Several local restaurants have cooked up ways to help support service industry workers during the shut-down. Want to help? You'll find some delicious options.
- by Kim Ranjbar
If there's one thing to be said about New Orleanians (other than we sure know how to party) is our resilience in the face of adversity. If the levee failures of 2005 proved anything, it was that we are always there for one another, ready to lend a helping hand.
Along with other cities across the globe, New Orleans is once again facing a crisis. Not only is the pandemic spreading faster in Louisiana than almost anywhere else in the country, our tourist-based economy is taking a huge hit due to government mandates for all of our hospitality businesses to temporarily close. Thousands upon thousands of workers are unemployed with little hope of relief, but for the heartwarming generosity we're witnessing daily from others in the local industry.
Weekly Curbside Fish Fries
Currently in its second week, five local restaurants – GW Fins, Pêche Seafood Grill, Luke, Ralph’s on the Park, and Station 6 - are taking part in a “city-wide, curbside fish-fry” with $2 per meal sold earmarked for Louisiana Hospitality Foundation's Hospitality Cares Pandemic Response Fund.
Also, Tabasco has generously pledged to support the fundraising efforts from last week's fish fry and this week's fish fry. In observance of Lent, Monsignor Christopher Nalty will once again visit each location to bless the meal.
Dishes offered from each restaurant will be available for curbside pickup this Friday, March 27th 4:00pm to 7:30pm. Below is a list of the participating restaurants, their location, dishes and telephone numbers seeing as you should likely call ahead to order.
English style fish & chips, beer battered flounder, house tartar sauce, steak fries $15
(808 Bienville Street) 504-581-3467
Crispy cornmeal fried catfish, French fries, fluffy sweet corn hush puppies, fish camp coleslaw, crispy Brussels sprouts $15
Kids menu: 3 chicken fingers with fries, hush puppies & ranch ($7)
(333 St. Charles) 504-378-2840
Pêche Seafood Grill
Shrimp Boil, corn and potatoes $15
(Pick up at Cochon Butcher: 930 Tchoupitoulas Street) 504-522-1744
Ralph’s on the Park
Corn fried local catch, coleslaw, white remoulade, hush puppies $15
(900 City Park Avenue) 504-488-1000
Crispy catfish with malt vinegar tartar sauce served
with crab boil corn-on-the-cob and Drew’s potato salad $15
(105 Old Hammond Highway, Metairie) 504-345-2936
Palm and Pine
Rampart Street restaurant Palm & Pine, launched less than a year ago by cooking couple Jordan and Amarys Herndon, recently offered free food and drink to all service industry workers; including tour guides, musicians, artists and performers.
“A friend from out of town” donated funds for the first 100 meals such as red beans and rice, fried chicken and a cold drink. As to be expected, their hard work and generosity paid off and they served around 160 people in need.
The folks at Palm & Pine plan on offering meals every Monday until the food and funds run out, or things return to normal. Industry folks seeking a hearty Monday night meal should keep an eye on their Facebook page for details.
Feel free to help their cause by ordering take out or delivery, or donating directly to their cause.
Palm and Pine
308 N. Rampart Street
Free delivery to the French Quarter and Tremé on orders over $40 ($2 to the rest of Orleans Parish).
Just last Saturday, March 21st, Cuban-inspired bar and restaurant Manolito began a daily offering of 30 free “family meals” to furloughed industry folk, an effort they plan to continue as long as they are able.
Though owners Nick Detrich and Chris Hannah were forced to temporarily close their other French Quarter restaurant, Jewel of the South, Manolito is still offering take-out from 2:00pm to 9:00pm daily, so swing by and grab a frozen daiquiri to-go, why don't you?
Check out other stories on FQJ's Hunkering Down blog.
Though she was born in the San Francisco Bay Area, Kim Ranjbar felt New Orleans calling her home as soon as she hit puberty. A graduate of granola U (a.k.a. Sonoma State University), Kim took her passion for the written word and dragged it over 2000 miles to flourish in the city she loves. After more than seventeen years as a transplant — surviving hurricanes, levee failures, oil spills, boil water advisories and hipster invasions — Kim hopes to eventually earn the status of local and be welcomed into the fold. Feel free to check out her blog at http://sucktheheads.com/ or contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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