NOMenu Back Issue For 4/17/2019: 84 Restaurants Open On Easter Sunday.

Easter, like many other holidays that used to keep us at home with family dinners, has been transformed by current dining vogues into a major dining-out holiday. So much so that it’s getting hard to find a restaurant with reservations available for Easter brunch (the most popular meal that day). Especially this year, with so many restaurants closed on Sunday. The demand is such that the bad dog of popular dining days has been unleashed again. That’s the “special holiday menu.” It offers a limited selection of dishes (so the…

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NOMenu Back Issue For 4/17/2018: A Why I Don’t Like Los Angeles.

Diary For The Week Previous To 4/17/2019: The Big Deal About Los Angeles Is Lost on Me. Again. Brother, am I happy to be back in my various saddles, the ones that park me carcass in front of my keyboard back home. The comfortable suits in which I run down through my mind all the hours in which my two grandsons show off how cute, noisy, funny, and lovable they can be. My son Jude was formerly known on my radio show and in this newsletter as “The Disgustingly Cute…

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NOMenu Back Issue: Complete Diary From Orient Express

A Vacation Aboard The Orient Express, By Mary Ann Fitzmorris, Day 1 As a kid I read Agatha Christie’s account of nefarious deeds aboard a mythical train. And ever since, I’ve wanted to take a ride on the Orient Express. And who better to accompany me that Tom, the ultimate train buff? When I called American Express to book the trip, the first thing she said was, “Let me explain how this will work, because it’s kind of complicated.” An understatement I didn’t quite grasp then, but I do now!…

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NOMenu Back Issue 4/9/2019: First Taste Of Costara, About Spanish And Seafood.

Diary For Monday, April 7,2019. Our First Visit To Costera. The corner of Prytania Street at Robert has the odd distinction of having been the home of around a dozen restaurants over the years. The most recent and most successful of these was La Thai Cuisine, whose long run ended a few months ago, making room for the new Costera. Costera (of the coast) will remind avid diners of other periods from the past. It bills itself as a Spanish restaurant, although it makes less of that heritage than it…

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NOMenu Back Issue: The New Orleans Wine and Food Experience Goes Well.

Diary For Sunday, April 7/2019. The Twenty-Seventh Annual New Orleans Wine And Food Experience Arrives Successfully. In the middle 1980s, wine became the rave of the upcoming generation. Which, luckily for wine producers and merchants, was the Baby Boom revolution. By the time this pampered children was old enough to drink, they began to develop a taste for good wine. They were accustomed to the likes of Boone’s Farm, Ripple and other cheap, sweet near-wines. When the Boomers found that many much better wines were available if you just looked…

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NOMenu Back Issue: Mr. Ed Gets Its Parking Back. Oysters Great Now.

Diary For Friday, April 5, 2019. Mr. Ed’s Oyster Bar & Fish Grill Becomes Accessible Again. The late Chris “Bozo” Vodonovich must have been writhing in his tomb during the past few years. During that time Bozo’s main restaurant in Metairie became very difficult to approach. Reason: a large office building across the street was under construction, ultimately (and untimely) rising to five stories. What had always been an easy place to get to became inconvenient, as the restaurant lost a parking lot and a lot of curbside spaces. For…

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NoMenu Back Issue For Thurs, 3/28/2019. Franklin Back Open: Bywater Gastrobar?

Diary For Thurs., 3/28/2019: Franklin Reopens In Bywater. The Effects Are Mostly As Remembered. I and many other people find it hard to keep the restaurants of the Bywater neighborhood straight in my mind. The distribution of restaurants, bars, parking spaces, and holes in the streets is a little puzzling unless one lives in the neighborhood full-time. Another reason I don’t focus on Bywater and Marigny sections as much as I do for restaurants in other neighborhoods is that the definitions of what a restaurant or a bar is changes…

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NOMenu Back Issue: 3/28/2019. Orient Express Diary. Best Grillades & Grits.

Journey On The Orient Express, March 2019. Episode #6: Venice And The Doges Palace. By Mary Ann Fitzmorris. We awoke to sunshine in Venice, and slightly warmer temps. Downstairs we ran into some of our new friends at breakfast. One was vexing about spending 100E for a gondola ride. I try to live by a line from a Seals and Croft song from the Seventies, though I hate all Seventies music (and everything else about that decade). The phrase “we may never pass this way again” guides me through decisions…

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NOMenu Back Issue For Wed., 4/3/2019: Exploring Venice. Best Grillades.

