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Pizza…It’s more than just a piece of bread and a few ingredients. If done right, the dough, is an oh-so-heavenly pillow painted with the heavenliest of tomatoes. And on this heavenly concoction lies only the best hand-rolled mozzarella…that can be found at Dough Pizzeria Napoletana. Dough Pizzeria bakes their delicious, fluffy pizzas in an authentic oven straight from Naples, Italy…
Truffle & Mascarpone Burrata - As Seen on the Food Network. House pulled truffle Burrata. Colorburst Farms tomatoes. Rosemary Balsamic Reduction. Flatbread.
This delicious handrolled Burrata is probably the culprit behind my sudden mozzarella binge. The combo of truffle and mascarpone was perfect! It left me wanting much more!
Bread. Oven-baked. Perfect chewy and soft bread texture, just like the pizza dough itself.
House Smoked Salmon Spinach & Pancetta. Baby Spinach. Vital Farms pasture raised organic hard boiled egg. Gorgonzola. Crisp apple. Toasted Walnuts. Warm Pancetta Vinaigrette.
Pork Love. Sopressata Salami. Sausage. Pancetta. Speck. House Pulled Mozzarella. Tomato Sauce.
Other Delicious Pizza: Arugula & Prosciutto.
I’ve never been to Naples, so I can’t guarantee the authenticity of the dishes, however, my palate tells me that this has to be the best pizza I’ve ever had… San Antonio is filled with pizza joints, but this one provides a romantic, yet homey atmosphere and more importantly, the best pizza around…
On a mini tour through Texas and my first stop..Houston! My previous post was on a great sandwich joint called Local Foods (click HERE for my review)…a local sandwich shop owned by Benjy’s. After a great lunch with the boyfriend, the next stop? A girl’s night at Straits. They had a great dinner menu filled with small, delicious plates. The restaurant atmostphere was perfect for a girls night out...trendy, but still comfy! And the drinks were delicious…unfortunately, they were gone before I could photograph them…
Roti Prata. Yellow curry dipping sauce.
Singapore Satay Sticks. Spicy Peanut Sauce.
Murtabak. Roti Prata. Spiced Beef. Curry Dip.
Every dish left me wanting more. For a bar scene, the dishes were well thought out and infused with homey, yet rich flavors. I’m not gonna lie…we ordered more than one Roti Prata. It’s not a girl’s night if you can’t load up on carbs! haha…It’s okay. We paid for it at the gym…
I have yet to try their official dinner entrees, but if these small plates are a reflection of what they have to offer, then I can’t wait!
There are plenty of restaurants in Houston, but I’m so surprised by this “local” food joint! Decor is very cool yet still very casual.
Truffle Egg Salad. Market greens. Parmesan. Aioli. Pretzel bun.
Posole. Green chili. CHicken. Cilantro. Lime.
Duck Confit. Arugula. Cranberry Preserve Aioli.
This has to be my favorite sandwich joint in Houston! I’m not even the biggest fan of chicken/egg salad type sandwiches, but their Truffle Egg Salad blew me away.
The “chef” and I had some friends come into town and Emeril’s was the perfect place to take them. We had a rather large group and figured it would be great if we ordered several different entrees and appetizers to create our own “little” feast.
Amuse Bouche. Vietnamese BBQ
"Emeril’s" New Orleans BBQ Shrimp. Petite Rosemary Biscuit and Fresh Chives.
Charbroiled Oysters and Escargot in Butter.
Steamy Buffalo Chappapeela Farms Duck Wings. Shaved Celery. REd grapes. Whippe Blue Cheese Creme Fraiche.
Crisp -Point Judith Calamari. Olive Salad. Parmesan. Smoked Tomato Sauce
Crisp - Point Judith Calamari. House Made Pepper Jelly. Crisp Okra. Black Pepper-Buttermilk Ranch
Seared Scallops and Softshell Crab.
Maple-Soy Lacquered Chapapella Farms Duck. Dirty Fried Rice. Pickled Local Vegetables.
Shrimp and Linguini.
Truffled Shrimp “Louis” Salad. Iceberg Wedge. Applewood Smoked Bacon. Chopped Eg. Asparagus. Tobiko.
BAM! Bombarded with the whole dessert menu! Man, is it good to have friends in the industry. Being the foodies that we are, the chef and I have made friends in the industry and we were treated like kings and queens. To top it all off, they served us with a buffet of desserts:
Key Lime Ice Box Pie. Torched Cinnamon Meringue. Honey Graham Crust.
