New Orleanians have been doing the happy dance since news first broke that Top Chef Season 11 runner up Nina Compton is moving to town to open her very first restaurant. Well, twerk on, cheftestapant groupies. Turns out the rumors about her Warehouse District location appear to be true. Todd Price reports that Compton will in fact be owner and executive chef of a still-unnamed restaurant with a gastropub-vibe inside the new Old No. 77 Hotel & Chandlery (535 Tchoup near Poydras) from West Coast hotel empire Provenance Hotels. The restaurant will open this summer. Per a press release:
She will channel the delectable diversity of her culinary background while incorporating the rich food traditions for which her newly-adopted home of New Orleans is rightly famous.
Compton hails from St. Lucia, so she brings a Caribbean flare, but also an Italian influence which she honed running the kitchen at Scarpetta in South Beach. So... 'diversity' indeed. Compton describes her menu inspiration as "eclectic" but with an emphasis on local ingredients and products.