Journey On The Orient Express, March 2019. Episode #6: Venice And The Doges Palace. By Mary Ann Fitzmorris. We awoke to sunshine in Venice, and slightly warmer temps. Downstairs we ran into some of our new friends at breakfast. One was vexing about spending 100E for a gondola ride. I try to live by a line from a Seals and Croft song from the Seventies, though I hate all Seventies music (and everything else about that decade). The phrase “we may never pass this way again” guides me through decisions…

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NOMenu Back Issue For 4/1/2019; the Most Delicious Passenger Train On Earth

A revolutionary expression of fine dining in America begins across the country today, and it has the restaurants and chefs of our country in a whirlwind. The high-speed, high-class new trains run on smooth, new tracks with rights of way over all other trains, rising over or under all other traffic.That alone would solve the problems that make Amtrak and other long-distance passenger trains unattractive. But Gourmet Rail goes another step, turning its trains into comfortable, delicious moving parlors. Although small-plate food and drinks would be available all the time…

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NOMenu Back Issue For 4/1/2019: The World’s Most Delicious Railroad Train.

A revolutionary expression of fine dining in America begins across the country today, and it has the restaurants and chefs of our country in a whirlwind. The high-speed, high-class new trains run on smooth, new tracks with rights of way over all other trains, rising over or under all other traffic.That alone would solve the problems that make Amtrak and other long-distance passenger trains unattractive. But Gourmet Rail goes another step, turning its trains into comfortable, delicious moving parlors. Although small-plate food and drinks would be available all the time…

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NOMenu Daily Back Issue: 3/29/2018: Ten Traveling Days In Europe.

Ten Days of Travel in Europe, Some of it on the Orient Express. The lst few days of that sojourn was memorable and puzzling. Being picked up by our daughter Mary Leigh on joyous. She has been very busy while we were gone, most notably by creating a magnificent birthday cake for a friend who will shortly turn 100. We know that all the cars will be picked up at the airport. That the dog and the cats have been fed while we were on the Orient Express. The daily…

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NOMenu.com Back Issue For 3/28/2019.

More Touring Before We Mount The Orient Express. Episode Four: Exploring London’s Many Attractions. By Mary Ann Fitzmorris. London is the capital of what I call the ampersand retailers. Two owner names are rampant in men’s stores here, but I only have two ampersands on my list: Rigby & Peller, and Fortnum & Mason. I was shocked it took me three days to get to these. At Fortnum & Mason, I didn’t have to gawk for a day this time, so I went straight to the list of favorites. Most…

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New Orleans Menu Back Issue: 3/28/2019. Orient-Express, London-Venice. Episode 3.

Touring Before We Find Orient Express. Episode Four: Exploring London’s Many Attractions. By Mary Ann Fitzmorris. In all previous trips to this my favorite city, I can’t believe I had still not made it to the Borough Market under the Tower Bridge. I aimed to rectify this today. Southwark Street is where all the hot eateries are, and I ran into a few here. (Always recognizable by lines of millennials out front.) But the food was so plentiful at the Market itself, and so interesting, I couldn’t imagine eating in…

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NOMenu Back Issue: Tuesday, 3/26/2019. Episode 1 On The Orient Express.

Continuing Diary On The Orient Express. 2019 Ever since I read Agatha Christie’s account of nefarious deeds aboard a mythical train, I’ve wanted to take a ride on the Orient Express. And who better to accompany me that Tom, the ultimate train buff? When I called American Express to book the trip, the first thing she said was, “Let me explain how this will work, because it’s kinda complicated.” That was an understatement I didn’t quite grasp then, but I do now! London to Venice means the trip begins on…

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NOMenu Back Issue: Mon., The Grand Journey On The Orient Express, London-Venice.

Diary For Wednesday, March 13,2019: The Grand European Tour Aboard the The Orient Express Begins With Stumbles. From the moment we began telling friends of these plans, many of them wanted to know all about it. The idea came from my wife Mary Ann, who has fantasized about a trip on the legendary railroad crossing of Europe since she was a teenager. Now, with our thirty-year anniversary looming, we began making the plans. The first thing we learned was that this is not an inexpensive mode of travel. It would…

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NOMenu Back Issue For 3/1/2019. Brunch Chimes. Trenasse For Oysters.

Diary For Sun., 3/3/2019. Chimes, the favorite restaurant of the Marys and my least favorite. Except for Sunday brunch. I don’t have a radio show to give forth, which means that I can have lunch with the Marys for a change. Their liking for Chimes has not declined since the last time the three of us got together. My dislike of the Baton Rouge-based sports restaurant hasn’t grown. I will give its kitchen points for having a decidedly Creole- Cajun flavor. That is largely lost by the Mary’s liking for…

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NOMenu Back Issue: 3/2/2019: Lola’s Delicious New Railcar.

