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Roussell's Restaurant in LaPlace

j
John Malik Oct 23, 2003 10:53 AM

I am seeking out any tidbits on the late, great Roussell's Restaurant in La Place. I hope to find old menus, photos, recipes or newspaper clippings that I can use for a feature article in a national magazine. I grew up eating at Roussell's practically every Sunday so I have many fond food memories but nothing else. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  1. h
    Hazelhurst Oct 23, 2003 11:00 AM

    Remember it well...they waited until their Art Deco roadside building could have been put into the Smithsonian and teh remodelled it in some wretched faux-Texas style. That neon coffee drip pot sign was a classic.

    The only family member I knew is dead but I will check with the folks that ran Airline Motors down the road..maybe they know who's still around.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Hazelhurst
      h
      Hungry Celeste Oct 23, 2003 01:46 PM

      If you're in town this weekend, a trip to the Andouille Festival in Laplace would certainly yield lots of informed sources. Even if you're not in town, I'd contact the festival organizers, who are probably tapped into the main line of Laplace information.

    2. m
      M&M Oct 24, 2003 09:58 AM

      WOW! I lived in New Orleans in the late 70's. About two years ago when back for a Jazz Fest I took friends to LaPlace telling them all the way about the wonderful meal we were going to have at Roussell's. Alas when we got there no one knew what I was talking about or what happended to it. If you do a story please post source on this board as I would very much like to read it.I remember the crawfish etoufe fondly.

      1 Reply
      1. re: M&M
        j
        John Malik Oct 24, 2003 10:41 AM

        I grew up in LaPlace and still have family there. We ate there practically every Sunday after Church. The crayfish etouffe was definitely my favorite. Years later when I entered Culinary School, the French chefs that I worked for would always mention Roussell's after I said I grew up in LaPlace. I know Craig Claiborne wrote about their food, especially the artichoke oyster soup, in the '60s. What I wouldn't do for an original menu! When I get this piece sold, I'll certainly post a notice.

      2. m
        M&M Oct 24, 2003 10:03 AM

        If you do a story please post source on this board. I lived in New Orleans in late '70's and ate at Roussell's on numerus occasions. I fondly remember the etoufee and beef brisket. Went looking for the place a few years ago when down for Jazz Fest and, alas, nowhere to be found. Couldn't find anyone who had even heard of it. Chalked it up to old age and drove on. What a surprise to see it mentioned.

        1. Jeeves_too Feb 17, 2010 07:55 PM

          I found the following while doing an obituary search. You may get some leads from the info.
          " 000064 Hachet - Elmire 'Coo' Roussel Hachet, On Thursday, December 9, 2004 At 9:50 P.M. Beloved Wife Of The Late J.O. Hachet, Jr. Mother Of Suzanne Hachet Mccann Of Livermore, Ca And Ken 'Bubba' Hachet Of Laplace. Grandmother Of Andree Hachet Schumacher, Heather Mccann Messier, Jennifer Mccann Trentham, And Warren Hachet. Also Survived By 3 Great Grandchildren. Daughter Of The Late Warren Roussel And Florence Dore Roussel. She Was The Owner Of Roussel's Restaurant In Laplace. Age 81. A Native And Resident Of Laplace. Relatives And Friends Of The Family Are Invited To Attend Services. Visitation At Millet-Guidry Funeral Home, 2806 West Airline Hwy. In Laplace On Sunday, December 12, 2004 From 5:00 P.M. Until 9:00 P.M. And On Monday, December 13, 2004 From 8:00 A.M. Until 10:00 A.M. Followed By Religious
          Services In The Funeral Home Chapel At 10:00 A.M. Burial In Garden Of Memories Cemetery In Metairie. Times Picayune 12-11-2004"

          If I'm not mistaken the old Roussell's building was recently torn down.

          4 Replies
          1. re: Jeeves_too
            r
            roro1831 Feb 18, 2010 06:00 AM

            Doubtful it will help OP, post is 7 years old, and John Malik has not posted here in quite some time.

            1. re: roro1831
              Mytah Feb 18, 2010 09:06 AM

              The only thing worse than a necro post is the person pointing it out :) Have a nice day!