Emeril’s Banana Creme Pie. Graham Cracker Crust. Caramel Sauce. Chocolate Shavings
Chocolate-Sambuca Mousse Cake. Au Lait Semifreddo. Espresso Bean Bark
Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie. Oreo Crust. Caramel Sauce.
Walnut Foster Bread Pudding. Cinnamon Candied Walnut. Bruleed Banana.
What a memorable meal! Tons of food and all with that Emeril’s flair! Great execution of every dish. Rich with flavor and leaving my mouth watering..even now.
There’s a new restaurant in town! Fat Bao took the traditional steamed bun and converted it into a delicious new concept. Steamed buns were most popularly stuffed with delicious roasted Peking duck, but Fat Bao has taken that idea and created their own variety of stuffed steamed buns, delicious appetizers, and even desserts…
Avocado Chips. Panko crusted w/ Jalapeno Dip
Crab Daddy Bao. Soft shell crab. Spicy mayo. Asian Slaw. Bulgogi Bao. Beef ribeye. Kimchi. Green onions. Peking Duck Bao. Roasted Duck. Green onions. Hoisin sauce.
Curry Bao. Beef brisket. Cilantro. Pickled Red Onions.Crab Daddy. (close up)
Peking Duck (left) and *Special*: Fried Portabello Bao w/ Asian Slaw
Fried Bao: Cafe du Monde Bao (left) Spicy Chocolate Bao (right)
Something so simple, but transformed into something so delicious! The idea of stuffed baos is not only impressive but the quality of the food is unexpected. Along with good food, the customer service here is awesome! Check this place out..you’ll love it!
Just what the Carrollton area needed! In the past year, various restaurants have opened down Oak St. and its newest addition is Pho Bistreaux. They have just recently opened but already have crowds of hungry patrons entering the restaurant and leaving satiated…
Chicken and Pork Sliders.
Pho with Brisket.
The restaurant has opened its doors for only a little over a week, but the food is delicious and authentic. Great service overall, especially in comparison to its competitors throughout the city! The restaurant is quite small, but the environment is modern and family-friendly.
New Orleans is known for it’s boiling pot of great restaurants all around the city, but when it comes to fast food, where do you go? With the superbowl right around the corner, wings are a hot commodity and Bayou Hot Wings has to be one of the best wings around! It’s so good that the Travel Channel selected BHW to be one of three other restaurants in the city to be on Adam Richman’s special “Super Bowl Tailgate Takeover” airing January 30 9ET/8CT. The owners are local New Orleans chefs that take pride in local flavors and homemade dishes. All the wings are 24+hr marinated and the sauces are made in house. They even offer local dishes: jambalaya, fried frog legs, and gator bites. ￼
Sausage and Seafood Jambalaya. Tasso. Sausage. Shrimp. ￼
Deep Fried Frog Legs. Excellent when paired with Remoulade sauce. ￼
Thick Seasoned Onion Rings. ￼
Caesar Wrap with a touch of Hotboy Sauce. ￼
1/2 lb Burger with Hotboy Sauce. Steak fries. ￼
Last but not least…WINGS: (left to right) Hotboy, Chipotle BBQ, Sweet, Lemon Pepper
I’ve basically tried the whole menu and I have to say it deserves more than the “best fast food” title…Every menu item comes out fully garnished, steaming hot, and packed with authentic chef-made flavors. I LOVE that their specialty is wings, but even the burgers are delicious…probably one of the best burgers I’ve had!
My favorites: Chipotle BBQ wings, Hotboy wings, onion rings, coleslaw, and ALL of the burgers
Local favorites: Jambalaya, Fried Gator Bites, and Fried Frog Legs w/ Remoulade sauce
If you haven’t tried them yet, I HIGHLY recommend this local wing joint. Not into wings? No worries, because I enjoy their non-wing items just as much..if not more! Tell them chefsgirl sent you ^_^ ￼
Chef John Besh does it again! I’ve heard about Borgne by word of mouth, but what really inspired me to go try it out for myself was when I tried the Oyster Amandine at New Orleans Oyster Festival at Woldenburg Park 2012 (click for pictures). I swear, festival food is always the best..Have you ever heard of the law of Diminishing returns? Basically, when applied to food, it means serving food in small bites that leave your palate longing for more…so when I tried multiple miniscule oyster dishes at the festival, you can only imagine how I felt when I only got to enjoy a BITE of Oysters Amandine…After that experience, I’ve had high expectations for Borgne…
Panoramic restaurant view.
Early for lunch…
Duck Poppers. Jalapeno. Bacon.