Diary For Sat., 03/02/2019. First Dinner In Lola Railcar Is Stunning, And The Food The Best We’ve Ever Had There. About ten years ago, Keith Frentz and Nealy Crawford–both of them chefs in the kitchen of the old Brennan’s on Royal Street–left that gig for a new one in the heart of Covington. There they found a large stretch of the old Illinois Central railroad terminal. The trains long since ceased to roll through here, but the building was so solid and the romance of the rails so intriguing that…

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NOMenu Back Issue 3-01/2019: Del Porto Continues To Rule Supreme.

Diary For Fri.& Sat. March 1-2/2019: Del Porto, The Best Italian Restaurant In Metro Area. Lola, Now Open In An Old Railcar. Mary Ann and I have a lot to talk about, with our big vacation two weeks from now. Today the official tickets arrived for our ride on the Orient Express, and MA is giddy with delight about the elegant possibilities on board that train from London to Venice (the one in Italy, not at the end of the Mississippi River). She and ML–who with friends will be taking…

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NOMenu Back Issue: 3/1/2019: Second Taste Of Justine.

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NOMenu Back Issue: 2/2/2019: Espiritu Mezcaleria: A New Taste Of Mexico.

Diary For Wed., 2/27/2019: Espirutu Mezcaleria. Laser Printer Trying To Drive Me Nuts. Many New Conversations On Air. I seem to be under a curse that washed in from the evil beings that control computer printers. My first computers and their printers arrived in my office in 1986, and have typically lasted for a year or less. Some of them went on to serve much longer than that, their replacement being caused by the ends of ink ribbons and accordion paper. But the one I have now was the best…

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NOMenu Back Issue For 2/27/2019. A Collection Of Warming Winter Soups.

Diary For Sat., 2/23/2019. Soups For Saying Good-Bye To February. That We should Have Been Making Months Ago. “We are rid of February, and good riddance, if you ask me.”–E.J. Kahn, Jr. I don’t know whether this effect is unique to New Orleans, but we have a bad habit of making the nice homemade soups that taste so wonderful when it’s cold outside until it’s a forgone conclusion. Even thinking about these makes one warm inside. So said a couple of readers who liked an article I wrote about a…

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NOMenu Back Issue For 2/26/2019. Nephew’s. Steak Pizzaiola Recipe.

Diary For Fri., 2/22/2019. Nephew’s Found And Enjoyed At `Last. A few days ago in this spot I told a pathetic tale of my inability to find the restaurant in Metairie called Nephew’s. My wife Mary Ann had been pushing me to dine in that relatively new place, but every time I went looking for it, I failed. Even though I had a map, an address, a reservation in which the reservationist told me exactly where the place was, I didn’t see anything that looked like a restaurant. Tonight, my…

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NOMenu Back Issue: DiMartino’s. A Unique Asparagus Recipe.

Diary For Thurs., 2/21/2019. MA Off TO LA. A Good Dish At Di Martino’s. Mary Ann is overdue to spend time with our grandchildren in Los Angeles. I love our two blue-eyed boys too, and I wish it were possible for me to take off as much as she does. On the other hand, there’s no way I would subject myself to the ordeals that MA creates through her unique methods of planning trips. Most of them involve the Buddy Passes that Delta offers its employees and friends. They save…

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NOMenu Back Edition: 2/22/2029: Bubbles & Arnaud’s. No Number One.

Diary For Fri., 2/22/2019. Bubbles And ?. As I went through my dozens of emails this morning, I was arrested by a promo for something going on this afternoon at Arnaud’s called Bubbles and Beads. Here is the entire description of the event: Arnaud’s French 75 Bar Bubbles and Beads Featuring Moët & Chandon specials, music by DJ Musa, and a glitter bar by Electra Cosmetics. Happy Hour. Feb. 22, 3-5:30 p.m. Darn! My radio show is on the air at that time, and as much as I like Moet…

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NOMenu Daily Back Issue: Wed., 2/21/2019. Where’s Nephew? Here’s Impastato’s.

Diary For Monday, Feb. 18, 2019: High Miscellany. Looking For Nephew, Finding Impastato’s. Are there undertakings more frustrating than trying to get computer matters pulled together? That’s how I spent hours in the last couple of days. The problem: getting American Express to compile all the transactions for the year just ended. It’s one of the better services that they give their Platinum cardholders, but it gets harder to use every year. It makes tax returns a lot easier, and I’ve come to depend on that. For an hour and…

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NOMenu Back Issue: Omelette De La Restes. Forks And Corks.

