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August

301 Tchoupitoulas Street, New Orleans, 70130, United States

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August has a cosy dining room, with exposed brick walls, wooden floors, a high ceiling and chandeliers casting a somewhat murky light. Starters were $9 - £19, main courses $26-39, with a tasting menu at $80. The wine list has selections such as Clos du Val Chardonnay 2006 at $54 for a wine that costs around $20 retail, up to La Mouline Guigal at $400 for a wine that costs around $200 retail if you can find it. A bonus is that if you have the tasting menu, a wine pairing is just $20, a genuine bargain. Bread was just doughy white rolls, which were under salted (11/20).

Truffled whelk with sabayon custard was an odd idea, served in an egg shell and fortunately mainly tasted of the sabayon with its hint of truffle; the whelk flavour was almost absent (14/20). Shrimp remoulade with a carpaccio of artichoke and fennel had good shrimp and vegetables but an over-acidic citrus dressing (14/20). Yard egg ravioli with brown butter and chanterelles had pasta that was undercooked and rather hard around the edges, though with a good tasting egg and topped with grated Parmesan (13/20). 

Butter poached lobster was very good, entirely avoiding the chewiness which besets so much restaurant lobster, served on top of a layer of crispy pork belly that was cooked a fraction too long, itself resting on fennel choucroute with a garnish of house-cured bacon, the pork and the lobster working well together (15/20).

Rabbit cassoulet was very good, the rabbit tender, the haricot beans cooked nicely, the stock reasonably rich (15/20). Slow braised “Kobe beef” (actually just American wagyu beef) was fairly tender, served with soft potato gnocchi, cauliflower crisp (a useful texture contrast) and a rich red wine sauce, the dish garnished with a little black truffle (15/20). 

Napoleon of nougatine was served with a Valrhona bavarois, chicory coffee sauce and saltwater toffee ice cream, and for me while pleasant lacked the deep intensity of flavour that a top class rendition would have had (14/20). Service was excellent, friendly and attentive. Chef John Besh managed to produce a strong 14/20 meal from his team tonight.

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  • Nic Moga

    Interesting place... I had their degustation menu last weekend and would rate them a "solid American one-star." It started off with a fairly average poached foie gras and followed with dishes such as brouillade aux truffes (scrambled eggs with truffles) and an intriguing Turtle coup seasoned with chili and cumin. Food was decent, service mediocre. For a place that prides itself on local ingredients I found it a bit odd they import their eggs from Provence (!). Clearly an established restaurant, reminded me of Gary Danko in SF. Readers of your blog will like this place I think.

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