By the time this Louisiana restaurant chain entered our area, a wide variety of Mexican food had already been available for years. Despite that, La Caretta managed to significantly expand upon that variety with a great approach to Tex-Mex. A trio of ceviche options with the added touch of mango and cucumber is a nice start and the wide range of authentic style tacos is fantastic. The menu is more concise than most other Mexican restaurants and the vibe is much more fun and hip. La Caretta is a welcome step in the right direction for our area’s Mexican food.
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Cuisine: Italian, Creole
The sign out front might say “Italian,” but the first half of the Foundry’s menu consists of classic French Creole dishes like escargot and some of New Orleans’ famous oyster preparations. Of course the Italian entrees are also delicious. There’s some pasta and red sauce to be found here, but the Foundry focuses on a rich and savory variety of sophisticated dishes featuring veal, duck, and lamb. The dining room is the height of elegance in the area, but if you’re looking for something a little more casual, the upstairs bar and patio are the perfect hangouts for sharing upscale snacks and cocktails.
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Cuisine: Southern, Creole
Fancy restaurants can be a hard sell in our area, but Cinclare manages to bridge the gap between down home and upscale with its self described “rustic Southern cuisine.” The food, the dining room, the service; everything looks and feels sophisticated but nothing is stuffy or uptight. Cinclare has a small but exciting menu that is constantly changing to reflect what’s fresh and local. While it’s difficult to make specific recommendations because of this, you can order easy knowing the limited options allows the kitchen to focus more on perfecting each dish. The seafood specials are highly recommended, though, as are reservations. Cinclare is still relatively new to the Downtown Thibodaux area, so getting a table can be difficult on short notice. Don’t rule out an impromptu visit altogether, though, as you can still pass a good time with a drink off the excellent cocktail menu in the restaurant’s handsome lounge.
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Cuisine: Cajun, Seafood
It’s fitting that you have to travel beside several miles of bayou and marsh to arrive at what is possibly the best seafood restaurant in Lafourche Parish. You’re completely surrounded by the unique sights of our humble swampland by the time you arrive at Leeville’s best and only restaurant. It’s modest surroundings are completely devoid of pretentiousness, but it’s menu isn’t lacking in sophistication when you look past the typical (but delicious) fried fare and into the restaurant’s specials. They’re especially good with crab: claws, fried softshell, and plain old jumbo lump find their way into many of the dishes with delicious results. It’s the height of decadence for the bayou made only better by the modest and authentic surroundings of Cajun country. Continue reading Leeville Seafood Restaurant
Cuisine: American, Sandwiches
Dominique’s Bistro is the area’s quintessential upscale lunch spot. Only open at midday during the week aside from the occasional wine dinner, the menu at Dominique’s makes the restaurant’s premise abundantly clear. There are currently only three traditional entrees available while salads and sandwiches dominate the menu. These aren’t simple mixed greens or poboys though. There are decadent options like an arugula and beef tenderloin salad with fried egg or a hot ham and brie sandwich with caramelized onions and pepper jelly on brioche. And despite the elegant dining room, beautiful bar, and wine menu; Dominique’s manages to make one of the area’s best burgers. If you’re ever free for a midweek lunch and are looking to indulge a bit, Dominique’s Bistro is worth a visit.
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Cuisine: Vietnamese, Asian
Vietnamese food finally made its way to our little area with the arrival of White Bowl a few years back. If you’re unfamiliar with the cuisine, don’t be scared off by the exotic names. Pho is the most incredible noodle soup you’ve ever had with a broth that can heal your soul. Bahn mi is a Vietnamese poboy with flavorful fillings in a crusty baguette. And if that’s still too daunting for you, White Bowl serves a variety of more traditional Asian dishes all in its very modern, casual dining room. It’s a hip ambassador to a vastly underrated cuisine.
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Cuisine: Thai, Asian
The convenient location and incredible beer selection help set Song Phi Nong apart from the area’s other Thai restaurants, but the food is the star here. There are no surprises on the menu, just consistently delicious food as spicy as you like. The atmosphere is extremely casual, and there are enough approachable Asian standards on the menu that anyone can have a great time at Song Phi Nong. Continue reading Song Phi Nong