Dinner – Antoine’s – Oct. 4, 2019 – New Orleans, Louisiana

Antoine’s is so iconic, it’s the oldest family-run restaurant in New Orleans. It has a built-in museum of all of their history and artifacts. It’s got many rooms, some of which are so special that you have to reserve months in advance. My favorite was the escargot room, a place for men to have their little dinner clubs events. Of course, you have to order their very famous escargot if your eating in that room.

My lovely guide Ricky, who is a great-great-great grandson of the original owner, was so enlightening, he took me on a tour before my dining experience. He showed me the many rooms, paintings, wine cellar and ashtray collection, everything super spectacular to feast my eyes on. I felt so special that I was given this tour and be able to understand the whole history of Antoine’s and what makes it so special. So many famous dishes were created under their roof; I got to try quite a few.

Here’s What I Tried:

Appetizers:

Huîtres Bienville, Fresh Louisiana gulf oysters baked on the half shell, with white wine, cheese, onions, pimento, and fresh peppers sauce.

Huîtres en coquille à la Rockefeller, Louisiana gulf oysters baked on the half shell with the original Rockefeller sauce created by Antoine’s in the late 1890s.

Huîtres Thermidor, Fresh Louisiana gulf oysters baked on the half shell with bacon and cocktail sauce. They gave me a sampler platter of threes darling oysters my favorite was the Huitres Bienville. The oysters Rockefeller were delicious,  and they created this popular oyster dish here.

Soup and Salads:

Gumbo Créole, A classic preparation of rich Louisiana gumbo with blue crabs, oysters, and gulf shrimp. This is an amazing Gumbo, with just the perfect amount of spice and flavor.

Soupe a l’oignon Gratinée, A classic onion soup baked and topped with a combination of cheeses. Not the usual soup you would expect, but it’s so differed and wonderful that you forget any others that you have tried.

Salade Combinaison, Mixed greens tossed with artichokes, asparagus, cherry tomatoes, and cranberries topped with feta cheese and a vinaigrette dressing. This is a nice simple salad that mixes the freshest ingredients with a nice subtle dressing.

Entrees:

Cotelettes d’Agneau Grillées, Prime center-cut lamb chops grilled and served with mint jelly. These chops are right up there with any I have tasted in the past. Grilled with a crispy outside and super tender inside, and the mint jelly is one of my favorite combinations on the planet.

Filet de Gulf Poisson aux Ecrevisses Cardinal, Grilled or fried gulf fish with gulf crawfish tails in Antoine’s signature white wine tomato sauce – our creation! This was drum fish, super thick with a great sauce and the crawfish just added the best part of the gulf.

Legumes:

Broccoli Sauce Hollandaise, Steamed broccoli with hollandaise sauce. Just what you would expect, but these broccoli florets were cooked al dent, so they kept their integrity and were just scrumptious.

Epinards Sauce Crème, Spinach in a light cream sauce with onion, garlic and Romano cheese baked in a casserole. I loved this spinach with the lamb, just the right accompaniment.

Dessert:

Tarte au Citron Vert, Authentic key lime mousse in a graham cracker tart shell topped with whipped cream. A very delectable way to end my glorious meal.

About Antoines:

Established in 1840, the main dining room at Antoine’s as it appeared in 1951. Even at that late date, the gas chandeliers provided the only heat for the room during the winter months!

It was spring in 1840, when New Orleans was queen city of the Mississippi River, when cotton was king and French gentlemen settled their differences under the oaks with pistols for two and coffee for one. “Dixie” had not yet been written, destined to become the marching anthem for Confederate forces in the Civil War. This was the city young Antoine Alciatore adopted, after stopping in New York, to establish a restaurant that would endure under his family’s direction for more than 179 years and set the standard that has made New Orleans one of the great dining centers of the world.

It was on St. Louis Street, just one block from the spot the famed restaurant occupies today, that the 18-year old Alciatore started what was to become simply “Antoine’s” as a synonym for fine food. He felt at home in the French-speaking city of lordly aristocrats and their extravagances, an ideal audience for his culinary artistry, a synonym for fine food. He felt at home in the French-speaking city of lordly aristocrats and their extravagances, an ideal audience for his culinary artistry.

The main dining room at Antoine’s as it appeared in 1951. Even at that late date, the gas chandeliers provided the only heat for the room during the winter months! After a brief period in the kitchen of the grand St. Charles Hotel, Antoine opened a pension, a boarding house and a restaurant. It was then that he made arrangements for his fiancée’ to join him from New York. She came to New Orleans with her sister and she and Antoine were married. Together they worked to build up their pension with culinary emphasis. New Orleans’ gentility was so taken with the restaurant that it soon outgrew its small quarters and Antoine’s moved down the block and eventually, in 1868, to the spot on St. Louis Street where the restaurant stands today.

