, including his Bandeja Paisa – a yardstick dish for Colombian cuisine and a favorite of area expats. This platter starts with Colombian-style red beans seasoned with pork belly and white rice and green and sweet plantains on the side. “You also get fried pork belly, grilled chorizo and grilled skirt steak, as well as a side salad,” Mantilla says. Putting it (literally) over the top is the fried egg draped over the rice.

Truck stops Food trucks, although not covered in this piece, share DNA with the restaurants described here. SliderShak typically parks outside the Bridge Lounge on lower Magazine Street, and Taceaux Loceaux can often be found parked near the Kingpin or Dos Jefes bars, to name a few. For more information about this scene, check out and look for the selection of trucks and other alternative dining options to expand over the course of 2013.

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Premiere Places

Tableau’s Oysters en brochette


By the time this magazine reaches you, Dickie Brennan’s newest venture, Tableau, should be open for business. The restaurant is housed next to Le Petit Théâtre du Vieux Carré on Jackson Square and has dining rooms and bars spread over three floors, all connected by a grand staircase. Chef de cuisine Ben Thibodeaux will head the kitchen after spending the better part of a decade at Dickie Brennan’s Steakhouse and Palace Café. Thibodeaux will serve French Creole classics to which he’ll add his own spin. Oysters en brochette are on the menu, for example, but instead of being breaded and fried, the bivalves will be skewered on rosemary stems, wrapped in bacon and then broiled. There will be 10 house-made sauces available every day; although the menu will mostly be composed plates, items such as a grilled veal chop will give diners an opportunity to sample the saucier’s skill. Fresh seafood will also be an option –

Thibodeaux will have three preparations of Gulf fish on the menu daily: pecan-crusted, à la meunière and amandine. Tableau will be open daily for lunch and dinner from 11:30 a.m. until 10 p.m. with brunch on Saturday mornings starting at 10:30 a.m. The restaurant’s address is 616 St. Peter St., and the phone number is 934-3463.

Chef Ian Schnoebelen and partner and maître d’ Laurie Cassebone are, as I write, in the process of opening their second restaurant in New Orleans. Mariza is an Italian restaurant located in the Rice Mill Lofts at 2900 Chartres St. in Bywater. The restaurant will have a small, focused menu weighted toward the antipasti, salad and pasta end of the spectrum. Nothing on the menu, at least as it appears at the moment, will cost more than $17. The restaurant will be open Tuesday through Thursday from 5 p.m. until 10 p.m. and until 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The restaurant doesn’t accept reservations, but you can call 598-5700 to learn more.

The building at 445 S. Rampart St. has been vacant for a long time. It is a historic space that played a significant role in the development of jazz in New Orleans, and with the recent opening of The Little Gem Saloon, it will once again play host to music. It will also feature the Creole cuisine of local chef Robert Bruce, whose step-grandfather, Willie Maylie, operated Maylie’s restaurant just across Rampart. Bruce won’t necessarily be duplicating the recipes from his family’s place; he’ll put his own interpretation on them. But the fact that he’ll be serving redfish vinaigrette and eggs rémoulade Maylie indicates the respect he’ll be showing the originals. Owners Nicholas Bazan and Charles and Tim Clark spent a great deal of effort and money renovating the building, which has the feel of a turn-of-the-century club. If you’d like to learn more or make a reservation, call 267-4863.

The first time I visited La Fin du Monde was last year on Dec. 21. It was oddly appropriate to dine in a restaurant whose name translates to “the end of the world” on the day the Mayan calendar ended. The restaurant, which replaced Café Rani at 2917 Magazine St., shares a tree-lined courtyard with a CC’s Coffee House, and in good weather 60

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that courtyard expands the restaurant’s available seating. Inside, tables line a glass wall facing the courtyard, and banquettes occupy both sides of a low wall that bisects the single dining room. Like many places that have opened in the past few years, drinks are as much a part of the menu at La Fin du Monde as food. Although the restaurant is

currently only open for lunch, the dinner menu is planned, along with both lunch and dinner cocktail menus, which are the work of Michelle McMahon, whom you may know from Tonique. Chef Jonathan Lestingi, last of Stella!, is responsible for the food, which shows influences of Thai, Korean, Creole, Italian and French cuisines.

At press time the restaurant hadn’t yet obtained a phone, and the nascent dinner service hadn’t started; currently the restaurant is open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. during the week, until 3 p.m. on Saturday and until 4 p.m. on Sunday. Questions? Comments? Suggestions? Email

S A R A   E S S E X   B R A DL E Y   P H O T O G R A P H S

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A Warm Feeling Hearty dishes for a cold winter day BY DALE CURRY


ne of the most memorab l e mea l s I e v er ha d

was in the middle of winter when we sat with family in a large dining room at a local hotel. Our first grandchild, Matthew, was 2, and he loved looking out of the panorama of huge windows. Amazingly, snow began falling on all sides. We were in New Orleans, and it was snowing! We were already having a good time but our moods got better, food was tastier and we reveled in the miracle of the day. Once outside, we chased each


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other through the snow as Matthew saw something for the very first time. It was truly a magical day. I have always liked winter and would take it hands down over summer in New Orleans. For one thing, I love hearty winter meals and dinner by a fire. Certain drinks are best in winter as well as dishes you don’t crave in hot weather.  One of my favorites is beef daube, a dish that EUGENIA UHL PHOTOGRAPH

was once a regular on local tables but now has slipped into the past along with crêpes and court-bouillon. I have found an easy way to make it using a bottled marinara sauce that’s just as good as making the whole thing from scratch. Basically, you have four ingredients: a beef roast, marinara sauce, beef broth and red wine. Simmer on top of the stove until the meat starts falling apart, serve it over pasta and you have a great winter meal. The early Creoles not only cooked their beef daube in winter but also their daube glacé, a jellied dish much like hogs head cheese. The reason for making it in the cold months was that, before airconditioning, the dish didn’t hold up well in summer. The cooks liked to let the meat stand at room temperature during the process of gelling in order to get the best taste. Daube glacé was served as a

luncheon dish and at fancy teas and parties. I love a pork roast as well as a pot of hearty soup. I recently made black bean soup to serve my book club and was asked for the recipe by several members. A chef friend who visited recently produced a gourmet dinner with the following todie-for – yet easy – scalloped potatoes. He paired them with lamb chops, but I tried them with a tasty pork loin prepared similarly to his lamb chops. Winter is a good time for cooking and eating. Great dishes give you a warm, happy feeling. Who knows? We may get another snow. I would say we’re about due for one. I know I’m ready.

Roasted Pork Loin

2 tablespoons olive oil 1 3-pound pork loin 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves 2/3 cup Dijon mustard 2 teaspoons kosher salt

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In a large, heavy skillet, brown the pork loin beginning on the fatty side, moving around in the skillet as it browns. Then brown well on all sides. Take meat up into a baking pan and set aside to cool. Drain oil off skillet and reserve the skillet, keeping the brown bits for making the sauce later. Discard the oil. This is the time to use fresh rosemary if you grow it; it takes a lot to make 1/2-cup finely chopped leaves. Rinse about 15 to 20 long stems of rosemary, dry with paper towels and strip off leaves by holding the tip end and running your fingers down the stem. When you have a pile of leaves, chop with a heavy, sharp knife over and over until rosemary looks like coarse pepper. Place in a ramekin.


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2 tablespoons freshly ground pepper 2 cups beef stock 1/2 onion, sliced 1 teaspoon Better than Bouillon beef base 1/3 cup Marsala or cognac

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Place Kosher salt in another ramekin and pepper in a third.  Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Turn roast fat-side down and coat heavily with mustard. The back of a spoon works well. Then sprinkle heavily with rosemary, then salt, then pepper. Carefully turn roast over repeat with the top and sides until all mustard, salt and pepper is used.  Insert a meat thermometer into the center of the pork loin, place in oven and roast until desired temperature is reached, 30 to 45 minutes. Most people cook pork to 170 degrees or well done although some prefer it slightly pink in the center, removing it from heat at about 160 degrees. It is juicier if slightly pink.  While pork is roasting, make sauce by heating the reserved skillet and deglazing it with beef stock. Add onion, Marsala or cognac and some freshly ground pepper and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.  When pork is done, pour any

juices in the pan into the sauce. Strain and serve hot on the side when meat is served, or pour over pork when sliced. Slice at about 1/2-inches and serve 2 or 3 slices to a plate. Serves 8.  (*This is delicious served with scalloped potatoes.)  

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Carefully, dump or spoon potato-cream mixture into a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Place in oven and cook until bubbly and slightly brown on top, about 30 to 40 minutes.  Serves 8 to 10.  

Scalloped Potatoes

1 pound dried black beans 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 medium onion, chopped 2 poblano, Anaheim or New Mexico chiles, seeded and chopped 1 jalapeño pepper, chopped 2 stalks celery, chopped 1 medium carrot, chopped 3 cloves garlic, minced 1 pound ham chunks 1 pinch sugar 1/2 cup red wine 8 cups water Juice of 1 lime Salt and pepper to taste 1/2 cup chopped cilantro Sour cream for garnish 2 avocados for garnish

6 1 3 2

medium-large russet potatoes pint heavy cream tablespoons minced garlic teaspoons salt

Peel and slice potatoes almost paper thin, using a mandoline or the slicing blade on a grater. Place them in a large bowl of water as you go to keep them from turning dark.  When potatoes are sliced, heat cream in a saucepan large enough to hold all of the potatoes. Add garlic and salt to cream and bring to a slight boil. Drain potatoes in a colander and add to cream, bringing again to a slight boil. Remove from heat.

Black Bean Soup

Sort beans and place in a bowl of water to cover by 2 inches. Soak for 8 hours or overnight. In a large, heavy pot, heat oil and sauté onion, peppers, celery, carrot and garlic until wilted. Add ham, sugar, wine, beans and water. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally. When beans are done, mix in lime juice, salt and pepper. Take out about 1 cup and place in a blender and purée. Return to pot. Or, if you have a hand blender, blend in pot until about a third of the beans are pureed. Adjust seasonings and add cilantro. Cook another 5 minutes. To serve, place toppings in side dishes. Peel avocados and cut in 1/2-inch chunks and sprinkle with a little salt and lime juice. Serve cream in a separate dish. Serve as optional toppings Serves 8.

Beef Daube 1 3-pound rump roast Salt and pepper 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 cup chopped onion 1 tablespoon minced garlic 2 cups marinara sauce, bottled or homemade 1 cup beef stock 1 cup red wine 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley

Salt and pepper rump roast liberally. Heat oil in large, heavy pot and brown well on all sides. Remove from pot.  In same pot, adding oil if needed, sauté onion until wilted. Add garlic and sauté 1 minute more. Stir in marinara sauce, beef stock and red wine. Bring to a boil, reduce neat and simmer for 4 hours, stirring every halfhour and turning every hour.  Serve with cooked spaghetti. Sprinkle servings with parsley and pass Parmesan cheese.  Serves 8.

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As Grand As Grand Can Be BY TIM MCNALLY





w or l d

there ’ s

noth i ng

l i ke

C arn i v a l

season in New Orleans. This month, streets in every part of the metro area become stages for a celebration that’s widespread but personal and enthusiastic. It is the annual party we throw for ourselves and invite anyone from anywhere to join in. Occupying a key plot of land along New Orleans’ grandest Carnival parade route is the Eiffel Society. In the early 1980s, more than 11,000 pieces of steel were removed from midway up Paris’ most visible landmark, the Eiffel Tower, and reassembled here in New Orleans as a 6,000 square foot restaurant, bar and entertainment space. Adding to the dramatic effect, the entire structure is 14-feet up from ground level and Carnival parades rolling by have to pass this point, making for a cultural mish-mash of Old France meeting Creole with a heavy dollop of a New Orleans party. It is a fitting place and time to introduce a cocktail created just for this occasion by the talented mixologists Will King and Jesi Goodwin at The Eiffel Society.


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On the Avenue 1 1/2 ounces Death’s Door Gin 3/4 ounce King’s Ginger liqueur 1/4 ounce simple syrup 1/2 ounce freshly squeezed Meyer lemon 4 slices fresh cucumber 5 small basil leaves

Muddle cucumber and basil leaves with simple syrup and lemon juice. Add gin and ginger liqueur. Add ice. Shake and strain with a julep strainer into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with a cucumber wheel (not pictured). As created at The Eiffel Society, 2040 St. Charles Ave.


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$= Average entrée price of $5-$10; $$=$1115; $$$=$16-20; $$$$=$21-25; $$$$$=$25 and up.

5 Fifty 5 Restaurant Marriott Hotel, 555 Canal St., 553-5555, French Quarter, ­555Canal. com. B, L, D daily. This restaurant offers innovative American fare such as lobster macaroni and cheese, seasonal Gulf fish with crab and mâche salad with boudin. Many of the dishes receive an additional touch from their woodburning oven. $$$$

7 on Fulton 701 Fulton St., 525-7555, CBD/ Warehouse, B, L, D daily. Upscale and contemporary dining destination in the Warehouse District. $$$$

13 Restaurant and Bar 517 Frenchmen St., 942-1345, Faubourg Marigny, 13Monaghan. com. B, L, D daily. Open until 4 a.m. Late-night deli catering to hungry club-hoppers along Frenchmen Street. Bar and excellent jukebox make this a good place to refuel. $

DINING GUIDE Andrea’s Restaurant 3100 19th St., 8348583, Metairie, L Mon-Fri, D daily, Br Sun. Indulge in osso buco and homemade pastas in a setting that’s both elegant and intimate; off-premise catering. New Orleans Magazine Honor Roll honoree 2009. $$$ Antoine’s 713 St. Louis St., 581-4422,

“Partailles” – something larger than an appetizer but smaller than an entrée. $$$

Basil Leaf Restaurant 1438 S. Carrollton Ave., 862-9001, Uptown, L Mon-Sat, D daily. Thai food and sushi bar with a contemporary spin is served in this date-friendly establishment; private rooms available. $$

Boucherie 8115 Jeannette St., 862-5514, Riverbend, L, D Tue-Sat. Serving contemporary Southern food with an international angle, Chef Nathaniel Zimet offes excellent ingredients, presented simply. New Orleans Magazine’s Best New Restaurant 2009. $$

French Quarter, L Mon-Sat, D Mon-Sat, Br Sun. This pinnacle of haute cuisine and birthplace of Oysters Rockefeller is New Orleans’ oldest restaurant. (Every item is á la carte, with an $11 minimum.) Private dining rooms are available. $$$$$

Bayona 430 Dauphine St., 525-4455, French

Arnaud’s 813 Bienville St., 523-5433, French Quarter, D daily, Br Sun. Waiters in tuxedos prepare Café Brulot tableside at this storied Creole grande dame in the French Quarter; live jazz during Sun. brunch. $$$$$

The Beach House 2401 N. Woodlawn St., 456-7470, Metairie. L Wed-Fri, D daily. Gumbo, steaks, lobsters, burgers and seafood are accompanied by live music each and every night. $$$

Audubon Clubhouse 6500 Magazine St.,

Besh Steak Harrah’s Casino, 8 Canal

892-5837, Abita Springs, L, D Tue-Sun. Famous for its Purple Haze and Turbodog brews, Abita serves up better-thanexpected pub food in their namesake eatery. “Tasteful” tours available for visitors. $$

212-5282, Uptown. B, L Tue-Sat. Brunch Sun. Closed Mon. Nested among the oaks in Audubon Park, the beautifully-situated Clubhouse is open to the public and features a kid-friendly menu with New Orleans tweaks and a casually upscale sandwich and salad menu for adults. $$

Acme Oyster House 724 Iberville St., 522-

August Moon 3635 Prytania St., 899-5129,

Abita Brew Pub 72011 Holly St., (985)

space, renovated largely by Laurentino himself, is charming. $

Quarter, 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, weatherpermitting. $$$$$

St., 533-6111, CBD/Warehouse District, D daily. Acclaimed Chef John Besh reinterprets the classic steakhouse with his signature contemporary Louisiana flair. New Orleans Magazine’s Chef of the Year 2007. $$$$$

Bistro Daisy 5831 Magazine St., 899-6987,

5973, French Quarter; 3000 Veterans Blvd., 309-4056, Metairie; 1202 N. Highway 190, (985) 246-6155, Covington; L, D daily. Known as one of the best places to eat oysters. $$

899-5122, Uptown, L, D MonFri, D Sat. Lots of vegetarian offerings and reasonable prices make this dependable Chinese/ Vietnamese place a popular choice for students and locals. Take-out and delivery available. $

Uptown, D, Tue-Sat. Chef Anton Schulte and his wife Diane’s bistro, named in honor of their daughter, serves creative and contemporary bistro fare in a romantic setting along Magazine Street. The signature Daisy Salad is a favorite. $$$$

Aloha Sushi 1051 Annunciation St., 566-

Austin’s 5101 W. Esplanade Ave., 888-5533,

Blue Plate Café 1330 Prytania St., 309-

0021, Warehouse District, L, D Mon-Sun. A large list of rolls, hot rice bowls, Asian-inspired soups, salads, cocktails and more. Visit daily between 11-6:30 p.m. for Sake Hour: half-priced sake and three rolls for the price of two. $$

A Mano 870 Tchoupitoulas St., 508-9280, Warehouse District, L Fri, D Mon-Sat. A Mano is Adolfo Garcia’s take on authentic regional Italian cuisine. Executive chef Joshua Smith handles day-to-day duties at this Warehouse District spot. “A mano” means “by hand” in Italian; fitting for a restaurant where much of the pasta and charcuterie are made in-house. $$

Ancora 4508 Freret St., 324-1636, Uptown, L Fri-Sat, D Mon-Sat. Authentic Neapolitan-style pizza fired in an oven imported from Naples keeps pizza connoisseurs coming back to this Freret Street hot-spot. The housemade charcuterie makes it a double-winner. $$

Metairie, D Mon-Sat. Mr. Ed’s newest upscale bistro serves contemporary Creole fare, including seafood and steaks. $$$

The Avenue Pub 1732 St. Charles Ave., 586-9243, Uptown, L, D daily (kitchen open 24 hours a day). With more than 47 rotating draft beers, this pub also offers food including a cheese plate from St. James, a crab cake sandwich and the “Pub Burger.” $ Bacchanal Fine Wines and Spirits 600 Poland Ave., 948-9111, Bywater, L, D daily. The pop-up that started it all, this ongoing backyard music and food fest in the heart of Bywater carries the funky flame. Best of all, the front of house is a wine shop. $$

Barcelona Tapas 720 Dublin St., 8619696, Riverbend, D Tue-Sun. Barcelona Tapas is chef-owner Xavier Laurentino’s homage to the small-plates restaurants he knew from his hometown of Barcelona. The tapas are authentic, and the

Brennan’s 417 Royal St., 525-9711, French Quarter, Br, L, D daily. The institution that turned breakfast into a celebration and introduced bananas Foster to the world is one of the city’s most storied destinations. Enjoy a brandy milk punch in the courtyard while you’re there. $$$$$

Brigtsen’s 723 Dante St., 861-7610, Uptown, D Tue-Sat. Chef Frank Brigtsen’s nationally-famous Creole cuisine makes this cozy Riverbend cottage a true foodie destination. $$$$$ Broken Egg Cafe 200 Girod St., (985) 231-7125, Mandeville. B, Br, L daily. Breakfastcentric café in turn-of-the-century home offers a sprawling assortment of delicious items both healthy and decadent. $$

