Sugar, Spicer and everything nice

Foodies are probably familiar with chef Susan Spicer, a James Beard Award-winner, a guest on Bravo’s “Top Chef” in 2009 and even an inspiration for a character on HBO’s “Treme.” She opened Bayona in 1990 in a 200-year-old Creole cottage in the French Quarter before opening Herbsaint (which she later sold to Donald Link) and most recently Mondo in Lakeview.

Bayona, which is listed in the Zagat Guide for New Orleans as one of the top five restaurants in the city, features its regular menu of signature items, such as Sautéed Pacific Salmon with Choucroute and Gewurztraminer Sauce. For Thanksgiving, however, a special holiday menu will be available. Last year’s included Roast Turkey with sides, Country Ham, Honey-Miso BBQ Redfish, Milk Chocolate Malt Cheesecake with Cherry Sauce, Sparkling Pear Sorbet and much more.

Lunch is served Wednesday through Saturday 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.; dinner is served Monday through Thursday 6-9:30 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 6-10:30 p.m.

Information, 430 Dauphine St., 525-4455, www.bayona.com.



Galatoire’s food and philanthropy

Galatoire’s Restaurant has been a New Orleans staple since 1905, serving classic Creole and Louisiana dishes and contributing to the canon of New Orleans dining.

Lately, however, their focus has also been on the community. Galatoire’s established The Galatoire’s Foundation to benefit local causes, partnering with Habitat For Humanity’s Musician’s Village, the Young Leadership Council of New Orleans, Animal Rescue of New Orleans, the Louisiana Children’s Museum and more.

Galatoire’s other philanthropic endeavors have included their annual Mardi Gras and holiday table auctions, which have raised more than $500,000 for organizations such as the Historic New Orleans Collection and City Park since November 2005.

The fifth annual Christmas auction will be held on Nov. 29 at 5:30 p.m., with guests bidding on a reservation at a hard-to-come-by downstairs table at Galatoire’s on the Friday before Christmas.

As for its latest gastronomic endeavors, Galatoire’s is featuring a special menu for December called Les Fêtes du Reveillon 2010, featuring Sweet Potato Bisque or Duck and Andoille Gumbo; Wild Mushroom Beggar’s Purse or Beet Salad; Gulf Fish Court Bouillon or Braised Lamb Shank; and Banana Bread Pudding for a fixed price of $45 per person.

Information, 209 Bourbon St., 525-2021, www.galatoires.com.



PJ’s and the holidays

As the weather (finally) begins to cool, one New Orleans staple for keeping warm is a hot cup of coffee. With that in mind, PJ’s has several holiday specials, including new flavors of coffee and gift baskets.

“PJ’s Coffee is the perfect place for holiday shopping,” says Chuck Corcoran of PJ’s. “We do two dedicated lines of custom holiday coffee, Jingle Bells and Santa’s Blend.” The former is a blend of cinnamon and hazelnut and the latter is a chocolate cinnamon mix.

Other new flavors include Tiramisu and Wedding Cake; though non-flavored brews are also popular, including the French Roast, Viennese blend and cold-dripped iced coffee. (The cold dripping process creates a coffee that is two-thirds less acidic than traditionally brewed coffee.)

And for when the gift-giving season arrives, PJ’s offers several solutions for a coffee-lover. “PJ’s Coffee locations will also be offering a wide variety of gift baskets,” Corcoran says. “PJ’s gift certificates are also the perfect stocking stuffer.”

Information, various locations throughout the city; visit www.pjscoffee.com for details.

 

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