In 1874, Antoine being in ill-heath took leave of his family, with the management of the restaurant in his wife’s hands. Jules married Althea Roy, daughter of a planter in Youngsville in southwest Louisiana. Jules and Althea had three children: Roy, Jules and Mary Louise. Roy followed in his father’s footsteps and headed the restaurant for almost 40 years until his death in 1972. He felt he had not much longer to live and wished to die and be buried in his birthplace in France. He told his wife he did not want her to watch him deteriorate and said as he left; “As I take the boat for Marseilles, we will not meet again on earth.” He died within the year. After Antoine’s death, his son Jules served as an apprentice under his mother’s tutelage for six years before she sent him to France where he served in the great kitchens of Paris, Strassburg and Marseilles. He returned to New Orleans and became a chef of the famous Pickwick Club in 1887 before his mother summoned him to head the house of Antoine. His genius was in the kitchen where he invented Oysters Rockefeller, so named for the richness of the sauce. They remain one of the great culinary creations of all time and that recipe remains a closely-guarded Antoine’s secret, though it has been imitated countless times.

The kitchen at Antoine’s as it appeared in 1951. The restaurant’s chefs were still using ancient coal-burning stoves to prepare meals for their many patrons. Note the oyster shells ready and waiting to be transformed into Oysters Rockefeller and the row of little baskets, soon to be filled with the delectable soufflé potatoes. Photograph by R. E. Covey.

Roy Alciatore managed the restaurant through some of the nation’s most difficult times, including the Prohibition era and World War II. His contributions still remain vibrant today. The 1840 Room, a replica of a fashionable private dining room, still contains the great silver duck press and is a museum of curios treasures including a cookbook published in Paris in 1659.

Marie Louise married William Guste; and their sons, William Jr., the former attorney general of Louisiana, and Roy Sr., became the fourth generation of the family to head the restaurant. In 1975, Roy’s son, Roy Jr., became proprietor and served until 1984. He was followed by William’s son, Bernard “Randy” Guste who managed Antoine’s until 2004. In 2005, Rick Blount, Roy Alciatore’s grandson became proprietor and CEO.

The long line of the Alciatore family members and descendants has guided Antoine’s to continued greatness, through the Civil War, two World Wars, Prohibition, the Great Depression and Hurricane Katrina.

Countless celebrities have dined in Antoine’s dining rooms. Lining the walls are photographs of the rich and famous who have feasted amid the splendor … musicians, politicians, military personnel, sports figures, and royalty … the list is endless. It includes George Bush, Bill Clinton, Franklin Roosevelt, Pope John Paul II, Brad Pitt, Bruce Willis, Tom Cruise, Kate Hudson, Jimmy Buffet, Whoopi Goldberg, Bob Hope, and Bing Crosby to name just a few!

There is so much history here, you just have to come in and taste their wonderful food and take in all of the rooms and artifacts, it’s a must-see when you are in New Orleans.

Antoine’s
713 St Louis St.
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 581-4422

antoines.com

* Note some content was taken off of their press release.

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Dinner – Bordeaux – Oct 3. 2019 – New Orleans, Louisiana

This is a great find in the Garden District of New Orleans. On a corner in the super hipster neighborhood of Magazine Street lies a restaurant that needs lots of accolades. It’s just that great. There is a big huge outside patio area and a little mini dining room. In the rare 90-degree beginning of October, I opted to sit inside, in the cool air conditioning. Just what the doctor ordered, comfort inside and out.

Noah was my server, as well as bartender. He was cordial and knew lots about this historic area, he really made my experience at Bordeaux very memorable.

Dining next to me was local Mike Fylnn, who lives near by.  He had a great quote: “New Orleans is an easy city to earn a living, but a hard city to be successful in.” He had lots to say about his fair city, as well as his favorite restaurants and Bordeaux being one of them.

The preparation by Chef Dominic McKlette was remarkable, using fresh sustainable ingredients, and adding his French touch of creativity and elegance.

Here’s What I Had:

Cocktails:

Five Minutes to Midnight, coconut-infused Rhum Agricole, Lime 1 Demerara Sugar, refreshing and potent, this cocktail packs a punch.

Sacra Bleu Vodka, Lemon, Elderflower, Egg White, so delightful, with an umbrella and blue, just loved it.

The Pipeline Bitter Orange Infused Vodka, Aperal, and passion fruit. This was also pretty strong, but for me, because I am a vodka lover, it did the trick.

Frozen Rose, like a slush, with other ingredients, and it comes out of a machine, a must- try.

Appetizer:

Jumbo Lump Crabmeat Green papaya Slaw with Remoulade. Just the perfect amount of fresh gulf crab in this amazing appetizer.

