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Coquette - still rocking it

the driving sheets of rain forced me to diverge from my plan to try out Red Maple on the west bank, so we used one of our restaurant.com coupons at Coquette. ive been there a couple of times and enjoyed it, but last nite they really knocked it outta the park.

we ate at the bar because we like the bartender and have always enjoyed bar dining in bistros. to begin they gave us an amuse bouche of fried oyster. then they set down the bread...their bread is amazing. i hear the preparation varies, but the rustic sliced loaf last nite was incredible, and the sea salted butter addicting.

for apps we had two: the green curry scallops w/ coconut foam and small noodles (usually a main), and foie gras ravioloi w/ fat grated parm and a type of butter sauce. both of these were very good ($11-12). next we had the boston bibb salad ($7), no complaints. for the main we ordered a single black drum w/ gnocchi and kale w/ an oyster cream sauce; this dish was very good. my minor complaint at Coqutte has been the entree is almost naked on the plate since they arent big on sides, but this dish w/ the kale and gnocchi was more to my liking. the fish was a thin, crispy, skin-on preparation and i think perhaps parm crusted.

for dessert, the "chocolate beignets" -- air-like dollups of fried love served w/ a cup of the best mocha-y chocolate pudding topped w/ a dense whipped cream. you dip or coat the beignets w/ this awesome concoction and sit back. perfect.

she also had two sazeracs, which we agreed were the best we've ever had, and quite reasonable at $6.50 (how the Sazerac bar can charge $12+ is beyond me...)

the big thing theyve improved on from our early visits is the service. the bartender is great, and the serving staff that assisted were friendly & gracious. they split our shared items w/o charging (at ordering i had said it was unnecessary since we dont mind sharing a plate) and generally seemed happy to be there. that is how you do it, folks.

this was a classic and perfect bistro dining experience. no complaints, pleasantly surprised.

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Coquette
2800 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA 70115

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  1. My wife and I enjoy eating at the bar in many restaurants as well. I've only been to Coquette once and the bar was packed. Can you reserve seats at the bar?

    1. I have never been disappointed by Coquette. I still dream about a lunch special I had there last summer-- triple-tail w/wild mushrooms; it was one of the best fish dishes I've ever had. And their "fried shrimp" appetizer defies expectation, in a very good way: the shrimp and almost-not-there batter is so light, so ethereal, that you can't believe you're eating fried shrimp.
      Oh, and the French 75 cocktail is divine.

      2 Replies
      1. re: nomadchowwoman

        ive had that fried shrimp app, youre right it is very good -- like shrimp cotton candy :)

        wasnt on the menu last nite tho, their menu changes daily. sure wish theyd copy its PDF to their website each day tho! never know what youre gonna get.

      2. Can you comment on how you used your gift certificates? I have a few of the restaurant.com ones that you recommended some time back, but I'm not sure exactly how they work. Do they just take of $25 from your bill, excluding drinks? Can you use more than one at once? Do you have so spend a minimum amount? TIA.

        5 Replies
        1. re: uptownlibrarian

          sure. its all very regulated, so no, you cant use more than one at a time -- or even more than one a month. while the particulars vary per restaurant, most exclude alcohol and have a min you must spend (my guess is its up to the staff to enforce the booze exception, just as they must the 2+ diners rule).

          basically you buy them, then print one when youre ready to use it. it has a unique ID number and a 1-800 number which the server then dials to verify the coupon's validity.

          unfortunately there is one big flaw -- using a coupon does not flag it as "used" in your restaurant.com account! instead you must manually keep track of the ones you print/use and update your account profile. they say its for "privacy reasons" but i really cant understand this as you own the coupons.

          1. re: kibbles

            Ok, so say I have two $25 certificates for Coquette (which I do). I can use only one per visit, and I tell them that I have it at the beginning of the meal, and then we do our thing, and then at the end they subtract $25 from the food total of the bill? Have I got this?

            1. re: uptownlibrarian

              yep. i always wait till i request the bill to include the coupon, feels less like a Perkins that way.

              one note: they also include an 18% tip w/ the coupon. so if the service was great you have to add on.

              1. re: kibbles

                Thanks so much. I feel much more confident now.

                1. re: kibbles

                  I do present the coupon when I get the bill.

                  Certain restaurants do give certain restrictions, so be sure to read your certificate. Like Atchafalaya only allows the coupon to be used M-F. Some coupons do specifically say it's not good for alcohol and others do not. I've only had one restaurant that I visited (Fausto's) where I didn't meet the minimum unless they allowed the inclusion of alcohol. Nothing was said and they gladly took the coupon off of the total. I LOVE restaurant.com! I agree that it would be great if you could see in your account which coupons you've used. To get around this, I just have all of the print outs in my purse. When it's time for me and hubby to go out to eat, I just pull out my stack (about 30 print outs currently) and we decide where to go.

          2. Thanks for the review kibbles, and I have to concur. I have never been disappointed with a meal at Coquette. We prefer to eat at the bar as well. I am a huge fan of those beignets, but if they have it on the menu next time, you must try the strawberry shortcake dessert. We had it there several weeks ago and it was easily one of the best desserts I've ever had. The "shortbread" consist of two soft, salted sugar cookies. They are heavy on the salt, which works perfectly with the whipped cream and cognac soaked strawberries...divine!

            1. I think their entrees which are pretty-good-not-great need to catch up a bit to the rest of it, which is mostly great, but it's still a fairly young place so I'll give it that. I had fish, drum I think, with cauliflower and some crunchy thing, I for the life of me, could not figure out what it was. I didn't like it- it seemed like a freeze dried vegetable but I don't know for sure... all I know is that it was somewhere in the cauliflower.

              But the price is very nice for what you get.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Slimpyslim

                id be willing to bet there isnt a freeze-dried vegetable in the kitchen :)

                1. re: kibbles

                  oh I didn't mean it in that way. It was obviously intentional whatever crunchy thing they had in there and it didn't seem like a nut. I was just saying what the texture was like since I have no idea what this ingredient was that didn't quite sit right.