FleurDeLis-5-Large

Average check per person $45-$55

BreakfastNo Breakfast SundayNo Breakfast MondayNo Breakfast TuesdayNo Breakfast WednesdayNo Breakfast ThursdayNo Breakfast FridayNo Breakfast Saturday
LunchNo Lunch SundayNo Lunch MondayLunch TuesdayLunch WednesdayLunch ThursdayLunch FridayNo Lunch Saturday
DinnerDinner SundayNo Dinner MondayDinner TuesdayDinner WednesdayDinner ThursdayDinner FridayDinner Saturday

Pardo’s

Covington: 69305 Hwy 21. 985-893-3603. Map.
Casual.
AE DS MC V
Website

WHY IT’S NOTEWORTHY
Pardo’s is the first North Shore restaurant to offer the food, service and style of the gourmet Creole bistro. Such restaurants have been dominant in New Orleans proper since the early 1980s, but until now they never got a purchase across the lake. After eight months, Pardo’s has become solidly popular for its kitchen’s verve and creativity. It claims to serve American food, but the ingredients and flavors are clearly those of Louisiana.

WHAT’S GOOD
The menu stops just short of (and possibly too close to) the fine dining category. Foie gras, caviar and carefully-arranged mini-sculptures of food provide more atmosphere than substance. The eating comes down to the familiar jumbo lump crabmeat, fresh Gulf fish, big local shrimp, and the signature dish of these times: roasted sizzling oysters on their shells. A wood-burning oven handles the oysters and a few other dishes. It all winds up providing an meal impressive enough that most conversations are about food. A very good sign.

BACKSTORY
Owner Osman Rodas came out of the Emeril’s restaurant organization to open Pardo’s in May 2012. The address is in one of the dozens of small strip malls near the burgeoning I-12/LA 21 intersection, where most of the major stores in West St. Tammany Parish have clustered in recent years. The chef is Jason West, a young local guy who worked around the country after culinary school.

DINING ROOM
Pardo’s took over a handsome space built out a few years ago by an Italian cafe that didn’t make it. It left behind a wood-burning oven and a spiffy open kitchen. The design of the room is cool and spare, with white dominating the bar in a striking way. The lighting is flattering, music a shade too loud and too Seventies. The service staff will be familiar to frequent North Shore diners, and they remember you, too.

ESSENTIAL DISHES
Starters
»Lump crab, salmon, and caviar parfait
Wood oven roasted pork belly, apple fennel slaw
»Black Angus beef carparccio
»Wood oven oysters, chorizo, garlic, oregano, spinach, pecorino
Shrimp, crab, and crawfish cheesecake
»Seared diver scallops and foie gras
»PEI black mussels, garlic, fennel, shallots, chorizo, garlic fries
Pizzetta of the day
Crispy goat cheese salad, pecans, apples, greens
»Roasted beet and lump crab salad
Mixed green salad
Caesar roulade, parmesan frico, watermelon balsamic reduction
Entrees
Black Angus ribeye steak, truffle fries, chimichurri
Roasted Scottish salmon, hoisin glaze, jasmine rice, bok choy
»Black Angus filet mignon, Cabernet reduction
»New Orleans barbecue shrimp, corn grits
Pork osso buco, citrus pan sauce, mushroom risotto
Grilled swordfish, Creole mustard and wine beurre blanc
»Seared ahi tuna, seared foie gras, red wine-portabella mushroom reduction
Quail two ways (corn and tasso stuffed, and country fried),
Fish of the day
Desserts
House-made cookies and milk
»Crème brulee
»Chocolate pot de crème
»Bread pudding
Seasonal fruit crumble

FOR BEST RESULTS
Pardo’s is full most nights, and it wouldn’t be prudent to show up without a reservation. However, the bar makes good, generous cocktail, and it’s clear that some people like to spend time there before sitting down. The mnore artistic dishes are also the most delicious.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR IMPROVEMENT
Although the beef has a good pedigree, steaks here are not the strong dishes–especially given the presence of three major steak players nearby. Some dishes would be better if one or two ingredients were subtracted.

