Antipasto @ Cafe Giovanni
Until about ten years ago, if you ordered antipasto in New Orleans you got an ice-cold plate of ham, salami, cheese, olives, and maybe a few slices of tomato. All you need do is make one trip to Italy to know a) that this is nothing like real antipasto and b) real antipasto is wonderful. The best of it is vegetables and seafood, all marinated for days or perhaps even weeks, served not cold but at room temperature, in a great assortment of textures, flavors, and colors. You can stuff yourself on it, so delicious is a well-made antipasto. Although Andrea’s set the standard, at this time I’d say Chef Duke LoCicero at Cafe Giovanni has the more impressive antipasto presentation. The full monte on this doesn’t really fit well onto one platter. Order it for the whole table to get the maximum pleasure.
Cafe Giovanni. French Quarter: 117 Decatur. 504-529-2154.
This is among the 500 best dishes in New Orleans area restaurants. Click here for a list of the other 499.