Slow Smoked Pork Empanadas. White BBQ Sauce.
Sopa Ajo (Garlic Soup). Garlic Soup. Idiazabal Cheese. Cured Egg Yolk.
Honeysuckle Hotty. Cathead Honeysuckle Vodka. Hot Chamomile Tea. (Missing: Sugar Candy pop)
Marinated Crab Fingers. Bread Salad. Torn Herbs.
Ragout of Louisiana Rabbit (Lunch Special). Orecchiette Pasta. Garlic. Tomatoes. Rapini. Reminds me a lot of the Spicy Lamb Meatball dish at Domenica’s except with rabbit!
Fried P&J Oysters Amandine. Grilled Mushrooms. Wilted Spinach. Oh..the delicious Oysters Amandine…Delicious and LOADED with cornmeal crusted oysters!
Seared Jumbo Shrimp. Brandade Ravioli. Shrimp Chorizo Consomme. Brussel Sprouts. Pumpkin. Chick Peas.
Pecan Praline Beignets.
My favorite dishes had to be anything with oysters: Charbroiled oysters and Oysters Amandine. I also LOVED the Pork Empanadas...Honestly, I hadn’t known much about Spanish or Mexican food until I relocated to Texas and since then, I just LOVE it. It’s just so rich, but can be so refreshing at the same time.
What didn’t I like? We had a grapefruit sorbet (not pictured) that was definitely homemade, but the fruit itself was not ripe and left a not-so-enjoyable bitter aftertaste. Another item I could’ve done without was the Honeysuckle Hotty. My girlfriend said the same about her cocktail so if anything, I would suggest grabbing a local beer like NOLA Brewing. I really like the blonde ale..it’s lighter and goes great with the food at Borgne.
Overall, good meal! I feel like Borgne’s menu is a boiling pot of Domenica and Luke…The rusticness of Luke together the Italian refinement of Domenica. If you’re in the CBD and looking for a fine lunch, Borgne is a great place to try!
If you’re familiar with Chef Donald Link's restaurant, Cochon, well you're in luck because Cochon Butcher is right around the corner! It's a casual deli as opposed to the finer Cochon. They offer a variety of meats, sausages, and best of all sandwiches! Cochon is known for their charcuterie so it’s only natural that the sandwiches are fresh and equally as delicious as the fine meals at its finer counterpart.
Pastrami w/ Sauerkraut on Rye.
BBQ Pork. "Carolina Style"
Hot Boudin. To Go! I’ve been on a boudin craze lately so anywhere there’s boudin, you know I’ll be getting it! This particular boudin was SO good. Who would’ve thought that creole mustard could go so well with it?
Each dish was served with homemade sweet pickles. Great for balancing out their savory dishes. After dining at Cochon Butcher, I ordered a few other sandwiches for “the chef” so he could enjoy at work…and he agrees! Not a single sandwich disappointed us. Every bite infused with flavor…
Cochon Butcher has been open for quite some time now, but lately has been “Talk Of The Town” (on Urbanspoon). Why now? Who knows, but it deserves the recognition!
A guide with LINKS to all of my reviews…Still thinking of a good way to organize them for y’all, but until then… Enjoy!
NEW ORLEANS RESTAURANTS REVIEWS
Of all of Emeril Lagasse’s New Orleans restaurants, NOLA is the most casual and laid back but still very nice. Great for a night out with the family or just a casual date night with your significant other. The restaurant is very warehouse district. There are approximately 3 stories…just my guess since I’ve only been on the first and second floor, but the see-through elevators are constantly taking guests up and down between floors.
View from my seat..
Table with a view!
Casual dining at its best!
Enough pictures of the restaurant..let’s get to the food! When “the chef” and I looked at the menu, many of the appetizers stood out to us much more than the actual entrees so we created our very own tasting menu…
Complimentary Ciabatta bread and Cornbread.
Miss Hay’s Stuffed Chicken Wings. Homemade Hoisin Dipping Sauce.
LOVED this dish…I’m typically not a fan of “fusion” types of food, but here, American + Asian = DIVINE! The authentic Vietnamese egg roll stuffing inside a juicy deep fried chicken wing was interesting and leaves you wanting more…
Duck Confit and Fried Egg Pizza. Parmesan Cheese. Truffle Oil. Baby Arugula.
Although it appears large, it’s light and savory…
Aged Allen Benton’s Country Ham Salad. Moonshine Spiked Watermelon. Arugula. Feta Cheese. Citrus-Herb Vinaigrette.
Gumbo of the Day: Cochon and Andouille Gumbo.