Brooklyn Pizzeria 4301 Veterans Blvd., 833-1288, Metairie, L, D daily (Drive thru/take out). Pie shop on Vets specializes in New York-style thin crust. The pizza is the reason to come, but sandwiches and salads are offered as well. $ Broussard’s 819 Conti St., 581-3866, French

9500, Uptown. B, L Mon-Fri, B Sat. Breakfasts and lunches are the hallmarks of this neighborhood spot. The Ignatius sandwich comes equipped with 10 inches of paradise. Breakfast is served all day on Sat. $

Quarter, D daily. Chef-owner Gunter Preuss brings his pedigree and years of experience to the table in offering up some of the city’s best Creole cuisine in an opulent French Quarter setting. New Orleans Magazine Honor Roll honoree 2006. $$$$$

The Bombay Club Prince Conti Hotel,

Byblos 1501 Metairie Road, 834-9773,

830 Conti St., 586-0972, French Quarter, D Mon-Sun. Popular martini bar appointed 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. $$$$

Metairie; 3218 Magazine St., 894-1233, Uptown; 3301 Veterans Memorial Blvd., 8307333 Metairie; 29 McAlister Drive, Tulane University; L, D daily. Upscale Middle Eastern cuisine featuring traditional seafood, lamb and vegetarian options. $$

Bon Ton Cafe 401 Magazine St., 524-3386, CBD/Warehouse District, L, D Mon-Fri. A local favorite for the old-school business lunch crowd, it specializes in local seafood and Cajun dishes. $$$$

Bouche 840 Tchoupitoulas St., 267-7485, Warehouse District, L, D Tue-Sat. Bouche is a mix of lounge, cigar bar and restaurant with an open kitchen serving largely Southern food in portions Bouche calls

Café Adelaide Loews New Orleans Hotel, 300 Poydras St., 595-3305, CBD/Warehouse District, B Mon-Sun, L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sun. This offering from the Commander’s Palace family of restaurants has become a power-lunch favorite for businessmen and politicos. Also features the Swizzle Stick Bar. $$$$ Café Burnside Houmas House Plantation, 40136 Highway 942, (225) 473-9380, Darrow, L daily, Br Sun. Historic

French Master Chef Reopens at Renaissance Hotel 700 Tchoupitoulas St., 613-2350

When Bistro René in the Pere Marquette closed several years ago, hearts sank throughout the city. Chef René Bajeux was always a front-runner in the now trendy “local is best” style of cooking, of which he became a devotee when he was just a boy, working on a farm in France and being paid with fresh milk, pork and potatoes. The good news is not only that he’s back but that he’s back with a tempting menu. The French Master Chef in America (one of only 44) has reopened René Bistro at the Renaissance New Orleans Arts Hotel. – M irella cameran 68

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plantation’s casual dining option features dishes such as seafood pasta, fried catfish, crawfish and shrimp, gumbo and red beans and rice. $$

Café Degas 3127 Esplanade Ave., 945-5635, Mid-City, L Wed-Sat, D WedSun, Br Sun. Light French bistro food including salads and quiche make this indoor/outdoor boîte a Faubourg St. John favorite. $$$

Café du Monde 800 Decatur St., 525-0454, French Quarter; One Poydras Suite 27, 5870841, New Orleans; 3301 Veterans Blvd., Suite 104, 834-8694, Metairie; 1401 West Esplanade, Suite 100, 468-3588, Kenner; 4700 Veterans Blvd., 888-9770, Metairie; 1814 N. Causeway Approach, Suite 1, (985) 951-7474, Mandeville; 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. $ Café Equator 2920 Severn Ave., 888-4772, Metairie, L, D Mon-Sun. Very good Thai food across the street from Lakeside Mall. Offers a quiet and oftoverlooked dining option in a crowded part of town. $$

Café Freret 7329 Freret St., 861-7890, Uptown, B, L, D Fri-Wed. Convenient location near Tulane and Loyola universities makes this a place for students (and dogs) to indulge in decadent breakfasts, casual lunches and tasty dinners – and their “A la Collar” menu. $$

Café at Gambino’s 4821 Veteran’s Memorial Blvd., 885-3620, Metairie, L Mon-Fri. Café nested in Gambino’s Bakery is a favorite local lunch spot featuring muffelattas, salads and soups. Afterward, pick up some Italian cookies to

take back to the office. $

Café Giovanni 117 Decatur St., 529-2154, Downtown, D Mon-Sun. Live opera singers three nights a week round out the atmosphere at this contemporary Italian dining destination. The menu offers a selection of Italian specialties tweaked with a Creole influence and their Belli Baci happy hour adds to the atmosphere. $$$$

Café Luna 802 Nashville Ave., 269-2444, Uptown. B, L daily. Charismatic coffee shop in a converted house offers a range of panini, caffeinated favorites and free Wi-Fi. The front porch is a prime spot for people-watching along adjacent Magazine Street. $ Café Maspero 601 Decatur St., 523-6250, French Quarter. L, D daily. Tourists line up for their generous portions of seafood and large deli sandwiches. $

Café Minh 4139 Canal St., 482-6266, MidCity, L Mon-Fri., D Mon-Sat. Closed Sun. Chef Minh Bui brings his fusion-y touch with Vietnamese cuisine to this corner location. French accents and a contemporary flair make this one of the more notable crosscultural venues in town. $$

Café Negril 606 Frenchmen St., 944-4744, Marigny. D daily. Frenchman Street music club draws locals in with their lineup of live Reggae and blues. Tacos and BBQ in back are a plus for late-night revelers. $ Café Nino 1510 S. Carrollton Ave., 8659200, Carrollton. L, D daily. Non-descript exterior belies old-school Italian hideaway serving up red-sauce classics like lasagna, along with some of the more under-the-radar New York-style thin crust pizza in town. $$

Café Opera 541 Bourbon St., 648-2331, Inside Four Points by Sheraton, French Quarter. B, L daily, D Thurs-Sat. Chef Philippe

Andreani serves Creole and Continental classics on the site of the old French Opera House. Choices include crabmeat beignets with corn maque choux as well as fried green tomatoes with shrimp remoulade. Validated parking is offered for dine-in. $$$

Cake Café 2440 Chartres St., 943-0010, Marigny, B, L daily. The name may read cakes but this café offers a whole lot more, including fresh baked goods and a full breakfast menu along with sandwiches. A popular place to while away a slow New Orleans morning with a coffee and a slice. $

Camellia Grill 626 S. Carrollton Ave., 3092679, Uptown; 540 Chartres St., 533-6250, Downtown. B, L, D daily, until 1 a.m. Sun-Thu and 3 a.m. Fri-Sat. The venerable diner has reopened following an extensive renovation and change in ownership (in 2006). Patrons can rest assured that its essential character has remained intact and many of the original waiters have returned. The new downtown location has a liquor license and credit cards are now accepted. $

Capdeville 520 Capdeville St., 371-5161, French Quarter, L, D Mon-Sat. Capdeville is an upscale bar-bistro with a short but interesting menu of food that’s a mix of comfort and ambition. Burgers are on offer, but so are fried red beans and rice – a take on calas or Italian arancini. $$ Carmo 527 Julia St., 875-4132, Warehouse District, L Mon-Sat., D TueSat. Caribbean-inspired fare offers a creative array of vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free fare in a sleek location on Julia Street. One of the few places in the city where healthy dining is celebrated rather than accommodated. $$

Carmelo Ristorante 1901 Highway 190, (985) 624-4844, Mandeville, L Fri-Sun, D MonSat. Italian trattoria serves old-world classics. Private rooms available. $$

Casamento’s 4330 Magazine St., 895-9761, Uptown, L TueSat, D Thu-Sat. The family-owned restaurant has shucked oysters and fried seafood since 1919; closed during summer and for all major holidays. $$ CC’s Community Coffee House Multiple locations in New Orleans, Metairie and Northshore, Coffeehouse specializing in coffee, espresso drinks and pastries. $

Chateau du Lac 2037 Metairie Road, 831-3773, Old Metairie, ChateauduLacBistro. com. L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sat. This casual French bistro offers up classic dishes such as escargot, coq au vin and blanquette de veau. A Provençal-inspired atmosphere and French wine round out the appeal. $$$$

Checkered Parrot 132 Royal St., 592-1270, French Quarter, B, L, D Mon-Sun. The Checkered Parrot is an upscale sports bar with a large menu, featuring nachos, fajitas, wings in seven flavors, wraps and burgers, and an outdoor patio. $$ Chiba 8312 Oak St., 826-9119, Carrollton, L Thurs-Sat, D Mon-Sat. Contemporary restaurant on Oak Street features an extensive list of special rolls, steamed buns and fusion-y fare to go along with typical Japanese options. Late night hours are a plus. $$$ Chophouse New Orleans 322 Magazine St., 522-7902, CBD, D daily. In addition to USDA prime grade aged steaks prepared under a broiler that reaches 1,700 degrees, Chophouse offers lobster,

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T HE M E N U redfish and classic steakhouse sides. $$$

Clancy’s 6100 Annunciation St., 895-1111, Uptown, L Thu-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Their Creole-inspired menu has been a favorite of locals for years. $$$

Cochon 930 Tchoupitoulas St., 588-2123, CBD/Warehouse District, CochonRestaurant. com. L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Chefs Donald Link and Stephen Stryjewski showcase Cajun and Southern cuisine at this Warehouse District hot spot. Boudin and other pork dishes reign supreme here, along with Louisiana seafood and real moonshine from the bar. New Orleans Magazine named Link Chef of the Year 2009. Reservations strongly recommended. $$ Commander’s Palace 1403 Washington Ave., 899-8221, Uptown, CommandersPalace. com. L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sun, Br Sat-Sun. The Grande Dame in the Garden District is going strong under the auspices of Chef Tory McPhail. The turtle soup might be the best in the city, and its weekend Jazz Brunch is a great deal. $$$$

Cooter Brown’s 509 S. Carrollton Ave., 866-9104, Uptown, L, D daily. Riverbend-area sports bar serves up the city’s largest selection of beers along with great bar food. The cheese fries are a rite of passage, and the Radiator’s Special poor boy makes for a great late-night meal. $

Copeland’s 701 Veterans Blvd., 831-3437, Metairie; 1001 S. Clearview Parkway, 6207800, Jefferson; 1319 West Esplanade Ave., 617-9146, Kenner; 1700 Lapalco Blvd., 364-1575, Harvey; 680 N. Highway 190, (985) 809-9659, Covington; 1337 Gause Blvd., (985) 643-0001, Slidell; L, D daily, Br Sun. Al Copeland’s namesake chain includes favorites such as Shrimp Ducky. Popular for lunch. $$ Copeland’s Cheesecake Bistro 4517 Veterans Blvd., 454-7620, Metairie; 2001 St. Charles Ave., 593-9955, Garden District; L, D daily. Dessert fans flock to this sweet-centric Copeland establishment which also offers extensive lunch and dinner menus. $$$

Coquette 2800 Magazine St., 265-0421, Uptown, Br Sun, L WedSat, D Mon-Sat. A bistro located at the corner of Washington and Magazine streets. The food is French in inspiration and technique, with added imagination from chef Michael Stoltzfus (New Orleans Magazine’s Best New Chef 2009). $$$

Corky’s Bar-B-Q Restaurant 4243 Veterans Blvd., 887-5000, Metairie, L, D daily. Memphis-based

DINING GUIDE barbecue chain offers good hickory-smoked ribs, pork and beef in a family setting with catering service available. $

Court of Two Sisters 613 Royal St., 5227261, French Quarter, 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. $$$$$ Crabby Jack’s 428 Jefferson Highway, 8332722, Jefferson. L Mon-Sat. Lunch outpost of Jacques-Imo’s chef and owner Jack Leonardi. Famous for its fried seafood and poor boys including fried green tomatoes and roasted duck. $ The Creole Grille 5241 Veterans Blvd., 889-7992, Metairie, L, D Mon-Sat. This quaint, upscale restaurant offers a variety of classic New Orleans cuisine, fresh fish and homemade soups and salads with early bird and daily chef specials. $$

Crépes a la Carte 1039 Broadway St., 866-236, Uptown, B, L, D daily. Open late. An extensive menu of tasty crêpes, both savory and sweet, make this a great spot for a quick bite for college students and locals. $

Crescent City Brewhouse 527 Decatur St., 522-0571, French Quarter, L Fri-Sun, D daily. Contemporary brewpub features an eclectic menu complimenting its freshly-brewed wares. Live jazz and good location make it a fun place to meet up. $$$ Crescent City Steakhouse 1001 N. Broad St., 821-3271, Mid-City, CrescentCitySteaks. com. L Tue-Fri & Sun, D Tue-Sun. One of the classic New Orleans steakhouses, it’s a throwback in every sense of the term. Steaks, sides and drinks are what you get at Crescent City. New Orleans Magazine’s Steakhouse of the Year 2009 and Honor Roll honoree 2007. $$$$

Criollo 214 Royal St., Hotel Monteleone, 681-4444, French Quarter, HotelMonteleone. com/Criollo/. 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. $$$

The Crystal Room Le Pavillon Hotel, 833 Poydras St., 581-3111, CBD/Warehouse District, L, D daily, Br Sun. Franco-American cuisine with Louisiana influences is served in the environs of the Le Pavillon Hotel. The Southern-style breakfast features its decadent Bananas Foster Waffle “Le Pavillon.” $$$

Commander’s serves up Rattlesnake! 1403 Washington Ave., 899-8221,

While Commander’s Palace is one of the most storied culinary locations this city can boast, it’s never a place where time stands still. True to the spirit of haute Creole cuisine, the chefs never stop experimenting and inventing. That is how the famous and unrivalled five-hour egg dish and the compressed oysters (with lemon, lime and chilies) came into being. Go in February and look for new menu items featuring Rattlesnake! Not hungry? Then turn to the incredible cocktails handcrafted by the bar chef. – M irella cameran 70

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Dakota 629 N. Highway 190, (985) 8923712, Covington, Dakota. L Tue-Fri, D Tue-Sat. A sophisticated dining experience with generous portions. $$$$$ The Delachaise 3442 St. Charles Ave., 8950858, Uptown, L Fri-Sat, D daily. Elegant bar food fit for the wine connoisseur; kitchen open late. $$

Dick and Jenny’s 4501 Tchoupitoulas St., 894-9880, Uptown, L Tue-Fri, D Mon-Sat. A funky cottage serving Louisiana comfort food with flashes of innovation. $$$$

Dickie Brennan’s Bourbon House 144 Bourbon St., 522-0111, French Quarter, B, L, D daily. Classic Creole dishes such as redfish on the halfshell and baked oysters are served with classic Brennan’s style at this French Quarter outpost. Its extensive bourbon menu will please aficionados. $$$$ Dickie Brennan’s Steakhouse 716 Iberville St., 522-2467, French Quarter, L Fri, D daily. Nationally recognized steakhouse serves USDA Prime steaks and local seafood in a New Orleans setting with the usual Brennan’s family flair. $$$$$

Domenica The Roosevelt Hotel, 123 Baronne St., 648-6020, CBD, DomenicaRestaurant. com. L, D daily. Executive Chef Alon Shaya serves authentic, regional Italian cuisine in John Besh’s sophisticated new restaurant. The menu of thin, lightly topped pizzas, artisanal salumi and cheese, and a carefully chosen selection of antipasti, pasta and entrées, feature locally raised products, some from Besh’s Northshore farm. $$$$ Domilise’s 5240 Annunciation St., 8999126, Uptown. L, D Mon-Sat. Local institution and rite-of-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. $

Dong Phuong 14207 Chef Menteur Highway, 254-0296, N.O. East. L Wed-Mon. Vietnamese bakery and restaurant in the community of Versailles makes great banh mi sandwiches and interesting baked goods both savory and sweet. Unbeatable prices. $

Drago’s 3232 N. Arnoult Road, 888-9254, Metairie; Hilton Riverside Hotel, 2 Poydras St., 584-3911, CBD/Warehouse District; L, D Mon-Sat. This famous seafooder specializes in charbroiled oysters, a dish they invented. Raucous but good-natured atmosphere makes this a fun place to visit. Great deals on fresh lobster as well. $$$$

Dry Dock Cafe & Bar 133 Delaronde St., 361-8240, Algiers, Br Sun, L, D daily. Fancier daily specials have been added to the menu of this casual neighborhood seafood joint in historic Algiers Point near the ferry landing. Burgers, sandwiches and fried seafood are the staples. $$

El Gato Negro 81 French Market Place, 525-9752, French Quarter, ElGatoNegroNola. com. B Sat-Sun, L, D daily. Popular spot near the Frenchmen Street clubs serves up authentic Central Mexican cuisine along with handmuddled mojitos and margaritas made with fresh-squeezed juice. A weekend breakfast menu is an additional plus. $$ Elizabeth’s 601 Gallier St., 944-9272, Bywater, B, L TueFri, D Tue-Sat, Br Sat-Sun. This eclectic local restaurant draws rave reviews for its Praline Bacon and distinctive Southern-inspired brunch specials. $$$

Emeril’s 800 Tchoupitoulas St., 528-9393, CBD/Warehouse District, L Mon-Fri, D daily. The flagship of superstar chef Emeril Lagasse’s culinary empire, this Warehouse District landmark attracts pilgrims from all over the world. $$$$$

Fat Hen Grocery 7457 St. Charles Ave., 266-2921, Riverbend, B, L, D daily. Breakfast gets re-imagined and dressed up at this diner headed by Chef Shane Pritchett, formerly of Emeril’s Delmonico. The house special is the Womlette, an omelet baked on a waffle. $$ Feelings Cafe 2600 Chartres St., 9452222, Faubourg Marigny, D Thu-Sun, Br Sun. Romantic ambiance and skillfully created dishes, such as veal d’aunoy, make dining here on the patio a memorable experience. A piano bar on Fridays adds to the atmosphere. $$$$ Fellini’s Café 900 N. Carrollton Ave., 4882155, Mid-City, L, D daily. With décor inspired by its namesake Italian filmmaker, this casual indoor/outdoor spot on Carrollton Avenue serves large portions of reasonably-priced Mediterranean specialties such as pizza, pastas and hummus. $ Fiesta Latina 1924 Airline Drive, 469-5792, Kenner, B, L, D Tue-Sun. A big-screen TV normally shows a soccer match or MTV Latino at this home for authentic Central American food. Tacos include a charred carne asada. $$

Five Happiness 3605 S. Carrollton Ave., 482-3935, Mid-City, L, D Mon-Sun. This longtime Chinese favorite offers up an extensive menu including its beloved mu shu pork and house baked duck. It’s a popular choice for families as well. $$

Flaming Torch 737 Octavia St., 895-0900, Uptown, L, D daily, Br Sat-Sun. French classics including a tasty onion soup make this a nice place for a slightly upscale lunch while shopping along Magazine Street. $$ Frank’s 933 Decatur St., 525-1602, French Quarter, L, D daily. Locally inspired Italian sandwiches such as muffulettas and Genoa salami poor boys are served here in the heart of the French Quarter. $$$

Davis Parkway, Suite 100, 301-3709, MidCity, B, L Mon-Sat. Boutique bakery in the ground floor of the new Woodward Building offers small-batch coffee, baked goods, individual desserts and sandwiches on breads made in-house. Catering options are available as well. $

The Green Goddess 307 Exchange Alley,

Galatoire’s 209 Bourbon St., 525-2021, French Quarter, L, D Tue-Sun. Friday lunches are a New Orleans tradition at this world-famous French-Creole grand dame. Tradition counts for everything here, and the crabmeat Sardou is delicious. Note: Jackets required for dinner and all day Sun. $$$$$