Local Red Fish and Octopus Ceviche Corn Shaved Onion, Cilantro, and Leche De Tigre. A bit on the acidic side for me, but great nontheless.

Fresh Burrata and Creole Tomato Salad, with Crispy Vidalia onion, Balsamic Dijon Vinaigrette. This is colorful and super tasty, but an amazing menu item.

Whole Wheat Flatbread Artisan Cheese, Prosciutto, Truffle Oil. You can taste the truffle oil in every bit, a super nice flatbread.

Entrée:

Sautéed Soft Shell Crab Saffron Basmati Rice Pilaf, Green Papaya Slaw, and Spiced Citrus Vinaigrette. Wow, wow, wow, terrific.

Rotisserie of Key West Spiny Lobster Quinoa, Creole Tomato with Citrus Mojo. This is a huge lobster ad so fresh and delicious, by far my favorite thing I tried here tonight.

Rotisserie, Maple Leaf Duck, nice meaty duck with super delicious rotisserie flavors, I loved it.

Desserts:

Red Berry Pavlova, very much like a meringue, with nice luscious fruit, simply delicious.

Warm Frangipagne, Pear Tart, the crust made this desert, it is buttery with nice flavor, a must have.

Wine:

Chardonnay, La Chevaliere, this is a wine to drink with shell fish, the carb or the lobster.

Chardonnay Macon Peronne, a great pair with the Barratta salad, it just had hints of lemon that added to the overall flavor of the lovely dressing.

Cabernet Sauvignon, Substance, hands down the wine to drink with the rotisserie duck, smoky, robust nuances that helped my taste buds feel the glory of the delicious duck.

Malbec, Catena, Vista Flores, a wonderful wine with the prosciutto flatbread.

They also have a nice pre-fix lunch that is relatively inexpensive and looks amazing, a nice way to enjoy a lunchtime meal.

About Chef Dominique Macquet: He has led his fair share of kitchens in New Orleans including Tamarind, Dominique’s, and Saveur, is opening a new restaurant this month after a two-year hiatus from professional kitchens.

NOLA.com reports that the French bistro is called Bordeaux, and will feature an imported rotisserie that Macquet will use to cook “whole lambs, goats and suckling pigs.” Bordeaux, which will seat 90 and has a large front patio, is at the corner of Magazine and Bordeaux Streets in a building that most recently held a dog daycare.

The first iteration of Macquet’s namesake restaurant, Dominique’s, was at the Maison Dupuy Hotel, operating from 1996 to 2008. Macquet then reopened and quickly left its next incarnation on Magazine Street (now Apolline), to open the now-shuttered Tamarind in the Hotel Modern. He then reopened Dominique’s for a third time in early 2013, at the location that now houses Shaya, but left once again for Saveur, another now-closed restaurant that was located on Magazine Street. Macquet is teaming up with Bruno Rizzo, who founded the original version of bakery La Boulangerie with his brother in 2000, to run Bordeaux’s dining room. The pair plans to open the bistro at the end of January.

Bordeaux Restaurant derives its heritage from southwestern France, the area known internationally for its outstanding wine and cuisine. Located among the beautiful oak trees at the intersection of Magazine and Bordeaux streets, the restaurant’s aroma emanating from the outdoor rotisserie entices the appetite daily. Award-winning executive chef Dominique Macquet and sommelier Bruno Rizzo meticulously pair menu items and wines to create imaginative dining experiences. Sous Chef Martin Fennelly brings an experienced hand in crafting the ultimate dining experience. Bordeaux chooses the fresh catch from local fishermen, and the produce from regional farmers to provide fresh, inviting and sustainable dishes. The cuisine is both contemporary French as well as south Louisiana Creole/Cajun. Menu treats such as lamb, suckling pig; goat, pheasant, quail and duck have their turn on the custom-built outdoor French rotisserie. Another treat: wines paired with specialty meats and cheeses on their charcuterie boards. Desserts, including cotton candy, are created in-house. Enjoy freshly shucked Louisiana gulf oysters at the outdoor oyster bar while enjoying a specialty cocktail created by the talented mixologist Lynn Burgett. The outdoor patio is the perfect place to relax on a lazy afternoon with a fresh fruit daiquiri or one of our many other delicious drinks such as our signature cocktail, the Sacre Bleu. Traditional weekend brunch, often with live jazz music, is served on the patio in classic New Orleans style with bottomless mimosas and specialty Bloody Marys.

As you would expect from a restaurant named Bordeaux, they offer a wide variety of wines personally selected by sommelier Bruno Rizzo. Afternoon children cooking classes, led by chef Bruno are a fun afternoon teaching the young about healthy food while parents will enjoy wine tastings by Bruno.

