December 26, 2015
By: Helen Freund, Gambit Nola
With more than 50 new establishments opening their doors, 2015 was a busy year for dining in the New Orleans area. While 2014 saw a more casual crowd of newcomers, including vegan cafes and laid-back Asian eateries, 2015 saw a variety of ambitious chefs and more poised restaurants, boasting finesse and modern approaches while shunning white tablecloths and fussiness.
Perhaps the most discussed opening of the year was from Top Chef New Orleans runner-up Nina Compton, who brought dishes inspired by her Caribbean roots and Italian prowess to Compere Lapin, where she wowed diners with dishes such as curried goat with gnocchi.
The Paramount, a luxury apartment building on the corner of O'Keefe Avenue and Girod Street, is home to a number of new restaurants, including Willa Jean, Blaze Pizza and a second location for Uptown's Company Burger. It hasn't been all good news: The first restaurant to open at the space, Ursa Major, shuttered after four months. Still to come at the location are Uptown Vietnamese cafe Magasin and Part & Parcel, a new deli-restaurant hybrid from Root and Square Root chef/restaurateur Phillip Lopez.