301-3347, French Quarter, GreenGoddessNola. com. Br, L daily, D Thu-Sun. Located in a tiny space, the Green Goddess is one of the most imaginative restaurants in New Orleans. The menu is constantly changing, and chefs Chris DeBarr (New Orleans Magazine’s Best New Chef 2006) and Paul Artigues always have ample vegetarian options. Combine all of that with a fantastic selection of drinks, wine and beer, and it’s the total (albeit small) package. $$

The Galley Seafood Restaurant 2535

The Grill Room Windsor Court Hotel,

Metairie Road, 832-0955, Metairie. L, D TueSat. A great local place for seafood, both fried and boiled. Famous for its softshell crab poor boy, a Jazz Fest favorite. $$

Gautreau’s 1728 Soniat St., 899-7397, Uptown, D, Mon-Sat. Upscale destination serves refined interpretations of classics along with contemporary creations in a clubby setting nested deep within a residential neighborhood. New Orleans Magazine named Sue Zemanick Chef of the Year 2008. $$$$$ Gott Gourmet Café 3100 Magazine St., 522-7902, Uptown, L, Tue-Fri, D, Tue-Sun. Upscale-casual restaurant serves a variety of specialty sandwiches, salads and wraps, like the Chicago-style hot dog and the St. Paddy’s Day Massacre – Chef Gotter’s take on the Rueben. $$

Gracious Bakery + Café 1000 S. Jeff

300 Gravier St., 522-1994, CBD/Warehouse District, B, L, D daily, Br Sun. Jazz Brunch on Sunday with live music. Featuring modern American cuisine with a distinctive New Orleans flair, the adjacent Polo Club Lounge offers live music nightly. $$$$$

GW Fins 808 Bienville St., 581-FINS (3467), French Quarter, D daily. To ensure the best possible flavors at GW Fins, owners Gary Wollerman and Tenney Flynn provide dishes at their seasonal peak by flying in products from around the globe. That commitment to freshness and quest for unique variety are two of the reasons why the menu is printed daily. $$$$$

Herbsaint 701 St. Charles Ave., 524-4114, CBD/Warehouse District, L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Enjoy a sophisticated cocktail before sampling Chef Donald Link’s (New Orleans Magazine’s Chef of the Year

2009) menu that melds contemporary bistro fare with classic Louisiana cuisine. The banana brown butter tart is a favorite dessert. $$$$$

Hevin 5015 Magazine St., 895-2246, Uptown. L, D Mon-Fri. Chef Kevin Vizard brings casual, family-friendly fare to a quiet, residential stretch of Magazine Street. “Po-Ninis”, i.e. pressed poor boys, are a specialty, and daily “hot plates” are offered as well. $ Horinoya 920 Poydras St., 561-8914, CBD/ Warehouse District. L Mon-Fri, D daily. Excellent Japanese dining in an understated and oft-overlooked location. The chu-toro is delicious and the selection of authentic Japanese appetizers is the best in the city. $$$ Hoshun Restaurant 1601 St. Charles Ave., 302-9716, Garden District, HoshunRestaurant. com. L, D daily. Hoshun offers a wide variety of Asian cuisines, primarily dishes culled from China, Japan, Thailand and Malaysia. Their five-pepper calamari is a tasty way to begin the meal, and their creative sushi rolls are good as well. $$

House of Blues 225 Decatur St., 529-BLUE (2583), French Quarter, L, D daily. World-famous Gospel Brunch every Sunday. Surprisingly good menu makes this a compliment to the music in the main room. Patio seating is available as well. $$

Il Posto Café 4607 Dryades St., 895-

Metairie, D daily. Bustling Italian restaurant on the edge of Fat City serves homemade pasta in a convivial atmosphere. Chef/Owner Joe Impastato greets guests warmly and treats them like family. The prix fixe options are a good way to taste a lot for not much money. $$$$

Irene’s Cuisine 539 St. Philip St., 5298811, French Quarter. 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. $$$$ Iris 321 N. Peters St., 299-3944, French Quarter, L Thu-Fri, D Mon, Wed-Sat. This inviting bistro offers sophisticated fare in a charming setting. The veal cheek ravioli is a winner. New Orleans Magazine’s Best New Restaurant 2006. $$$$ Jack Dempsey’s 738 Poland Ave., 9439914, Bywater, L Tue-Fri, D Wed-Sat. Local favorite nestled deep in the heart of the Bywater is known for its stuffed flounder and baked macaroni served in generous portions. $$$

Jacques-Imo’s Cafe 8324 Oak St., 8610886, Uptown, D Mon-Sat. Reinvented New Orleans cuisine served in a party atmosphere are the cornerstones of this Oak Street institution. The deep-fried roast beef poor boy is delicious. The lively bar scene offsets the long wait on weekends. $$$$

2620, Uptown, B, L, D Tue-Sat, B, L Sun. Italian café specializes in pressed panini, like their Milano, featuring sopressata, Fontina, tomatoes and balsamic on ciabatta. Soups, imported coffee and H&H bagels make this a comfortable neighborhood spot to relax with the morning paper. $

Jamila’s Café 7808 Maple St., 866-4366, Uptown. 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. $$

Impastato’s 3400 16th St., 455-1545,

1104 Decatur St., 592-2565, French

Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville Café

Celebrating 10 years as New Orleans’ first and premier pupuseria. Easily accesible by streetcar La Macarena is open 7 days a week, located at the Riverbend Stop (where St. Charles meets Carrollton) Urbanspoon TOP 10 Breakfast & Brunch Spots/ Vegetarian Places to Eat





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T HE M E N U Quarter, L, D daily. Parrotheads and other music lovers flock to Jimmy’s outpost along the more local-friendly stretch of Decatur. Strong bar menu and stronger drinks keep them coming back. $$

Joey K’s 3001 Magazine St., 891-0997, Uptown, L, D MonSat. A true neighborhood New Orleans restaurant with daily lunch plates keeps it real along this rapidly gentrifying stretch of Magazine Street. Red beans and rice are classic. $

The Joint 701 Mazant St., 949-3232, Bywater, L, D Mon-Sat. Some of the city’s best barbecue can be had at this locally owned and operated favorite in Bywater. $

DINING GUIDE Chef of the Year 2006. $$$

Lakeview Harbor 911 Harrison Ave., 4864887, Lakeview, L, D daily. Burgers are the name of the game here at this restaurant which shares a pedigree with Snug Harbor and Port of Call. Rounded out with a loaded baked potato, their halfpound patties are sure to please. Daily specials, pizza and steaks are offered as well. $

La Macarena Pupuseria & Latin Cafe 8120 Hampson St., 862-5252, Uptown. L, D Mon-Fri, Br,L, D Sat & Sun. This cash-only and BYOB restaurant has recently overhauled their menu, now including a large selection of vegan and vegetarian items, as well as a tapas menu. $$

569-0000, Uptown; 4724 S. Carrollton Ave., 486-9950, Mid-City. L, D Mon-Sun. Hard-core tacos and massive burritos are served in an edgy atmosphere. $

La Petite Grocery 4238 Magazine St., 891-3377, Uptown, L, D Tue-Sat. Elegant dining in a convivial atmosphere quickly made this place an Uptown darling. The menu is heavily French-inspired with an emphasis on technique. $$$

Jung’s Golden Dragon 3009 Magazine

La Provence 25020 Highway 190, (985)

St., Uptown, L, D daily. This Chinese destination is a real find. Along with the usual you’ll find spicy cold noodle dishes, dumplings and a Beijing-style breakfast on the weekends. This is one of the few local Chinese places that breaks the Americanized mold. $

626-7662, Lacombe, LaProvenceRestaurant. com. D Wed-Sun, Br Sun. John Besh (New Orleans Magazine’s Chef of the Year 2007) 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, an elegant French colonial stucco house. $$$$$

Juan’s Flying Burrito 2018 Magazine St.,

Kosher Cajun New York Deli and Grocery 3520 N. Hullen St., 888-2010, Metairie, L Mon-Fri & Sun, D Mon-Thu. Great kosher meals and complete kosher grocery in the rear make this Metairie eatery a unique destination. The matzo ball soup is a winner and catering is available for parties of any size. $

K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen 416

La Thai Uptown 4938 Prytania St., 8998886, Uptown, L, D TueSun. Uptown outpost of the Chauvin family’s ingredient-driven Thai-Cajun fusion cuisine. The summer rolls are good as is the tom kar gai soup. Lunch specials are a good deal and vegetarian dishes are offered as well. $$

Chartres St., 524-7394, French Quarter, L Thu-Sat, 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. $$$$

Latil’s Landing Houmas House Plantation, 40136 Highway 942, (225) 473-9380, Darrow, L Sun, D Wed-Sun. Nouvelle Louisiane, plantation-style cooking served in an opulent setting features dishes like rack of lamb and plume de veau. $$$$$

Kyoto 4920 Prytania St., 891-3644, Uptown,

French Quarter, D Tue-Sat. This restaurant blends fine wines with Southern-flavored cuisine for a memorable fine-dining experience in a casual environment. Chef Michael Farrell’s well-rounded menu features suggested wine and food pairings, along with full or half servings both by the glass and by the plate. Complimentary valet parking. $$$ L, D Mon-Sat. A neighborhood sushi restaurant where the regulars order off-the-menu rolls. $$

La Boca 857 Fulton St., 525-8205, Warehouse District, D Mon-Sat. This Argentine steakhouse in the blossoming Fulton Street corridor specializes in cuts of meat along with pastas and wines. Specials include the provoleta appetizer and the Vacio flank steak. New Orleans Magazine’s

Le Meritage 1001 Toulouse, 522-8800,

Le Salon Windsor Court Hotel, 300 Gravier

Buffet Mon-Fri. Also, Afternoon Tea, ThuSun, Seating at 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Formal afternoon tea with harpist or string quartet served in a sophisticated atmosphere. A local mother-daughter tradition. $$

Liborio’s Cuban Restaurant 321 Magazine St., 581-9680, CBD/Warehouse District, L Mon-Sat, D Tue-Sat. Authentic Cuban favorites such as Ropa Vieja and pressed Cuban sandwiches along with great specials make this a popular lunch choice. $$$

Lil’ Lizzy’s 1500 Esplanade Ave., 569-8997, Mid-City. B Mon-Sat, L Mon-Fri. Spot local and national politicos dining at this favored Creole soul restaurant known for homey classics like fried chicken and Trout Baquet. $ Lilette 3637 Magazine St., 895-1636, Uptown, L, D Tue-Sat. Chef John Harris’ innovative menu draws discerning diners to this highly regarded bistro on Magazine Street. Desserts are wonderful as well. $$$$$ Lola’s 3312 Esplanade Ave., 488-6946, Mid-City. D daily. Garlicky Spanish dishes and great paella make this artsy Faubourg St. John boîte a hipster destination. $$$

Lüke 333 St. Charles Ave., 378-2840, CBD, Br Sat-Sun, B, L, D daily. John Besh (New Orleans Magazine’s Chef of the Year 2007) and executive chef Matt Regan characterize the cuisine “Alsace meets New Orleans in an authentic brasserie setting.” Germanic specialties and French bistro classics, house-made patés and abundant plateaux of cold, fresh seafood. New Orleans Magazine’s Best New Restaurant 2007. $$$

Mahony’s 3454 Magazine St., 899-3374, Uptown, L, D Mon-Sat. 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. $

Mandina’s 3800 Canal St., 482-9179, MidCity, L, D daily. Quintessential New Orleans neighborhood institution reopened following an extensive renovation. Though the ambiance is more upscale, the same food and seafood dishes make dining here a New Orleans experience. $$

Maple Street Café 7623 Maple St., 3149003, Uptown. L, Mon-Sat, D, Mon-Sun. Casual dinner spot serving Mediterraneaninspired pastas and entrées, along with hearti-

er fare such as duck and filet mignon. $$

The Marigny Brasserie 640 Frenchmen St., 945-4472, Faubourg Marigny, B, L, D daily. Chic neighborhood bistro with traditional dishes like the Wedge of Lettuce salad and innovative cocktails like the Cucumber Cosmo. $$$ Martin Wine Cellar 714 Elmeer Ave., 8967300, Metairie, L daily. Wine by the glass or bottle to go with daily lunch specials, towering burgers, hearty soups, salads and giant, deli-style sandwiches. $ Mat & Naddie’s 937 Leonidas St., 8619600, Uptown, L MonFri, D Thu-Mon. Cozy converted house along River Road serves up creative and eclectic regionally-inspired fare. Crab cakes with cucumber slaw makes for a good appetizer and when the weather is right the romantic patio is the place to sit. $$$$

Maximo’s Italian Grill 1117 Decatur St., 504.586-8883, French Quarter, MaximosGrill. com. D daily. Italian destination on Decatur Street features a sprawling menu including housemade salumi and antipasti as well as old school classics like Veal Osso Bucco. Private dining is offered for special events. $$$

Middendorf’s Interstate 55, Exit 15, 30160 Highway 51 South, (985) 386-6666, Akers, L, D Wed-Sun. Historic seafood destination along the shores of Lake Maurepas is world-famous for its thin-fried catfish filets. Open since 1934, it transitioned to its next generation of owners when Horst Pfeifer purchased it in 2007. More than a restaurant, this is a Sunday Drive tradition. $$ Mike’s On the Avenue 628 St. Charles Ave., 523-7600, CBD, MikesOnTheAvenue. com. L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Mike Fenelly and Vicky Bayley have re-opened one of New Orleans most inventive restaurants in Mike’s On the Avenue. Fennelly’s California-Asian cuisine may lack the novelty it enjoyed in the 1990s, but it’s every bit as good. $$$$ MiLa 817 Common St., 412-2580, French Quarter, L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Latest offering from husband-andwife chefs Slade Rushing and Allison VinesRushing focuses on the fusion of the cuisines of Miss. and La. Signature dishes include Oysters Rockefeller “Deconstructed” and New Orleans-style barbecue lobster. New Orleans Magazine’s Best New Restaurant 2008. $$$$ Mona’s Café 504 Frenchmen St., 949-4115, Marigny; 4126 Magazine St., 894-9800,

St., 596-4773, CBD/Warehouse District. L

Bouquets from Edible Arrangements 1650 Gretna Blvd., Harvey, 367-7798,

It is hard to think there could be something better than flowers and chocolates as gifts, especially on Valentine’s Day, but now there might be: a hand-crafted, fresh fruit bouquet that won’t break your budget or your diet. Fresh fruit arrangements, including chocolatedipped fruit, can be ordered and delivered the same day from Edible Arrangements. They are available in a huge range of presentations for every kind of holiday and occasion; including Hello Kitty, Nascar and football versions. The new “cupcake” collection is a cleverly carved pineapple in cupcake shapes, dipped in chocolate and sprinkles. Delicious and healthy! – M irella cameran


F E B R U A RY 2 0 1 3

Uptown; 1120 S. Carrollton Ave., 861-8174, Uptown; 3901 Banks St., 482-7743, Mid-City. L, D daily. Middle Eastern specialties like 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. $

Mondo 900 Harrison Ave., 224-2633, Lakeview, Br Sun, L Wed-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Susan Spicer’s take on world cuisine isn’t far from her home in Lakeview. Make sure to call ahead because the place has a deserved reputation for good food and good times. $$$

Morton’s, The Steakhouse The Shops at Canal Place, 365 Canal St., 566-0221, French Quarter, D daily. Quintessential Chicago steakhouse serves up top-quality slabs of meat along with jumbo seafood. Clubhouse atmosphere makes this chophouse a favorite of Saints players and businessmen alike. $$$$$ Mosca’s 4137 Highway 90 West, 436-9942, Avondale. D Tue-Sat. Italian institution near the Huey Long Bridge dishes out massive portions of great food family-style. Good bets are the shrimp mosca and chicken à la grande. Note: Cash Only. $$$

Mother’s 401 Poydras St., 523-9656, CBD/ Warehouse District, 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. $$

Mr. Ed’s Seafood and Italian Restaurant 1001 Live Oak St., 838-0022, Bucktown; 910 W. Esplanade Ave., #A, 463-

3030, Kenner. 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. $$

Muriel’s Jackson Square 801 Chartres St., 568-1885, French Quarter, L, D daily, Br Sun. Enjoy pecan-crusted drum and other New Orleans classics while dining in the courtyard bar or any other room in this labyrinthine, rumored-to-be-haunted establishment. $$$$

Naked Pizza 6307 S. Miro St., 865-0244, Uptown (takeout & delivery only), NakedPizza. biz. L, D daily. Pizza place with a focus on fresh ingredients and a healthy crust. The Mediterranean pie is a good choice. $ Napoleon House 500 Chartres St., 5249752, French Quarter, L, D Thu-Tue. Originally built in 1797 as a respite for Napoleon, this family-owned European-style café serves local favorites: gumbo, jambalaya, muffulettas and for sipping, a Sazerac or lemony Pimm’s Cup. $$

Nine Roses 1100 Stephen St., 366-7665, Gretna, L, D SunTue, Thu-Sat. The extensive Vietnamese menu specializes in hot pots, noodles and dishes big enough for everyone to share. Great for families. $$

NOLA 534 St. Louis St., 522-6652, French Quarter, L Thu-Sun, D daily. Emeril’s more affordable eatery, featuring cedar-plank-roasted redfish; private dining. $$$$$

Nuvolari’s 246 Girod St., (985) 6265619, Mandeville, D daily. Dark woods and soft lighting highlight this Northshore Creole Continental-Italian fusion

restaurant famous for crabmeat ravioli, veal dishes, seafood specialties and delectable desserts. $$$$

One Restaurant and Lounge 8132 Hampson St., 301-9061, Uptown, L Tue-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Black seating and herbaceous sage-colored walls form a dining room where every seat is a view into the open kitchen and the chefs creating contemporary comfort food on a seasonally changing menu. The bar is also known for cranking out clever cocktails. New Orleans Magazine’s Best New Restaurant 2005. $$$$

Orleans Grapevine Wine Bar and Bistro 720 Orleans Ave., 523-1930, French Quarter, D Tue-Sun, closed Mon. Wine is the muse at this beautifully renovated French Quarter bistro, which offers vino by the flight, glass and bottle. A classic menu with an emphasis on New Orleans cuisine adds to the appeal $$$

Palace Café 605 Canal St., 523-1661, CBD/Warehouse District, L Mon-Sat, D Mon-Sun, Br Sun. Dickie Brennan-owned brasserie with French-style sidewalk seating and house-created specialties of Chef Darrin Nesbit at lunch, dinner and Jazz Brunch. Favorites here include crabmeat cheesecake, turtle soup, the Werlein salad with fried Louisiana oysters and pork ”debris” studded Palace Potato Pie. $$$$$ Parkway Bakery and Tavern 538 Hagan Ave., 482-3047, Mid-City, L, D daily, closed Tue. Featured on national TV and having served poor boys to presidents, Parkway 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. $

Pascal’s Manale 1838 Napoleon Ave., 895-4877, Uptown. L Mon-Fri, D Mon-Sat. Vintage New Orleans neighborhood restaurant since 1913 and the place to go for the housecreation of barbecued shrimp. Its oyster bar serves icy cold, freshly shucked Louisiana oysters and the Italian specialties and steaks are also solid. $$$$

Patois 6078 Laurel St., 895-9441, Uptown, Br Sun, L Fri, D Wed-Sat. 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 (New Orleans Magazine’s Best New Chef 2009). Reservations recommended. $$$ Paul’s Café 100 Pine St., (985) 386-9581, Ponchatoula, B, L daily. Best known for its strawberry daiquiris, Paul’s also cooks up egg breakfasts and lunches including all manner of sandwiches and poor boys. $ The Pelican Club 312 Exchange Place, 523-1504, French Quarter, D daily. Tucked into a French Quarter alley, Pelican Club serves an eclectic mix of hip food, from the seafood “martini” to clay pot barbecued shrimp and a trio of duck. Three dining rooms available. $$$$$

