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A Neighborhood Joint... - Chris DeBarr
chefcdb
chefcdb
A Neighborhood Joint...
When we designed Serendipity, we had a few set ideas that we wanted to showcase about our style of dining here in New Orleans. First off, we wanted to make a glamorous BUT AFFORDABLE place, with great cocktails & an adventurous wine list. Ed Diaz has brought his classic punch riffs & timeless sense of the role of booze in New Orleans dining to a stunning & beautiful bar. Just like at Bar Tonique, the sun never sets on his exquisite hand-crafted cocktails that share nuances of how ice, old school spirits, and flourishes of bartender alchemy (bitters, phosphate, fizzy in house tonic water, etc) can elevate a drink into elixirs of sheer pleasure. Most of our Serendipity cocktails are just $8, and believe me -- they will get you focused on living life properly with that relaxed, New Orleans vibe of appreciating the finer things in life.

A good cocktail does indeed ease you into the meal, and my job as the chef of Serendipity is to seduce you with unexpected magic at the table. I love creating our precisely just-so creative food, but again, we strive to make it affordable. I sometimes worry that because writers always talk about my relentless, thoughtful sense of adventure that folks will think that we are expensive. They see we have white tablecloths & think that we might hook a vacuum hose to their wallets or purses, thus we get saved for 'Special Occasion' Dining. Now I love having fun with my guests on their Big Night Out (whether a birthday or anniversary, etc), but we believe in keeping our prices reasonable so that when "you just don't feel like cooking" that night you can slide into Serendipity for an entertaining bite and a stress busting glass of wine. We don't mind cuz we aim to really be 'a neighborhood joint' that makes life easier & more fun for our people.

Now that we are opening for weekday lunches from Mon-Fri, we can show y'all what we mean by being 'a neighborhood joint' for Mid-City & for my entire beloved city of New Orleans. We will expand our ideas of fun lunches, often with the notion of 'having a picnic' guiding my inspiration. Sandwiches, cool salads, reliably entertaining soups, and who knows what else we might put forth for a lunch. It seems that Mid-City has kept its blue collar sensibility intact, so we look fwd to meeting our neighbors in the shops, offices, and stores that dot the maps in Mid-City. We simply want to keep our American Can location popping & buzzing & ready to restore a bit of happiness in a hectic working week. Check out the lunch menu on our Facebook.com/SerendipityNOLA site for all the lowdown on lunch...and much besides as we grow our neighborhood joint.

I also really enjoy getting with our guests to explore the marvelous worlds of terroir & great wines from real vineyards. We have begun to find some killer wines from here, there, and everywhere...a beautiful New York Finger Lakes Cab Franc & a spot-on super dry Sparkling Riesling from Pfalz, Germany lead the charge of stunning, eclectic beauty on our list. Delicious wine is such a boon companion because balanced yet unexpected wines reveal such great flavors next to our food. The sense of adventure that we bring here @Serendipity makes life fully lived in Technicolor pleasure--at least, that's my aim as a chef & lover of libations. We want to bewitch, charm, reveal the daring, and tell the sweetest secrets of fun dining. Fine dining we leave to the stuffed shirts trying to extract 'money for nothing' but the privileged. We dig our Nola, in all its noisy, crazy, spectacular extravagances that color our ordinary days so unforgettably. We are gonna keep bringing that sense of joy to the table, plate by plate, sip by sip, so that together we can celebrate our beautiful city.

So for sure, when it is a special event like New Year's Eve (...and by all means, see the previous post & come swing in the New Year with us!) we go ruthlessly big, and on any given night, if you are hankering for 'The Show' we can do that! But honestly, I dig just as much that sense of why not head to Serendipity for some soul refreshment rather than just settling for pizza or casual mediocrity. My babies, if you wise...we can stretch those dollars just as far as a pizza place without much trouble, so come on bye on a weekday for supper or lunch. I gotcha on that too, so don't be fooled by thinking I'm a fancy chef. We cook for the people of New Orleans and all those visitors who love our beguiling city.

Just wanna make sure you know that we are serious about serving as 'a neighborhood joint' for Mid-City & Bayou St. John. Come see us at 3700 Orleans Ave (next to the public library in the American Can Bldg) or give us a call at 504.407.0818 if ya feel like making a reservation...See y'all this week for lunch or our regular suppertime mischief!

Open for lunch Mon-Fri from 11:30-2:30
Supper starts at 6 pm, but the bar opens at 5 pm, with supper until 10 on weekdays, until 11 pm on Fri & Sat and (for just awhile, after tonight's Sunday ends) closed on Sundays.

Thanks for all the support! I was just stopped this afternoon by a veteran Nola cop, not cuz I was in trouble (thankfully!) but because he recognized me from being on Chopped. He said I was among the most creative chefs he'd seen on the show but he liked it even more that I represented the spirit of Nola so well. Gotta tell you, it perked up my spirits, not to be recognized from a TV show, but because my passion for cooking in New Orleans made me stand out! That was a mighty fine compliment, and it's that fire for making the citizens of Nola happy, satisfied, and proud that motivates me everyday! I am a lucky so&so because my krewe believes in our food & our city together just as much, and with them riding shotgun alongside me there's no shortage of pleasure we can create for dedicated New Orleans diners! Try us...