New Orleans Style Crab Cake. Spicy Corn Relish. Crystal-Butter Sauce.
Good but not my favorite. The corn relish balanced the heavily seasoned crab cake and gave it a refreshing kick with the Crystal-Butter sauce.
Crispy Smoked Duck and Mushroom Boudin Balls. Tomato-Bacon Jam. Creole Mustard.
NOLA Banana Pudding Layer Cake. Graham Cracker Crust. Vanilla Wafers. Fudge Sauce.
One thing I’ve learned is when you’re craving a good ol’ homemade banana pudding, you won’t get it at these upper echelon restaurants…but what you will get is an overly decadent yet still so delicious version. Not too far from the original homemade kind…fresh slices of banana, light pudding cream, graham cracker crust…loved it!
Great experience at NOLA in Nola! Great service. Cool and casual vibe. Great place for a laid back night but very good food. Props to Mr. Emeril Lagasse!
Dick and Jenny’s is located along New Orleans’ own Tchoupitoulas street, known for it’s old time New Orleans homes and traditional warehouse architecture. You could almost miss this restaurant, because it blends right in with the homes around it.
Inside…homey decor. Reminds me of Grandma’s house…will it compare to grandma’s food??
Corn Fried Oysters, Southern Coleslaw, and Remoulade.
Garlicky Escargot. Sauteed Escargot. Neuske Bacon and Mushrooms. Garlic Butter Reduction. Not your classic French-style escargot, but the touch of bacon and mushrooms was a nice surprise.
Duck Confit and Louisiana Alligator Sauce. Slow cooked duck confit leg quarter. Alligator Sausage w/ Spaghettie Squash, Southern Greens, and Tangy Orange-Chili Glaze.
Abita Braised Beef Short Ribs. Decadent Mac & Cheese, Brown Butter Sauteed Brussel Sprouts. Spiced Bourbon Demi-Glace.
Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream Sundae w/ Vanilla Creole Creamery Ice Cream.
As you can see, the food was delicious! Very hardy and homey. I loved the Corn fried oysters and remoulade…perfectly crispy and with the addition of coleslaw and remoulade was soooo good! My personal favorite dish had to be the dessert…Yes, it looks overwhelming, but the chocolate chip cookie wasn’t just your ordinary chocolate chip. Two decadent cookies filled with your local ice cream…yum!
If you’re looking for some good ‘ol Southern cooking, Dick and Jenny’s is a great place to try out. They offer large portions so either be prepared for it OR order less. That’s something the chef and I need to learn…Our eyes tend to be larger than our stomachs!
So many burger joints are popping up in the Orleans area, it’s hard to pick a favorite! Truburger offers a simple menu: beef burger or veggie burger. Choose your own toppings: grilled onions, mushrooms, bacon, etc. Other items include corndogs, hot dogs, and milkshakes.
At the bar!
Double Cheeseburger and Fresh Cut Fries.
I really enjoyed the burgers here…cooked perfectly. Juicy. Flavorful. Dressed with fresh lettuce, tomatoes, and pickles. They don’t ask for a temp on the burger, but as you burger eaters out there know…medium is the way to go! But if for some reason you like it otherwise, I’m sure they’ll cook to your liking. The handcut fries were awesome…One order has enough to share between 2 people! They were crispy and had the perfect amount of salt for me. Loved it!
I travel a lot between New Orleans and Houston so I thought I’d spice this blog up a little with some Mexican food!
Torchy’s Tacos was originally an Austin taco joint, which expanded and finally reached Houston. Austin is known for it’s laid back atmosphere and character and you can definitely see that in Torchy’s menu and atmosphere…
I ordered To Go so it’s not plated up as nice as when you’re dining in, but I tried!
Chicken Fajita. Tender marinated & grilled chicken breast. Grilled onions and peppers, cheese and pico. Flour tortilla.
Taco of the Month: Tuk Tuk. Marinated and grilled Thai beef fajitas. Cooked cabbage slaw. Pickled cucumbers and carrots. Sriracha. Avocado sauce. Jack Cheese. Lime. Crushed peanuts and mint. Corn Tortilla.
The next taco I’d love to try is “The Independent”…it has hand-battered deep fried portobello mushroom strips and more…but it had me at portobello…
Whether you’re dining in or ordering take out, Torchy’s is a great place when you’re craving some delicious tacos. The service is always friendly and helpful and food service is quick. The tacos vary from authentic Mexican versions to creative concoctions that are just as delicious. I know Houston has tons of taco joints, but Torchy’s will definitely satiate that taco craving!