Mat and Naddie’s in New Orleans, LA

rack of lamb

Mat and Naddie’s
937 Leonidas St.
New Orleans, LA

Whenever possible, I try to make dinner reservations ahead of time if I know I will be dining out on a Saturday night. Usually if I don’t call early enough, the restaurant will tell me that they are completely booked. Well not the case with Mat and Naddie’s! When I called, they still had a few availabilities so when I picked up Joe I told him to rush into the car so we could make our dinner reservation.

duck confit salad

Joe and I are so predictable, just from glancing at the menu, I already knew what two appetizers we would most likely order and sure enough when the waiter came around, we got the duck confit salad and crabcakes. Joe asked if we should try something new but I said why mess with something good? PS. im also a super picky eater, so once I find dishes I like, I tend to stick to them like glue…. I thought the salad was surprisingly delightful, and I say surprisingly because all the duck was hidden underneath the lettuce and so when you put your fork down for a bit of lettuce and come back up with a bunch of other delicious treasures like succulent duck, what other word can you use to describe it?

crabcakes

The crabcakes were warm and crisp on the outside. They smelled delicious! A mouthwatering combination of ocean and bread. WHO DOES NOT LOVE THE SMELL OF BREAD? you know what i’m talking about! it’s the same reason y0u all of a sudden get hungry when you’re walking on a block with a bakery. BAM! BREAD SMELL!

rack of lamb

Joe ordered the rack of lamb but he didn’t realize it would come out as lollipops of meat (I don’t know why because the description clearly said it would). He let me try one and it was delicious!

filet mignon

I had the filet mignon. It was melt-in-your-mouth-good! I have a few friends who are vegetarians and I say, hats off to you guys. I don’t know how you do it. I don’t think I could ever cheat on Meat with Veggies. =)

I think this place is a gem regardless of its location. When I was parking, I saw a security guard standing out front and thought, oh geez! please God let me find a parking spot within sight of the security guard. Let me explain, this area by the riverfront tends to be dodge-y at night and I’m already super paranoid….And it doesn’t help that we get emails from Tulane Security saying a younger person got mugged at gunpoint in this area at 3 AM (ok, why would you be out here at 3 AM anyways?). I figured since it was 6:30 PM, parking around the corner from the restaurant would be fine but I admit, after dinner, I did make joe join me in a light jog back to the car because I realized I was holding around 3G’s worth of camera gear around my neck.

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Gautreau in New Orleans

Gautreau
1728 Soniat St.
New Orleans, LA

the outside

The restaurant is in a residental area. We drove right by it! It really blends in with its surroundings.

ambiance

The ambiance was clean and fancy but not uptight. The maitre’d was very friendly as he escorted us to our table and welcoming us to New Orleans. I think they get a lot of out of towners because we saw a town of elderly couples arrive in taxi cabs.  Despite the wait for our menus, I would say overall the service was very quick, efficient and friendly.

drinks

I started off with a cosmopolitan and Joe started off with a gin and tonic. Our waittress doubled as the bar tender. We weren’t impressed with the drinks. Probably not worth the $25.

duck confit

we split the duck confit appetizer with beluga lentils fig and sherry vinegar. the duck was so moist and juicy. the skin was very crispy! a little on the sweet side but very delicious.

grouper

the sauteed grouper with zucchini, carrots, yellow squash, and truffle bleurre blanc which is your basic butter based sauce. the grouper was flaky and flavorful. the truffle butter sauce had a tang to it but very good.

black angus filet

the black angus filet wasn’t as tender as I had hoped but it was still a nice piece of meat. the medium rare was more medium than rare which was fine by me. It was served with gnocchi, mushroom, spinach in bordelaise sauce. The gnocchi was overcooked for my tastes. The bordelaise sauce was very heavy with the dry red wine base but overall I found it to be quite savory.

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Bouchon Bistro in Yountville, CA

Bouchon Bistro
6534 Washington Street.
Yountville, CA 94599

Bouchon restaurant

I was super excited to have the opportunity to eat at Thomas Keller restaurant. I picked Bouchon for the casual feel that it seemed to have. The 2 Michelin stars was also very appealing.

pistacchio

the pistachios were  salty. just enough to get the palette geared up. It also came out with this unique braided bread, it was unique because it was thinly braided whereas most of the ones I’ve eaten are chunky thick breads.

bread

the bread was quite crunchy and tough to chew. but it was pretty good.

duck confit

The duck confit was tender on the inside and crispy on the outside.  The texture was juicy and the dish had its innate duck taste. It came out on a celery puree. The celery actually enhanced the duck flavor.

crispy soft shell crab

The crispy soft shell crab was alright. We had heard it was a signature appetizer and so we had ordered it but was very similar to other soft shell crab dishes that I’ve had.

lamb meat

The lamb meat was literally falling off the bone.  The innate lamb flavor wasn’t overwhelming and the marinade was very well done. There was a ton of meat which is great for guys.

flat iron steak

I had the flat iron steak which I heard was another staple on the menu. The steak had some sort of caramelized onion compote on top with garlic butter on top of that. What a heavenly combination! The meat was prepared medium rare as per the chef’s recommendation, which I usually don’t like because it bleeds but this steak did not bleed even though it was medium rare. It was easy to chew and appreciate the other flavors on the palette.

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