PJ’s Coffee Multiple locations throughout Greater New Orleans, The city’s first iced-coffee spot that pioneered the coffee house experience in New Orleans and introduced us all to velvet ices, drinkable granitas and locally made Ronald Reginald vanilla. A wide assortment of pastries and bagels are offered as well as juices and fresh ground or whole bean coffees. $ Port of Call 838 Esplanade Ave., 523-

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T HE M EN U 0120, French Quarter, L, D daily. It’s 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. $$

Praline Connection 542 Frenchmen St., 943-3934, Faubourg Marigny, L, D daily. Downhome dishes of smothered pork chops, greens, beans and cornbread are on the menu at this homey Creole soul restaurant. $$ Ralph Brennan’s Red Fish Grill 115 Bourbon St., 598-1200, French Quarter, L, D daily. Chef Austin Kirzner cooks up a broad menu peppered with Big Easy favorites like BBQ oysters, blackened redfish and double chocolate bread pudding. $$$$$

Ralph’s On The Park 900 City Park Ave., 488-1000, Mid-City, Br Sun, L Wed-Fri, D daily. A modern interior, a view of City Park’s moss-draped oaks and contemporary Creole dishes such as City Park salad, turtle soup and BBQ Gulf shrimp. The bar gets special notice for cocktails. $$$$ The Red Maple 1036 Lafayette St., 3670935, Gretna, L Tue-Fri, D Tue-Sat. This West Bank institution since 1963 is known for its seafood, steaks, wine list and some of the best bread pudding around. $$$$

Reginelli’s Pizzeria 741 State St., 8991414, Uptown; 3244 Magazine St., 895-7272, Uptown; 5608 Citrus Blvd., 818-0111, Harahan; 817 W. Esplanade Ave., 7126868, Kenner; 874 Harrison Ave, 488-0133, Lakeview; L, D daily. Pizzas, pastas, salads, fat calzones and lofty focaccia sandwiches are on tap at locations all over town. $$

Arnaud’s Remoulade 309 Bourbon St., 523-0377, French Quarter, 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 thin-crust pizza. $$

René Bistrot 700 Tchoupitoulas St., 613-2350, CBD/Warehouse District, B, L, D daily. Fresh local seafood, international ingredients and a contemporary atmosphere fill the room at this hotel restaurant near the Convention Center. $$$

Restaurant August 301 Tchoupitoulas St., 299-9777, CBD/Warehouse District, L Mon-Fri, D daily. James Beard Award-winning chef (New Orleans Magazine’s Chef of the Year 2007) John Besh’s menu is based on classical techniques of Louisiana cuisine and produce with a splash of Euro flavor set in a historic carriage warehouse. $$$$$

R’Evolution 777 Bienville St., 553-2277, French Quarter, L, D Mon-Fri, Br, D Sun, open late Fri-Sat. R’evolution is the partnership between chefs John Folse and Rick Tramonto. Located in the Royal Sonesta Hotel, it’s an opulent place that combines the local flavors of chef Folse with the more cosmopolitan influence of chef 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


F E B R U A RY 2 0 1 3

DINING GUIDE more. $$$$$

Ristorante Da Piero 401 Williams Blvd., Kenner, L Tue-Fri, D Tue-Sat, 469-8585. Homemade pastas and an emphasis on Northern Italian cuisine make this cozy spot in Kenner’s Rivertown a romantic destination. $

Rib Room Omni Royal Orleans Hotel, 621 St. Louis St., 529-7046, French Quarter, B, L, D daily, Br Sun. Old World elegance, high ceilings and views of Royal Street, house classic cocktails and Anthony Spizale’s broad menu of prime rib, stunning seafood and on weekends, a Champagne Brunch. $$$

Riccobono’s Panola Street Café 7801 Panola St., 314-1810, Garden District. B, L daily. This breakfast spot at the corner of Burdette and Panola streets has been waking up bleary college students for years. The omelets are good, as are the Belgian waffles. Offers daily specials as well. $

Rio Mar 800 S. Peters St., 525-3474, CBD/Warehouse District, RioMarSeafood. com. L Mon-Fri. D Mon-Sat. Seafood-centric Warehouse District destination focuses on Latin American and Spanish cuisines. Try the bacalaitos and the escabeche. The tapas lunch is a great way to try a little of everything. Save room for the Tres Leches, a favorite dessert. New Orleans Magazine’s Chef of the Year 2006. $$$$

Ristorante Filippo 1917 Ridgelake Drive, 835-4008, Metairie. L Mon-Fri, D Tue-Sat. Creole-Italian destination serves up southern Italian specialties bathed in red sauces and cheese alongside New Orleans classics like pan-fried gulf fish and plump shellfish. $$$ River 127 Westin New Orleans Canal Place, 100 Rue Iberville, 566-7006, French Quarter. B, L, D daily. Continental cuisine with Louisiana flare in a dining room that overlooks the Mississippi River and French Quarter. $$$$

Rivershack Tavern 3449 River Road, 8344938, Jefferson, L, D daily. Home of the Tacky Ashtray, this popular bar alongside the Mississippi levee offers surprisingly wide-ranging menu featuring seafood, poor boys and deli-style sandwiches along with live music. Open late. $

Rock-N-Sake 823 Fulton St., 581-7253, CBD/Warehouse District, L Fri, D Tue-Sun. Enjoy fresh sushi along with contemporary takes on Japanese favorites in this club-like setting in the Warehouse District. Open until midnight on Fri. and Sat., this makes for a unique late-night destination. $$$

Root 200 Julia St., 252-9480, CBD, RootNola. com. L Mon-Fri, D Sun-Thur, open late Fri-Sat. Chef Philip Lopez opened Root in November 2011 and has garnered a loyal following for his modernist, eclectic cuisine. Try the Korean fried chicken wings and the Cohiba-smoked scallops crusted with chorizo. $$$$ Royal Blend Coffee and Tea House 621 Royal St., 523-2716, French Quarter; 204 Metairie Road, 835-7779, Metairie; B, L daily. Known for their frozen Café Glace and a wide selection of coffees and teas, as well as pastries, daily specials and hearty breakfasts. $

Ruth’s Chris Steak House 3633 Veterans Blvd., 888-3600, Metairie. L Fri, D daily, Br Sat-Sun; 228 Poydras St. in Harrah’s Hotel,

587-7099, L, D daily, Br Sat-Sun; RuthsChris. com. 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. $$$$$

Sake Café 2830 Magazine St., 894-0033, Uptown, L, D daily. Creative and traditional Japanese food in an ultramodern décor. Sushi and sashimi boats, wild rolls filled with the usual and not-sousual suspects and a nice bar with a number of sakes from which to choose. $$$ Sammy’s Po-Boys and Catering 901 Veterans Blvd., 835-0916, Metairie, L Mon-Sat, D Sun. Bucktown transplant offers a seafood-centric menu rounded out with wraps, kid meals, and catering options all at a reasonable price. $

Satsuma Café 3218 Dauphine St., 3045962, Bywater; 7901 Maple St., 309-5557, Uptown; B, L daily (until 7 p.m.). Two locations bring healthy, inspired breakfast and lunch fare, along with freshsqueezed juices, to the University Section of Uptown. $ Semolina 4436 Veterans Blvd., Suite 37, Metairie, 454-7930, 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. Popular entrees include Grilled Chicken Alfredo, Chicken Marsala and Veal Parmesan. $$

Serendipity 3700 Orleans Ave. 407-0818, Mid-City, D nightly. Chef Chris DeBarr brings his eclectic and far-ranging style of cuisine and classicallyinspired cocktails to an outpost in American Can. A late-night option as well. $$

Slice 1513 St. Charles Ave., 525-7437, Uptown; 5538 Magazine St., 897-4800; L, D Mon-Sat. Right on the Avenue, order up slices or whole pizza pies done in several styles (thin- and thickcrust) as well as pastas, seafood, paninis and salads. $

Slim Goodies Diner 3322 Magazine St., 891-EGGS (3447). B, L daily. This diner offers up an exhaustive menu heavily influenced by local cuisine. Try the Creole Slammer, a breakfast platter rounded out with Crawfish Étouffée. The laid-back vibe is best enjoyed on the patio out back. $ SoBou 310 Chartres St., 552-4095, French Quarter, B, L, D daily. There is something for everyone at this “Modern Creole Saloon,” the latest offering from the Commander’s Restaurant Family. Decidedly unstuffy with an emphasis on craft cocktails and wines by the glass, diners will find everything from $1 pork cracklins’ to an extravagant foie gras burger on the accomplished yet eclectic menus. $$ Snug Harbor 626 Frenchman St., 949-0696, Faubourg Marigny, D daily. The city’s premier jazz club serves cocktails and a dining menu loaded with steaks, seafood and meaty burgers served with loaded baked potatoes. $$$$

Stein’s Market and Deli 2207 Magazine St., 527-0771, Uptown, B, L, D Tue-Sun. New York meets New Orleans. The Reuben and Rachel sandwiches are the real

deal and the half-sours and pickled tomatoes complete the deli experience. $

Stella! 1032 Chartres St., 587-0091, French Quarter, D daily. Global cuisine with a Louisiana blush by native son chef Scott Boswell. Dishes are always inventive and flavorful from appetizer to dessert. The wine list is bold and the service “stellar.” Boswell was New Orleans Magazine’s 2005 Chef of the Year. $$$$$ Sun Ray Grill 619 Pink St., 837-0055, Old Metairie; 1051 Annunciation St., 566-0021, CBD/Warehouse District; 2600 Belle Chasse Highway, 391-0053, Gretna; 2424 Williams Blvd., Kenner, 305-4704; SunRayGrill. com. L, D Mon-Sun. This local chain offers a globally influenced menu with burgers, steaks, sesame crusted tuna, sandwiches and salads. $$ Surrey’s Café and Juice Bar 1418 Magazine St., 524-3828, Coliseum Square; 4807 Magazine St., 895-5757, Uptown; B, L daily. Laid-back café focuses on breakfast and brunch dishes to accompany fresh-squeezed juice offerings. Health-food lovers will like it here, along with fans of favorites such as peanut butter and banana pancakes. Note: Cash only. $$ Tan Dinh 1705 Lafayette St., 361-8008, Gretna. B, L, D Wed-Mon. Roasted quail and the beef pho rule at this Vietnamese outpost. $$

Theo’s Pizza 4218 Magazine St., 894-8554, Uptown; 4024 Canal, 302-1133, Mid-City; L, D daily. The thin, crackercrisp crust pizzas are complemented by the broad assortment of toppings which include a lot of local ingredients. Cheap prices make this an economical choice along upscale Magazine Street and a delicious choice in Mid-City. $$ Three Muses 536 Frenchmen St., 298-8746, Marigny, D Sun-Mon, Wed, Fri-Sat. Three Muses is a bar-restaurant serving the eclectic cuisine of chef Daniel Esses. The menu changes, but expect Esses’ take on Italian, Spanish, North African and Korean cooking. Local bands provide music on a regular basis. $ Tommy’s Cuisine 746 Tchoupitoulas St., 581-1103, CBD/Warehouse, D daily. Classic Creole-Italian cuisine is the name of the game at this upscale eatery in the Warehouse District. Appetizers include the namesake Oysters Tommy, baked in the shell with Romano cheese, pancetta and roasted red pepper. $$$$$ Tony Angello’s 6262 Fleur de Lis Drive, 488-0888. Lakeview. D, Tue-Sat. Creole-Italian favorite serves up fare in the completely restored Lakeview location. Ask Tony to “Feed Me” if you want a real multi-course dining experience. $$$$ Tout de Suite Cafe 347 Verret St., 3622264, Algiers. B, L, D daily. Neighborhood coffeehouse/café in historic Algiers Point offers a light menu of soups, salads and sandwiches for a quick meal or carryout. $$

Tracey’s Irish Restaurant & Bar 2604 Magazine St., 897-5413,, Uptown. 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.” $

This popular restaurant serves a variety of grilled items as well as appetizers, salads, side dishes, seafood, pasta and other entrées, drawing from a wide range of worldly influences. Zea’s also offers catering services. $$$

opened a donut shop? This is no joke. 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.

French Quarter. L Fri, D Tue-Sat. Chef Tom Wolfe has reinvented the former Peristyle, opening up the doors for full expression of his inventive, contemporary New Orleans cuisine. The menu changes seasonally. Complimentary valet. $$$

Zoë Restaurant W New Orleans Hotel,

Blue Frog Chocolates 5707 Magazine

333 Poydras St., 2nd Floor, 207-5018, B, L, D daily, L Mon-Sat. Completely redone in both décor and cuisine, each restaurant features a separate menu by executive chef Chris Brown. $$$

St., 269-5707, Uptown, BlueFrogChocolate. com. French and Belgian chocolate truffles and Italian candy flowers make this boutique a great place for gifts.

Wolfe’s in the Warehouse 859

SPECIALTY FOODS Antoine’s Annex 513 Royal St., 525-8045,

Upperline 1413 Upperline St., 891-9822,

Convention Center Blvd., 613-2882, CBD/ Warehouse District. B, L, D daily. Chef Tom Wolfe brings his refined cuisine to the booming Fulton Street corridor. His Smoked Kobe Short Ribs are a good choice. $$$

Uptown, D Wed-Sun. Consummate hostess JoAnn Clevenger and talented Chef Nathan Winowich make for a winning combination at this nationally heralded Uptown favorite. The oft-copied Fried Green Tomatoes with Shrimp Remoulade originated here. $$$$

Ye Olde College Inn 3000 S. Carrollton Ave., 866-3683, Uptown, CollegeInn1933. com. D Tue-Sat. The Carrollton institution moved next door into brand-new digs but serves up the same classic fare, albeit with a few new upscale dishes peppering the menu. $$$

Vega Tapas Café 2051 Metairie Road, 836-

Yuki Izakaya 525 Frenchmen St., 9431122, Marignuy. D Tue-Sun. Authentic Japanese Izakaya serves small plates to late-night crowds at this unique destination on Frenchmen. Try the Hokke Fish or the Agedashi Tofu. An excellent sake menu rounds out the appeal, as does the sexy, clublike ambiance. $

Trey Yuen 600 N. Causeway Blvd., (985) 626-4476, Mandeville, L Tue-Fri & Sun, D Tue-Sun. Chinese cuisine meets with local seafood in dishes like their Szechuan Spicy Alligator and Tong Cho Crawfish; private rooms available. $$

Tujague’s 823 Decatur St., 525-8676, French Quarter, D daily. 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. New Orleans Magazine’s Honor Roll honoree 2008. $$$$$

2007, Metairie. D daily. 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. $$

Venezia 134 N. Carrollton Ave., 488-7991, Mid-City. L Wed-Fri & Sun, D Wed-Sun. Casual neighborhood Italian destination known for its thin-crust pizzas. Good lunch specials make this a popular choice as well. $$

Vincent’s Italian Cuisine 4411 Chastant St., 885-2984, Metairie, L Tue-Fri, D Tue-Sat; 7839 St. Charles Ave., 866-9313, Uptown. L

Tue-Fri, D Mon-Sun; VicentsItalianCuisine. com. Snug Italian boîte packs them in yet manages to remain intimate at the same time. The cannelloni is a house specialty. $$$

Wolfe’s 1041 Dumaine St., 593-9535,

Zea’s Rotisserie and Bar 1525 St. Charles Ave., Lower Garden District, 5208100; 1655 Hickory Ave, Harahan, 738-0799; 4450 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie, 780-9090; 1325 West Esplanade, Kenner, 468-7733; 1121 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey, 361-8293; 110 Lake Drive, Covington, (985) 327-0520, L, D daily.

French Quarter, Around the corner from the oldest continuously operated restaurant in the country, Antoine’s Annex serves French pastries, including individual baked Alaskas, ice cream and gelato, as well as panini, salads and coffee. They also deliver.

Bee Sweet Cupcakes 5706 Magazine St., 891-8333, Uptown, Open Mon-Sat. Tiny shop sells its namesake treats with a New Orleans twist. Try the Bananas Foster or the Pralines and Cream flavors. Daily specials are offered, as well as catering orders for weddings and parties.

Bittersweet Confections 725 Magazine St., 523-2626, Warehouse District, Freshly baked cookies, cupcakes and specialty cakes. Serving handmade chocolate truffles, fudge, caramels, gelato, ice coffee, chocolate-dipped strawberries and fresh squeezed lemonade. Children’s birthday parties, chocolate tasting parties, custom chocolates and truffle party bar. Call for details.

Calcasieu 930 Tchoupitoulas St., 5882188, Warehouse District, CalcasieuRooms. com. Located in the second floor of a renovated warehouse, above Cochon and Cochon Butcher, is a place to host gatherings both large and small. Catering menus feature modern Louisiana cooking and the Cajun cuisine for which chef Donald Link is justifiably famous. Magic Seasonings Mail Order (800) 457- 2857. Offers Chef Paul Prudhomme’s famous cookbooks, smoked meats, videos, seasonings and more. Online shopping available at

St. James Cheese Company 5004 Prytania St., 899-4737, Uptown, Specialty shop offers a selection of fine cheeses, wines, beers and related accouterments. Look for wine and cheese specials every Friday.

Sucré 3025 Magazine St., 520-8311; 3301 Veterans Blvd., 834-2277; ShopSucre. com. Desserts nightly. Open late weekends. Chocolates, pastry and gelato draw rave reviews at this new dessert destination. Beautiful packaging makes this a great place to shop for gifts. Catering available.

Blue Dot Donuts 4301 Canal St., 2184866, Mid-City, B, L daily. Heard the one about the cops that

F E B R U A RY 2 0 1 3



BIG 76

F E B R U A RY 2 0 1 3

Myths and realities of super krewes



Syndey Byrd photograph

Mystery surrounds the character of

many figures in Greek mythology, and the lad known as Endymion is no exception. Some literary scholars portray him as a handsome shepherd who fathered dozens of children with a moon goddess. Others peg him as a king endowed by Zeus with eternal youth. Students of mythology generally agree as to Endymion’s physical attributes, but many seem unaware of another, equally important asset: Endymion knew how to have a good time. For evidence, look no further than the New Orleans Carnival organization that bears his name. The Krewe of Endymion is far from being the oldest Carnival parading organization, but during the 46 years of its existence it has become the largest such group and a leader among dozens of peers. Every year on the Saturday before Mardi Gras, the krewe rolls out its massive parade of super-sized floats graced by celebrities and a few thousand other riders tossing huge quantities of trinkets to admiring crowds. The parade is a favorite of many Carnival devotees, particularly denizens of Mid-City who line the route that Endymion has traveled on most Saturday nights before Mardi Gras for several decades. The krewe’s annual “Extravaganza,” held the evening of the Endymion parade, offers not only the spectacle of Mardi Gras finery and frivolity but also big-name entertainers performing exclusively for the party-goers. In terms of overall bigness, Endymion has come to lead the ranks of the organizations known as “super krewes,” and this year is raising the bar. When the Endymion parade starts rolling on the early evening of Feb. 9, it will feature the largest float ever seen in New Orleans and possibly the world. Stretching 330 feet, the nine-unit mega-float will carry more than 220 riders and pay tribute to the Pontchartrain Beach amusement park, a popular Lakefront attraction that closed in 1983. As the parade ends hours C A R N I V A L ’1 3 later inside the Mercedes-

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Benz Superdome, the largest single party of Carnival will begin. The Endymion Extravaganza of 2013 is expected to draw 15,000 people for a show and celebration headlined by Grammy-winning singer/ songwriter Kelly Clarkson. The anticipation of the biggest-ever Endymion parade and ball has krewe founder and Captain Ed Muniz marveling over the growth of New Orleans’ signature celebration. “Mardi Gras is bigger now than it has ever been in my lifetime,” the 72-year-old says. Size matters

Though Muniz claims Endymion doesn’t aim to one-up other krewes, there’s no question the new float will outsize all others, including the Krewe of Orpheus float called “Smoking Mary,” which Orpheus Captain Sonny Borey says has expanded from six to seven sections and will carry more than 200 riders this year. Muniz says he had been thinking of how to mark Endymion’s 50th anniversary in 2017. But when the National Football League chose New Orleans to host Super Bowl ’13 and he realized that the game would occur just before Mardi Gras, bringing many thousands of extra visitors to the city, he felt this is the year the krewe should make a bigger-than-ever splash.