One of my favorite tastings of my trip, everything was unique and individual, no repeat performance, just all new and different. I loved their concept, and the rotisserie of things you would not expect to be rotisserie. In California, we only ever do this with a whole chicken. The concept of putting a whole spiny lobster on a rotisserie made me very excited, and it did not disappoint. I would highly recommend trying Bordeaux. The other more important thing about this restaurant is that it’s not the usual heavy fried Southern food, it lends itself to being somewhat healthy and wholesome, so you feel really good when you’re done.

Bordeaux
4734 Magazine Street
New Orleans
504.273.5747
bordeauxnola.com

Dinner | Tuesday-Thursday 530-10 | Friday + Saturday 530-11
Lunch | Wednesday-Thursday1130-230 | Friday 11-3
* Note some content was taken off of their website.

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The Columns Stay – Oct. 2- Oct. 6 – New Orleans, Louisiana

Old opulent, one of a kind. Even with its minor problems, The Columns will put you in a great state of mind. Adam Miller gave me a 4-night stay and a dining experience. It’s very casual, but The Columns Hotel attracts New Orleans up-and-coming youth. If you’re looking for a perfect modern stay, don’t stay at The Columns. The Columns offer the charm and a bye-gone era. It does have its glitches, but all and all it offers a nice comfortable respite from all of the riff-raff in the French Quarter.

Located in the famed Garden District, there are so many amazing mansions all around to check out. This is a destination bar and restaurant for the party-goers, music lovers and everything in between. The hotel is a bit dated but it still has a feel that you really don’t find at any other properties. The rooms have very high ceilings, I usually knew when a place is touched by spirits and I really did not feel any of that here, For me, it was a comfortable home away from home, without all of the razzle- dazzle, but instead glorious antiquity and beautiful architecture.

Adam was kind enough to give me a gift certificate to use for my simple but elegant dinner.

Here’s what I had:

Vodka Martini, this is the way I like my martini, in a big traditional martini glass with a bit of crushed ice, a great way to start my elegant evening.

Strawberry Spinach Salad, with chicken on top. The fresh strawberries add an extra layer of flavor and the fresh spinach is just what the doctor ordered. Any chance I could get to order anything fresh and green is the way to go here in The South, you need to say healthy.

Onion Rings, their presentation is so fun, stacked on top of one another and so yummy.

Crawfish Penne, creamy rich with a nice flavor, very filling, really great.

The property is right on the St. Charles trolley car line, after I had dinner I took the trolley down the street to the famous Halloween house, which is so creative, It really made me laugh and put me in the holiday spirit.

There is much work to be done at The Columns, but if you know that going in and have a taste for the funky then you will enjoy your stay.

Built in 1883, and listed in The National Registry of Historic Places. The Columns Hotel, designed by one of New Orleans’ great architects, Thomas Sully, is the only remaining example of a large group of Italianate houses that he designed in the late 1880s.The surviving interior features are considered among the grandest known in any late-nineteenth-century Louisiana residence. One of the most dramatic features is the mahogany stairwell, which rises to meet an extraordinary square domed stained-glass skylight in a stylized sunburst motif.The Victorian Lounge was once the main dining room and features a remarkable mantlepiece, and the original built-in breakfront. This piece is of particular historical interest because it is the only surviving piece of its kind in any residence designed by Thomas Sully.

I really enjoyed my stay at The Columns, I would stay here again!

The Columns Hotel
3811 St. Charles Ave
New Orleans, La 70115
504.899.9308
http://thecolumns.com/
* Note, some text was taken off of their website.

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House of Blues – Foundation Room – Dinner – Oct. 1, 2019 – New Orleans, Louisiana

I so miss our House of Blues on Sunset Blvd. in West Hollywood so much.  I was granted passage to dine in the Foundation Room at the New Orleans location. It did not disappoint, elegant, homey, and chic, with the best food I have had in a long time. Ashley, who does their special events, helped me along on my journey.

Here’s What I tried:

Vodka Martini, traditional martini done the right way.

Broccoli Cheddar Soup, creamy, delicious, and served with a piece of cheesy baguette on top.

House of Blues Salad, a great salad with super fresh greens and a great dressing.

Caesar Salad, just perfect, with a nice tangy Caesar dressing and super fresh romaine lettuce.

Lump Crab Cakes, these cakes were packed full of luscious crab, and there was not a lot of breading, just amazingly delicious crab.

Fried Green Tomatoes, this salad has lump crab as well, bits on the top of the super crispy fried tomatoes. In the South, this is a mainstay and they did it well.

Prime Steak with mashed potatoes, Brussels sprouts, and wonderful fragrant gravy. The meat was super tasty and tender, just a great steak.

