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Vizards?

karendor Nov 12, 2011 09:25 AM

I have read very mixed reviews on C-hound about Vizards.

I have a reservation there for later this month, but am thinking about canceling and going to Cowbell instead. (Earlier this year, a loyal C-hound had good things to say about Vizards which is the main reason I had it on my list.)

Any updates or thoughts?

  1. s
    star2005 Nov 27, 2011 06:12 AM

    My husband andI ate there last year during Jazz fest and had an amazing meal and great time. The space is cozy and neighborhood-y - bright, fun art on the walls and great crowd. The food was terrific. A neighbor in NYC just went last week and was also very impresseed.

    1. karendor Nov 25, 2011 08:05 AM

      Ok, here's my report:

      Great neighborhood, easy street parking. Vizards looks pretty & welcoming from the outside and the ambiance, lighting and decor inside are inviting, too. The red ceiling adds to the warmth. We (daughter and I) arrived at 7 pm and there were only a couple of parties dining. No one at the tiny bar. We got put in the corner, pretty far away from the other diners which was a little weird, but since the rezzie was for two maybe they thought we wanted "privacy."

      Waiter came over right away and he was smart, attentive, and sweet. He told us about the specials which was an oyster soup and scallops entree. We ordered bottle of a nice red (pretty reasonable at $36), and told him we were probably going to mix up a few appetizers. He was positive and friendly about that, and we didn't feel pressured in any way to eat or drink more.

      She started with the house salad: greens, apple, walnuts in a vinaigrette. (This is a standard "harvest salad" where I come from, but still she enjoyed it.)

      I had the soup which was beautifully made with great flavor, consistency, and some fat oysters but it was a bit lukewarm. We both cleaned our plates :)

      Our "mains" were the Crabmeat Nelson, Mussels and Chorizo, BBQ Shrimp/Crablegs. We both liked the Nelson on first bites, but after a few more tastes it felt a bit rich and wasn't finished, Daughter dug into the mussels/chorizo which is a nice combination, and I thoroughly enjoyed the BBQ dish, the crab in particular was fleshy, sweet ,and absorbed the sauce nicely.

      Later Vizards got busier with quite a few large pre-holiday parties coming in. The diners were mostly older, but I did not feel they were clubby or neighborhood-centric. Thank you hounds for warning us it was a bit dressy; we were fine. It is a bit fancier/smaller than other Magazine St. bistros, but the lighting and the spacing of the tables give Vizards a cozy feel, without being cramped.

      BEST DISH: DESSERT.
      Thank you hounds for recommending the chocolate bleu cheese dessert. Killer dark chocolate fluffy little cake with thick dark chocolate frosting and a hint of bleu cheese woven into the cake: memorable, unique flavor combo, just the right portion. Sweet cream/strawberries on the side.

      So I don't think any of the dishes were super memorable-- except for dessert! The food was well-flavored, and the service was warm and perfectly timed. In fact, after bringing our check the waiter sincerely told us to "take our time." We felt we could linger, and we did! I am not sure either of us would go back (because the competition is just too alluring). But it was a nice meal, great service, with a memorable dessert.

      1 Reply
      1. re: karendor
        c
        califkatie Nov 25, 2011 11:37 AM

        Thanks, Karen. Really appreciate you giving us a report while you are there. Can't wait for more.

      2. c
        CharlieH Nov 14, 2011 11:30 AM

        Vizards is great. Kevin has been around for a long time. He installed the wood burning pizza oven at Mondo. Not many tourists make it there. He doesn't advertise much.

        -----
        Mondo
        900 Harrison Ave, New Orleans, LA 70124

        8 Replies
        1. re: CharlieH
          karendor Nov 14, 2011 11:57 AM

          Thanks, now I am intrigued.

          Thankfully, I feel I have graduated from a tourist to a "relative" category -- as my Dear Daughter lives in the Carrolton district. (She is actually the one who is sweet on Cowbell, but we may just be convinced to give Vizards a try given the recent posts.)

          Glass 'o wine, eggplant/crabmeat appetizer, and a special dessert sounds great for my first of 7 nights for T-giving week. It is the night before T-day, so I might want to take it easy. The rest of my food itinerary is **amazing** and I will share my experiences while in town.

          I am so appreciative of the NOLA chowhounders -- you have turned my world around.

          1. re: karendor
            m
            midcity Nov 14, 2011 05:15 PM

            Please do post if you go--I am curious to hear more about this place.

            1. re: midcity
              karendor Nov 14, 2011 07:14 PM

              Will do. Here is the rest of my itinerary. All are first visits except as noted....

              23 Wednesday night: Vizards
              24 Thursday: Thanksgiving with friends....And “Da Track”
              25 Friday lunch: Casamento's, second visit.
              25 Friday dinner: Herbsaint
              26 Saturday lunch: The Joint in Bywater for BBQ.
              26 Saturday dinner: Patois, second visit
              27 Sunday brunch: Dante’s Kitchen
              27 Sunday dinner: Martinique Bistro
              28 Monday lunch: Cochon Butcher
              28 Monday dinner: TBD, we may need a food break!
              29 Tuesday lunch: TBD, Visit my daughter's school in the Treme
              29 Tuesday dinner: MiLa
              30 Heading home :(

              -----
              Casamento's Restaurant
              4330 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70115

              Herbsaint
              701 Saint Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70130

              Cochon Butcher
              930 Tchoupitoulas, New Orleans, LA 70130

              1. re: karendor
                b
                Brfoodie Nov 15, 2011 06:07 AM

                You have a great plan and I would suggest that you keep Vizards on the list. The place is intimate and the food was very good. Small plates are a thing of the past. My wife had the crab crusted redfish which was one of the best fish dishes that I have tasted. The chef is very talented and does the best roast chicken in town if you get a hankering for that. Enjoy.

