Meauxbar (942 N. Rampart St., 504-569-9979; www.meauxbar.com) chef John Bel has launched a series of six dinners highlighting seasonal local produce in four- and five-course meals. Desserts are provided by pastry chef Ruby Bloch, and Meauxbar's bar director Gillian White is selecting wine pairings for each course. The dinners cost $50 to $60 per person, not including wine. The next event is a cocktail-themed Spirits of the Americas dinner on July 17, which coincides with the Tales of the Cocktail (www.talesofthecocktail.com) conference. Other dinners include a meal inspired by Julia Child on Aug. 15 and one featuring famous dishes from closed New Orleans restaurants on Sept. 13.
Meauxbar offers late night dinner service (until midnight) on Friday and Saturdays. Chef Kristen Essig has quite the following and with the help of General Manager Natalie Secco, these two dynamic women have created a restaurant where guests enjoy great food, great drinks and great times.
–The Scout Guide
For years, Kristen Essig has been a central figure in the New Orleans food scene. Many first met Essig when she sold prepared foods at the Crescent City Farmers Market. Essig, though, first cooked in restaurant kitchens, most notably at Peristyle under chef Anne Kearney. She took a nearly decade-long break from restaurants, but now she's back. Essig is currently the executive chef at Meauxbar, where her market-driven updates on classic bistro fare have made her a Chef to Watch.
In the interest of continuing our seasonal quest for cool refreshing adult beverages, Meauxbar, the charming French Quarter neighborhood restaurant and bar recently re-opened on Rampart Street, has taken a local favorite, the French 75 cocktail, and instead of gin or cognac as the base spirit ingredient “introduces” a French Alpine herbal liqueur, Genepy des Alpes, first created in the early part of the 19th century. You don’t get much cooler than the French Alps.
The newly renovated and reopened Meauxbar, courtesy of Chef Kristen Essig and the rest of the former team at Sainte Marie, is an excellent, romantic place to dine. But it’s also an excellent, romantic place to grab a drink, as evidenced by the sophisticated cocktail program. If you’re not going for the food (which you should), definitely go for a Laurel Collins, Basil Smash, or a classic Vieux Carre.