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Three Beans for Refined Southern Charmer Purloo

It's Chef Ryan Hughes' "most ambitious" venture yet.

Sara Essex Bradley/Purloo

This week Brett Anderson takes on Purloo at the Southern Food And Beverage Museum, where chef Ryan Hughes "lets the food do the talking":

Hughes repeatedly (and refreshingly) showcases seasonal produce without reducing it to a vehicle for pork. Soft lettuces hold lacey strands of pickled Vidalia onions and steamy-crisp hush puppies. Roasted beets are gorgeous, paired with cauliflower giardiniera, celery leaves and escarole; a long buttermilk cheese straw, a touch stale on one visit, came balanced over the top. A perfectly pan-seared drum fillet was nearly outclassed by its supporting items: creamy, cardamom-scented grits, artichoke barigoule and more of those fried pickles.

Don't sleep on the she-crab soup, "the product of expert stock-making." Nor should you skip dessert: the "classically southern roster of sweets enhanced by chefly expertise" includes fried lemon curd handpies, chicory au lait pot du crème, and homey chess pie.

Purloo

1504 Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard, New Orleans, LA 70113, USA

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