FACTORS OTHER THAN FOOD
Up to three points, positive or negative, for these characteristics. Absence of points denotes average performance in the matter.

  • Dining Environment +2
  • Consistency +1
  • Service+1
  • Value
  • Attitude +2
  • Wine & Bar +1
  • Hipness +2
  • Local Color

 

SPECIAL ATTRIBUTES

  • Romantic
  • Good for business meetings
  • Open Sunday lunch and dinner
  • Easy, nearby parking
  • Reservations recommended

ANECDOTES AND ANALYSIS
“It makes you feel like you’re Uptown,” was the first comment I heard about Pardo’s. That captures the place exactly. Despite the affluence of much of the Mandeville-Covington corridor, diners there have shown a preference for the very straightforward, eschewing complexity or adventurousness in the restaurants they frequent. But apparently a certain, younger crowd has ached to have some restaurants like this. The location across the highway from the monopolistic movie complex only helps Pardo’s popularity.

Something else I heard at the beginning: “It’s a little expensive.” Not by Uptown standards, no. But noticeably higher than Northshorinians are accustomed to.


13 Readers Commented

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  1. Stanley on July 28, 2014

    Second choice for best restaurant on the North Shore.

  2. robert moses on October 20, 2014

    Ever heard of charging $ 2.00 extra for a drink on the rocks? Kind of makes a nice dinner bad.

  3. Elizabeth on January 18, 2015

    Last Night. Disappointed. Menu not as noted on your web site. Some Entrees no longer available as well some Starters. My filet was barely warm at best. My husbands rid eye was cold. He sent his back to the kitchen and it was returned hot but way over cooked. Environment was nice. Service good. The food was barely adequate. We dine on the North-shore and in the City often so the price was expected and would not be considered out of line if the meal had been better.

    TOM SEZ: Surprised to hear that, after a bout a dozen first-class dinners and a memorable Eat Club. But name a restaurant that has always been perfect. I can’t.

    Like most top-class restaurants, the menu changes frequently. It’s not possible for me to find out about and report every menu change.

    Write a note to or call Osman Rodas, the owner. I think you will find him willing to correct this.

    Tastefully yours,
    Tom Fitzmorris

  4. Thomas Klekamp on January 22, 2015

    We really enjoy Pardo’s and their varied menu. There’s usually 2-3 specials, and the chef will cook something to your spec’s. My wife saw favorite wasn’t featured on the menu and they tailored it for her. The service is almost too attentive. Enjoyed their Bouillabaisse twice and found it rich and flavorful. Their flatbread “pizzas” are worth trying. We’re surprised at the number of Northshorians who haven’t heard of Pardo’s; perhaps their location.

  5. Daryl on February 5, 2015

    You have them rated as a 4 star, however, their ad, on your website, claims a 5 star. Which is it?

    TOM SEZ:
    It’s five stars. I just went back and fixed it online. Thanks for letting me know.

  6. Stanley Turner on February 18, 2015

    My wife and I had dinner on Valentine’s Eve and it was outstanding. Some of the best meals I have eaten were here, and we get around quite a bit in the New Orleans and Northshore areas. After each of the last two visits, I said to my wife,”This is the best meal I have ever had”. Pear and cinnamon bread pudding was incredibly delicious. Staff is always first rate.

  7. JIM on August 29, 2015

    PROS-The atmosphere is lively to the point of boisterous. The staff are attentive. The food is generally well prepared and well presented.
    NOT SO PRO-Small portions (So small that upon completing a five course dinner, I left hungry.
    Crowded to the point of making it difficult to have a private conversation or even hear the staff. The prices are a bit on the high side and each extra seems to add inordinately to the expense. With all of the windows, I felt as if I were in a fishbowl.

    • Tom Fitzmorris on August 30, 2015

      Sounds like not your kind of place. I haven’t noticed any of the issues you note. I keep scrfeing up and getting fantastic dinners.