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Having grown up in the Gentilly neighborhood of New Orleans, Muniz had spent considerable time at Pontchartrain Beach in his youth, and it occurred to him that the park was one of the few local icons Endymion had not yet featured in its parade. He got together with the park’s former owners, the Batt family, who offered photos and memorabilia for designers to use in planning a new float. Setting the tone for Endymion’s 2013 theme “Ancient Mysteries,” the Pontchartrain Beach float will present replicas of the park’s Zephyr roller coaster, carousel, Ferris wheel, haunted house and “Wild Maus” ride, among other features. Barry Kern, chief financial officer of float builder Blaine Kern Studios, says the float, designed by the studio’s creative chief Damon Bowie, will also offer a light show the likes of which parade-goers haven’t seen before. Kern shopped for the technology during one of his regular trips to Hong Kong and says the advanced LED system will illuminate alternately on the float with vintage, carnival-style lighting. The float also incorporates scent-generating technology. “People are going to see an amusement park on wheels going down the street, and they’re also going to smell popcorn and cotton candy,” he says.

Endymion has come to lead the ranks of the organizations known as “super krewes,” and this year will feature the largest float ever seen in New Orleans and possibly the world. Stretching 330 feet, the nine-unit mega-float will carry more than 220 riders and pay tribute to the Pontchartrain Beach amusement park (below).


Just as important to the show-stopper’s success is the engineering beneath the float. An “articulated,” or segmented, chassis enables maneuvering on narrow streets and turning corners without interrupting the parade’s flow. The float’s solid rubber tires will squelch fears of flats. And pulling the behemoth – which could top 40 tons when fully loaded with riders and beads – will be a tractor similar to those used to tow Boeing 747 airplanes. Kern, whose father founded the float-building and entertainment business that has become associated with Mardi Gras around the world, says the Pontchartrain Beach float suits Endymion, which has a history of setting Carnival trends. “Ed Muniz has been a pioneer in Carnival in terms of always wanting to make his parade and show better,” Kern says.

In New Orleans, the Krewe of Bacchus made news last summer when several of its members sued the organization to gain access to its financial records. The move followed a reported hike in membership dues from $1,000 to $1,450. The lawsuit named as defendants Bacchus Captain Owen “Pip” Brennan Jr. and his son Owen Brennan III. While the suit only sought access to records, postings on a Facebook page called “Save the Krewe of Bacchus” suggested that krewe members had larger concerns. While most postings were later removed from the page, news reports last July quoted Facebook comments criticizing the krewe for paying a $138,000 salary to the younger Brennan, as krewe director, and close to $100,000 spent for unspecified travel and outof-town events. Neither of the Brennans could be reached to comment for this article. Paying the Bill A statement released by the Brennans last summer in The quest to keep the offerings fresh is expensive for every response to the criticism stated: “In order to continue to move krewe, but more so for super krewes such as Endymion, Bacchus forward, our Board of Directors has approved an increase in and Orpheus, which are known for the length of their parades dues and a building fund assessment to lease-purchase our and oversized floats. own den ... if there are Some of the krewes have members of Bacchus who departed from policies folwould prefer not to move lowed by old-line Carnival forward with us, they have groups and financed their every right to resign their growth not only through membership.” membership dues and Robert Kutcher, one bead sales, but also with of five Bacchus members the sale of tickets to their who sued the organizaannual parties. tion, declines to comTickets to the Endymion ment on the current dues Extravaganza this year or reported dissension range from $150 up to in the ranks, saying only $230 if food and drink are that the records dispute included, Muniz says. The was resolved. “The suit revenue helps cover fees had to do with the abilpaid to the Superdome, ity to inspect the records,” catering services and entertainment – the krewe Above: Instead of holding Kutcher says. “We saw the records and the issues will pay Clarkson $300,000 for her performance. a costly ball the Endymion were resolved and we’re rolling in February.” “Instead of putting on an event that costs us, we Extravaganza makes Whatever the outcome, the flap points up the put on an event that makes money for the orgamoney for the organizachallenges of making Carnival organizations nization,” Muniz says. He calls the extravaganza tion. Krewe captain Ed financially viable. No matter what their size, proceeds “icing on the cake” after the krewe colMuniz call the proceeds all krewes are dependent on members’ willinglects dues of about $1,000 per member, and sells “icing on the cake.” ness to work as volunteers. For krewe officers, each member signature bead-and-trinket packages, this often means donating substantial amounts which this year include inflatable beach balls. of time not just during Carnival season but throughout the As a nonprofit, Endymion uses the net proceeds to cover its year to plan minute details of the parades and parties; arrange growth. Krewe president Dan Kelly, who owns Carnival supplier entertainment; communicate with members; prepare and mail Beads by the Dozen, says big costs for Endymion in recent years event invitations; collect dues; and manage bead purchases included about $300,000 spent to upgrade the captain’s float and ticket sales. and incorporate new lighting, and construction of a new float “It’s never-ending,” says Orpheus Captain Borey, who estiwarehouse, or “den,” at a cost of almost $3 million. mates he puts in more than 15 hours a week on Orpheus busi“We had about $700,000 to put down and got a loan for the ness. “Some people play golf, I do Orpheus,” he says. rest, which we paid off in three years,” Kelly says. “We don’t Orpheus employs two full-time workers in its office and have any bills that we can’t pay.” adds a part-time staffer in the weeks leading up to Mardi Gras, Many Carnival krewes adhere to a code of secrecy about Borey says. Like Endymion, the krewe’s revenue comes from their inner workings, and some have become particularly sensidues, bead sales and the after-parade party, known as the tive about financial matters in the wake of fiscal stumbles by a Orpheuscapade. few of their peers. Several suburban parade groups have folded This year’s event, celebrating the organization’s 20th anniveror taken a hiatus due to financial pressures. sary, will feature krewe founder and Broadway singing star

Syndey Byrd photograph

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Harry Connick Jr., among other performers. Borey estimates Orpheus will spend $1.5 million on its parade and ball, which is expected to draw 6,000 people. Ask krewe members why they’re willing to donate so much time to activities that people elsewhere might see as frivolous and they’ll inevitably answer that it’s a labor of love. Muniz – who likely puts in more time than any other captain given the size of Endymion and the fact that Endymion captain the krewe pays only one Ed Muniz stands part-time employee – admits beside one of the that many people have quesPontchartrain Beach tioned his sanity. “They think float details that is I’m nuts,” he says. fashioned after his But he adds that nearly wife, Peggy. everyone who dips into the Endymion experience for the first time ends up coming back for more. “We’ve got 700 members who live outside Louisiana and come in every year to participate,” he says. Lifelong obsession

Muniz believes Carnival is truly in his blood and says his mother is to blame: “She loved Mardi Gras and dragged me to every single parade.” The only child of his 7th Ward working-class parents, he soaked up New Orleans’ Carnival traditions like a sponge and considered himself lucky years later when he met a girl named Peggy who was equally addicted. Peggy eventually became his wife and through the decades supported not only the founding and growth of Endymion but also her husband’s parallel careers in the radio business and politics. Muniz began his radio career in the 1960s as an advertising salesman, but quickly learned the nuts and bolts of the business and began buying radio stations, gradually amassing an enviable portfolio. In time, his station ownership would give him the financial freedom to indulge his Endymion obsession. He sold his stations in ’99 at a price said to be near $30 million. While still in the radio business, Muniz stepped into politics, winning a seat on the Kenner City Council. He later served several stints on the Jefferson Parish Council, and after a short respite was elected mayor of Kenner, serving one term before retiring in 2010. Muniz figures his diverse experiences enhanced his qualifications as captain of Endymion. Along with growing the krewe’s membership from 140 in its first year of parading to the current 2,700, Muniz says both his radio experience and political instincts have helped him lead the krewe into the big leagues of Carnival entertainment. Ironically, he credits the Krewe of Bacchus with opening his eyes to the long-range potential of Endymion’s after-parade par-


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ties. That happened in 1973, when Blaine “Mr. Mardi Gras” Kern invited him to attend the Sunday night Bacchus ball. The Krewe of Bacchus was a few years younger than Endymion (which had started as a small Gentilly-based krewe), but it had launched with more members, and in contrast with old-line krewes whose galas mostly centered around the crowning of “royalty,” Bacchus staged annual events that were as much concerts as balls. On the night that Muniz joined Kern at the Rivergate Auditorium, film and comedy icon Bob Hope reigned as the king of Bacchus, and Muniz recalls the moment when Hope’s float rolled in and the Harry James Orchestra broke into “Thanks for the Memory” as being a stunner. “Everybody went crazy,” he says. “It was beautiful.” The experience convinced him that big-deal entertainment at krewe balls was the wave of the future. The following year, “Tonight Show” bandleader Doc Severinsen headlined the Endymion Extravaganza. In order to make that first big ball financially viable, Endymion needed to increase membership to 400 and sell at least 4,000 ball tickets. “We barely made it,” Muniz says, adding that by the skin of its teeth Endymion had “transitioned into a super krewe.” Subsequent years brought a long string of big-name headliners to Endymion’s parade and party, including Bobby Vinton, Alice Cooper, Wayne Newton, Neil Sedaka, Lou Rawls, Tom Jones, Smokey Robinson, The Four Tops, Stephen Stills, Britney Spears, and last year, Maroon 5. During that period Endymion went from renting a handful of floats from another krewe to housing 80 of its own floats in three warehouses. “And we have no trouble getting riders to fill them,” Muniz says. Even so, he admits that Endymion could be nearing its limits. One concern he has is what would become of the krewe if he and other key members were no longer around. “It’s a lot of work, and who else is going to invest this much time and energy?” he asks. Muniz says the krewe has attempted to answer that question by drawing younger members into its ranks in the hope that they’ll come to love Endymion enough to help it thrive into the future. It’s ironic, he says, that many students of mythology see Endymion as a god of youth. “We didn’t choose him for that reason,” Muniz says, “but Endymion has been a great leader for this krewe.”



UPTOWN’S FAVORITE CARNIVAL HANGOUT BY JOHANNA GRETSCHEL “There is nothing which has been yet contrived by man, by which so much happiness is produced as by a good tavern or inn.” – Samuel Johnson

Si t t i n g





p r o mi n e n t

Uptown parade corner of St. Charles and Napoleon avenues, Fat Harry’s – or, Fat’s for short – was once the exclusive realm of Loyola Phi Kappa Thetas and Tulane Dekes. Through a span of 42 years, Fat’s has since developed an eclectic cast of veteran employees and regular patrons who call the place home. But for the past four months leading up to Carnival season, locals have had to make do without their favorite watering hole. On Sept. 2, just after Hurricane Issac blew over, an electrical fire gutted the beloved building, leaving its insides in tatters. “I’m counting down the days till reopening,” bartender Ashley “Shelby” Hurst said in December. “I feel like a lost puppy.” Wedding Drinks

But before Fat Harry’s was Fat Harry’s, the prominent plot of property on St. Charles Avenue was Fat Harry’s location Gerald’s Key Club and sometime before on the St. Charles that The Corral, complete with hay barrels Avenue parade route decorating the interior. Harry Begg bought makes it a hot spot Gerald’s Key Club in 1970 and gave the during Carnival. establishment its current moniker. After a

falling out with his business partner a year later, Begg sold the bar to Allen Ignatius Boudreaux Jr., a 21-year-old who would jump-start the trend of keeping Fat’s ownership within Loyola’s Phi Kappa Theta fraternity. Another Loyola Phi Kap, Richard “Dickie” Unangst, first wandered into Fat Harry’s during his senior year in 1971. A two-sport varsity athlete, he claims he didn’t have much time for bars as an undergrad but was then taking a hiatus from baseball after a rough-and-tumble basketball season left him injured. It was springtime, and the bartenders on shift recruited the athlete to help defend Fat’s honor in a softball challenge from the French Quarter crew at Cosimo’s Bar. A few months later, the bartenders remembered his athletic exploits and convinced him to take a part-time job at the door while studying at Loyola University’s College of Law. “Listen,” Unangst laughs with a roar. “I’m 6 feet, 6 inches; 300 pounds. No one gives me any trouble.” He bought the bar from Boudreaux in 1974 and set to work on renovations that lasted C A R N I V A L ’1 3 until this past fall’s fire. The crew installed

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On Sept. 2, just after Hurricane Issac blew through, an electrical fire gutted the beloved building, right, leaving its insides in tatters, below. The subsequent renovation, below right, had regulars counting the days until its reopening.

the bar’s signature medieval double doors and outdoor dining tables, and ripped out the shag carpeting that covered the bar’s entire circumference. Whether or not the shag carpet’s wine color was the original hue of the fabric or the result of a few too many spilled beverages, will remain forever in the vault of Fat Harry’s legend. “Everything was dark in those days,” Unangst says. “It was called wedding drinks – you learned how to drink at weddings. Everyone drank bourbon or scotch, no ‘white spirits,’ as they’re called today.” In decades since, patrons moved on to the “Sex and the City”-inspired cocktails of the late 1990s, as former manager J.P. Martin remembers. “Whatever cocktail was featured on the show that week, that’s what the girls would be ordering, it was like clockwork – apple martinis, chocolate martinis, definitely cosmopolitans.” The Regulars

Bud Light, two napkins: this is Dexter Stephens’ regular order and he is, by all accounts, the very definition of a regular – and has been since 2000. He pretends to consider how many nights a week he spends at Fat Harry’s. “Eight? Oh, I’m sorry, there’s only seven days in a week! Seven. If I’m in town, I’m going to the bar. If I’m gonna be late, I give them a call or they’ll worry.” Stephens speaks with an air of stern paternalism that’s 82

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comforting just as much as it commands attention. He eagerly coaches new hires in proper pour technique and introduces his fellow regulars as they meander into the bar. “He’s a very integral part of making the girls and boys who work there feel comfortable,” Hurst says. “He makes you feel like you belong even when you don’t know anyone.” “That’s part of my job description,” Stephens says. “Fat Harry’s is my living room, so I treat people at Fat Harry’s the way I would treat people if you came to my house.” David Stidd grew up just a few blocks away on Milan Street and attended De La Salle High School. He still vividly remembers his first experience at Fat’s as a 6-year-old, accompanying his father to the bar and lugging a pocket full of quarters for the pinball machine. “You know, you have a room in your house that you always go into to relax? Fat Harry’s is where I go to relax,” says Stidd, a regular since 1986. A highlight of the year for Stephens and Stidd is Mardi Gras. Not only do they enjoy the parades, but also they give back to Fat Harry’s by acting as temporary employees, checking IDs and manning the door. There is a laundry list of them, these Fat Harry’s regulars – young, old, black, white, here for a cold draft, free WiFi, infamous Jazz Burger or simply the comforting knowledge that if, at any moment or time of day (though not too long past 2 a.m.)

they’re feeling alone, anxious or stressed, Fat Harry’s is around the corner and friends await inside.

going through now, as far as the bar itself. We were closed for about a month during Katrina, and we’re on three-plus months now. If it wasn’t for Fat Harry’s and the people working there, I’d The Matriarch move back home.” Deborah Huling – “Mizz Debbie” to some, “Deb” to others – is Trippi and Bradley were two of several stalwart staff members the current owner. Mother hen to employees and patrons alike, who returned to the Big Easy less than two weeks after Katrina to the matriarch still remembers the night she kissed Harpo Marx clean up the bar. The waterline ended across the street at Sacred at Fat Harry’s. Heart, so Fat’s didn’t sustain any water damage. The staff’s main It was Halloween 1974. Debbie’s last name was Magnon, and task was to clean out the stash of aging chicken and hamburger Harpo was a costumed Fat’s cook named Carl Huling. Both meat that had been left to rot in the coolers. were Loyola undergraduates and met for the first time that night What perhaps saved Fat’s from succumbing to the same fate as at a Greek party. They dated for the next six years, with Debbie many other restaurants were Unangst’s medieval double doors. joining the staff as a waitress in 1975 and Carl overseeing her Looters raided the Copeland’s next door, leaving a battleground shifts when he took over as general manager. He proposed three of spoiled food and feces in their wake inside the classic eatery. times. She denied three times. Finally, in ’79, she felt ready and Vagrants and looters attempted to do the same to Fat Harry’s, but they put together a wedding in four months. the wooden doors swelled shut. At the altar, Carl turned to his new bride to answer the priest’s As soon as the electricity came back on, the bar’s free WiFi question. “I do,” he smiled. “And you’re fired.” made a return as well, sending dozens of insurance adjustors Bar management conover to Napoleon and St. flicts of interest now Charles avenues to enjoy Regulars pay tribute to co-owner Carl Huling. resolved, the couple was a cold draft while emailfree to celebrate their new ing in their reports. Fat’s union. A friend hosted was one of the first busithe reception just blocks nesses to open after the away from Fat’s and made storm. With a limited staff regular booze runs back in town, the post-Katrina and forth to keep the party months were a maelstrom flowing all night. Carl purof long hours and FEMA chased the bar shortly later money. from Unangst. “We had cold beer and Relieved of her maincold sandwiches and tenance duties, Debbie everyone was happy as nonetheless remained hell,” Bradley remembers active in the bar’s affairs as about the post-Katrina Secretary-Treasurer. When, crowd. “Everyone was getin 2010, Carl passed away ting their FEMA money so from cancer, she took over we were getting money the ownership role. hand-to-fist because we “Carl was such an icon didn’t have any competiin the business. It was natural but it was also tough [to take tion for about a month. One time we had to get the military to over],” Debbie remembers. “I was 55. It’s just hard at that age to come in to get people to leave.” learn a whole new life plan, but the management staff made it so The peak of the staff’s blistering Katrina pace was set during much easier. They knew the place inside and out, where every NOLA Fest, a Kermit Ruffins concert at the bar sponsored by screw and knob is.” The party was broadcast over the Internet to demonstrate that New Orleanians were coming back to the city and It Sounded Like Van Halen Out There here to stay. More than 3,000 people spilled out of the bar and This past November, manager Joey Trippi would have celpacked the space on St. Charles Avenue between Napoleon ebrated his 42nd birthday and 20th anniversary of employment Avenue and General Pershing Street that night, forcing the New at Fat Harry’s – both events falling on the same day. But he’s far Orleans Police Department to shut down the street. With only six from an anomaly, with the majority of staff racking up years of staff manning the bar to aid a crowd that was nine people deep, experience at the bar. they eventually stopped bothering to stock the bar and simply “They’re good owners and good staff,” Trippi explains. “You sold beer by the six-pack and by the case. ain’t gotta worry about anyone stabbing you in the back, like I’ve “It sounded like Van Halen out there,” Bradley remembers. seen at other bars.” The dearth of other options in the city naturally drew a more Manager Chris Bradley is another decade-plus veteran, starting racially diverse crowd. The surprise was when they kept coming at the door in 2002 and taking a year off only when he broke his after everything else opened up again. femur in ’10. Still basking in the afterglow of the Saints’ Super “Carl was most proud of the fact that people who hadn’t come Bowl victory, Bradley slipped while dancing after the Muses before Katrina were now becoming part of the Fat Harry’s family. parade at – where else? – Fat Harry’s. It was a thing he said he was most proud of in his lifetime other “Everyone asked me why the hell I stayed after (Hurricane) than his children,” says Debbie. “My husband always said, ‘What Katrina, but something in my heart just told me I had to come a great job, your friends could be anything from a ditch digger back,” Bradley, a Memphis native, muses about his long stay to a brain surgeon.’ These are all the kinds of people who come in Louisiana. “Katrina wasn’t nothing compared to what we’re into the bar and share their lives with you.”

