Food & Drink

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

SWEGS Kitchen opens in Mid-City

Posted By on Tue, Jan 17, 2017 at 2:38 PM

SWEGS Kitchen, a new health-focused grab-and-go meals spot, is now open in Mid-City. - HELEN FREUND
  • HELEN FREUND
  • SWEGS Kitchen, a new health-focused grab-and-go meals spot, is now open in Mid-City.

SWEGS Kitchen (231 N. Carrollton Ave., 504-301-9196), a health-conscious grab-and-go meals spot with locations in Metairie and Mandeville, is now open in Mid-City.

The retail spot opened last week in the same strip mall that houses a Subway and Brown Butter Southern Kitchen and Bar. SWEGS's menu includes salads, wraps, sandwiches, entrees and gluten-free pizzas. The menu has a color-coded system to label items that are gluten-free, vegan, low sodium, low calorie, heart healthy and dairy-free.

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Thursday, January 12, 2017

NOLA Jerk Chicken Festival debuts in Central City Feb. 11

Posted By on Thu, Jan 12, 2017 at 3:41 PM

The inaugural NOLA Jerk Chicken Festival takes place Feb. 11 at Central City BBQ. - WIKICOMMONS/JERILYN QUINTANILLA
  • WIKICOMMONS/JERILYN QUINTANILLA
  • The inaugural NOLA Jerk Chicken Festival takes place Feb. 11 at Central City BBQ.

A new food festival (yes, another one) debuts next month when the NOLA Jerk Chicken Festival takes over the newly opened Central City BBQ (1201 S. Rampart St., 504-558-4276) on Feb. 11.  The festival was initially called the Marley Gras Jerk Chicken Fest, but changed the name after members of Fifty-Six Hope Road Music (a company run by the heirs of Bob Marley) threatened legal action with a cease and desist letter.

The inaugural festival, from the organizers behind the NOLA Caribbean Festival, celebrates the Caribbean island nation’s cuisine and it signature smoky chicken staple, as well the music and culinary traditions of both New Orleans and Jamaica.

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Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Jerusalem Cafe opens on Tulane Avenue

Posted By on Tue, Jan 10, 2017 at 6:36 PM

Jerusalem Cafe, a Middle Eastern and Mediterranean restaurant, is now open on Tulane Avenue. - HELEN FREUND
  • HELEN FREUND
  • Jerusalem Cafe, a Middle Eastern and Mediterranean restaurant, is now open on Tulane Avenue.

Mid-City dwellers and employees at the University Medical Center and surrounding criminal justice buildings now have another option to get their hummus and falafel fix.

Jerusalem Cafe (2132 Tulane Ave., 504-509-7729) opened in December across the street from the University Medical Center and next door to long-time diner Anita's Restaurant. The cafe takes over the space formerly held by the soul food take-out spot Mama’s Cooking. It’s the first restaurant for Ali Hinawi, who is from Jerusalem and emigrated to New Orleans nearly two decades ago.

“I’ve worked in restaurants in the past and I thought (now) was a good time to open one," Hinawi said. "I wanted to really show people our culture and our food.”

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Monday, January 9, 2017

Black Label Icehouse closes

Posted By on Mon, Jan 9, 2017 at 4:41 PM

Central City's Black Label Icehouse has closed. - COURTESY BLACK LABEL ICEHOUSE/FACEBOOK
  • COURTESY BLACK LABEL ICEHOUSE/FACEBOOK
  • Central City's Black Label Icehouse has closed.

Central City barbecue spot Black Label Icehouse (3000 Dryades St., 504-875-2876) has closed. The restaurant, which opened in fall 2015, announced the shutter on its Facebook page Dec. 30, a day before closing its doors for good on New Year’s Eve.

The Central City beer and barbecue hall was part of a recent boom in the New Orleans barbecue scene (just days before the shutter, Rob Bechtold and Aaron Burgau's Central City Barbecue opened on nearby South Rampart Street). The Dryades Street bar and restaurant opened with pitmaster Damian Brugger on board, serving Texas-style brisket, oversized burgers and whimsical takes on bar food. Brugger departed the restaurant earlier in the year, and opened his Brugger’s Barbecue stall at St. Roch Market.

No word yet on what caused the shutter.

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Johnny Sanchez holds Blessing of the Animals Feast Jan. 17

Posted By on Mon, Jan 9, 2017 at 4:34 PM

Crispy pig's ear salad will be served at the Blessing of the Animals Feast at Johnny Sanchez Jan. 17. - COURTESY JOHNNY SANCHEZ
  • COURTESY JOHNNY SANCHEZ
  • Crispy pig's ear salad will be served at the Blessing of the Animals Feast at Johnny Sanchez Jan. 17.

