Chef Susan Spicer's French Quarter landmark Bayona turns 25 this month, and Chris Waddington has the low down on the big celebration. Tomorrow night, April 8, the restaurant will offer a menu of Spicer's greatest hits—"cream of garlic soup, veal sweetbreads with lemon caper butter, chile-rubbed Louisiana duck breast in house-made mole" are a few of her beloved signature dishes—with seatings at 6, 7 and 8 p.m. The dinner is $85/person with more details here.
As for chef Spicer, who has spent the past 25+ years earning a spot among New Orleans' most regarded chefs of all time, she's helped launch the careers of chefs Donald Link, John Harris and Aaron Burgau among many others, penned a cookbook, preempted the post-Katrina farm-to-table revolution, and only recently traded out her service clogs for some nerdier orthopedic shoes. Here's a taste of what she has to say about her success:
"I put my blessing on each dish and every plate before it leaves the kitchen. It's a good job for a chef who is a control freak— and that's how I am about my food. I have always been a hands-on chef, and if that's not the smartest approach to the business, I can live with it. My regulars want me here, in the kitchen."