News for Restaurants in New Orleans
May 2011 Archive
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New Orleans' master restaurateur, Ralph Brennan, never disappoints, largely because he studies the market before he opens a new restaurant. This time, Brennan has found a quaint neighborhood spot in well-established Old Metairie, on bustling Metairie Road. He calls his new venture Cafe B, and the food is aptly named "elevated neighborhood cuisine." We call it comfort food. Look for double cut pork chops, chicken pot pie, grilled fish, fried oysters and more. Be sure to check out the wine list, which is uniquely arranged by price instead of type. With the recent closing of Brennan's French Quarter Italian eatery Bacco, Cafe B is a welcome addition to his collection of restaurants. Cafe B, 2700 Metairie Rd., New Orleans, LA 70112, 504-934-4700.
We can all agree cops and donuts go together like...well, like cops and coffee. So it only make sense that three of New Orleans' finest would open their own donut shop. Blue Dot Donuts is the brainchild of NOPD Officers Dennis Gibliant, Ronnie Laporte and Brandon Singleton. With about 1,600 officers on the force, Blue Dot already has a built-in clientele, but the locals are finding their way to the shop, as well. Perhaps the locals crave some of the unique offerings such as donuts glazed with peanut butter. Or, it could have something to do with the maple-glazed donuts topped with bacon. Other offerings include Key lime crumb donuts and ice cream sandwich donuts. Blue Dot is open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., but the volume is high and many selections sell out early. Blue Dot Donuts, 4301 Canal St., New Orleans, LA 70125, 504-218-4866.
Cochon Chef Wins James Beard Award
No one had to tell New Orleans that Stephen Stryjewski of Cochon was a great chef, but it helps when the James Beard Foundation tells the rest of the world. Stryjewski was named Best Chef: South by the organization, and now joins other high-profile chefs, including Emeril Lagasse, Susan Spicer and Frank Brigtsen, among others. Stryjewski, formerly of other New Orleans restaurants, including Herbsaint, Commander's Palace and Dante's Kitchen, is often lauded as one of the few chefs in New Orleans who has maintained the time-tested cooking styles of Southern Cajun country. Mustard-crusted ham hocks with shell peas and greens, anyone? We thought so. Congratulations to Chef Stryjewski. Cochon, 930 Tchoupitoulas St., New Orleans, LA 70130, 504-588-2123.
If you haven't heard the name Brian Landry before now, get ready to hear it nationwide. Landry, who for the past five years has helmed the kitchen at Galatoire's on Bourbon Street, is taking on a massive new task. He will go to work for the Louisiana Seafood Marketing and Promotion Board, which has tasked Landry with helping to repair the damage to the national reputation of Louisiana Seafood that was done via last year's BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Serving as the state's primary advocate for Louisiana seafood, Landry will pop up at events all over the country. Landry's sous chef, Gerry Middleton, will take over the Galatoire's kitchen. Galatoire's, 209 Bourbon St., New Orleans, LA 70130, 504-525-2021.
Still reeling from the surprise departure of The Ritz-Carlton, New Orleans chef Matt Murphy in March, the hotel has finally revealed its new chef. He is New York native Vincent Russo, who will take charge of M Bistro, the Davenport Lounge and room service. Russo has worked at resorts in Turks and Caicos and in California, and more recently at The Ritz-Carlton in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands. There is no word yet on if and when Russo will change the concept and or menu of M Bistro. M Bistro, 921 Canal St., New Orleans, LA 70112, 504-670-2828 .
The list of New Orleans chefs who can instantly be identified by their first names is short, but count René Bajeux among them. Long before Katrina, Bajeux operated in one of the toniest dining rooms in town, René Bistro. After the storm, Bajeux re-emerged at John Besh's North Shore French eatery, La Provence. Now, Bajeux has been named the new executive chef at the Rib Room at the Omni Royal Orleans. Diners are anxiously wondering how Bajeux will make his mark in a room known since the Camelot era for red meat and potatoes. Bajeux is one of just 50 French Master Chefs in the United States as designated by the Maître Cuisinier de France. His culinary sensibilities lean European, while the Rib Room is as all-American as it gets. Long known for his penchant for using ingredients indigenous to the areas in which he works, Bajeux is likely to expand on what already has succeeded at The Rib Room, rather than re-invent the wheel. Rib Room, Omni Royal Orleans Hotel, 621 St. Louis St., New Orleans, LA 70130, 504-529-7045.
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