Bite and Booze by Jay D. Ducote

Friday, November 20, 2015

Atmosphere Makes for a Memorable Meal at Houmas House

by Sydney Blanchard

What makes for a great meal?

I'm sure anyone you ask will answer this question differently,  but I'd argue many favorite food memories have less to do with what was served and more to do with the people sharing the meal. 

It might be the Southerner in me speaking, but few things beat a meal blanketed by the warm shroud of friendly conversation and banter.

Back in September, the Bite and Booze team (with the delightful addition of Rue Rusike) had the opportunity to dine at one of the finest restaurants in the area with Houmas House owner Kevin Kelly.

Latil's Landing is situated on the Houmas House Plantation grounds, both a tourism hotspot and highly coveted wedding and event venue. 

Executive chef Andrew Foster, Jr.'s menu is ambitious, flavorful, and it tastes like home. They're doing something that feels really special at Houmas House.

We started off the evening with appetizers. I had the crispy pork belly covered in Houmas House honey. The crispy, salty pork was complimented by the honey with perfect subtlety. 

houmas house pork
Crispy pork belly with Houmas House Beehive honey

Next came the scallop and foie gras "sandwich." Seared foie gras nested between two rosemary seasoned scallops. Generally scallops are not my favorite, but the corn coulis made all the difference. 

houmas house scallop
Scallop and foie gras sandwich

For the soup course, we had the famous crawfish, corn, and curried pumpkin bisque. This, to me, was the highlight of the meal. The pumpkin worked well with the spicy, salty crawfish tails. This is something I would love to try to recreate at home. 

houmas house bisque
Curried pumpkin bisque with crawfish and corn

Onto the beets, Blair's favorite root vegetable (and one of mine). The salad was composed of jumbo lump crab meat tossed with a lemon basil dressing with sweet roasted beets and organic greens. I found the crab and beet combination a bit weird, but in a delicious way.

houmas house beets
Roasted beet and crab salad

If there's anything Latil's Landing is great at, it's pretty plating. All of the entrees and event the desserts featured a pop of color courtesy of an orchid flower. I opted for the grilled, butter basted filet mignon with parmesan potatoes, Burgundy mushrooms, and Abita root beer demi-glace. It was as tasty as it was gorgeous.

houma house filet
Filet mignon at Latil's Landing

Last, though thoroughly stuffed, we indulged in dessert. For me, that meant chocolate bourbon cake with coffee bourbon syrup. How could I say no?

houma house dessert
Chocolate bourbon cake

Sure, the Latin's Landing dinner we shared was a culinary delight, but taking the time to enjoy a meal with friends is the real pleasure. If you haven't toured the neatly manicured grounds at Houmas House, sipped cocktails at The Carriage House, or dined at Latil's Landing, you're missing out!

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