      Tastefully yours,
      Tom Fitzmorris

  8. Ryan on September 18, 2015

    Had lunch on an off-day, I suppose, a month ago. Disappointed with the soup of the day, the pizza special was way too contrived? not simple at all, more like a Papa John’s supreme pizza. I sent back my 17-19$ pork belly “b.l.t.” it had been desimated under the pass multiple times while waiting for the cooks to fire the other two dishes for the table. Seriously the first time in my life I ever sent food back. I am a career cook and I 99.9% of the time eat what is put in front of my whether the cook botched it or not. We serve a b.l.t. at my job for $8 and in my opinion there is no room for error at that price. Almost 20$ for a horrible sandwich barely deserves 3 stars… 5 stars?! Really? Definitely not close to one of the Northshore’s best.

    • Tom Fitzmorris on September 19, 2015

      A five-star rating is based on dinner, not lunch. Lunch on the North Shore is hampered by the fact that even if you live there, as I do, it’s twenty minutes getting to most restaurants and twenty minutes back to home or office. Not much that a restaurant can do in that slot. This is even true, really in almost every restaurant that serves lunch.

      And to judge a restaurant by a sandwich and pizza? On one visit? Come on.

      Call or write Osman Rodas, the owner, and tell him what you just told me. Let me know what he does. And let me know how you like it when you go for dinner. And for goodness sake, forget about trendy things like pork belly! There is real food there if you will just open yourself to it.

      I stand by my review.

      Tastefully yours,
      Tom Fitzmorris

  9. John Boyle on February 11, 2016

    I had hoped to write a review of the food at Pardos but instead must address their service. We were looking for an excellent place on the Northshore for a dinner on Mardi Gras for my wife and me and two close friends. We used to live in New Orleans but were just visiting now. It would be our only chance for a nice dinner in the area for a long time. I had booked an online reservation using their web site. Realizing that Mardi Gras Day might be an unusual time, I called the restaurant to reconfirm the reservation and they assured me they would be open for that day. When we drove up at the appropriate time, Pardos was completely dark. If their plans to be open had changed, perhaps they could have called me since my phone number was included in the reservation information. Needless to say, we are VERY displeased with service from Pardos. So much for the claim on their web site: “Pardos takes pride in accommodating patrons at our restaurant”.

  10. Tom Chapin on March 8, 2016

    A delightful experience this evening. Chef Jason prepared two wonderful creations – a crab/shrimp parfait (with fried tomato and fried avocado) as an appetizer, and a sword fish, shrimp, mussel dish that was generous in seafood and wonderful in taste for my entree. Wait staff was informative and attentive. I’ll look forward to my next trip from Arkansas to the North Shore.

  11. DIANE STAUB on April 30, 2017

    A disastrous night, last night at Pardo. We ordered cocktails. Two old fashions, one with Southern Comfort, the other with Wild Turkey. They had neither. Two martinis were ordered, one with Tanquerray 10. Nope didn’t have that either.
    One appetizer was ordered, carpaccio, which was delicious.
    Two ordered duck, two ordered porterhouse($36.00) one medium, one medium rare. This was a special and not on the menu. When the entrees came out I cut into my “porterhouse” to see if it were cooked to medium rare. It did not look right. I asked the waitress if it were beef, she replies “YES”. The first two bites were gristle and it was tough. Same with the other medium porterhouse.
    We told the waitress we did not want the entrees. We reordered and when the steaks came out we were told by the manager that the porterhouse were pork chops. By this time our companions were finished their entrees.
    Don’t you think the waitress would have been suspicious when one was ordered medium rare. Who orders pork chops medium rare………….REALLY?
    After a few bites if the steak I couldn’t eat anymore. I just wanted to get out of Pardo. Same with the other steak order. They boxed it and brought it out bagged. I felt 3 boxes which was too many. I looked in one it was the other steak. When we got home I also had his side.
    It make the evening even worse the waiters kept bumping my chair 5-6 times when they had an aisle next to our table on the other side. I told the manager when he delivered the second entree and he said he would correct the bumping. Did the bumping stop………….NO
    WE WILL NEVER GO BACK TO PARDO.

    TOMMENT:
    Before you decide forever to never return, try calling or writing the owner (Osman Rodas), tell him what you said here, but don’t say you’ll never return, because that ties his hands as to what he can do. But try to make contact in a more reasonable tone.

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