Scallops with lobster pasta, this was by far my favorite menu item, and there were pieces of lobster in the sauce and in the pasta, the scallops were big and popped in your mouth, just a lovely menu item.

Dessert:

Orange Crème Brulee, out of this world, enough said!!!

Manager Brittany took great care of me, and so did my server Isaac. Everyone was so friendly and gracious, my whole experience was stellar.

Located right in the French Quarter, I walked from the French Market to the venue; I got to see all of the locals, tourists and people just checking out the sites in the very colorful city.

I was also invited to come back for their Burlesque night, called “Bustout Burlesque”, which I did and had a blast as well. It was more of a variety show then strictly burlesque, either way, its super fun to see all of New Orleans local talent, I would highly recommend it for a night out.

There are so many reminders of the West Hollywood location, so I felt right at home. Great Haitian art, patchwork velvet fabric on the walls and a glorious Buddha, all very tastefully appointed. I just felt so blessed and fortunate to have had this joyful experience.

House of Blues
225 Decatur St.
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 522-8281
www.houseofblues.com/neworleans/concert-events

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Dinner – September 30, 2019 – Kingfish – New Orleans, Louisiana

Smack dab in the middle of the French Quarter, Kingfish pays homage to its name sake Huey Long. With fine Louisiana food Kingfish is quite the find in this food-driven city.

About Huey Long (April 25, 1904 – June 10, 2009) was an American jazz and R&B guitarist and singer who was a member of The Ink Spots. Long’s career began in the 1925 as a banjoist before moving to guitar. He became a member of the Ink Spots in 1945 and participated in spin-off bands in the 1960s.[2]

Born in Sealy, Texas, Long began his musical career in 1925 playing banjo for Frank Davis’ Louisiana Jazz Band Houston. He switched from banjo to guitar after moving to Chicago, where he appeared at the 1933 World’s Fair with Texas Guinan’s Cuban Orchestra. He performed with artists such as Lil Armstrong and Fletcher Henderson, and his career also encompassed sideman, band leader, music arranger and music teacher.

In 1943, the Ink Spots’s guitarist Charlie Fuqua was drafted and replaced by Bernie Mackey. When Mackey departed in 1945, leader Bill Kenny offered Long the position. Long stayed with the Ink Spots’ for nine months until October 1945, when Fuqua returned from the Army. Long moved to New York City, where he taught music. In the 1960s he joined Ink Spots tribute groups. [
He retired to Houston, where his daughter set up a museum commemorating him and the Ink Spots. Long died in Houston, Texas, at the age of 105 on June 10, 2009.

Here’s What I tried:

Kale & Chicken Soup. This is Jewish penicillin done Southern style, just what the doctor ordered.

Louisiana Crawfish Gratin, Louisiana crawfish tails, artichoke, roasted garlic béchamel Parmesan, tortilla chips. This is creamy, cheesy, and super yummy.

Garlic Crab Claws, with spiced creamy garlic sauce, toasted French bread, so fragrant and delicious, my favorite item of the night.

Grilled Smoked Alligator Sausage, with Creole potato salad, bourbon mustard. I just had to try alligator, when in Rome. I have to say it taste to me like chicken, but the seasonings are out of this world. The potato salad was equally fantastic as well.

Jambalaya Risotto, with roast chicken and Andouille sausage. This Jambalaya is smooth and silky, really a keeper.

New Orleans BBQ Scallop Fettuccine, with seared scallops, New Orleans style BBQ butter sauce. They give you 3 scallops and the pasta is wonderful with nice creole seasonings, another stellar menu item.

Blackened “Hook and Line” Louisiana Gulf Fish, freshly prepared gulf fish, with local vegetables. The fish is very fresh and meaty, only something you can get in New Orleans.

Sweet Eats:

Chocolate Sticky Pudding, Coffee toffee & vanilla whipped cream, extremely rich, but if you’re a chocolate lover this is for you.

Bread Pudding, with buttermilk – vanilla Anglaise, local berries. A big dish of yummy desert, here in the South they know their bread pudding!

Wines:

Chardonnay, Simi, California, a buttery, creamy wine, it went great with the crab and the scallops.

Chardonnay, Alexander Valley, Sonoma, CA. This wine was a great pair with the jambalaya, it added the right acidity. Alligator sausage, it’s a light bright wine that lends itself to the smoky flavors of the sausage.

Pinor Noir, Cloudfall, Monterey County, CA. California. I would drink this wine with the Louisiana Crawfish Gratin, it’s a nice light wine that works well with the cheese.

Cabernet Sauvignon, Joel Gott, California. A bold strong wine, this worked well with the jambalaya.

My fantastic server, Mike Carollo, from Michigan, added to my overall enjoyment, he is a pretty well known New Orleans actor as well. Chef Bill John made some really great menu choices, and all of what I tasted was terrific.