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Shades of Gray From oyster pearls to platinum, pewter and metallic sheen – no matter your fantasy (or pleasure), shades of gray can turn you on to this season’s unexpected trend. PHOTOGRAPHED BY EUGENIA UHL



Silver Palette Vintage mesh chain with lariat and labradorite drops by New Orleans designer Lauren Schonekas at Construct Jewelry; brushed sterling silver unisex cuff bracelet by New Orleans designer Walt Adler at Adler’s Jewelry; 24 karat gold and oxidized diamond ring by Stella Flame at Saint Germain; sterling silver ring at Symmetry Jewelers.


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Full Circle Four-strand necklace of glass beads, Swarovski crystals and semi-precious gems; sterling silver “Fleur d’ Lys” pendant; and round acanthus leaf pendant; all at Fleur D’ Orléans; platinum, white quartz and hematite cufflinks; platinum, gray druzy cufflinks; and platinum and black jade men’s ring, all at Symmetry Jewelers; 14 karat white gold, 4.03 total carat weight diamond stud earrings; and platinum 1.53 total carat weight radiantcut diamond ring, both at Boudreaux’s Jewelers.

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Gray Matters Sterling silver, arrow-like necklace at Sabai Jewelry; sterling silver brooch from Fleur D’ Orléans; sterling silver, gray quartz and black onyx beaded necklace; and sterling silver, white moon quartz drop earrings, both by New Orleans designer Walt Adler at Adler’s Jewelry.


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Clean Slate Oxidized silver leaf pendant on labradorite cord by Wendy Brigode; faceted, oxidized sterling silver beaded bracelets with 14 karat gold, gray and white pearl accents by Mizuki, all at Saint Germain; sterling silver, slate gray mabe pearl pendant and ring, both at Sabai Jewelry; South Sea multi-colored round, pear and baroque-shaped pearls with .12 total carat weight diamonds with 18 karat white gold clasp necklace; 18 karat white gold, 14 millimeter Tahitian pearl and .31 total carat weight baguette diamond ring, both at Wellington & Company Fine Jewelry; sterling silver bangle with Swarovski Passion topaz gems by New Orleans designer Walt Adler at Adler’s Jewelry.

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Gunmetal and Gold Plated gold drop medallion over hammered silver pendant with vintage chain by New Orleans designer Lauren Schonekas at Construct Jewelry; hand wirewrapped, oxidized silver and Swarovski crystal bracelet by Dana Kellin at Saint Germain; Palladium 1.01 total carat weight cushion diamond ring by New Orleans designer Tom Mathis at Symmetry Jewelers.


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Atrial Fibrillation


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Getting the irregular problem regular Any condition that causes a heart to larity. This disordered electrical activation of the heart beat too slow, too fast or with irregularity is termed an causes blood to stagnate and form clots in the thinarrhythmia. When the heart’s electrical conduction syswalled left atrium of the heart. Clinically, there are tem goes astray, the four chambers of the heart don’t several outcomes from no symptoms to incapacitating expand and contract in concert causing the heart to be a complications caused by decreased blood flow or less effective pump. breaking off of pieces of clot that cause havoc in the Dr. James McKinnie lives and breathes arrhythmias. He arterial circulation. What causes atrial fibrillation? Any got hooked on heartbeats one summer condition that enlarges the atrium or during high school after scoring a suminflames the atrial tissues can cause mer job as an orderly at West Jefferson atrial fibrillation. These include hyperMedical Center. He began watching the tension, diabetes mellitus, coronary heart monitors in the coronary care unit artery disease, thyroid disorders and and became fascinated by the various advancing age. A multitude of other changes in rhythm patients had after triggers include caffeine, alcohol, nasal heart attacks. decongestants and sleep apnea. The His fascination launched his career. increasing use of highly caffeinated As had become the increasing norm energy drinks may also be playing a even before Hurricane Katrina, role in increased prevalence of atrial McKinnie left New Orleans after medical fibrillation. school to pursue specialized training. What are the symptoms? About a third And, as is also common, he returned of folks with atrial fibrillation have no to New Orleans to practice. He joined symptoms, the silent variety. Others the faculty at Louisiana State University may experience varying degrees of paland migrated to Tulane Medical School BY BROBSON LUTZ, M.D. pitations, shortness of breath, weakfor a spell. McKinnie is a board-certified ness, dizziness, confusion and even cardiologist with a specialty in electrochest pain. Often patients experience physiology and is now ensconced in atrial fibrillation as a “come and go” heart rhythm disturbances at both East phenomenon termed paroxysmal. When atrial fibrillaJefferson and West Jefferson Medical centers. tion doesn’t convert spontaneously it’s persistent. And It has been my impression through the years that the atrial fibrillation that persists for more than several busier the physician, the easier they are to track down. months is called chronic. McKinnie’s answering service found him one Saturday Is atrial fibrillation a killer? Rarely alone. Atrial fibrillamorning within minutes of my call. He emailed me tion is important clinically because of its strong associaresponses to dozens of questions on atrial fibrillation, tion with stroke and heart failure. the most common arrhythmia of them all, which I sumHow is atrial fibrillation diagnosed? An irregular pulse marized and edited. What is atrial fibrillation? An irregularity in the heart detected incidentally during a physical examination is rate that physicians have long called an irregular irregua tip-off. It takes an electrocardiogram (EKG) or some

A Q&A with cardiologist Dr. James McKinnie

B r y a n T a r n o w s ki P h o t o g r a p h

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other monitoring device to confirm the diagnosis. There is a strong link between aging and the prevalence of atrial fibrillation. Predicted population demographics suggest there will be more and more atrial fibrillation diagnoses as our country ages.

lation ablation dates to 2004. Many of those early patients have had no recurrent atrial fibrillation. Typically the success rate of catheter ablation with a single procedure is about 60 percent with success rates increasing if the procedure is repeated a second or third time.

Why does the incidence of atrial fibrillation seem to increase with age? Increasing age is linked to deposition

I hear about freezing and radiofrequency forms of ablation. Which is better? The original technique utilized

True or false: Are atrial fibrillation diagnoses on the rise? True.

of increased deposits of certain tissue in the atrial walls. This increased collagen deposition can result in unstable patterns of activation in the atria increasing the susceptibility to atrial fibrillation. In addition, chronic inflammation from any cause can play a contributory role. Will atrial fibrillation go away on its own?

If atrial fibrillation is due to some precipitating cause such as heavy caffeine or alcohol intake or thyroid dysfunction treatment of these underlying conditions may result in resolution of the atrial fibrillation. More commonly, atrial fibrillation is a chronic relapsing disease and requires long term management. Ablation sounds like some religious term. How does this seek and destroy mission work?

Catheter ablation is a viable treatment option for patients with symptomatic atrial fibrillation not controlled by medications. We thread flexible catheters usually from the femoral vein toward the heart. Using electrical impulses we locate what’s usually a tiny area of tissue in the heart or pulmonary arteries producing the faulty electrical signals and zap those cells. How successful is catheter ablation? My own current experience with atrial fibril-


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Getting into a rhythm

“For me having a normal heart rate is the difference between a bumpy ride in a Jeep and the smooth glide of a Cadillac,” says Jose Torres. “I first woke up feeling funny and with palpitations about 10 years ago.” An emergency room physician diagnosed atrial fibrillation when Torres was in his 40s. He became a regular with his cardiologist, but the irregular heart rhythm kept coming and going in spite of numerous medications. Finally he listened to his wife, a nurse at East Jefferson Medical Center, and made an appointment to see Dr. McKinnie. Last November McKinnie threaded a small caliber catheter through a large vein in Torres’ leg until the tip was inside the heart. First, McKinnie found the small area of aberrant cells causing the recurrent atrial fibrillization. Then he zapped them, a procedure called a radiofrequency. “Dr. McKinnie is optimistic that my regular rhythm will be permanent. I have already stopped three medications I was having to take previously,” says Torres. And Torres knows the importance of regular rhythm. He was a sales director at the House of Blues for 10 years and has just helped open the doors of The Little Gem Saloon on North Rampart Street, an eagerly anticipated opening at the site of an important New Orleans jazz landmark.

a ≠≠ generator to create a series of encircling lesions around the pulmonary veins. An alternative strategy is to create this series of lesions involves the use of a specially designed refrigerant balloon. The latter seems to be safer and is the preferred technique in our laboratory. What are those possible adverse effects? Any procedure in which cath-

eters are threaded inside the heart carries the risk of death and stroke. Overall these procedures carry a risk of unexpected death in 1 in 5,000 cases. Strokes can also occur. The wall of the nearby esophagus might be damaged. And, it’s important to remember that this procedure doesn’t always work. Failure rates range between 25 and 40 percent. Why did cardiac electrophysiologists like you start treating atrial fibrillation?

The increasing complexity of long term antiarrhythmic drug therapy coupled with adverse effects of antiarrhythmic drugs like amiodarone prompted primary care physicians and general cardiologists to seek non-pharmacologic methods, such as catheter and surgical ablations.

B r y a n T a r n o w s ki P h o t o g r a p h


Cypress Pointe Surgical Hospital 42570 S. Airport Road Hammond (985) 510-6200 Lady of the Sea General Hospital 200 W. 134th Place Cut Off (985) 632-6401 Leonard J. Chabert Medical Center 1978 Industrial Blvd. Houma (985) 873-2200

Top Hospitals

There is only one source for patient evaluation of hospitals, and that is Medicare. Using the agency’s data we compiled a list of those hospitals within the region that received a positive response from at least 50 percent of the patients surveyed when asked if they would “definitely recommend the hospital.” Listed here are those top-rated Louisiana hospitals within a 100-mile radius of New Orleans, excluding Baton Rouge. For more information, check the website NEW ORLEANS/JEFFERSON

Charity Hospital & Medical Center of Louisiana at New Orleans 2021 Perdido St. 4th Floor 903-3000 East Jefferson General Hospital 4200 Houma Blvd. Metairie 454-4000 Ochsner Baptist Medical Center LLC 2700 Napoleon Ave. 897-5998 Ochsner Foundation Hospital 1516 Jefferson Highway 842-5898 94

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Ochsner Medical CenterKenner LLC 180 W. Esplanade Ave. Kenner 464-8065 Touro Infirmary 1401 Foucher St. 897-7011 Tulane Medical Center 1415 Tulane Ave. 988-5800 West Jefferson Medical Center 1101 Medical Center Blvd. Marrero 347-5511

North Oaks Medical Center 15790 Paul Vega MD Drive Hammond (985) 345-2700 Ochsner St. Anne General Hospital 4608 Highway 1 Raceland (985) 537-8377 /locations/st_anne_ general Physicians Medical Center 218 Corporate Drive Houma (985) 853-1390 Teche Regional Medical Center 1125 Marguerite St. Morgan City (985) 384-2200 Terrebonne General Medical Center 8166 Main St. Houma (985) 873-4141 Thibodaux Regional Medical Center 602 N. Acadia Road Thibodaux (985) 447-5500

Lallie Kemp Medical Center 52579 Highway 21 South Independence (985) 878-9421 LK.htm Louisiana Heart Hospital 64030 Highway 434 Lacombe (985) 690-7500 Ochsner Medical Center – North Shore, LLC 100 Medical Center Drive Slidell (985) 649-7070 Slidell Memorial Hospital 1001 Gause Blvd. Slidell (985) 643-2200 Southern Surgical Hospital 1700 W. Lindberg Drive Slidell (985) 641-0600 St. Tammany Parish Hospital 1202 S. Tyler St. Covington (985) 898-4000 Washington St. Tammany Regional Medical Center 433 Plaza St. Bogalusa (985) 730-6700 UPRIVER

Lane Regional Medical Center 6300 Main St. Zachary (225) 658-4000 River Parishes Hospital 500 Rue De Sante LaPlace (985) 652-7000


St. Elizabeth Hospital 1125 W. Highway 30 Gonzales (225) 647-5000

Fairway Medical Center 67252 Industry Lane Covington (985) 801-3010

St. Charles Parish Hospital 1057 Paul Maillard Road Luling (985) 785-6242 Source


Hospital Buzz: Medical Breakthroughs and News Regional hospitals are doing all they can to meet the medical needs of Louisiana and beyond by providing worldclass physicians, technology and overall care. Breakthroughs in technology and procedures as well as special events and offerings top the news of several local health care providers. From celebrating American Heart month with free seminars and screenings, to making available the latest cutting-edge surgical technologies and techniques, these hospitals are buzzing with news and information that could help you and your family maintain good health and a happy heart. Want to show your heart some love this year? Along with cutting out sodium and fatty foods, try to incorporate more dark chocolate and red wine into your diet. That’s right! Dark chocolate and red wine, a little in moderation, are two essential foods that are important for a healthy heart diet. Join Touro nutritionists for a free Healthy Lifestyles seminar in February and learn about the facts of red wine and how it’s important for your heart, nutritional facts about chocolate, and how to create heart-healthy chocolate treats just in time for Valentine’s Day! Details: February: Heart Healthy Eating How to eat heart healthy, plus learn the benefits of dark chocolate and red wine Thursday, Feb. 7, 5-6 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 20, Noon-1 p.m. 2nd Floor, Foucher Room Touro Infirmary Light refreshments will be provided. The seminar is free but registration is required. For more information about the free Healthy Lifestyles seminar or to register, please visit Touro. com/events or call 897-8500.

In February, and every month, West Jefferson Medical Center (WJMC) has a strong focus on helping to stop heart disease from taking lives. In the U.S., one in four women die from cardiovascular disease. According to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, coronary heart disease is the No. 1 killer in this country of both sexes. There’s a lot happening on the West Bank. The West Jefferson family is growing. It recently welcomed Louisiana Heart Clinic physicians and staff to the hospital family via West Jefferson Physician Services. In addition, West Jefferson Medical Center earned Chest Pain Center Accreditation and American Heart Association Get With the Guidelines quality awards for heart failure and stroke. This month, WJMC is reaching out to the community with a Heart Healthy Fair on Feb. 21. To take part in free screenings, including EKGs, and to learn vital heart health measures, call 349-1789 or go to In 2007, Thibodaux Regional Medical Center was the only hospital in the Bayou Region to acquire the da Vinci Robotic Surgical System, and now Thibodaux Regional remains at the forefront of minimally invasive robotic surgery by acquiring the next generation in robotic technology. This next evolution of robotic surgery, the da Vinci Si Surgical System, utilizes single-site technology and features a number of innovations that will enable surgeons to operate more effectively and efficiently. Utilizing this advanced robotic technology, surgeons will be able to perform a number of complex gynecological, head and neck, urological and general surgical procedures. With minimally invasive robotic surgery, patients experience minimal trauma, less scarring and pain, low risk of infection and they recover significantly quicker.

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For information on robotic and other minimally invasive surgeries at Thibodaux Regional Medical Center call (985) 4934326 or visit The Center for Restorative Breast Surgery (CRBS) in New Orleans recently announced the launch of a groundbreaking new iPhone app. The first and only app of its kind is designed for women newly diagnosed with breast cancer and looking for more information on the latest, most sophisticated reconstruction techniques available following mastectomy. It can be downloaded for free in the iTunes store. Developed by the renowned surgeons at CRBS and the St. Charles Surgical Hospital – the only hospital in the world dedicated to state-of-the-art breast reconstruction surgery – the app allows users to explore all reconstructive options, get detailed information about each procedure and see “before and after” photos. “We are passionate about the information that this app is capable of delivering to all women facing a breast cancer diagnosis,” states Dr. Frank DellaCroce, one of the app’s creators. “It will empower women in search of answers, and assist them in making better reconstructive decisions for themselves.” Features of the app include a “What to Ask” section for women seeking treatment and “Procedure Wizard,” which determines personalized reconstructive options.


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For more information on the iPhone app and CRBS, visit Omega Hospital stands at the forefront of breast cancer and breast reconstruction care, offering top-notch health care in an intimate and luxurious atmosphere. World-class surgeons at Omega Hospital are leaders in breast reconstruction and breast conserving procedures, giving women more options than ever before. Doctor Ali Sadeghi is an expert in the revolutionary DIEP flap procedure, a procedure that reconstructs one’s breast from abdominal tissue. Also known as the “Tummy Tuck” flap, this procedure removes excess skin and fat from the lower abdomen and is superior to procedures of the past in that no muscle is removed. Recipients receive natural looking breasts and a tummy tuck simultaneously. Dr. Sadeghi also performs the PAP and GAP procedures, which take skin and fat from the back of the thigh, under the buttock crease (PAP), or directly from the buttock (GAP). Additionally, Dr. Sadeghi performs a newly pioneered technique: fat grafting to the breast for rejuvenation and reconstruction. This procedure is usually performed as an outpatient basis with the added benefit of removal of unwanted fat and rapid recovery.  For more information on Dr. Sadeghi and Omega Hospital, visit or call 210-3831. •


Cardiology/ Heart Health February is the month for hearts, and not just those of the Valentine’s Day décor and candy variety. Celebrate American Heart Month with a little love, and make sure you and your family know what it takes to maintain a healthy heart. Knowing the risk factors for heart disease are paramount in preventing this deadly ailment, which is often the cause of heart attack or stroke. South Louisiana is fortunately home to numerous cardiovascular experts, who can help determine your risk factors and create a plan for care. Whether you need a check-up or extensive cardiovascular care, these renowned physicians and clinics are experienced in both prevention and treatment of heart disease and other heart-related problems. Find a specialist right for you among the following heartfocused health care providers.

February is American Heart Month. Did you know that cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S. for both men and women? Particularly in Louisiana, the prevalence of obesity and diabetes means that our communities are at greater risk of heart disease. Heart disease can strike anyone at any age. In fact, it is becoming more prevalent in those under the age of 60. Heart disease can also be a silent killer, with no symptoms until a heart attack or stroke occur. That is why it is important to determine your risk factors now and take preventative measures to lessen your risk. With 13 locations throughout south Louisiana, Cardiovascular Institute of the South (CIS) has an international reputation for providing state-of-the-art cardiovascular care and is known as a world-leader in preventing and treating both cardiovascular and peripheral vascular disease. To learn more, call CIS at 1-800-425-2565 or visit The highly skilled cardiologists with Crescent City Cardiovascular Associates have long been known for their dedicated care, clinical excellence and technological leadership. They are among the area’s most respected specialists and are located in the heart of New Orleans at 3715 Prytania St., Suite 400. The Uptown office offers a wide array of cardiac and vascular services – from routine checkups to advanced therapies and outpatient diagnostics – in a comfortable and friendly environment.