Diary For Weekend of 2/16/2019: Loose Days, Extra Radio Hours. Through the year, the schedules of LSU basketball and baseball have my weekend Food Show moving around, doubling up, or absent entirely. This weekend and last, I had shows both on Saturday and Sunday, making for a twenty-consecutive run without a day off from the radio. When is the last time I said how lucky I am in the job I have, involving so many of my favorite things–radio, food, writing, music, and being in the public eye! So it…

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NOMenu Back Issue: Galliano Restaurant Reviewed. MA Still Exploring Houston.

Diary For Fri., 2/15/2019. Dinner @ Galliano, But Not Before Waiting On The Sidewalk. Immense Portions. Heavy Pepper. I have been ambiguous about Galliano since it opened. Taken as a whole, that’s also the way people I’ve spoken to felt about the place. It occupies a spot in the Warehouse District that became familiar when Philip Lopez opened Root there. Root proved to be too brilliant and is now extinct. The same fate befell the related Square Root, which in 2016 was trying to be the best restaurant in New…

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NOMenu Daily Back Issue: Valentine Dinner @ New Justine, French Bistro.

Diary For Thurs., 2/14/2018. Valentine’s Day. First Dinner @ Justine. If the degree to which I don’t follow the advice I give people about getting the most out of restaurants, I’d lose all my credibility. So why am I telling you that I’m about to do that? Because I hold nothing back from you. Ever. Today is Valentine’s Day, one of the busiest day of the year for restaurateurs. By the time we get around to it, Mary Ann and I have gone out to eat grandly on February 6,…

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NOMenu Back Issue: MA Explored Houston Some More.

Experiences By Mary Ann Fitzmorris. Weekend Of 2/7-10/2019. Now Try This One: Poitin (pronounced “PUUT- cheen”) Over the weekend in Houston I witnessed an astonishing (to me anyway) amount of drinking. The drinks were so beautiful, their names so inviting, and their presentation so interesting that I really wish my palate didn’t lump all spirits together, including mineral spirits. It was such fun to watch all the drinks paraded before me, fortunately consumed by other people. Cocktail menus have become so involved and the drinks now pure artistry, I was…

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NOMenu Back Issue 2/12/2019. Bubbles & Burgers. Glenn Miller Music.

Diary For Tues., 2/12/2019. Burgers And Bubbles At The Roosevelt Hotel. Glenn Miller Orchestra Across The Street. What a busy week this has been! Celebration of our thirty-year anniversary dominated the calendar, while a lot of audio production at the radio station took up most of my open space in the mornings. Today, I had a remote broadcast of The Food Show at the Roosevelt Hotel. Mary Ann and I stayed after the show ended to sample the Roosevelt’s new Tuesday special: a line of unusual hamburgers, served with champagne….

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NOMenu Daily Back Issue: Wed. 2/13/2019/To Houston To Eat, MA Creates New Column.

Experiences By Mary Ann Fitzmorris For Feb., 2/7-11/2019. Invited To Houston To Eat, She Creates A New NOMenu Column. Yauatcha. Back in Houston, this time just to eat. And eat. And eat. I was invited by a Houston p.r. agency to sample the wares of some of their clients, and to remind New Orleanians that our Texas neighbor is way more than a place to gas up heading west. It is! Our first stop had nothing to do with Texas. Yauatcha (“you watch’ a” it takes practice!) is a Michelin-starred…

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NOMenu Back Issue 2/11/2019: Our Thirtieth Anniversary @ Windsor Court.

Diary For Yesterday, 02/11/2019. Thirtieth Wedding Anniversary. A lovely return to other nights at the Windsor Court Grill Room, complete with pizza. It was thirty years ago today that Mary And I were wed at St. Mary’s Assumption Church in the Irish Channel, followed by a magnificent reception, catered by Chef Andrea, at the home of my friends Kit and Billy Wohl. That day has resonated with us ever since, and many people have asked me to tell the story again. It was a sunny, cold, windy day when we…

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NOMenu Back Issue: Got Gumbo Competition 02/07/2019

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NOMenu Daily Back Issue: 2/5/2019. Second Oldest Restaurant: Tujague’s.

Diary For Tues., 2/5/2019: The Second-Oldest Restaurant in New Orleans. It happened again today. Traffic was so jammed when I tried to leave the radio station that I decided to head off in the opposite direction from my usual route, right into the heart of the French Market. There I saw what appeared to be a long stretch of open curbside. The signs said that I couldn’t park there until 6 p.m., but after that there were no other restrictions. And it was four minutes until six. And there I…

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