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by MCJ graduate
German Valley, Illinois
April 29, 2005
From journal New Orleans --Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler!
Bayside, New York
December 6, 2004
The restaurant has been around since 1971 and takes credit for introducing the locals and tourists to a more sophisticated palate. It opened another restaurant called L’Escale (which means "the stop-over" in French), which closed after six years. The first chef was Frenchman Daniel Bonnot, who eventually left to become the owner of a couple of bistros and was replaced by Agnes Bellet.
The dining area actually looks larger than it is, thanks to ceiling-to-floor mirrors on two walls. Our table was an intimate seating area for two, but we were unfortunately squeezed between two other seating arrangements. The menu is quite elegant, and their wine list is extensive. Ice water, accompanied by petits pains and beurre (little French baguettes and butter), is served immediately. During the course of the meal, you get to see many servers, so it’s best not to try to remember anyone in particular.
You first see "Entrées Froides", or cold entrees, followed by "Entrées Chaudes" (hot entrees), Soupes/Potages, Salades, Poissons (fish), Viandes (meats), ended with Café et Thé. You will not be left wanting, actually, as there is a Creole feature on the menu, by way of "Gumbo Nouvelle Orleans", or Gumbo soup, and Poisson Louisiane (fish Louisiana style).
The Escargots à la Bourguignonne are pictured below, and don’t even think that I would eat snails -- I had a wonderful salad instead with vinaigrette dressing which didn’t choke me. The presentation of the food is alluring, though some people have said that over the years, Louis XVI has given in to being more Louisiana and less French. It is hard to agree or not, since one visit cannot make comparisons. However, it certainly was the most elegant and attentive staff I’ve ever had in this city.
We shared an entrée, as we always do, and that was the Filet de Poisson Amandine. This dish is drenched in butter, but the fish melts in your mouth and the almond crust on top is just grand! For other choices in fish, one could select lobster or crab, and they had another specialty which looked fabulous with bananas and red peppers.
For the meat lovers, the choices included chicken, duck, beef Wellington, filet mignon, citrus veal, and lamb. It is odd, but they listed assorted cheese plate under meats. There was no room for dessert, and I imagine they change quite often, as you order from the tray itself rather than a menu. Aromatic Earl Grey always does well for me at the end of a meal, while Chuck continues to nurse his wine. Three cheers for this place.
From journal There is....a house.....in New Orleans