RESTAURANT INSIDER

Late last year, Chef Guillermo Peters re-opened Taqueros (1432 St. Charles Ave.). The food Peters once served at Coyoacan is only available during private dinners, but he has re-imagined Taqueros as a casual restaurant serving “botanos,” or snacks. Tacos filled with Cochinita Pibil, Al Pastor, Poblano Chicken and Chile Con Carne will run you $2.50, and grilled, marinated lamb chops cost $8.50. Peters has a knack for chiles, both fresh and dried; the Tequila Shrimp, served in a tequila-pasilla butter sauce; and the Chipotle steak – a petit filet served over an open-faced quesadilla with a tomato-chipotle sauce – are excellent examples. Specials are offered periodically.

The restaurant is open Tuesday through Saturday, starting at 6 p.m. Call 267-3032 for more information.

Sid-Mar’s Restaurant & Bar, below, has re-opened in Metairie (3322 N. Turnbull Drive). Sid-Mar’s operated for nearly 40 years in Bucktown, but after Katrina the land on which the restaurant stood was expropriated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. After several years in limbo, the restaurant’s owners, the Burgess family, decided to find a new location. Sid-Mar’s was always a local favorite for boiled, fried and broiled seafood, and Marion, Kent and Tina Burgess have maintained their standards at the new location. Poor boys, platters and sides, such as hush puppies, jambalaya and Italian salad, are still being served, albeit in a much different atmosphere.

Call the restaurant at 831-9541 to find out the latest.

The changes at M Bistro, the restaurant in the Ritz-Carlton New Orleans, go farther than the name. Chef Matt Murphy, at top, has developed relationships with numerous local farmers to secure first-class produce, dairy and meat.

The result isn’t only seen on the plate: The restaurant’s food costs have been reduced significantly as well. Further, what started as a way to recycle green plastic strawberry containers led to a “greening” of M Bistro’s kitchen.

Breakfast is served at M Bistro daily from 6 to 11 a.m.; lunch from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.; and dinner from 5:30 until 10:00 p.m. Call the Ritz for more information at 524-1331.

Astrid LaVenia and Jeri Fertel are set to open Mesón 923 (923 S. Peters St.). Chef Chris Lynch, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, will be the executive chef. Lynch has ample local experience, having spent five years at Emeril’s, the last two as Chef de Cuisine. The menu is in flux at the moment, but the intent is to present French, Spanish and New Orleans cuisine with a light touch. Having seen a first draft, I’m optimistic about the kind of food the restaurant will serve. Mesón 923 will also feature an affordable wine list, focused on obscure selections from France and Spain.

Initially the restaurant plans to open for dinner from Tuesday through Thursday from 5:30 to 10 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 5:30 to 11 p.m. By the time you read this, they may also be open on Monday evenings and for lunch.

Call the restaurant at 523-9300, or visit their Web site www.meson923.com.

Questions? Comments? Suggestions? E-mail Peyton: rdpeyton@gmail.com.

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