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Restaurant Insider: New for the New Year

Happy New Year, kids. I hope you have all recovered from whatever you did for the recent holidays. My 10-year-old stayed up later than I did on New Year’s Eve, but I suppose some of you engaged in debauchery?

Root (200 Julia St.) opened in November in the space formerly occupied by Feast. The restaurant continues the collaboration between chef Phillip Lopez and general manager/partner Maximilian Ortiz, who previously worked together at Rambla. Lopez is among the more adventurous chefs in town, and the plates he’s putting out at Root are full of contrasting textures, flavors and, in many cases, temperatures. The Korean fried chicken wings and the cohiba-smoked scallops are must-try dishes. Root is open for lunch Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and for dinner from 4 to 11 p.m. Monday through Wednesday evenings and from 4 p.m. until 2 a.m. Thursday through Saturday. Call 252-9480 for more information.

In November, Rouses opened the first full-service supermarket in the CBD in decades (701 Baronne St.). The store is located in a former auto dealership, but you wouldn’t know that from the renovation. The 33,000 or so square feet of shopping area is packed full of high-end products, huge butcher and seafood selections and a quantity and diversity of prepared foods to rival any place in town. You can contact them by calling 227-3838.

Not far away, brothers Beau and Nic Nesbit have opened Poeyfarre Market (925 Poeyfarre St.). It isn’t on the same scale as Rouses, but the two operations share a focus on locally produced prepared foods; folks like Nolavore, Rare Cuts, Sucre, the Green Fork and de la Luz have products available in the cold cases at Poeyfarre. The wine and liquor come from Lirette Selections, and you’ll find local breweries represented as well. The rest of the market skews towards the “health food” end of the retail spectrum, with a lot of brands you’d expect to see at places like Whole Foods. It is a great option for folks who live or work in the neighborhood, and there are several tables on the deck in the front of the store for those who want to sit down and eat some of the salads, sandwiches and other ready-to-eat selections. Poeyfarre Market is open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Call 522-5252 to learn more.

Chef Greg Picolo headed the tiny kitchen at the Bistro at Maison de Ville for many years, and he was briefly without a job when it closed. He recently landed at Redemption, which is housed in the former church at 3835 Iberville Street that was once Christian’s restaurant. It’s a beautiful space that should give Picolo a larger canvas on which to display his talents. It’s a shame that the Bistro is apparently gone for good, but those of us who enjoyed his food are glad chef Picolo has found a new home. Call Redemption at 305-3570 to make a reservation.

Café Adelaide (located in the Loews Hotel at 300 Poydras St.) has named Chris Barbato executive chef. Barbato spent the last seven years as chef de cuisine at Commander’s Palace, and his culinary philosophy – modern adaptations of Creole classics – should work well in the restaurant’s elegant dining rooms. The restaurant sports one of the best bars in the city in the Swizzle Stick, and hopefully Barbato’s tenure will bring the restaurant’s reputation to the same level. Café Adelaide is open for breakfast seven days a week from 7 to 10 a.m.; for lunch Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.; and for dinner Monday through Saturday from 6 to 9:30 p.m. You can reach the restaurant at 595-3300.

Bistreaux, the semi-casual restaurant in the Maison Dupuy hotel, has opened a second location in neighboring Jefferson Parish. The new spot is in the New Orleans Marriott Metairie in the Lakeway Center (3838 N. Causeway Blvd.). The restaurant takes over from Bistro 38, which never quite caught on. Jason Schwartz, a Florida native, is the executive chef, and his food combines the traditions of New Orleans and his home State. Bistreaux Metairie is open seven days from 6:30 to 11 p.m. To make a reservation, call 832-3838.

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