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The field of cardiac medicine is truly dynamic and Crescent City Cardiovascular Associates strives to provide patients with the most effective and least invasive procedures. The group also provides cardiac services in areas with limited access to health care such as New Orleans East. The non-invasive, interventional and electrophysiology specialists that make up Crescent City Cardiovascular Associates include Roberto Quintal, M.D., Sudhanva Wadgaonkar, M.D., Royce Dean Yount, M.D., Thanh Nguyen, M.D., Murat Celebi, M.D. and Viviana Falco, M.D. With Crescent City Cardiovascular Associates, your heart is in the right place. For more information or to make an appointment, call 504-897-8276.  The Tulane University Heart and Vascular Institute (TUHVI) provides expert care in all conditions of the heart, blocked arteries and vein problems. The physicians and staff are highly trained experts from leading national institutions ready to provide you with the care, understanding and knowledge you need to live a happy and long life. TUHVI offers a comprehensive heart and vascular program at four locations – Metairie, downtown New Orleans, on the West Bank at Woodland Drive and General deGaulle, and in New Orleans East on Read Boulevard.  TUHVI physicians include specialized medical professionals trained in treatment of varicose veins, spider veins, blocked heart and leg arteries, abnormal heart rhythms including atrial fibrillation, and high blood pressure, and cholesterol management. The Institute is a leader in treating peripheral arterial and venous disease (PAD), and offers the painless Endovenous Laser Treatment for varicose veins, as well as sclerotherapy for spider vein closure, at their West Bank Clinic. Because TUHVI physicians and surgeons are university physicians, patients can be assured that each case is thoroughly reviewed and all options are considered. To schedule an appointment, call 378-5080 or 988-6113.  

Home Health Services

Established in 1925, Nurses Registry continues to serve the health care needs of the Greater New Orleans area and remains a vital community resource. The founder, Rose Mary S Breaux, RN, BSN, believed it is an honor and privilege to care for the sick and aging in our community, and to treat the whole patient – Body, Mind and Spirit. Nurses Registry doesn’t just send out a caregiver. All staff members are personally interviewed, carefully screened, receive hands-on training, orientation and on-site supervision by licensed health care professionals. There is also a team of office staff available to assist clients on non-clinical matters. As an added value, their clients have the full set of resources of a Medicare-certified home health agency at their disposal. Nurses Registry provides private duty nursing as well as an array of private medical and non-medical support services. Any service can be completely customized based on individual needs in collaboration with family and/or the physician, if desired. Call 736-0803 or (866) 736-6744 for a personalized in-home assessment. Nurses Registry provides “Care for Them and Peace of Mind for You.” Visit for more info. • 98

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Celebrate Your Way: Locals’ Guide to Mardi Gras

Everyone has their own way of celebrating Mardi Gras, so whether you’re looking to set up shop with a grill and some snacks and celebrate with family and friends along the parade route or for a place to get your groove on in the raucous throes of French Quarter revelry, New Orleans has options for you. Along with bakeryfresh King Cakes, boiled crawfish and party supplies, live music, specialty drinks and top-notch local cuisine round out this list of favorite citywide Mardi Gras destinations. Plan your celebrations and dining destinations with the following professionals and find all you need for a successful, thrilling and filling Carnival season. Saunter over to one of several Tropical Isle® locations, home of the Hand Grenade®, New Orleans’ most popular drink. Experience Trop Rock, Cajun/Zydeco & the Blues with Tropical Isle’s nightly entertainment, the best on Bourbon. Check out their live Webcams and entertainment schedule at You can also pick up a Hand Grenade®

at Funky Pirate Music and Sports Bar, open Monday-Wednesday, 4 p.m.-‘til at least 1 a.m. and Thursday-Sunday, noon‘til at least 1 a.m., with an 80-inch HD screen for sporting events and classic pirate films. With blues music seven nights a week, enjoy monthly visiting acts and world famous Big Al Carson and the Blues Masters performing Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. Music is also featured on weekends during the day. For the music schedule, visit While in the French Quarter, visit Orleans Grapevine Wine Bar & Bistro, a favorite dinner and drinks destination right off Bourbon and Royal streets with more than 75 wines by the glass and 200 by the bottle. From 10:30 p.m.-midnight, enjoy late night specials including $3 Absolut martinis and various wine specials. Cheese Boards and desserts are available. For menus and more, visit Louisiana owned and operated, Rouses serves the needs of New Orleans neighborhoods and restaurants all year long, but during

Mardi Gras, Rouses is the headquarters for parade krewes, marching bands and revelers. The Rouses “krewe” gets into the spirit of the celebration, too – there are Kings, Queens and other Carnival royalty working in Rouses stores alongside Grand Marshals, Maids, Zulus, Indians, Spy Boys, Elvi, Bone Gang members, Moss Men and Baby Dolls.  With more than 50 Mardi Gras seasons under its belt, it’s safe to say Rouses knows King Cakes – they sell more than 300,000 a year. Gourmet cinnamon dough entices you from the moment you walk through the market’s doors. Grab a king cake, but don’t forget their famous fried chicken, party trays, platters and supplies for your crawfish boil. Want crawfish pre-prepared? The Rouses Bayou Boys boil through the season with their time-honored recipe. Take everything home with you in a Rouses reusable green grocery bag and find out how convenient they are for holding beads at every parade. Rouses Markets are located all across metropolitan New Orleans and on the Northshore. For the location nearest your Carnival celebration, visit •

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new orleans

Theo’s Neighborhood Pizza Located in Uptown New Orleans, Mid-City and in the Elmwood Shopping Center, stop before or after the parades for its food and drink specials.

Salú Small Plates & Wine Bar 3226 Magazine St. (504) 371-5809

Circle Bar 1032 St. Charles Ave. (504) 588-2616

Adler’s 722 Canal St. (504) 523-5292

Rouse’s Supermarket 701 Baronne St. (504) 227-3838

Shops at Canal Place 333 Canal St. (504) 522-9200

Gallier Hall 545 St. Charles Ave. (504) 565-7457

Harrah’s 228 Poydras St. (504) 533-6000

Small plates & entrees inspired by our unique take on European culture & traditions along the Mediterranean. “Best Happy Hours in Town.” Starting @ $2.50!

Sucré: A Sweet Boutique 3025 Magazine St. (504) 520-8311 Sun-Thurs 8 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 8 a.m. midnight. Breakfast to dessert, Sucré will sweeten your day. King Cake, pastries, gelato, French macaroons, artisan chocolates & exceptional confections made in New Orleans. 100

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Clearview Mall 4436 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (504) 885-0202

Lager’s International Ale House

Shogun Japanese 2325 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (504) 833-7477

Houston’s 4241 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (504) 889-2301

Sucré: A Sweet Boutique 3301 Veterans Blvd. (504) 834-2277

Sweet Things and Grill 1021 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (504) 838-2282

3501 Veterans Blvd. (504) 887-9923

Sun-Thurs 8 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 8 a.m. midnight. Breakfast to dessert, Sucré will sweeten your day. King Cake, pastries, gelato, French macaroons, artisan chocolates & exceptional confections made in New Orleans.

Home Bank 3798 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (504) 457-6220

Carretta’s 2320 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (504) 837-6696


710 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (504) 834-8216

We’re a full-service bank with personal style. Visit our convenient ATM while you’re enjoying Mardi Gras fun! Have a safe and happy Carnival season.

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Go Red

for Women Why Go Red? The facts are clear. More women die of heart disease than all forms of cancer combined. Unfortunately, the killer isn’t easy to see. Heart disease is often silent, hidden and misunderstood. The truth is: our lives are in our hands. We can stop our No. 1 killer together by sharing the truth. We can be the difference between life and death. This means women like you – mothers, sisters, friends – are dying at the rate of one per minute, because they don’t know what you know: heart disease kills. Go Red for Women is more than a message. It’s a nationwide movement that celebrates the energy, passion and power we have as women to band together and wipeout our No. 1 killer. The good news is that heart disease can be prevented. And, thanks to the participation of millions of people across the country the color red has become linked with the ability all women have to choose heart health and live stronger, longer lives. Ten years ago, before the American Heart Association 102

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introduced Go Red For Women, few people realized just how big a threat heart disease poses to women. Many were stunned to learn that heart disease is the No. 1 killer of American women. Go Red For Women raises awareness of the danger heart disease poses to women and helps them make choices to reduce their personal risk. Heart disease has already touched you or someone you love, so help us save a woman’s life today. Tell five women you want them to live and we can help stop heart disease in our lifetime. In the past, heart disease and heart attack have been predominantly associated with men. Historically, men have been the subjects of the research done to understand heart disease and stroke, which has been the basis for treatment guidelines and programs. This led to an oversimplified, distorted view of heart disease and risk, which has worked to the detriment of women. Because women have been largely ignored as a specific group, their awareness of their risk of this often-preventable disease has suffered. Only 55 percent of women realize heart


disease is their No. 1 killer and less than half know what are considered healthy levels for cardiovascular risk factors like blood pressure and cholesterol. The Go Red For Women movement works to make sure women know they are at risk so they can take action to protect their health.

Circle of Red “The Circle of Red allows me to bring my passion for preventative health into my work with the American Heart Association,” says Barbara Turner Windhorst, Circle of Red member. “Understanding the risk factors for heart disease is powerful in making the decision to fight back against this deadly disease.” The Circle of Red and the Red Tie Society 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. The Circle of Red and Red Tie members are champions for reducing the impact that heart disease has in our lives. Here is why just a few of our members Go Red: Barbara Turner Windhorst: “I Go Red because it is the right thing to do” Beverly Norwood-Matheney: “I Go Red because I want to make a personal impact in my local community. I discovered through my scare, with chest pain, that minor diet changes can make a difference. Just by limiting my salt intake and stopping my consumption of liquid candy, soft drinks, I have maintained a healthy lifestyle.” Barbara Bush: “I Go Red because it is a great cause.” Ivy Kushner: “I Go Red because the nurse, RN, in me has seen first-hand the long term effects of an unhealthy lifestyle and poor nutrition.” Janie Glade: “I Go Red because I am a daughter, a wife, a mother and a grandmother. I Go Red because knowledge is power.” Louellen Berger: “I Go Red because I have seen first-hand a family member effected by heart disease.” Glen Golemi: “I am a huge supporter of the American Heart Association and have been on the Greater Southeast Affiliate Board for the last several years. There are so many great things that AHA does, particularly Go Red for Women campaigns. It is amazing to me that only one in six American women believe that heart disease is their greatest health threat and that more women die of heart disease than all forms of cancer combined! I Go Red because as a man, more people might ask me why am I here? Then I can share what many folks don’t know about women and heart disease.” The 2012-2013 Circle of Red and Red Tie Society members include: Sarah Abrusley, Louellen Berger, Barbara Bush, Jacquee Carvin, Deena Cossich, Theresa Danos, Rhonda Eckholdt, Virginia Eckholdt, Bridget Galatas, Janie Glade, Glen Golemi, Holley Haag, Mary Ann Hymel, Molly Kimball, Donna Klein, Ivy Kushner, Kim LaNasa, Beverly Matheney, Dr. Robert Matheney, Christie Mintz, Anne Redd, Jenny Rich, Kathleen Robert, Sonda Stacey, Tracy Stewart and Barbara Turner Windhorst.

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New Orleans Goes Red The 2013 Go Red For Women campaign in New Orleans will culminate on Friday, February 22 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel for the Go Red For Women Luncheon. The luncheon is chaired by Kathleen Robert. Kathleen is a passionate volunteer of the American Heart Association because she knows firsthand that heart disease kills. She lost both of her maternal grandparents to the disease. “Being conscious of our family’s health became even more important for my mother after she lost her parents each so suddenly,” says Kathleen. With additional risk of heart disease on her husband’s side of the family Kathleen continues her mother’s mission for a healthy family through the right balance of eating healthy and exercise. “Your heart is irreplaceable,” says Kathleen. “It is your most important and vital organ. Each and every day should include some form of care for such an important part of your life.” When asked to chair the 2013 Go Red event Kathleen was enthusiastic to the cause. Her passion for the American Heart Association stems from her family. “I Go Red for my family because the American Heart Association through prevention, education and research has a direct impact on myself, my husband and my children,” says Kathleen. Kathleen is supported by a committee of ladies equally as passionate about heart health. The committee includes Sarah Abrusley, Louellen Berger, Barbara Bush, Chana Doreaux, Ann Dwyer, Rhonda Eckholdt, Virginia Eckholdt, Heather Evans, Bridget Galatas, Janie Glade, Alice Glenn, Holley Haag, Molly Kimball, Donna Klein, Ivy Kushner, Kimberly LaNasa, Beverly Matheney, Christie Mintz, Sherry Zeller O’Bell, Merisa Pasternak, Kathy Singleton, Sonda Stacey, Melissa Stelly, Tracy Stewart, Kathy Vogt and Barbara Turner Windhorst. The luncheon includes free health screenings, a silent auction and inspirational speakers. The goal of the Go Red For Women luncheon is to raise $230,000 to fight heart disease and stroke in women. The dollars raised at the event stay in New Orleans to fund research and educational initiatives specifically for women and heart disease. The luncheon features a heart healthy lunch and the ladies will strut their stuff on the runway with clothes provided by Chatta Box and hair and makeup by Paris Parker. Because the women of New Orleans are unique, the American Heart Association has answered that with a unique silent auction, called “Purseanalities.” The auction will feature purses filled with favorite things of local movers and shakers that will be auctioned off at the luncheon. The items in the purse are at the discretion of the donor and can include items such as restaurant gift certificates, spa treatments, museum passes, jewelry, books, wine and art. 104

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Purseanalities at this year’s auction include Beverly Matheney, Stephanie Osborne, Molly Kimball, Virginia Eckholdt, Rhonda Eckholdt, Susan Roesgen, Jennifer Van Vrancken, Chriss Knight, Jocelyn Lockwood, and Chet Pourciau. February 22 also serves as Wear Red Day in New Orleans for a visual call to action in the support of the women in our community and their risk of heart disease. Join the fight by wearing red. “Your heart is in your hands,” says Kathleen. “With only one heart and one life we must educate our community against the No. 1 killer in order to make a difference in the lives saved.” The 2013 Go Red for Women luncheon is sponsored by Peoples Health, Times-Picayune/, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Paris Parker, Tulane Medical Center, UnitedHealthcare, Sheriff Newel Normand, Humana, Touro, Crescent City Physicians, WWL-TV, New Orleans Magazine, Cox, Magic 101.9, New Orleans Kids and Family and PetroTV.


10 Reasons to Make It Your Mission Heart disease and stroke are the greatest health threats to women of all ethnic backgrounds. Consider these facts: •H  eart disease is still the No. 1 killer of women age 20 and over, killing approximately one woman every minute. •M  ore women die of cardiovascular disease than the next four causes of death combined, including all forms of cancer. • In fact, while 1 in 30 American women die of breast cancer, about 1 in 3 die of cardiovascular disease. •S  till, only 1 in 5 women believes that heart disease is her greatest health threat. •N  inety percent of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease. •E  ighty percent of cardiac events in women could be prevented if women made the right choices for their hearts involving diet, exercise and abstinence from smoking. •H  ispanic women are likely to develop heart disease 10 years earlier than non-Hispanic white women. •M  ore than 8 percent of Hispanics age 18 and older have heart disease. •A  frican-American women are at greater risk for heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases than Caucasians. •A  frican-American females have higher death rates from heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases than white females.

Blackened Fish with Strawberry Kiwi Salsa 4 Servings Cooking spray 4 fish fillets (4 ounces each; flaky white fish like tilapia, flounder or sole, or red fish work well – look for something you like that’s on sale) 2 tablespoons chili powder 2 teaspoons garlic powder 2 teaspoons cumin 2 teaspoons paprika 1/2 teaspoon salt 1. In a small bowl, mix dry ingredients (chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, paprika and salt) 2. Generously coat fish with seasoning mixture on one side. 3. Spray frying pan or skillet with cooking spray, heat over high heat. Place fish in pan, seasoning side down and cook for 3 minutes. While cooking generously coat the other side with seasoning mixture. Flip fish and cook for 3 minutes longer.

Strawberry Kiwi Salsa 1 1/2 cup diced strawberries (about ½ pound) (you can substitute cantaloupe melon or mango based on what is in season or on sale) 1 medium kiwi peeled and diced 1/2 medium cucumber peeled and diced 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro 2 teaspoons lemon juice 1/4 cup red onion, thinly sliced (optional) 1/4 medium jalapeño, seeded and minced (optional) Place all ingredients in a medium bowl and toss. Keep chilled until serving. Serve salsa over fish. TIP: if time permits, make 1-2 hours before serving to allow juices and flavors to blend.

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Andrea’s Restaurant & Catering 3011 19th St. at Ridgelake, Metairie (504) 834-8583 Andrea’s Restaurant is celebrating 28 years of success. “We are here to serve you, your family, friends and children for many years to come. My Home is Your Home.” Capri Blu Piano Bar & Andrea’s Restaurant are open Mardi Gras day at 5 p.m. Come celebrate Valentine’s Day with Chef Andrea.

Audubon Clubhouse Café 6500 Magazine St., On Golf Club Drive, New Orleans •
(504) 212-5301 clubhouse-cafe Nestled amid the live oaks of Audubon Park is the Audubon Clubhouse, open to the public and ever-popular with Uptown locals and Magazine Street shoppers, it’s a perfect spot for a delicious breakfast or lunch. The breakfast menu is traditional and includes omelets and pancakes and lunch offers up tasty sandwiches, fresh salads and even baskets of fried green tomatoes! A sumptuous buffet is served on Sundays!

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713 St. Louis St., New Orleans
 (504) 581-4422 Since 1840, world-renowned Antoine’s Restaurant has set the standard that made New Orleans one of the greatest dining centers in the world. Antoine’s Restaurant’s excellent French-Creole cuisine, service and atmosphere have combined to create an unmatched dining experience for both locals and visitors to New Orleans.

813 Bienville St., New Orleans (504) 523-5433 The Ultimate New Orleans dining experience. Award-winning classic Creole cuisine in a charming French Quarter ambiance. Dine in the traditional Main Dining Room or The Jazz Bistro, offering live Dixieland Jazz. Serving dinner nightly and Sunday brunch. Exquisite private dining rooms.

Austin’s Seafood and Steakhouse

Breads On Oak

5101 W. Esplanade Ave., Metairie (504) 888-5533 Austin’s Seafood and Steakhouse welcomes you to a casual upscale dining experience. Voted Best Restaurant in Metairie and Top 3 Steakhouses in the City. Local owner Ed McIntyre and his son, Austin, invite you and your family to enjoy his famous cuisine time and again. Great menu changes and specials for the new year. Private dining rooms are available for special occasions. Hours: Monday- Saturday 5 p.m.-till.

8640 Oak St., New Orleans (504) 324-8271 New Orleans’ first organic bakery, where everything is made by hand from scratch and baked in our stone hearth oven – from Parisian baguettes and Old World miche to our croissants and fresh fruit muffins. Come enjoy breads, sandwiches, pastries and coffee. Thursday-Saturday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Sunday, 8 a.m. to noon.


Chophouse New Orleans

4517 W. Esplanade Ave. at Clearview, Metairie (504) 455-5511 Mr. Ed’s newest venture is now open! Serving prime burgers, great seafood, fries, tacos, wings, homemade shakes and martinis in a casual counter-service atmosphere. Here we grind our beef fresh daily so you can build your burger as you like it. Enjoy our patio dining with TV’s for your sporting events. Open for lunch and dinner Monday- Saturday.

