Monday, June 6, 2011

New Orleans Food and Wine Experience 2011 - Review

GRAND TASTINGS (from the website)

A truly “Grand” experience for both foodies and wine connoisseurs, with offerings from New Orleans’ finest chefs and selections of wines from around the world. The 2011 Grand Tastings will feature the Louisiana Seafood Cook-Off, a competition between Louisiana’s top 10 Chefs!

My Review:

On our recent trip to New Orleans we had the opportunity to “Come to our senses” at the New Orleans Wine & Food festival which ran from May 24th to the 28th. Having been to Disney’s food and wine festival I thought I knew what I would be in for, it was similar but very different. It was held in the Convention Center which was all decked out and decorated to make you feel like you were in a garden, the trees they had reminded me of the new trees in the new Disney stores, the looked very similar and are very cool. There were tables and chairs scattered throughout the hall with several standing tables making it easy for us to find a spot to pig out, and pig out we did! We were given a wooded plate with a notch in it to hold a wine glass and we knew this plate was going to get a lot of use! We sampled a lot of food but have narrowed it down to a handful to talk about.

Our first food to try was from Arnaud’s Restaurant it was a Chicken and Andouille Gumbo, wow is the best way to describe it. It was delicious, I’m not sure my husband had the chance to taste his, he woofed it down so fast flavor couldn’t have had a chance to set it! He kept nodding in approval, so he must have tasted something! 

We moved along to Atchafalaya they were serving Louisiana Gulf Shrimp & Creamy Grits. My husband liked it, he liked it a lot, I on the other hand really enjoyed the shrimp but the grits were well…..let’s just say I’ve never met a grit I liked. It wasn’t bad just not something I like, but my husband raved about the grits, he loves grits and can eat them until they come out of his ears, they have his seal of approval.

We made our way to the center of the hall and grabbed a couple bottles of water, we wouldn’t be taking part in the wine part of the evening since neither of us are drinkers. From there we made our way to the Oceana Grill table they were serving Alligator Mardi Gras Pasta. We saw them and made a B line for their table because the season finale of Kitchen Nightmares was based on fixing their restaurant. Well….. Gordon Ramsey needs to head back; the pasta was cold, tasteless and just blah. Sorry to say that was a plate that went unfinished, and thankfully that was the only one of the night. 

After eating entrees we wanted some dessert, we first hit the New Orleans Ice Cream Company, which is something we had the pleasure of trying a few days earlier when my husband bought a pint of King Cake ice cream from a market in the French Quarter, their ice cream is first rate, very tasty and very creamy. I tried the Cream Cheese ice cream and my hubby went with the Banana’s Foster ice cream. I had a heck of a time getting him to share a taste of that with me, he finally relented and I must say I know why he didn’t want to share! I wish this ice cream was available locally. 

Next we hit Sugaree’s Bakery where we tried the Coconut Cake, this was a big step for my husband who doesn’t like coconut at all. He ate the cake and marveled at how good this cake was and the fact that it had no sugar in it was amazing! I asked him how he knew it was sugar free he said the name of the bakery of Sugarfree’s Bakery! Yeah, he miss read the name, I laughed at him he gave me the stink eye and said the cake was still good! 

Our last well my last dessert was from M Bistro at the Ritz Carlton is was Peaches & Cream Shot with White Peach Crawfish Crepes. It was the coolest looking dessert I’ve ever seen! It had cotton candy on top of it! It was a cheese cake like pudding with layers of peaches and a white peach schnapps flavor shot. It was divine! And was visually stunning, it looked like a high class dessert.

Here are some more pictures of the wonderful dishes that night:

We enjoyed our night and had a good time, the only thing is I wish the lines for the food were a little more organized, lines just seemed to meld into one another and getting from table to table was taxing and we managed to lose each other and only be 25 feet apart. That aside, we had a wonderful time stuffing ourselves silly. I would recommend, the New Orleans Food and wine Experience  
if you are in the New Orleans area next year, make sure you check this out, it will be worth it!

Disclosure: The reviews and or opinions on this blog are my own opinions . I received passes to the Food and Wine Experience to do this review.  No monitory compensation was received. I was not required to write a positive review. Your experience may differ. The opinions I have expressed are my own I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsement and Testimonials in Advertising .

1 comment:

GoNOLA said...

Glad you had a good time at NOWFE. We were there, as well, and had a wonderful time. We didn't get the chance to try Arnaud's gumbo but will make sure we get a bowl the next time we're at Arnaud's for dinner. One of our favorite YouTube videos is "How to Make Gumbo" ( -- you should make your own and let us know how it comes out! :)

Thanks again for coming to New Orleans and glad you had a good time!

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Disclosure: The reviews and or opinions on this blog are my own opinions, . No compensation was received. All opinions are my own. This is a unofficial fan site that is not affiliated with the Walt Disney Company or Disney theme parks.