Chef Baruch Rabasa, best known for his stints turning out incredible food at shortlived Warehouse District beauty Meson 923 and Irish Channel favorite Atchafalaya, is now the executive chef of sultry Marigny den The Franklin, reports Ian McNulty. Not too surprising as Rabasa started popping up in the Marigny restaurant in 2014 with his popular Sunday brunch operation Chilango NOLA, but a very welcome change for the restaurant that's had a rather shaky year including the recent death of co-owner Jason Baas.
Rabasa brings Latin flavor and a load of awesome new dishes to the new dinner menu. Here's what McNulty has gobbled up so far:
Buttery-tasting slices of hamachi, the nightly crudo recently, were ignited by aji amarillo sauce as thick as caramel and flickering with chile heat. The frisée salad is joined by guacamole puree and a chicken taquito to break apart in crispy chunks between the bitter greens. And the bacon-wrapped pork loin gets a roasted corn and poblano relish and hominy puree.
Grilled octopus and quail served with a savory bread pudding that's "imbued with flavors of Vietnamese pho" are also fair game. A few old menu favorites remain, including the crab stuffed deep fried avocado and oysters galore.
Chilango NOLA brunch will continue every Sunday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and The Franklin's new dinner menu is now available nightly at 6 p.m. Get you some.