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The Longbranch (2005-07)


Mayhaw Man
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Well, you got a better candidate? No? Ok then. Read the review by Pableaux Johnson (I was there with him). The place is really good and will only get better. The owners are pros and have proven to be great people and even better citizens of our little town. I highly reccoment the place and the food.

It is, easily, the best place to eat within a hundred miles of New Orleans right now.

The Lonbranch-Fois Gras and Chainsaws. Would you like cracked pepper with that?

Pableaux's site has some interesting stuff about New Orleans and my home, Abita Springs

Thanks Pableaux. You are, in fact, the man.

Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sara Roahen has The Longbranch covered for Food and Wine

I have eaten a crazy number of meals there and I can attest to the fact that, even if the city was working full blast, pre Katrina, this place would be in the top 5 in a very short period of time (maybe now).

I had a piece of poached escolar (poached in a very flavorful olive oil) that was, hands down, one of the best fish courses that I have ever had the pleasure of eating. Just awesome.

So if you are in town temporarily, or here as a theiving contractor, or maybe an overworked FEMA worker or insurance adjuster, treat yourself to a swell meal. Lunch is only $20 for a three course meal, they have a brunch type deal on Sundays until 3, and regular evening service Wed through Sat with lunch on those same days. Go eat. It's good. Watch out for log trucks though, there are lots around. Don't worry about hitting any cable guys, however, as there don't seem to be any to hit.

Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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Knocked out brunch kind of thing today (Sunday). Grits and grillades (the grits were crazy rich and delicious) with a perfectly fried egg served on the grits. The boys had a take on steak and eggs that was, well, as good as it's going to get in the steak and egg world. Robin had a beautiful piece of grilled lemon fish and everyone, all of us, 4 orders dammit, had the rice pudding for dessert. It's simply one of the best rice puddings that I have ever had and a nice switch from the usual bread pudding on every menu in New Orleans (or, I guess, it used to be, anyway).

Oh yeah, Allison had concocted some kind of flatbread.cornbread that existed in a texture world pretty close to a piece of corn cake and in the flavor world just like a great piece of cornbread (unsweet, of course, as all cornbread should be).

Just for the record, Slade said the nightime business has been great, pretty much all that they hoped for, but lunch has been a bit slow-so go eat lunch. You won't do any better for the money, anywhere in the South.

Cheerleading? Damn right. There aren't many bright spots down here in hurricane hell and I happen to have one of the brightest just around the corner from my house, improbably located in a tiny town in the hurricane torn Gulf South. But all of that aside, it's a great place to eat food and you would be hard pressed to find a more comfortable place in as beautiful a setting.

Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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a great piece of cornbread (unsweet, of course, as all cornbread should be).

Amen to that.

I'll have to add this to my list of place to visit when we go home this winter. I plan on a trip to New Orleans similar to one we took to NY in October, 2001 -- go just to drop some cash (meager though our contribution may be) into the economy.

Bridget Avila

My Blog

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  • 2 months later...

Brett goes to the Northshore. And really likes what he sees.

Who wouldn't? Great, truly great food put together by really nice folks.

And a really great explanation on why someone would just up and leave a very hot (though tiny) new York restaurant:

"We're Southerners," Slade said. "And I'm sick of fishing in the East River."

Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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Okay, Longbranch will be at the top of my must list when I head that way in January.

It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

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  • 3 months later...

From a recent trip:

The beautiful Longbranch hotel and restaurant:

gallery_7404_2695_1627.jpg

The complimentary white-bean puree, served with cornbread. Delicious!

gallery_7404_2695_59993.jpg

Chocolate pancakes for dessert

gallery_7404_2695_42511.jpg

And rice pudding with strawberries

gallery_7404_2695_47492.jpg

Food is a convenient way for ordinary people to experience extraordinary pleasure, to live it up a bit.

-- William Grimes

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Sara is my better half. The meal we had at Longbranch last weekend was the best of our trip to NOLA, although we also ate well at August, Jacques-Imo's, Drago's, Felix's Uptown, and Herbsaint.

Allison and Slade are doing something special at Longbranch, bringing it home from appetizer to dessert. Longbranch's wine list is also reasonably priced and well thought, with a heavy nod toward Europe.

I rarely get excited by a salad, but Longbranch's current one is beautifully done. The foie gras appetizer may be the best one I've ever eaten. And the flavors in the perfectly cooked beef filet were in perfect unison.

Here is Longbranch's current menu--not including desserts which should not be overlooked.

Appetizers

Oyster Rockefeller "Deconstructed" -14-

Pan Roasted Sweetbreads, Truffle Grits, Glazed Bacon Lardons -13-

Covington Market Lettuces, Organic Sprouts, Louisiana Meyer Lemonette -8-

Salt Cured Foie Gras, Louisiana Strawberry Jam, Warm Country Biscuit -18-

White Asparagus Soup, Asparagus Marmalade, Louisiana Crawfish -12-

Blue Crab Stuffed Tomato, Creole Remoulade, Avocado Mousse -15-

Entrees

Smoked Pepper Dusted Filet of Beef, Parsley Potato Confit, Shallot Sauce -30-

Filo Crusted Dover Sole, Fondue of Carrots and Leeks, Sweet Red Pepper Jus -32-

Wild Striped Bass, Caramelized Artichokes, Tomato Confit, Spicy Lobster Sauce -26-

Poached Foie Gras Stuffed Duck Breast, Scallions, Toasted Quinoa, Hibiscus Syrup -29-

Rabbit Saddle "AU Boudin", Cabbage Choucroute, Creole Mustard Jus -28-

Liam

Eat it, eat it

If it's gettin' cold, reheat it

Have a big dinner, have a light snack

If you don't like it, you can't send it back

Just eat it -- Weird Al Yankovic

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 1 year later...

The Times-Picayune confirms the closure. According to the article, the food was too fancy for the Northshore and the service wasn't fancy enough:

"We always were very proud of the product we put out," Vines-Rushing said.

Nevertheless, the chefs struggled to find an audience large enough to sustain their business. Vines-Rushing said while colleagues in New Orleans reported receiving nothing but love from customers after reopening post-storm, some Longbranch diners were alienated by the ambition and unfamiliar composition of the dishes, the casual nature of the service or the perceived discrepancy between the two.

"We've had so many customers who really love what we do," Vines-Rushing said, "but we just didn't find enough."

They're talking about opening a place across the lake.

Edited by TAPrice (log)

Todd A. Price aka "TAPrice"

Homepage and writings; A Frolic of My Own (personal blog)

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