There are great classic NOLA photos circa the 1930’s, all about Huey Long. Clean lines rule the interior space, with square top tables, wood green chairs, a nice backdrop seeing that the building was built in 1830.

Clientele are locals, tourist, everyone letting the good times roll. It’s a super fun bar scene as well as the dining room seemed to be buzzing. In any case, you just can’t miss, delicious food with a great theme.

I would come back here in an instant, it’s just that good!

Kingfish
337 Chartres St.
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 598-5005
kingfishneworleans.com

 

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The Jazz Quarters – Hotel Stay – Sept. 30 & Oct. 1, 2019 – New Orleans, Louisiana

When I first started looking at my options to write about my travels in New Orleans, I put out a marketing letter, and Vic, the owner of the Jazz Quarters came calling. He offered me a 2 to 3 night stay at The Jazz Quarters and a connection to Mark Pruess of NOLA DeTours, both very kind and generous offers. I spoke to him many times before coming into town and he was very accommodating.

His property, which he has only owned for 18 months, is a compound in the Faubourg Treme district, super close to The French Quarter and across the street from the newly renovated Louis Armstrong Park, and Congo Square. This district is known as “The Back of Town”, best known for as the oldest neighborhood “Free People of Color”, in the United States, Treme was the only place where people of color owned property before the civil war. Daytime is just fine to walk about and see all of the sights. At night they keep the streets very dark, so you need to be careful when going to and from the property. But if your looking for a great stay that is centrally located, then The Jazz Quarters is the perfect place for you. Plus if you are traveling with a large party, there are many areas where they can house guests close together. But, if you’re looking for someone to hold your hand through your stay, you have come to the wrong place. Jazz Quarters offers a very independent experience. They do have maid’s service, but things like ice or any amenities you really need to figure that out on your own. There is a store close by that delivers anything you may need, and they do supply ice chests for any of your things that need to be kept cold, besides what can fit in your mini-fridge. But things that a hotel has to offer The Jazz Quarters does not. Not to stop you from staying there, because what they do have to offer is a great location, beautiful guest suites, and opulent art and antiques in most rooms. They have flat-screen TV’s, and the rooms are very clean. So, by all means, do book your stay at The Jazz Quarters, and you will also be glad you did.

There is a gate code as well as a room code, which Vic will give you by text so that you can come and go without having to check-in like your typical hotel experience.

The interior of my room was quaint, but fully modern, sparkling clean, with a nice comfy bed. Next time I go back to NOLA, I will stay here again. It’s just a real down home experience, with subtle beauty. It really lends itself to everything a great Bed and Breakfast has to offer, except the breakfast, but some of the rooms have kitchens with all of the amenities. There are so many restaurants near by. After all, you’re coming to New Orleans to enjoy their fine cuisine, so get out and walk down to the French Quarter where a lot of action is always happening.

Jazz Quarters
1129 Saint Philip St.
New Orleans, LA 70116
(504) 523-1372
https://jazzquarters.com

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NOLA DeTours – Off The Beaten Path Sightseeing – New Orleans, Louisiana

Vic, who runs The Jazz Quarters introduced me to Mark Pruess a few months back when I started planning my trip. What I didn’t know then was that he hooked me up with the best tour guide in NOLA. He paints pictures with his words and tours. He shows you the magic and the colors of his fair city. He picked me up from the airport with no fuss or muss, and he gave me a nice 2 hours tour on my first day in town. But he tends to shy away from the typical tourist spots, Mark gave me the lay of the land.

When I arrived on Sunday I saw on the airport TV that the Saints were playing. Well, the city was all abuzz and The Super Dome was very close to B on Canal, my first hotel stop. Needless to say that the Saints won and Mark warned me that the area would be going crazy with revelers. He was so right. Indeed a man who knows his city. I dropped off my luggage and went to Frenchman street and heard some great music, and on my way back it was super hard to get an Uber, the streets were all in party mode.

Monday he took me through many different neighborhoods and explained the history of each. We did some shopping stops, but he took me to the bar “Vaughn’s” were Green Book was filmed and had the bar mistress “Crinkle” make us some Bloody Marys’ with okra and pickled green beans, how delicious. We also tried a Snowball at another place, Williams Plum Street Snowball, which was so good! Another off the beaten path kind of experience that only Mark could show me. Unique and different, he is both creative and knowledgeable. He just has an intuition as to what you would like to see. He is just amazing.

If you’re interested in a tour that is not a typical tourist adventure then you should try NOLA DeTours, Mark will give you some great tips and the history of the city that he really knows so well.

