The end of the road for one seafood destination in New Orleans has given way to the beginning of an ambitious seafood market and restaurant with a potentially game-changing approach. Porgy’s Seafood is opening in the former home of Bevi Seafood Co., reports the Times-Picayune/New Orleans Advocate, from the partners behind two of the city’s top seafood restaurants: Carmo in the Warehouse District and Seafood Sally’s in Uptown.
After what appeared to be a temporary closure, 8-year-old Bevi Seafood on Carrollton Avenue has closed for good, sold to Caitlin Carney and Marcus Jacobs, the chefs and couple who own Seafood Sally’s and Marjie’s Grill, and Christina and Dana Honn, the chefs and couple behind Carmo. Porgy’s, which is expected to open in a few months, sounds like a one-of-a-kind spot for New Orleans. The partners aim to expand residents’ access to Gulf seafood from the typical selection of shellfish to include a greater variety of fin fish like amberjack, mackerel, blue runner, and of course, porgy.
It will operate on a smaller scale than many local seafood markets, with Honn saying its aim is to provide an outlet for fishers that may have just five to 10 of a certain type of fish, for example. Honn has long been known for his close relationships with regional fishmongers and involvement in sustainable fishing movements, founding the Tropical Foodways Institute and BioCultural Institute and serving as a member of Audubon’s Gulf United for Lasting Fisheries and Slow Fish, among other organizations. He’s written op-eds about legislation related to the Gulf and advocated for conservation laws to protect national fisheries before Congress.
While newer to the game, Carney and Jacobs, who opened Marjie’s Grill in 2017 and Seafood Sally’s in 2021, are also known for utilizing a wider-than-average range of Gulf seafood on their menus. Honn and Jacbos got to know one another after frequently competing for uncommon Gulf fish from Anna Marie Shrimp, a longtime Louisiana fishery founded by Lance Nacio. “Sometimes Marcus or I would trade off going down to pick up at the docks, when Lance couldn’t make it up,” Honn tells Eater. “We’d deliver to each other, as well as Mike Nelson over at GW Fins. Since then, we’ve been involved in some of the same organizations, like Audubon GULF.”
Despite its lofty goals, Porgy’s knows its audience. It will serve familiar boiled seafood seasonally, like Bevi, and also offer gumbo, po’ boys, and local oysters. It will have a full bar and cocktail menu, so customers can grab a drink while picking up their fresh catches. Bevi was well-known for its rotating fresh fruit daiquiris, so it wouldn’t come as a surprise if the foursome continued that tradition as well.
Porgy’s Seafood Market is expected to open this fall at 236 N. Carrollton Avenue.