The restaurants in the lobby of Metairie's Heritage Plaza have changed often over the years, but they've all served the same purpose, as the primary power lunch location for the building's office workers, Ian McNulty writes. The newest restaurant, a Ralph Brennan endeavor called Heritage Grill, is the "default option when a $20 or $30 lunch is in order." With a menu created by Haley Bitterman (the executive chef for the Ralph Brennan Restaurant Group) and overseen by Steven Marsella, it mostly "lays out familiar Creole comfort food classics, but gives them enough flair to stand out in a crowd." While McNulty was generally pleased with his meal there, "There are some weak spots," including "shriveled crab claws" and "bland chicken and dumplings." [Gambit]
Tom Fitzmorris likes Louisiana Bistro but says it's inconsistent and has weak service: "The restaurant is not entirely consistent. Friends who are frequent diners report occasional nights when they wonder whether the restaurant has been sold, but then return to another brilliant dinner." Even though it has a "microscopic" kitchen, Austrian-born Chef Erik Mars pumps out a number of Creole classics "with enough twists to make it pop out from its neighbors." (Sounds a lot like what McNulty had to say about Heritage.) The best way to go, apparently, is with Chef Mars' Feed Me menu, a tasting menu of as many courses as you want. [CB]
Jenny Sklar went to Russell's Marina & Grill in Lakeview for their chicken and waffles, and liked what she had: Russell's is a Lakeview institution for breakfast that does a surprisingly impressive chicken and waffles, complete with "a spectacular maple-Dijon dipping sauce." The sauce is "maple syrup inspired" with hints of Dijon and horseradish and, according to Sklar, brings together the "kettle corn-esque salty-sweet dynamic." [OffBeat]
Carroll Trosclair went to Salu for small plates and loved it, minus the fact that it's "a noisy place": Located across the street from college-town and young adult favorite bar, the Bulldog, perhaps it's unsurprising that Trosclair reported Salu attracting "mostly young people". Going with a group of four, each person got a different small plate, "and each one drew rave reviews." Salu has a large menu and, according to Trosclair, is a comfortable place to sit for a spell and enjoy yourself. They also play Saints games on TV. [Examiner]
THE BLOGS: Haute Plates went to John Besh's August for the special COOLinary menu and enjoyed it. Through the month of August, the restaurant August is offering a special prix fixe menu as part of the city wide COOLinary shenanigans. And Andrea Morvant at Pistolette bemoaned the lack of beignets uptown, until she realized that the New Orleans Coffee & Beignet Company just opened off St Charles Avenue. The beignets were "better than Morning Call, and equal to Café du Monde."