ALEX PATOUT'S RESTAURANT


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Voted best Creole restaurant
by Where Magazine Readers

Voted best Creole restaurant
by N.O. Magazine Readers

Award of Excellence
by Wine Spectator

Alex Patout - "One of America's 25 hot, new chefs"
by Food & Wine Magazine

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Chef Alex Patout

It's been a busy time for the fiery Cajun who was named "One of America's 25 hot, new chefs" by Food & Wine Magazine and was called "a tyrant, genius chef" by Esquire. In the same year he opened on the North Shore and coped with the fire, he moved Alex Patout's Louisiana Restaurant from its longtime Royal Street location in the French Quarter to 720 St. Louis Street.

The bayou- born Patout was schooled in classic Cajun cookery in his hometown of New Iberia. His ancestors left the sugar cane business to open their first family restaurant in 1918. But Patout knew there was more to life than the Cajun mainstays like "jambalaya, crawfish pie and file' gumbo."

After moving to New Orleans, he became enamored with the Creole cooking legacy that ruled the city for centuries. And he was surprised by the compatibility of the two distinctive but neighboring cuisines. "Both Cajun and Creole cooking incorporate a lot of slow-cooked 'pot' food." And he pointed out that both, even to the point of overlapping, make use of the abundance of fresh seafood harvested daily from all the lakes, bayous, swamps and nearby Gulf of Mexico.

When the chef first opened Alex Patout's Louisiana Restaurant at 221 Royal Street more than 15 years ago, the menu was weighted heavily with Cajun classics like Rabbit Sauce Piquant and Smothered Roast Duck. Over time, the Creole influences have become increasingly visible, with New Orleans classics like Crabmeat Imperial and Shrimp Remoulade. Perhaps that marriage (and dichotomy of menu) was consummated in the year 2000 when New Orleans Magazine named his restaurant "Best Creole Restaurant" and Where Magazine named it "Best Cajun Restaurant." But the accolades for Patout's cooking have come continuously since his first plate of Crawfish Etouffee. Esquire Magaine said he was one of the "men under 40 who are changing America" and The James Beard Foundations said he was a "Who's Who of Cooking in America" as far back as 1987.