Donald “Chef D” Smith initially planned to open at 1535 Basin Street by mid-October, but has stuck to weekend popup hours and catering out of the new location for the last few months. Smith said he thought King’s Day (January 6) would be fitting for a grand opening party - where he plans to feed attendees “like kings and queens” - on the house.
Located in a former club from Kermit Ruffins, the new location will have live music and a few new menu items like crab claws, in addition to its affordable New Orleans classics like red beans and rice with fried chicken, traditional Creole gumbo, and yaka mein.
Smith grew up on the West Bank, attended culinary school, and opened a restaurant serving New Orleans-style food in Oakland, California, returning to New Orleans a few years ago. He and his mother, Doris (Mama D) opened and closed restaurants in Gretna and Gentilly before operating the critically-acclaimed Chef D’z on on Broad Street for a year.
Regular hours will start Monday, January 7, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, until 9 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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