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John Besh

Going to New Orleans for a long weekend in July and want to try a John Besh restaurant. I love great food, but I am not one for stuffy and formal. I like a lot of energy, and I want to feal comfortable in jeans or a sundress. Which one would be right for me. Thanks in advance for all of your suggestions.

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  1. Sounds like Domenica. Service can be inconsistent, but the food has never disappointed. Casual too. Happy hour, half off drinks & pizza.

    1. Doesn't he also own Luke? It's a lot of fun, not stuffy at all. Domenica is Italian, Luke is more mittel European, which is where he had his training. Nice raw bar too. http://www.lukeneworleans.com/

      1. Either Domenica or Luke, plus Borgne has been getting good reviews. As whs says, Domenica's italian [have only ever had their happy-hour pizza, which was great], and Luke's more a bistro. Borgne is Besh's new seafood restaurant. Although if you're up to packing one somewhat formal outfit, August's prix-fixe lunch is an amazing deal.

        1. Now, I must be an iconoclast, as I think that you should go to Restaurant August. It is a tad more "formal," then the others, BUT it is NOT "stuffy." A jacket for the gentlemen would be appropriate, but ties would be optional.

          Chef Besh rather "turns loose" with the Chef's Tasting Menus, and they are well worth the trip.

          Most of all, enjoy,

          Hunt

          12 Replies
          1. re: Bill Hunt

            Go to August for lunch (m-f). It is less formal in the afternoon. A sundress will be perfect. Don't restrict yourself to just one Besh rest. Domenica is really good. Clam and mushroom pizzas are delicious. Mushroom soup, lasagna bolognese, squash blossoms, veal chop...it's hard to go wrong. BTW, sundresses are the way to go, all day, everyday during our very hot, humid summers.

            1. re: JazzyB

              Dang! Here I traveled in my blazer, when a sundress would have sufficed... [Grin]

              Hunt

                1. re: LaLa

                  No jeans till probably November. I've worn sundresses (during the day) to Voodoo, and that's Halloween.

              1. re: Bill Hunt

                A sundress would certainly work at August. Go there for lunch.

                1. re: Bill Hunt

                  as for August's tasting menus -- two reviewers recently posted their reservations about it. i cant really infer whats going on, but its worth mentioning. one of the diners is experienced w/ tasting menus and had some good points (no cleanser, etc).

                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/853455
                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/853344

                  ...in that second post they also detail a phenomenal experience w/ R'evolution, citing it above their August experience. we've been for a few bites at Rev, but are quite interested in their tasting...

                  1. re: kibbles

                    Tasting menu lunchtime is usually good. Last had it in April. We both enjoyed.

                    1. re: kibbles

                      In July, we will be doing Restaurant August, and my intention is to do the tasting menu, but much will depend on what each offers. I will dutifully report.

                      Last time there, the wine selection was my only complaint. Things have changed.

                      Hunt

                      1. re: Bill Hunt

                        Sadly, Luke is a shadow of its former self. For years this was a consistent go-to for me and my family as we often host visitors to New Orleans and Luke was perfect for groups. For years it was a consistent fan favourite, in weekends that included all kinds of great stops. But that is all over now.

                        The service is at this point a joke. I personally had 3 bad experiences in a row before calling it quits. My brother held out for six strikes, but even he has given up now. One night they brought oysters after our entrees and rather than just apologizing or saying they were backed up the server began an argument, claiming this is how it is with oysters -- they come when they come. Twice we showed up and they didn't have our reservation in their system, or made it for the wrong time (like 11pm on a Sunday instead of 11am). Lost orders, wrong orders, mystery items on checks, sloppy attention to the table, long lapses with no service, etc. Perhaps most damning, the food isn't as good as it used to be. So it isn't even worth the service gaffes (slightly less egregious) with small groups anymore. I'm really sad about this.

                        1. re: johnstubbs

                          i work near by and go there often - have noticed the service is usually sub-par. figured its the besh training grounds...

                          1. re: kibbles

                            Really? I'd give that distinction to Domenica. Granted, service at Luke has always been slower than their oyster shucker and thats s....l...o...w.

                          2. re: johnstubbs

                            This is bad news indeed. We had planned on working Luke into the mix on our July trip, as we actually have several days "off" from familial duties.

                            Sorry to hear that.

                            Hunt

                    2. Thanks everyone! I thought I had settled on Luke, but the last couple of posts have changed my mind. I admit I am even more overwhelmed by all the choices (I know, everyone should have such problems :)) I am sure I will have a great time and have way too much great food while I am there. I notice no one mentioned his steak house in the Casino (my husband loves to gamble) is it any good???

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: mlmarek08

                        It 's good. It's also the most expensive steak in town with the strip running around $65. Mr. John's Steakhouse serves great USDA prime for much less. Thre is a " Living Social" deal available today priced at $25 for $50 certificate. Mr. John's is located on St. Charles streetcar line
                        It will be on your R heading uptown.

                        1. re: JazzyB

                          despite the two-day duration the Mr. John's coupon sold out in record speed. sadly for me.