Monday, December 11, 2017

NOLA Seafood and Steakhouse

Readers of my blog know my infatuation with all things New Orleans. Blue Denim in Greensboro is a fantastic taste of The Big Easy, but I had never ventured to New Orleans Bar & Grill, off Wendover Road. When they announced a sister restaurant would be opening on New Garden Road, much closer to my house, I jumped at the opportunity to dine at NOLA Seafood and Steakhouse. While it's difficult to make a direct comparison between the flavors of authentic New Orleans cuisine with any restaurant in Greensboro, this feels like NOLA at heart, and it definitely reminds me of my amazing trips to the city.

Bread with an herbed olive oil coating is presented, and a nice complimentary munchie while you enjoy a Hurricane or an Electric Lemonade.

Fried Oysters are hand-breaded and fried to a golden hue. The crunchy, salty coating is perfectly crisp, and balances nicely with the salinity of the oyster. It's fried lightly, too, so you can really taste the oyster. The homemade tartar sauce is money.

In keeping with traditional NOLA-style cuisine, portions are LARGE. The Snapper Duo is fresh, grilled snapper, topped with buttery shrimp scampi, studded with tomatoes and topped with parmesan cheese. It's fantastic! As if it couldn't get better, the dish is served alongside a crab cake - mostly crab, not breading! - and more of that delicious tartar sauce. To make sure you get your $29.95 worth, this comes with your choice of 2 sides, so it would easily feed 2 people. My favorite side was the dirty rice with mushrooms, red peppers and sausage, but the house salad offers fresh greens with tasty, herby croutons, made from their bread.
Snapper Duo with Crab Cake

My favorite New Orleans dish (besides Bananas Foster) is Crawfish Etouffee, and I was impressed with their rendition. The bowl was loaded with crawfish, smothered in a buttery sauce enhanced with onion, green pepper, celery atop a mound of rice. I would be lying if I said this tasted like the Crawfish Etouffee I had in New Orleans, but it delicious and large enough to serve 3 people!
Crawfish Etouffee
Simply grilled shrimp is plump and not overcooked. A serving of 12 comes with 2 sides and is only $16. This is a bargain.
Glorious shrimp with dirty rice

Their Bananas Foster Cheesecake is a fun play on the classic dessert. Plain cheesecake gets dressed up with real bananas, banana liquour and rum. It's pretty delicious. I thought caramel sauce would be a more appropriate plate drizzle than chocolate, but cheesecake is usually enhanced with any sort of sauce.
Bananas Foster Cheesecake

Key Lime Pie lovers will enjoy the real lime filling, not too tart - just the right amount of tang - that rests atop a housemade graham cracker crust. Again, I thought chocolate sauce was an odd choice to serve with the fruity pie, but it surprisingly worked.

I'm excited to have another New Orleans restaurant in town; you can't have too many. It's such a nice departure from the usual dining out experiences, and it brings back excellent memories of my time in the Big Easy. I'll be back, and if you haven't gone here, or to Blue Denim, check them out!