Kevin R. Roberts has made it his mission to save New Orleans' neighborhood restaurants. 'We could wake up five, six, 10 years from now and a lot of them could be gone,' he says. 'I'm trying to turn on suburban people to the wonderful restaurants of New Orleans.' He singlehandedly writes and distributes the New Orleans Neighborhood Restaurant Guide , an opinionated survey of 40 neighborhood restaurants that serve quality Louisiana food. Roberts just completed the fourth edition of the guide. He chooses the restaurants based on their reputation, the meals he's eaten there and by asking restaurant owners where they go to eat. A photo by Roberts accompanies each listing and the book also includes recommendations for bars, juke joints and jazz clubs. The New Orleans Neighborhood Restaurant Guide can be found at area bookstores and retailers or ordered directly through Roberts' Web site at www.krrmarketing.com.
The Name Remains the Same
This weekend Restaurant Indigo (2285 Bayou Road, 943-1707; www.restaurantindigo.com) reopens with a new menu and new owners. The husband and wife team of Kerry and Michael Sichel moved from Napa Valley to New Orleans to open their first restaurant. Kerry Sichel, a Lafayette native, has worked in the front and the back of the house at restaurants throughout Louisiana and Napa Valley. Most recently she served as the general manager of Napa's Bistro Don Giovanni and Restaurant Angele . Michael Sichel, born in upstate New York, was trained at the Culinary Institute of America and cooked at world-class restaurants in France, Chicago, Napa Valley and San Francisco. When the couple decided to open their own restaurant, they were enchanted by Restaurant Indigo. 'It's beautiful and it's in a community,' Ms. Sichel says. The new menu will feature 'French country cuisine with a touch of Southern soul,' including whole redfish with white beans and sauteed calamari, seared tuna with an eggplant puree and an Angus burger topped with seared foie gras.
Wide World of Suds
In two hours, you can drink your way around the world at WYES' 22nd Annual International Beer Tasting (www.wyes.org/events/beer.html). Two hundred beers from every corner of the globe, including brews from Japan, Denmark, Germany and the United States, will be served from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, June 4, in the air-conditioned comfort of the Kiefer UNO Lakefront Arena (6801 Franklin Ave.). Local home brewers will also offer samples of their craft. Representatives from breweries and distributors will answer questions, and the New Orleans Dixieland and Rag Time Orchestra will provide entertainment. Tickets are $25 in advance, $20 for seniors or groups and $30 at the door. Call the UNO box office (280-7222) or Ticketmaster (522-5555) for advanced tickets. All proceeds benefit public television station WYES (www.wyes.org).