District Donuts (Lower Garden District, New Orleans, LA)

I decided to pick up donuts for work and who better than to go to District Donuts? It’s a local restaurant and donut shop that serves fresh and homemade donuts as well as breakfast and lunch sandwiches. What’s interesting on the menu are the Croquenuts. They are Donuts grilled to sandwich perfection. Trust me…if you’re looking for healthy, go elsewhere.

I ordered a Miso Praline Bacon Biscuit to go for an on-the-go bite and a few donuts for my girls at work. This has to be the most amazing breakfast sandwich EVER. The biscuit was extremely buttery and reminded me of a homemade-style Popeyes biscuit. I don’t know how you like your eggs, but it was overeasy and always makes the best breakfast sauce! As a whole, the miso praline bacon tied it all together. It’s a tad bit messy for on-the-go, but I’d do it all over again!

If you’re looking for a place for an epic, awesome breakfast, District Donuts is where to go. If you’re looking bland and healthy, you’re in the wrong place!

 

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Donuts: Wedding Cake, Glazed, Coconut Creme

 

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Miso Praline Bacon Biscuit. 

 

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Rating: 5/5 spoons

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Cafe Du Monde (Veterans, Metairie, LA)

I’ve always been a bit biased towards ONLY going to the French Quarter Cafe Du Monde location since I’ve had such bad experiences with the mall locations in the past. I haven’t tried the Veterans location until now. It’s a lot cleaner and the inside actually looks very similar to being outdoors in the French Quarter.

It was nice not having to worry about downtown parking and it wasn’t packed with tons of tourists! The beignets were good, but maybe not as crispy as I’d like on the outside. I like the crispy outside and the soft breading on the inside and the French Quarter location never fails with that, but overall, I liked it here. Next time I’m in the area and I’m craving beignets and coffee, I know where I’ll stop! Here’s another plus, they have a drive thru!

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Cafe Du Monde, Metairie. 

 

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Beignets outside. It was a nice day!

 

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Rating: 4/5 spoons
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Compère Lapin (Warehouse District, New Orleans, LA)

Chef Nina Compton is Caribbean native that was one of the top Top Chef contestants on the Bravo TV Channel. Although she didn’t get the top spot, her success lead to her recent endeavor: Compère Lapin. With her Caribbean roots and background in French cuisine, she’s created a menu that’s unlike any other in New Orleans. My fiancé and I celebrated our 10 year anniversary at Compère and it was impressive!

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Refreshing cocktail. 

 

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Chive Biscuits. Honey Butter. Bacon Butter.

 

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Conch Croquettes. Pickled Pineapple Tartar Sauce.

 

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Marinated Shrimp. Roasted Jalapeno Jus.

 

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Beef Tartare . Matsutake mushrooms. Cured egg yolk.

 

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Roasted Beet Salad. Ricotta. Pistachio.

 

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Left: Pici Pasta. Lobster. Summer squash.

Right: Curried Goat. Plantain Gnocchi. Cashews.

 

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Roasted Banana Zeppole. Rum Caramel.

 

First, the bread was a chive biscuit that was flaky, buttery, and flavorful. To top that it came with two butters: a honey butter and a bacon butter. My favorite was the bacon butter. It’s amazing how they were able to infuse such a pure bacon flavor. I felt like I was eating a really good breakfast sandwich. Now, that’s just the bread!

For our appetizers, we ordered:

  1. Conch croquettes: these were delicately crispy on the outside and saucy on the inside.
  2. Marinated shrimp with Jalapeño Jus: I’m not the biggest fan of shrimp, but this was so well done. The shrimp was very fresh and nicely cooked and the sauce had a nice kick to it. What I love in Chef Nina Compton’s dishes is that she’s not afraid to spice things up! She chose the perfect city for her restaurant.
  3. Beef Tartare with Matsutake mushrooms and cured egg yolk: Smoky. Savory. Goodness. The tartare was one of my favorite dishes of the night.
  4. Roasted Beet Salad with Ricotta: This salad was no salad. It was so good it was like dessert to me. The Beets were sweet and perfectly roasted. Next, was the ricotta which was blended into a sweet icing-like texture.

For our entrees:

  1. Pici Pasta with Lobster and summer squash: The pasta was homemade and delicious. I loved that there were clear chunks of lobster throughout the dish.
  2. Curried Goat with Plantain Gnocchi and cashews: This was definitely the finale and I almost wanted to stop here and just savor that last bite of gnocchi. When you think about certain elements complimenting a dish, this has to be the perfect example. The savoriness of the goat curry coated the little gnocchis. Once you bite into the gnocchi, there’s this instant of a billion flavors all at once! First you get the savory curry, then you get a hint of white wine, then unexpectedly there’s the plantain sweetness. I’m so amazed.

Dessert:

  1. Roasted Banana Zeppole: This was a great treat in the end, but I definitely could’ve stopped with the gnocchis.

Everything was phenomenal! I love the Caribbean twist on the classically French cuisine. Chef Nina isn’t afraid of adding a lot of spice and I love that. We’re going to have to go back to celebrate our 10 yr 1 mo ! If you’re considering a dinner option this weekend, Compère is a MUST!
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Rating: 5/5 spoons

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Lotus Xpress (Harvey, LA)

This restaurant recently switched ownership from My Thai and is now either Lotus Xpress or Lotus Cafe (Yelp and their signs differ). I went to My Thai a few months ago in search of really great Thai food. I actually didn’t go inside, because it looked so dead inside! My mistake, because even though Lotus Cafe has switched ownership, the cashier told me that all of the recipes are still the same. My friends mentioned that the restaurant looks different in that it’s more of a fast food/take out AND restaurant setup. The previous restaurant was strictly restaurant only.

 

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Thai tea and Roti. Chili sauce.

 

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Yellow Chicken Curry. 

 

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Green Chicken Curry. 

 

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Chicken Pad Thai. 

 

Now onto the good stuff…I ordered the Thai tea, Roti, Green Chicken Curry, Yellow Chicken Curry, and Spicy (Level 2) Pad Thai. The Thai tea was delicious. The Roti was THE BOMB…so buttery, flaky and delicious. The sauce that comes with it was good, but I wish it was thicker so it’s easier to dip into. The food comes in to go boxes, which make it easy to eat and bring the rest “to-go”! The curries came with a side salad (or wonton chips) and rice. The curries are delicious and have to be the best I’ve found in the area so far! The Pad Thai was the perfect amount of spice, but I found it a little sour (maybe too much tamarind?). Everything definitely exceeded my expectations and this restaurant will have to be one of my top Thai restaurant right now!

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Rating: 4/5 spoons

 

Chipotle (Veterans, Metairie, LA)

This review is strictly to this location and not the franchise itself. I love Chipotle. Everything is so fresh and flavorful, however, this particular location fails. Maybe they recently opened and haven’t had things fine-tuned yet BUT it’s a franchise and operation is usually consistent among stores.

First, the building is quite small so there’s limited seating. If you sit indoors, it’s cramped and very noisy and echo-ey. Since I was by myself, I took my food to-go and just ate in my car!

Secondly, something was a little off as far as flavoring of the steak and the guacamole…most likely a lack of lime and/or salt. Everything was so bland. As I ate my burrito bowl, I kept pondering why it tasted so different and found myself chewing on a piece of plastic. I’ll spare you the disgust and won’t post that photo, but I was so disappointed that I had to try again at Chipotle in Harahan the next day. That experience was much better.

I’ll wait a little while for them to improve and maybe try again, but I definitely won’t go out of my way for it.

 

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Rating: 2/5 spoons

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