Monday, November 29, 2010
My first mission as Food Godmother: Café Adelaide
Last year, John and I enjoyed our Thanksgiving at Muriel's Jackson Square and had a fabulous dinner on top of a beautiful day spent in an unusually quiet French Quarter. This year, we invited another couple and their darling daughter to join us for dinner at Café Adelaide. This is my 62nd cheat and I am down 76 pounds, having lost one of the pounds I gained last week.
John and I appeared for our 4 p.m. reservations to find Dani, Saeed and Posie patiently awaiting our arrival in the lobby of the Loews New Orleans Hotel, which is where Café Adelaide and the Swizzle Stick Bar are housed. We were escorted to our table in their comfortable dining room whose decor (intentionally) echoed the elegance of the 1950's.
Before long, our appetizers arrived accompanied by warm, fresh French bread. Though it might seem difficult, all five of us managed to share two very different dishes; Hudson Valley Foie Gras Grillades & Grits and Blue Crab Pound Cake. The "pound cake" turned out to be a dense, sweet cornbread draped in a Port-Salut cheese "icing" with truffled crab claws on top. It was delectable and rich with the flavor of crab. My only complaint would be the quantity...I wanted more!
Posie, our 11-month-old dining companion was delighted by the foie gras and considering my general dislike of liver, so was I! The meat simply melted in my mouth and meshed well with the creamy grits doused in a port wine sauce. That little girl is eating far better than I was at her age. Posie's mother Dani informed me that it was my responsibility to see that Posie learned how to eat well. Mission accepted!
We had just begun sipping when our entrées arrived, served all at once by three different servers. I love this kind of extra-special care when dining, to me it's one of many signs the restaurant really does have your best interests at heart and good service (along with fabulous cuisine) is a top priority.
Dani's Creole Cream Cheese Gnudis were fluffy and cheesy with wild mushrooms and a light, grilled tomato consommé, a delightful dish even though I had expected her to order something a bit heavier. John's Pecan Smoked Redfish-Soybean Cassoulet was "off the hook" with a house-made andouille encased shrimp that he was reluctant to share, but strangely enough, I thought the white beans stole the show.
We finished off our meal with two lovely desserts, a "Hot Chocolate" Pound Cake and Praline Pot de Creme. Both were wonderful, but for the first time ever I preferred the thick, creamy custard over the dense, rich chocolate. Hey, it had to happen sooner or later! Posie just happened to agreed wholeheartedly...
Written by Kim Ranjbar