322 Magazine St., New Orleans (504) 522-7902 The USDA Prime-only menu at CHOPHOUSE NEW ORLEANS also offers notable fresh seafood such as Florida Stone Crabs- served cold, the succulent and juicy claws are accompanied with a special house sauce. The restaurants relaxed sophistication complements the great food and bustling, live entertainment nightly.

Commander’s Palace

Five Happiness

Martin Wine Cellar

1403 Washington Ave., New Orleans (504) 899-8221 Located in the heart of the Garden District, Commander’s Palace is open for dinner daily, lunch Monday-Friday, as well as for their world-famous jazz brunches on Saturday & Sunday. Complimentary valet parking is available. It’s what living in New Orleans is all about! Visit CommandersPalace, or follow on Twitter @Commanders_NOLA.

3605 S. Carrollton Ave., 
New Orleans
 (504) 482-3935 Come to Five Happiness and let the ambiance and friendly staff take you to a new level of dining experience. This award-wining restaurant always strives to achieve its best. Private party and banquet rooms are available.

Monday is Burgers-n-Beers night at Martin Wine Cellar! Join us in Metairie from 4-8 p.m. for 5 specialty burgers with a gourmet twist! Sign up for our emails or go to for the complete selection. Add a beer to your burger order and get a FREE Martin Wine Cellar Coozie!

541 Bourbon St., New Orleans (504) 648-2331 Convenient Parking! A Taste of History…Sample delicious continental and Creole creations at Café Opéra in the French Quarter. Located on the site of the legendary French Opera House, Café Opéra offers a unique taste of New Orleans history, for breakfast, lunch and dinner!


Cheeseburger Eddie’s

Café Opéra at Four Points by Sheraton

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Maximo’s Italian Grill

Mr. Ed’s Restaurant

1117 Rue Decatur, New Orleans (504) 586-8883 Indulge in the city’s finest Italian cuisine at Maximo’s, a French Quarter favorite for 25 years. Sit at our Grill-Bar and be amazed as you watch Executive Chef Thomas Woods prepare his fire roasted specialty dishes. We can accommodate your private events as well.

1001 Live Oak St., Metairie (504) 838-0022 910 W. Esplanade Ave # A Kenner (504) 463-3030 Mr. Ed’s is celebrating its 24th year with two convenient locations and one great menu! Serving New Orleans home cooking from po-boys to the best fried chicken in town! Mr. Ed’s caters for any occasion and is open for lunch and dinner Monday-Saturday.

Pascal’s Manale

Rivershack Tavern


1838 Napoleon Ave., New Orleans
 (504) 895-4877 This famous restaurant has been family-owned and-operated since 1913. Pascal’s Manale Restaurant is the origin of the well-known Bar-BQue 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.

3449 River Road, Jefferson (504) 834-4938 As featured on “Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives”, The Rivershack Tavern regulary wows its guests with unexpectedly and modestly prices high-end lunch specials, as well as timeless local favorites in an eclectic and friendly neighborhood honky-tonk.

310 Chartres St., New Orleans (504) 552-4095 Created by the Commander’s Family of Restaurants, SoBou is a spirited restaurant, offering cutting-edge cocktails and Louisiana street foodinspired small plates. SoBou is located in the chic W French Quarter Hotel and serves breakfast, lunch and dinner alongside an innovative cocktail, wine and beer program. Visit www.facebook. com/SoBouNola or follow on twitter@ SoBouNola.

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Parkway Bakery and Tavern 538 Hagan Ave., New Orleans (504) 482-3047 Parkway Bakery and Tavern is the oldest, most entertaining poor boy shop in New Orleans, overlooking the historic Bayou St. John at 538 Hagan Ave., in Mid-City, New Orleans. Come and enjoy a Parkway poor boy in our restaurant, covered patio or our classic New Orleans bar.

The Court of Two Sisters 613 Royal St., New Orleans
 (504) 522-7261 The Court of Two Sisters, known for its large dining courtyard, serves a lavish daily Jazz Brunch buffet. At night choose from its à la carte dinner menu or a four-course dinner. Complete menus available at Reservations are recommended.

Theo’s Neighborhood Pizza Theo’s Neighborhood Pizza has been serving up the cities best pizza for the past 8 years. Located in Uptown New Orleans, Mid-City and will be opening this Fall in Elmwood Shopping Center.  Theo’s is known for its thin and crispy crust plus great drink specials. www.

The Ruby Slipper Café With three locations to serve you, MidCity, Downtown and the Marigny, The Ruby Slipper Café serves warm southern faire to locals and tourists alike. Come enjoy our warm atmosphere with your friends and family. There’s no place like home – New Orleans!

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Valentine’s Day gift guide


722 Canal St., Lakeside Shopping Center Towne Center, Baton Rouge • AdlersNewOrleans • (504) 523-5292 A handwritten note is stylish, romantic and appreciated. Tell your Valentine how you feel with a sweet note penned on Alexa Pulitzer’s whimsical stationery. Adler’s collection of her designs ranges from love birds to sea life to ornamental decor. Notecard and envelope sets from $13.00 for 10.


4408 Shores Drive, Metairie (504) 888-3313 Kimono Rose... a blend of rose, peony and jasmine petals, finished off with a smooth, silken vanilla. It is just one of the many wonderful collections from Thymes and special gifts you will find at Auraluz.

Boudreaux’s Jewelers

Bra Genie

2881 US 190, Mandeville (985) 951-8638 Discover what an improvement expertly fitted bras will make in your appearance. Bra Genie, just 30 minutes from the New Orleans area, has 3,500 square feet and over 10,000 bras in-stock by the world’s leading manufacturers. Band sizes 28-50 and cups AA-KK! Walkins are welcome or by appointment.


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701 Metairie Road, Metairie • (504) 831-2602 4550 Highway 22, Mandeville • (985) 626-1666 7280 Corporate Blvd., Baton Rouge • (225) 928-6868 Boudreaux’s Jewelers has been the local choice for over 75 years, with three locations in Metairie, Mandeville and Baton Rouge. Let our experienced gemologists help make the most for the special woman in your life.

Cristy’s Collection Create a loving memory with your special someone with the Broken Heart Pendants by Cristys Collection. Choose from “Together Forever”-“Never Apart”, “Sister”-“Sister” or “Mother”-“Daughter.” Once the soldered pendant is broken, each reminds you of someone who cares. For more designs or to purchase, visit


Fleur D’Orleans

3701 A Magazine St., New Orleans (504) 899-5585 Our Heart of Palm earrings inspired by an old iron gate here in NOLA, perfect for Valentine’s Day. Just one of many sterling silver architectural details from the designers at Fleur d’Orléans. Celebrate the Design Heritage of New Orleans.

Grand Hotel Marriott Edible Arrangements

1650 Gretna Blvd., Suite 5 Harvey, LA 70058 (504) 367-7798 This February 14th, share the love with your one and only by sending one of our Valentine’s Day or love-themed fruit arrangements, including heartshaped pineapple, and our legendary chocolate covered strawberries. You can even add a cuddly teddy bear or custom balloon to make your romantic gift extra special!

(251) 928-9201 For 166 years, The Grand Hotel has been known as “The Queen of Southern Resorts,” and is the ideal place to recover from Mardi Gras or to celebrate Valentine’s Day. The Grand ranks among Marriott’s top hotels for spa, golf, dining and resort experience. Visit or call (251) 928-9201

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Hilton Sandestin Beach

Hilton Garden Inn Houston Galleria

Upscale yet affordable! Log on to www. today! 3201 Sage Road, Houston, Texas (7130 629-0101 Valentine’s Day is the perfect occasion to show the special person in your life just how much they mean to you. The Hilton Garden Inn Houston Galleria Area hotel is located in the heart of the Uptown District just a few steps away from the world-renowned Galleria Shopping Mall. HGI Galleria also provides complimentary shuttle service within a 3-mile radius of the hotel. Call to book your weekend with us! (713) 629-0101.

(800) 559-1805 Treat your Valentine to a romantic getaway at the Hilton Sandestin Beach. Sugar white sand and emerald green waters create the perfect setting! The Romantic Rendezvous Package offers special touches that include beachview room, breakfast, Godiva Chocolates, Champagne and dozen roses (800) 559-1805 or www.

K&M Custom Jewelry

(866) 725-2636 Show your love of the city through these beautiful earrings by K&M Custom Jewelry Designs. Made to order and specifically for you, each pair of earrings can be handcrafted in silver or 14K gold and features the iconic fleur de lis. See the entire collection at or call toll free at (866) 725-2636.

Mississippi Museum of Art

380 South Lamar St. Jackson, MS • (601) 960-1515 Enjoy a romantic outing with your sweetheart at the Mississippi Museum of Art!  The Museum is located at 380 South Lamar Street in downtown Jackson, Mississippi. Open Tuesday-Saturday, 10 AM until 5 PM and Sunday, noon until 5 PM. Visit www. to find out more.

Mignon for Children

2727 Prytania St. in the rink, New Orleans (504) 891-2374 Throw Me Something Mister tee exclusively at Mignon for Children in the Rink, 2727 Prytania, corner of Washington Ave. Beautiful spring merchandise is arriving daily. Call us at (504) 891-2374 for information or email to sign up for our newsletters. MondayFriday 10-5, Saturday 10-4.


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Newman-Dailey Resort Properties - Extreme Love Beach Package

(800) 225-7652 Bring your love to new heights with romantic beach getaway to Destin, Fla. Newman-Dailey Resort Properties “Extreme Love” package, includes a 3-night stay at the Beachside Inn, a bottle of champagne and helicopter excursion for $388. Can’t getaway now? Visit or call (800) 225-7652 to view all special offers.


New Orleans Hornets The New Orleans Hornets Valentine’s 3-Game Pack is perfect for anyone on your list. Starting at only $96, it includes a pair of tickets to three games PLUS a $25 Manning’s gift card (retail value $133). Call (504) 525HOOP or visit to get yours today!

New Orleans Auction Galleries New Orleans Auction Galleries, situated in a former 19th century cotton exchange building in the historic Arts District, is one of the premier regional auction companies in the nation. Preview for their February 23 and 24, 2013 auction will begin February 13th. For more information about the Auction, to order a catalogue, or to speak with specialists regarding buying or consigning, visit

Perlis Clothing

6070 Magazine Street, New Orleans, 895-8661; 1281N. Causeway Blvd, Mandeville, 674-1711; 600 Decatur, French Quarter, 523-6681; PERLIS Clothing introduces the newest member of the Crawfish logo Mardi Gras family ... the Mardi Gras Rugby onesie in sizes 6-18 months.

Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort

9300 Emerald Coast Pkwy W Destin, FL 32550 (866) 544-1026 Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort, the #1 resort on Florida’s Emerald Coast, is the perfect destination for your romantic getaway. Sandestin is making it easy to get away with its FREE* Night offer. Make memories of a lifetime at Sandestin this Valentine’s Day weekend. Visit www.sandestin. com/nom or call (866) 544-1026 for details. *Code: FREE3.

Steamboat NATCHEZ

Saint Germain

The Shops at Canal Place 333 Canal St., 2nd level (504) 522-1720 For someone special, this perfect Valentine’s gift: oxidized silver and diamond heart pendant and earrings by Mizuki. These special pieces represent one of many jewelry designers at Saint Germain located in Canal Place.

(504) 569-1401 Toulouse Street & the Mississippi River Romance on the River! Enjoy dancing, lavish buffet, cocktail options, champagne toast, and one of the most romantic views of the City from the decks of the last authentic steamboat on the Mississippi River.  Take home a commemorative champagne flute and many unforgettable memories.

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Symmetry Jewelers

The Sweet Palate

(504) 861-9925 With its vivid color and unique brilliance, this natural pink spinel is complimented by colorless emerald cut diamonds, and is just one in a collection of exotic precious gems from around the world, set in the classics by Tom Mathis and the artisans of Symmetry.

519 St. Louis, New Orleans (504) 522-5150 Nothing says “Valentine’s Day” more than chocolate. Express your love with an assortment of decadent chocolate cocoa-pods or exquisite hearts by world champion, Oriol Balaguer from The Sweet Palate. The stunning Ferrari Red “I loooove you” box is only to be outdone by the heavenly chocolates that await inside.

The Shops at Canal Place

333 Canal St., New Orleans A Gift Card from The Shops at Canal Place is the perfect Valentine’s Day gift! Let your sweetheart shop in the most exclusive stores in town like Saks Fifth Avenue, Anthropologie, lululemon athletica, BCBG and many more. Purchase at our concierge desk on level one.


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Help a Mardi Gras First-Timer

of-towners don’t know about. For example, it’s OK to carry an alcoholic drink throughout the city, as long as it’s in a “go-cup.” Make sure your friend isn’t walking around with glass. Lotz also advises pointing out terms such as “sidewalk side” and “neutral ground side” so your guest can find you if you get separated.










long enough that you say “Carnival” instead of “Mardi Gras,” you know how to navigate New Orleans’ favorite season. But if you’ve invited a friend who has never celebrated Mardi Gras in New Orleans before, chances are your out-oftowner is going to need some guidance. Here are a few tips for introducing your guest to Mardi Gras. We asked Jennifer Lotz of the New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau to share some expert advice. Alert your guest of the attire. In other parts of the country, Mardi Gras is simply celebrated with purple, green and gold beads. Tell your friend that costumes are common in New Orleans so he or she can plan accordingly. Lotz suggests telling your guest to bring comfortable shoes because there’s going to be a lot of walking. Make a plan for transportation. Try to walk as much as possible. Walking is more convenient and it’s a great way for someone new to get a sense of the Mardi Gras atmosphere. “Talk to locals as you walk down St. Charles prior to the parade,” Lotz says. “It’s not uncommon for a local to offer you a cool beverage or a piece of King Cake.” Explain the lingo and laws. There are lots of terms and rules C A R N I V A L ’1 3 in New Orleans that seem obvious to locals but a lot of out-



See a famous parade and a smaller one, too. Your friend will

want to see famous parades, such as the Krewe of Endymion, Krewe of Bacchus and Krewe of Orpheus, but let him or her know about other parades, too. Check out the Krewe of MidCity (which actually parades Uptown) or relative newcomers, the Krewe of Nyx. If you find yourself in the French Quarter on Fat Tuesday, keep an eye out for the less formal but equally jubilant groups, such as the Society of Saint Anne, the Ducks of Dixieland, Krewe de Lune and Mondo Kayo. Also, tell your guest that he or she doesn’t need to see every single parade. “Mardi Gras is such a traditional time in New Orleans,” Lotz says, “and any parade is really going to give you the authentic experience that visitors are often looking for.”

Beautiful Made Easy at Floor and Decor 2801 Magazine St., 891-3005

If you’ve been amazed at a friend’s recent bath renovation or turned green with envy on a kitchen tour, you need to read on. The “secret” behind some of the most beautiful renovations across the city is Floor and Decor on Magazine Street in the Garden District. From this convenient location, you find a huge selection and great prices for floor, walls, tiles, kitchen and bath and more. Plus special-order custom lines, such as antique reclaimed heart pinewood, meet local décor taste and house styles. A professional installation service makes it even easier to get your next project underway. – M i r ella c ame r a n

CIS to Open in Luling Health

Cardiovascular Institute of the South, (800) 425-2565,

In March, Cardiovascular Institute of the South is opening a 14th location, in Luling at St. Charles Hospital, offering diagnostic services, including ultrasound, nuclear and treadmill testing. Currently, CIS has nearly 40 cardiologists at 13 locations and is recognized as a world-leader in the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular and peripheral vascular disease. February is American Heart Month and cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, striking men and women of all ages. Do you know your risk of cardiovascular disease?  To determine your own risk factors and take any preventative measures to lessen your risk, call CIS at (800) 425-2565 or visit – M . C .

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Marching Orders Mardi Gras and the military B Y  E RR O L   L A B O R D E


f y o u h a d t o k e e p th e p e a c e , th i s w a s th e w a y t o

do it. In 1979 there were no Carnival parades in New Orleans because of a police strike. But the Teamsters Union, which was behind the strike, couldn’t erase Mardi Gras from the calendar, so on that day, revelers gathered in the French Quarter, working extra hard at being festive as if to defy the strikers. Without a working police department, the Louisiana State Police patrolled the streets, but the most visible presence was the Louisiana National Guard. Troopers, mostly young men, stood in groups at key corners in the French Quarter. As they tried to look solemn and military-like, they couldn’t help smirking as girls danced around them and placed flowers on their helmets. From their duty stations they could glance at the balconies and see things that basic training had not prepared them for. Never had service to one’s country been as titillating. What happened that day was one of many examples of how the military have been part of the Mardi Gras celebration. They are an overlooked factor in Carnival. Some examples: 1872. The Grand Duke’s Escort. That year, when Rex made its debut, the Russian Grand Duke Alexis happened to be in town as part of his national tour. Escorting him was a young Army Major named George Armstrong Custer. While here, Custer entered a horse he owned in a race at the newly opened Fair Grounds. The U.S. Army band also marched in the first Rex parade, even though the times were still tense as Reconstruction continued. Parade Marshalling. Military expertise has long been a part of running a parade, many times at the hand of former military personnel. The late Carl Smith, a retired National Guard Brigadier General, was a classic example having been Captain of his own Krewe of Pegasus and helping put together other parades, including super-sized Bacchus. 1951. Krewe of Patria. Because of the Korean War (President Harry Truman had declared a “limited emergency”) and a fire in the Rex den, several parades, including Rex, were canceled that year. However, some krewes chipped in floats to create the one-time Krewe of Patria that marched on Mardi Gras. The King was a disabled war vet; the Queen was a female member of the armed forces; and the theme reflected the mood: “The freedoms, historic traditions and other national heritages worth fighting for.” Zulu, at the time a smaller parade, also took to the streets that day, as did some marching groups, including the Jefferson City Buzzards. Navy ships. Frequently they have come to town during Carnival, providing tours and unloading a boatload of C A R N I V A L ’1 3 happy sailors.


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Coast Guard at Lundi Gras. Ever since Lundi Gras started, the Coast Guard has been the official Navy of Rex, bringing the King of Carnival for his arrival to the city. When Zulu started a similar tradition a few years later, it relied on the Coast Guard as well. Coast Guard helicopters add to the excitement as they circle overhead. A Coast Guard honor guard escorts the royalty to the stage. Texas A&M Ross Volunteer Company. This precision marching group has long been at the head of the Rex parade. Rex Ball Presentation. Rex has had a long relationship with the military. Each year selected military brass receives special recognition at the Rex ball. The Marine Band. There is no greater band in all of Mardi Gras than that of the locally based Marine Forces Reserve Band. The group marches in parades and performs at several balls, including the televised Rex ball, where they are the featured entertainment. Mardi Gras 2006. This was arguably the most important Mardi Gras ever, because it would be the proof that New Orleans could lift itself from the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, which occurred only five months earlier. The krewes came together, some with abbreviated schedules, and New Orleans celebrated not only to prove a point but also to soothe its soul. It couldn’t have happened without the National Guard. With the New Orleans police department still depleted, the guard, not just from Louisiana but from throughout the country, once again provided a presence. As in 1979, the revelers were determined to celebrate in peace to defy yet another demon. The military and the public rejoiced together. Those who organize Carnival parades tend to have a patriotic streak that extends to the military. As for the troops – such as the National Guardsmen and the sailors at liberty – if your biggest battle is getting through the crowds on Bourbon Street, then the spirit of Mardi Gras has touched you, too. AR T H UR NEAD ILLUS T RA T ION

Profile for Renaissance Publishing

New Orleans Magazine February 2013  

New Orleans Magazine February 2013