|Local Products List and Pork Rinds at Beausoleil|
Best deals:$15 - Chelsea's Cafe - Cheese fries, the stellar chicken mojo poboy with fries, and French silk cake for $15... yeah, that's a good deal despite it all being on the normal menu.
$20 - The Londoner - Just a slight step up from Chelsea's, at the Londoner you could get a grilled chicken, strawberry, and walnut salad, a steak and ale pie, and finish it with their amazing sticky toffee bread pudding for nothing but a Jackson.
$25 - Beausoleil - Starting off a meal with a dish called "General Tso's Cheeks" always gets the imagination running. Following that up with a Creole cane syrup grilled pork chop and ending with a fresh fruit cobbler with toasted pecan crust for only a hundred quarters... that's just plain silly good.
|Le Creole's Lobster Wontons|
$35 - Le Creole - I began my meal with the lobster wontons. Lobster knuckle and claw meat and truffle cream filled crispy fried wontons accompanied with pepper jelly. They were delightful. Next came the gulf red grouper topped with crab meat sitting on a bed of Napa cabbage in a ginger-citrus sauce. I finished the meal with flaming bananas foster. I won.
Best off menu dishes:Appetizer - Allow me to rant here: While a Restaurant Week is amazing and I'm extremely happy that Baton Rouge has one, it does also seem that perhaps part of the spirit is not understood. I could find ZERO restaurants that went off of their ordinary menu for the first course of their restaurant week menu. They recycled their appetizers, soups, and salads. They showed a lack of creativity, imagination, and desire to use the week to showcase their chef or something new rather than let people just order something that would be on the menu anyway. Next Restaurant Week, I encourage all restaurants and their chefs to allow their passion to shine and create some restaurant week specials as small plates and first courses. Fortunately, there were a few second and third courses that went off-menu.
Entree - Bin 77: Stuffed Mississippi Quail - As if the bird wouldn't be enough for the entree in a $25 three course menu, the folks at Bin 77 rounded the dish out with foie gras, oyster ragu, three potato pave, and red-eye gravy. What a dish! And it can't be found on their regular dinner menu!
Dessert - Blend: Warm Chocolate Torte - Complete with salted caramel gelato and roasted peanuts, this dessert cried out to be eaten! While there is a chocolate torte on Blend's dessert menu, it doesn't come with salted caramel gelato and roasted peanuts, so if you didn't get to try this version, you may have missed out!
Special Mentions:Most Creative Menu - Nino's Italian: Forget dessert... you can order that on your own. Nino's bucked the "three courses = appetizer, entree, dessert" mentality and decided instead to offer a slew of incredible appetizers like mussels or gnocchi followed by a soup or salad and then an amazing entree including their homemade grilled vegetable and goat cheese cannelloni!
|The filet at Doe's, an option I could have had for Restaurant Week|
and I missed it. That steak costs over $35 by itself, but they served it with three tamales, fries, biscuits, and then eclair cake. While I can go back to Doe's and eat tamales, prime steak, and eclair cake any time, I'm still sad I missed this deal.
Welcome to the Show - Le Bon Temps: Although they just recently opened, Le Bon Temps Bar & Grill wasted no time joining in on Restaurant Week Baton Rouge. That's what I like to see from a new restaurant! And for $20, their menu that featured combinations like duck and andouille egg rolls, a cochon de lait platter, and lemon icebox pie could not have steered anybody wrong!