                1. re: Brfoodie
                  b
                  bmoskowitz Nov 16, 2011 02:41 PM

                  Please do post your thoughts after you visit Vizard's. I'm in NOLA fairly often and have been to many of the well-known restaurants, but this hasn't been on my radar until reading about it here. The menu looks very good and it sounds like the chef is a pro. I look forward to hearing more about it.

                2. re: karendor
                  edible complex Nov 18, 2011 06:05 PM

                  if he still has the roast chicken, GET IT! it's been yrs since I've been and it is that memorable.

                  1. re: edible complex
                    karendor Nov 19, 2011 07:56 AM

                    Thanks, EC. Online menu shows roasted chicken w/rosemary au jus, roasted garlic, pomme frites, asparagus ....and they show a photo that looks pretty amazing:

                    http://vizards.net/Menu_%26_Wine_List...

                    I'll be there Wednesday, if all goes well with Southwest Airlines' flight the day before Thanksgiving :\

                    1. re: karendor
                      c
                      califkatie Nov 19, 2011 10:45 AM

                      i fly SWA from LAX all the time, so good flying! can't wait to hear your trip report.

          2. m
            mikey Nov 13, 2011 12:00 PM

            Don't listen to them. I love this restaurant. It is one of my top 10 in New Orleans. Also, please be aware that they have gone back to doing full dinners rather than small plates. Kevin Vizard makes the best creme brulee in the city. Also, his appetizer of eggplant with fresh lump crabmeat is one of my favorite dishes in New Orleans. Now, be prepared for a very small, intimate restaurant. It is also rather dressy. Located in uptown New Orleans, an area known for being a bit snooty, this place caters mostly to local swells. The fact that half of the people all know each other might turn others off as it is kind of clubby. Still, the owners could not be nicer and the waiters are excellent. Food is prepared to order so it can get just a bit slow. Just order a few appetizers and have some wine. I really love Vizards and would certainly choose it any day over a burger place like Cowbell which is very good but in comparison, I would pick creole food like that served at Vizards rather than hamburgers. Good luck. if you do end up going to Vizards, do write back. I hope you enjoy it.

            3 Replies
            1. re: mikey
              BayouTeche Nov 13, 2011 12:30 PM

              I'd say mikey summed it up nicely.

              1. re: mikey
                e
                expatorleanian Nov 13, 2011 01:54 PM

                Thank you. Agree about the eggplant and crabmeat app. And the chocolate/blue cheese dessert.

                We don't know anybody else dining there, and have never felt that we were outsiders.

                1. re: expatorleanian
                  c
                  califkatie Nov 13, 2011 01:57 PM

                  sounds like i should check it out.

              2. e
                expatorleanian Nov 12, 2011 05:25 PM

                Hate to say for sure, but it seems to me as though there are a very small number of bar spots, like < 4. Maybe you could call and ask. We've always made reservations and sat at a table.

                3 Replies
                1. re: expatorleanian
                  karendor Nov 12, 2011 08:00 PM

                  Thanks all! Will let you know if we end up there. And will give a full report of my 11/23 - 11/30 trip.

                  1. re: karendor
                    s
                    sanglier Nov 12, 2011 09:45 PM

                    Don't go. The menu is all small plates, even things that don't warrant it like a duck breast and beef dish. Kinda goofy. Should've left the menu alone. Not bad, just not worth going to vs. some many more worthy places.

                    1. re: sanglier
                      e
                      expatorleanian Nov 13, 2011 06:08 AM

                      We specifically went last time to order the winning Nocca student entree, and no one in the party ordered a different entree, but I don't consider what we served as a small plate at all. The time before that, we ordered salads and entrees. It just doesn't equate to a small dish place. Vega is all small plates, which we love, but vizard's? Not really. I hate to be argumentative, but I had to respond.

                2. e
                  expatorleanian Nov 12, 2011 04:22 PM

                  We've been there a couple of times in te last few months, and always enjoy it. I can't picture where you would have a glass of wine and small plates. It's rather a small place. There is adjacent off street parking, in case you so go.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: expatorleanian
                    c
                    califkatie Nov 12, 2011 04:31 PM

                    oh, so no bar area?

                  2. m
                    midcity Nov 12, 2011 04:19 PM

                    It's in my neighborhood, so I've been thinking of trying it, but I've just never heard anyone say anything positive about it. :(

                    1. karendor Nov 12, 2011 03:06 PM

                      Oh that's right: on 10/3/11 califkatie posted (on my Thanksgiving in NOLA post) that I need to go to Vizard's? and report back. It has an 88% like it on urbanspoon but most reviews look older. I am really unsure about this one,since no one seems to be speaking up in its defense. Maybe we will just do Coquette and sit at the bar. Will for sure let the board know what if we go.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: karendor
                        c
                        califkatie Nov 12, 2011 04:11 PM

                        i looked at urbanspoon and yelp to see but you are right, mostly older reviews. The menu looks good. one review said it was tapaslike. you could stop by for a glasss of wine and a few plates. it sure is off everyone's radar. okay, we'll await your review of your trip.

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