John Besh and Aaron Sanchez's Mexican restaurant Johnny Sanchez (930 Poydras St., 504-304-6615) launches a dinner series highlighting Mexican holidays and celebrations, beginning Jan. 17 with a Blessing of the Animals Feast.

The five-course menu celebrates the feast day of St. Anthony the Abbot, said to be the guardian and protector of animals. In Mexico, the tradition includes bringing your favorite animal to Mass for an annual blessing and asking for protection and blessing of livestock.

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Friday, January 6, 2017

The worst king cake ever devised — and it's by Sandra Lee

Posted By on Fri, Jan 6, 2017 at 3:33 PM

Sandra Lee's "Mardis Gras King Cake" — a package of Pillsbury breadstick dough topped with a container of frosting.
  • Sandra Lee's "Mardis Gras King Cake" — a package of Pillsbury breadstick dough topped with a container of frosting.

New Orleanians and scholars will debate which is the best king cake until ever they cease to love, but what about the worst king cake ever foisted on the public? Here's one strong nominee.

Food Network's Semi-Homemade host Sandra Lee is infamous for her "Kwanzaa cake" (Anthony Bourdain once called it "a war crime on television") and white chocolate polenta (which is exactly what it sounds like, plus thyme) , but what she calls a "Mardi Gras king cake" may be just as bad. It calls for one package of Pillsbury breadstick dough and a container of pre-made frosting — no cinnamon, no spices, no filling, no fun.

Behold the hell. Why isn't this as infamous as the Kwanzaa cake?

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Thursday, January 5, 2017

Hogs for the Cause announces music schedule for March 31-April 1

Posted By on Thu, Jan 5, 2017 at 10:40 AM

Futurebirds perform Friday at Hogs for the Cause.
  • Futurebirds perform Friday at Hogs for the Cause.

Hogs for the Cause, the barbecue and pig roast festival and fundraiser, moves to the UNO Lakefront Arena grounds for its March 31-April 1 event. It announced the music schedule for its three music stages.

Headliners include Shovels and Rope, London Souls, Futurebirds, Railroad Earth, Seratones, George Porter Jr. and many others. Daily schedule after the jump.

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Wednesday, January 4, 2017

'Seven Deadly Sins' dinner/theater production debuts Jan. 6

Posted By on Wed, Jan 4, 2017 at 11:19 AM

David Castillo created Jukebox Castle to present events like "Seven Deadly Sins."
  • David Castillo created Jukebox Castle to present events like "Seven Deadly Sins."

David Castillo is an opera singer, artist and the creative director at Jukebox Castle, a new multidisciplinary food, theater and arts collective. The inaugural event titled "Seven Deadly Sins" is Jan. 6 at Loyola University. It combines classical and modern music and a seven-course tasting menu with dishes by chefs Tenney Flynn, Phillip Lopez, Will Avelar and others, as well as a seven-course menu of sweets. Castillo, a Loyola graduate, spoke with Gambit about the idea behind the production.

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Thursday, December 29, 2016

New Orleans restaurants ring in 2017

Posted By on Thu, Dec 29, 2016 at 11:53 AM

French Quarter restaurant Angeline will be serving a special prix-menu for New Year's Eve and bottomless mimosas for New Year's Day brunch. - COURTESY ANGELINE/FACEBOOK
  • COURTESY ANGELINE/FACEBOOK
  • French Quarter restaurant Angeline will be serving a special prix-menu for New Year's Eve and bottomless mimosas for New Year's Day brunch.

Ringing in the new year at home is nice and all, but it also can be fun to get out and spread some of that holiday cheer. Many of city’s restaurants offer New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day spreads. Here are six spots to help you eat, drink and merry your way to 2017.

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Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Link Stryjewski Foundation Bal Masque is Jan. 7

Posted By on Tue, Dec 27, 2016 at 3:22 PM

The second annual Link Stryjewski Foundation's Bal Masque is on Jan. 7. - COURTESY LINK STRYJEWSKI FOUNDATION
  • COURTESY LINK STRYJEWSKI FOUNDATION
  • The second annual Link Stryjewski Foundation's Bal Masque is on Jan. 7.

New Orleanians excited about Mardi Gras revelry can kick off their Carnival season at the second annual Bal Masqué on Jan. 7, 2017.

The formal masked ball from chefs Donald Link and Stephen Stryjewski’s charitable foundation includes food by an impressive lineup of national chefs and several musical guests, and it benefits the foundation’s mission to help the youth of New Orleans.

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