NOLA DeTours’ Promise to You:
Something different, flexible, creative, yet true to history… NOLA Detours strives to show what the city’s all about with small walking and driving tours that stray from typical tourist spots. You deserve authentic yet affordable experiences. Mark is a lifelong resident of New Orleans and was raised in the French Quarter hospitality industry. He takes pride in the city being one of the most interesting places in the world. The various tours are tailored to show you around New Orleans as personally and as locally as it gets! He strives in customizing each tour to tailor your needs to make the most genuine New Orleans experience possible. Mark is German and speaks German fluently for all of the German tourists. You will be picked up in front of your hotel by either a sedan or a passenger van, depending upon your needs. Most tours will run rain or shine.

A perfect way to see the Crescent City!!

Nola DeTours
Mark Preuss
https://noladetours.com

* Note Some Content Was taken off of their website.

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Sunday – September 29, 2019 – Hotel Stay – B On Canal – New Orleans, Louisiana

This is really the perfect hotel to get the lay of the land. Located in the Central Business District part of town, but near lots of good shopping and nice breakfast spots. The room itself was sleek and spacious, with an incredible king size bed. I would highly recommend this hotel. It just gets you in the right frame of mind, with a stellar view on the 14th floor; you feel the pulse of the city through these 14th floor windows. A short but sweet stay, the hotel gave me an upgrade when they found out I would include them in my overall story about NOLA. Good call, I would stay here again.

An inviting respite from the excitement of New Orleans, their collection of 155 guestrooms and suites allow you the freedom to relax and just B. Tailor your stay to your specific needs, choosing between classic options like their Chic and Captivating rooms or opt for a more spacious experience in the Junior and Posh suites. Elevate your visit to New Orleans with signature amenities and features, including our Blissful Bed®, AVEDA bath products, FreeB™ Wi-Fi, and a calming décor that features thoughtful touches of purple throughout.

Dig into the local flavor during your stay with B On Canal in New Orleans. Their on-site restaurant, Madam’s Modern Kitchen + Bar, struts the line between sophisticated and sultry, serving up a unique blend of classic Creole cuisine with new, global-inspired elements.

Step foot in New Orleans and feel transported in time. B On Canal offers a lively neighborhood in the heart of the city combines the best of the Big Easy, from iconic historical destinations to vibrant centers for art and culture, and easy access to top New Orleans attractions and neighborhoods, including the famous French Quarter.

B on Canal
1300 Canal Street
New Orleans, LA 70112
(504) 299-9900
https://www.bhotelsandresorts.com

* Note Some Content Was taken off of Their Website

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Late Lunch – Marmalade Café – Sept. 14, 2019 – Santa Monica, CA.

When my friend Lenny Rosenberg invited me to come taste his new venture, I jumped at the chance. He owned Lenny’s Deli on Westwood Blvd., which I reviewed a while back. So he brings his genius along with some amazing deli items. All the food was stellar and hit it way out of the park for me.

Here’s What I Tried:

Soup:

Matzo Ball, this is Jewish penicillin at it’s finest, they scored 100 on this is my book.

Curry Chicken, spicy, sweet and savory, just amazing.

Asparagus Puree, lots of pure asparagus flavors, a delicious heart warming soup.

I can always tell how the food is going to be from the soup, they have it covered in spades!!

Breakfast:

Smoked Scottish Salmon Platter, with a toasted bagel, cream cheese, red onion, capers, tomato, and cucumber. This menu item is straight from the deli, a great accomplishment.

Sandwich:

Classic Club, with slow roasted turkey breast, smoked bacon, tomato, lettuce, and mayo. This reminds me of the tennis club I used to go to as a child, they had a big meaty club, and this one was even better.

Wrap:

Southwest BBQ Chicken Wrap, BBQ chicken breast with avocado, corn, black beans, tomato, cilantro, onion, jack and cheddar cheese, and romaine. The chicken is sweet from the BBQ sauce, so I just loved it.

Hot Sandwiches:

Marmalade Cheeseburger, Fresh ground beef, with bacon, avocado, cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles and mayo on a brioche bun. This burger is piled so high, it’s hard to fit in your mouth, but once you do all of the glorious flavors explode, what a burger!

Salad:

Hollywood Cobb: with diced chicken, cucumber, tomato, eggs, Swiss, provolone, blue cheese, smoked bacon and avocado on romaine with lemon Dijon dressing. Another one of my favorites, it’s got all the right ingredients, cut the right way, just perfect. Also it’s Gluten-free.

Marmalade House, with organic mixed greens with cherry tomatoes spiced candied walnuts, goat cheese and balsamic vinaigrette. The best part of this salad is the super sweet cherry tomatoes and the candied pecans.

Tacos:

Halibut Grilled Tacos, with shredded cabbage, avocado crema and pico de gallo. The halibut is very fresh and they really pile it on, another great menu item.

