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June 7 - Farewell Dinner Venue for 18 Cooks/Culinary Students?

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Looking for a venue on Thursday, June 7th. This will be the final night for a group of 18 chefs, culinary students and food writers after a week-long volunteer trip working with different food-related non-profits throughout the city.

General Requirements (although not set in stone):

1. A restaurant with heart who would get a kick out of a bunch of cooks descending upon it.
2. Can accommodate all of us in one room (after a few drinks, I'm sure speeches will be made)
3. Can offer us a set-price menu hovering around $30-$40 pp (depending on venue, drinks may or not be included in that price)

Was thinking Dooky Chase, but doesn't seem to be open? We're already frequenting Cochon one evening as well as Rock n' Bowl, Bayona and the House on Bayou Road for a Crawfish Boil.

Suggestions are more than welcome. And if we end up booking that venue and you're in New Orleans, you certainly get an invite to join us!

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  1. Gosh, I wish Marisol were still open, that would have been perfect. When suggesting things for a group of chefs, you sort of have to take into account the personality of the chef where you're sending them. Or else I've just watched too much Tony Bourdain. :)

    I know K-Paul's could accomodate that group, and it's always pretty rollicking in there, so you'd fit right in. Not sure about the price point for a group dinner, though. Mother's has a side room, and their food is solid, might actually be too small of a group for that venue, though. Hmm. Mandina's is another old New Orleans join that could certainly hold you all.

    Check into Vizard's. The space is big enough, the food is great, and the chef might join you.

    1. Marisol is gone but Chef Pete lives on. He does his incredibly creative Sunday thing at Bacchanal – perhaps they’d wrangle a special Thursday one for your group? Not sure it’s the type of atmosphere you’re looking for though, but a lot of fun in its own way so worth checking into.

      Or, why not go for the ultimate, traditional New Orleans restaurant experience? Commander’s has a 3-course menu in the mid $30’s and rooms of various sizes. The Brennan family’s history of chef-friendliness is legendary and current Chef Tory McPhail is an extremely excellent dude. Café Adelaide also has a smallish room though not sure if they offer a prix fixe dinner in your range.

      Upperline is lovely, has a wonderful chef-loving proprietor and has a great tasting menu for $38.50. Not certain how the room situation would work out but might be worth asking.

      Ditto Riomar – they have a fantastic group menu at $34 but I only know their main room; don’t know if they have a small private room.

      Muriel’s is actually quite good and also good with “event” dinners, various rooms and such. Fun location right on Jackson Square.

      Savvy Gourmet might be another way to go. It’s actually a cooking school and kitchen store. They only serve lunch, but also do catering and events so you could probably take over the place for a private dinner. They’re wonderful people – one of the 1st places to open after Katrina and for months fed a lot of first respondents and early rebuilders.

      Wherever you end up, it’s food city so my guess is they’d love to host culinary students. I’ll bet if you asked the Chef to say a few “words of wisdom” to your group that he/she would be happy to do so. Have fun and report back!

      1. Thanks for the great leads JGrey and MoonpieLover. We've actually decided to go in a completely different direction and head to John Besh's newest (yet previously beloved) restaurant, La Provence. Looking forward to crossing the lake for the first time and getting a first-hand look at their working garden and farm!

        1 Reply
        1. re: culinarycorps

          I think La Provence is a great choice. You'll enjoy the drive and the restaurant.