The Times-Pic critic Brett Anderson has just named the top 12 dishes he ate in New Orleans this year, and while the world might be expecting a heavy dose of rich Creole cooking, this list is actually a pretty good indication that New Orleans 'remarkable' dining scene is continuing to change.
Middle Eastern, haute Mexican, Cuban, and even Southwestern-influenced dishes make Anderson's list this year, alongside a few restaurants that continue to push the boundaries of traditional Creole, Cajun, and French cuisine, a couple local seafood stalwarts, and a few unexpected gems. Behold the dishes you need to get your hands on now:
- Falafel, 1000 Figs: "No one's orbs of seasoned legume batter can quite touch the ones served at this sunny, slender cafe. After the crunch comes a burst of flavor: green herbs laced with cinnamon absorbing a spill of tahini. Look for local chefs to continue drawing from a similar palette in the year ahead."
- Fried Pickles, Cosimo's
- Green Chile Cheeseburger, Atomic Burger
- Eggs Hussarde, Brennan's
- Lechon Asado, Churros: "I've frequented this Cuban strip-mall restaurant over the years mainly to binge on its black beans and pressed sandwiches. It pains me now to realize how many times I missed out on this terrific dish of roast pork, delivered in a slick of its own juices, fragrant with its marinade of oranges and garlic."
- Oyster on the half shell, Borgne & Peche
- Oyster fennel soup, High Hat Cafe
- Pita bread, Shaya: "Alon Shaya, this year's food world answer to Kendrick Lamar."
- Pumpkin blossoms, La Provence
- Roast beef po' boy, Bevi Seafood
- Seared scallops at Gautreau's: "Set artfully on a plate with poblano crema, corn, pickled onions and queso fresco, the two browned, sweet-fleshed scallops also amounted to the finest local expression of the haute Mexican cuisine that is captivating much of the rest of the country."
- Shrimp & Butternut Squash Bisque at Brigtsen's