Entrees:

Linguini Bolognese, with slow cooked Bolognese sauce tossed with linguini and Parmesan cheese. The sauce is so authentic, right up there with the best Italian restaurants that I have reviewed, really a keeper.

Ginger Sesame Grilled Salmon, sustainably raised British Columbia salmon grilled and served with sesame ginger glaze, steamed vegetables and Yukon gold mashed potatoes. The salmon is thick and juicy, cooked to perfection. The glaze adds to the over all lusciousness of this meal.

Dessert:

Chocolate Flourless Cake, Pecan Square, and Lemon Square. Part Marmalade has many food cases, all with very tempting delights, but the dessert section will really make your mouth water. There’s a bold selection of homemade desserts, you just can’t go wrong. My three were outstanding.

About Marmalade Café:

Over 20 years ago, three young entrepreneurs with a passion for food and a desire to make customers happy, came together with a simple idea: serve fresh, high quality, eclectic California inspired food for busy Angelino’s. They would cook for those too busy to cook. In 1990 the original Marmalade Cafe opened on Montana Avenue in Santa Monica. The 1,400 square foot store with limited seating featured a full bakery and cases of fresh salads and entrees for diners on the go. Marmalade Cafe was an instant success and was quickly adopted by the community. Less than three years later, in response to an increasing number of appeals for a full dining experience at Marmalade Cafe, founders Selwyn Yosslowitz, Robert Burns Jr. and Bonnie Burns opened the first full service Marmalade Cafe in Malibu. With only 100 seats, Marmalade Cafe Malibu quickly became a cornerstone in the eclectic Malibu community. This constant demand for the fresh California cuisine characteristic of Marmalade Cafe led to the restaurant’s expansion into major Los Angeles communities.

Each cafe is unique in design and décor. Adorned with Americana antiques, personally found and placed by Bonnie Burns, every Marmalade Cafe exudes a warm & cozy neighborhood cafe ambiance.

Marmalade Cafe was embraced by the Santa Monica locals who loved their fresh baked goods and healthy fare served in a charming setting. Since that time, the Marmalade Family has grown to include a vibrant, full-service catering company. At the heart of our business, they are a friendly neighborhood gathering where the food is delicious and our warm service is genuine.

It’s quite a comfortable atmosphere; with people hanging out at they’re outside tables, with their friends, dogs, in the cool fall breeze. The interior has community tables which adds to the overall vibe, casual, but charming. It’s more of a marketplace then a classic dining establishment, but the food is so wonderful, you will just want to see for yourself. For me it was just what the Doctor ordered!

With seven locations, Farmers Market, El Segundo, Calabasas, Malibu, Sherman Oaks, West Lake Village, and Santa Monica, there is no excuse not to go try some magnificent food.

Marmalade Café
710 Montana Ave
Santa Monica, CA
(310) 395-9196
http://marmaladecatering.com
Lenny Rosenberg (@LennyRosenberg) | Twitter
* Note some content was taken off of their website.

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First Ladies High Tea – Saturday, September 14, 2019, The Beverly Hilton Hotel, Beverly Hills, CA.

Hats, hats and more hats, all the finest. With so much glamour and finery I felt like I was in church and not at a big huge Hollywood event. But that truly is the beauty of this glorious day. This is High Tea with all of the fixings, done by the great catering there at The Beverly Hilton. What more could you ask for.

First Ladies High Tea an event that was created by L.A. Focus to honor the role of women in the community, and women of faith, with particular respect to the influence and impact they have in the lives of our youth. In light of that vision, the tea provides scholarships awards to at-risk girls

Legendary Actress Marla Gibbs will receive the Legacy Award. Gibbs is best known for her work on CBS’s The Jefferson. Honorees include; LA County Supervisor Janice Hahn, Erica Campbell, Grammy-winner of Mary Mary, R&B music artist and radio host, Actress Essence Atkins, starring in OWN’s Ambitions, and renowned Dr. Kristi Funk, MD, breast cancer surgeon. LA Focus honors First ladies honorees are: Melinda Campbell from First AME Pasadena, Junita Edwards from Pasadena Community Christian Fellowship and Barbara Hendricks from Church of the Living God. An amazing performance by multi Award winning Anthony Brown & Group therAPy. Co-Hosts will be Actress Wendy Raquel Williams starring in ABC’s Grand Hotel and Apostle Beverly “BAM” Crawford, Pastor, Bible Enrichment Fellowship International Church.

Truly a wonderful event, filled with spirit and love, I was healed!! I go every year and always have the most elevated experience.

The Beverly Hilton Hotel
9876 Wilshire Blvd.
Beverly Hills, CA 90210

@Firstladieshightea

* Note some content was taken off of press release.

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