Historically, bar food in the French Quarter consisted of burgers, nachos, and cheese fries. Not that there's anything wrong with that. But two relatively new spots have, ahem, raised the bar.
Saint Lawrence NOLA
Saint Lawrence NOLA, named for the patron saint of cooks, is owned by Brendan Blouin and Jeff James. It is located at 219 N. Peters, between Iberville and Bienville Streets. St. Lawrence's web site claims their mission is to "... humbly present a seasonal approach to elevated, epicurean bar fare."
I walked over there for lunch yesterday. The menu is surprisingly sophisticated: Roasted Beets, orange, shaved fennel, goat cheese, arugula, & Steens cane vinaigrette; Crispy confit wings, pepper jelly glaze & goat cheese dressing; Reuben Spring Rolls - corned beef, chowchow, Gruyere & 1000 Island; Turducken Burger - trinity of birds, green apple remoulade, duck cracklins & dirty rice; Fried Chicken - apple cider brine, mashed potatoes, & chicken demi gravy ; Pork Chop - Duroc Pork, apple butter, braised greens & crispy onion; and Lamb Stew with shoestring potatoes & Bearnaise. This is only a sample of the menu items offered. Not like any bar menu I've ever seen.
Alas, I was in the mood for the burger: Two Run Farm grass-fed beef on a brioche bun served with hand-cut fries. The brioche bun was just firm enough so as not to fall apart - a big plus in my book. And the fries were thin and perfectly fried. It was delicious.
|Two Run Farm burger|
Killer PoBoys is located in a small space at the back of Erin Rose, a bar at 811 Conti Street, between Bourbon and Dauphine Streets. Killer PoBoys is owned by Cam Boudreaux and April Bellow. It is a tiny operation, but they are serving terrific food. The limited po-boy menu offers: Roasted seasonal vegetables with red bean puree & chimichurri; Coriander lime gulf shrimp with marinated radish carrot, cucumber, herbs & a special sauce; the "Dark & Stormy" with NOLA Rum braised pork, lime slaw & garlic aioli; the Moroccan spiced lamb sausage with tzatziki sauce, sumac carrots & torn mint; and the Guinness & garlic braised beef with horseradish aioli & pickled onions. All are served on perfectly delicious french bread from Duong Phong Oriental Bakery in New Orleans East, and range in price from $8 to $12.
Today I enjoyed the Moroccan spiced lamb sausage po-boy. I have to say, Vietnamese french bread, made with rice flour, is far superior to other local french bread. One: it doesn't fall apart. Two: it is crispy but doesn't tear up the roof of your mouth.
|Moroccan spiced lamb sausage po-boy|
Next time, I'll try either the "Dark & Stormy" pork or the Guinness & garlic braised beef. And I'll likely get it to go -- smoking is allowed in the bar which is only a few feet away. (By the way, Killer PoBoys is cash only).