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Northshore Nosh
After writing about the fine barbecued pork ribs served out of the back of a Shell station on the Northshore, I learned that, as of Memorial Day, Abita Bar-B-Q (69399 Hwy. 59, Abita Springs, 985-892-0205) operates out of its own, free-standing restaurant. The new location, just 1.9 miles north on Highway 59 from the Shell station, seats around 40 people.

Kudos to the Duke
Congratulations to Chef Duke LoCicero of Cafe Giovanni (117 Decatur St., 529-2154), who recently received the USA Chef of the Year for 2002 from the American Tasting Institute. The American Tasting Institute is a branch of the Awards of the Americas, an organization based in San Francisco that researches and evaluates all aspects of the food and beverage industry.

Shout-out, Part I
A shout-out to all chefs: you are invited to take part in the second annual Satchmo Summerfest, scheduled for Aug. 1-5. Participants are required to prepare a creative variation on one of Louis Armstrong's favorite dishes. For more information, call 522-5730 or email beth@frenchquarterfestivals.org by June 5.

Shout-out, Part II
A shout-out to all salsa makers: on Tuesday, June 18, when tomatoes and peppers are at their finest, Chef Corey Jacobs of Vaqueros (4938 Prytania St., 891-6441) will judge a salsa contest at the Crescent City Farmers Market. The grand prize is dinner for two at Vaqueros. This Saturday is Creole Tomato Day at the market. The Tuesday market is at 200 Broadway St. and runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Saturday market is at 700 Magazine St. and runs from 8 a.m. to noon. The Thursday market is at 3700 Orleans Ave. and runs from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Call 861-5898 or visit www.loyola.edu/ccfm.

New Day for Muscadet
Oenophiles should be sobered up following last month's Wine and Food Experience and planning ahead for the fourth annual Muscadet Wine Festival slated for Friday, June 28, at the Royal Sonesta Hotel (300 Bourbon St.). (The event has been moved from its original June 21 slot due to scheduling conflicts.) A light, dry wine often containing nuances of lemon and green apple, Muscadet is produced in France's Loire region; the local festival celebrates the release of the newest vintage. Chefs participating in the event will provide seafood dishes to complement the wine, and guests are encouraged (but not required) to wear costumes that reflect the turn-of-the-century Impressionistic era in Paris. Tickets cost $40 in advance, $35 for members of the French-American Chamber of Commerce and $350 for groups of 10. Call 524-2042 or log on at www.faccla.com. -- Roahen

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