              1. re: Mytah
                r
                roro1831 Feb 18, 2010 09:13 AM

                You too

              2. re: roro1831
                Bill Hunt Sep 28, 2010 06:37 PM

                Ah, but look at some of the recent comments, that this zombie has spawned. Guess that was the power and influence of the restaurant.

                Hunt

            2. j
              Jamesroussel Sep 25, 2010 06:01 PM

              The diners at Roussel's restaurant in LaPlace discussed many topics over bowls of gumbo and chicken dinners through the years, including the war in Europe. The late Elmire "Coo" Hachet, whose parents, Warren and Florence Roussel owned the restaurant, enjoyed telling the story of a day in October 1942 when U.S. Sen. Allen Ellender stopped in on his way to Washington, D.C., from his home in Houma.

              The talk turned to war. Americans were concerned about the Allies' shaky foothold on Guadalcanal and the Axis troops in South Africa. They wanted to know when the volatile Joseph Stalin, in the Kremlin, would settle down and retake Stalingrad.

              That topic exhausted, talk turned to tabac de perique, or perique tobacco.

              "We hit on the idea that it has the power to soothe one's nerves and my father decided to send Stalin, a pipe smoker, a carotte of perique to calm his nerves so he could get on with the job and beat the Germans," Hachet recalled.

              A carotte is a tightly wrapped bundle of aged tobacco tied with a fiber rope. The one sent to Stalin probably weighed between one and five pounds.

              Hachet said Ellender took the precious bundle with him to the nation's capital and presented it to Maxim Litvinoff, then the Soviet ambassador to the United States. Litvinoff forwarded the perique to the Kremlin and Hachet recalls that her father received a letter saying Stalin had received it.

              In the following months U.S. troops secured Guadalcanal, Axis forces were defeated in Tunisia and the Russians regained Stalingrad and continued to repel the Germans.

              "My father thought that the tobacco must have done some good because after that all went well with the Russians," Hachet said.

              I found this information as I studied my family tree. James Roussel

              1 Reply
              1. re: Jamesroussel
                b
                Big Easy Sep 26, 2010 04:31 AM

                What a great story! Thanks for sharing.

              2. Bill Hunt Sep 28, 2010 06:34 PM

                I wish that I had something to offer, other than the memories of great redfish courtbouillon lunches. Roussel's was a favorite of mine, and I had the opportunity to dine there many, many times, as I had projects just up River. I probably had some other dishes (how could I not have?), but it seemed that the special was so often redfish courtbouillon (back when there was no "season" on redfish), that that is all that I really remember.

                Fond memories, and they will forever be missed. I managed to take my (then future) wife there on occasion, and she recalls them with great fondness, as well.

                Good luck in your search,

                Hunt

                5 Replies
                1. re: Bill Hunt
                  Jeeves_too Nov 8, 2010 03:05 PM

                  Bill, here is a picture of Roussel's I took back in the '70s.

                   
                  1. re: Jeeves_too
                    Bill Hunt Nov 14, 2010 06:35 PM

                    Brings back memories. Back in the late 60's, I had a big project in Geismar, LA, and stopped in for many meals. Very fond memories indeed. Thanks for sharing that "blast from the past."

                    Hunt

                    1. re: Bill Hunt
                      e
                      edgarg Jan 22, 2013 07:28 PM

                      It may be too late but I have a menu from the restaurant, I worked there for about 10 years until the last day it was open. One of the owners Bubba Hachet just died and was buried today. A great man.

                      1. re: edgarg
                        Bill Hunt Jan 23, 2013 08:40 PM

                        I never met any of the principles in the restaurant, but did have the pleasure to dine there quite often - normally lunches.

                        I do miss them.

                        Hunt

                        1. re: edgarg
                          c
                          chauvina Apr 22, 2013 11:31 AM

                          I'd love a copy. I grew up in LaPlace from 1974-1981. I remember eating there as a kid and just today thought I'd look it up. If you have a scan could you send it? addie1974@aol.com

                  2. r
                    ruzil Jan 26, 2013 06:28 PM

                    You got too many L's in that name.

                    1. j
                      joeljcj2 Apr 8, 2013 05:33 PM

                      world's largest cast iron frying pan / or am i confusing this with another reataurant out around la place?

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