, , , , ,

Over the summer, I drove Mum and the kids down to Louisiana, ending our journey in New Orleans, which was the first city I stayed in when I came to America. From the middle of a New Zealand Winter, to the middle of a New Orleans summer – it made quite an impression. I lived in Lake Charles, about a 3 hour drive from New Orleans, and traveled to the Big Easy many times – usually when visitors from back home were in town. If there was a place I could have a second home, other than the beach, it would be in the heart of French Quarter. I love it, and love to visit as often as I am able.
On this trip, we spent a couple of nights with friends in Lake Charles, stopped for lunch with family in Slidell, and spent a couple of nights in New Orleans at a hotel my husband had Pricelined for us.
Our first night in town I wanted to re-create an evening we had shared with friends, driving to several different locations. We enjoyed happy hour on the gorgeous front porch of The Columns hotel in the Garden District, where previously I had lingered over mimosa ladened brunches. After toasting the evening with a glass of champagne we moved to The Superior Grill. Mum appreciates good Mexican Food and Margaritas, and this fun location serves both, right on the St Charles Streetcar line. After our spicy dinner, we wanted a little sweet, and I couldn’t resist introducing my family to Sucre, a truly gorgeous and unforgettable dessert shop. I first read about this treasure in a cooking magazine, and was thrilled when I stumbled across it on Magazine Street. We sampled Macarons and delectable chocolates, and sat down to allow the kids to indulge in a couple of edible works of art.

The S’Mores Skillet from Sucre

I’m not sure what this was called, but it was delicious
We parked our car in the hotel garage, that night, and spent the rest of our New Orleans holiday on foot. After traversing Jackson Square, Cafe Du Monde, the Mississippi river and the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas the next day, we were ready for lunch, and tracked down a fresh new restaurant. SoBou, established in 2012 by some of the regions leading food families, and shortened from South of Bourbon, was an outstanding experience. We were warmly welcomed into this decidedly chic, adult establishment, the kids were comfortable and the adults were fascinated by the fabulous menu, and the beer taps built into the tables.
The fun SoBou napkin
Mum and Elise reflected in the glass behind a table loaded with a pour-your-own beer tap

We ordered 25 cent “Pink Elephant on Parade” cocktails and swooned over dishes such as the Butternut Squash Beignets with Foie Gras Fondue, Duck Debris and Chicory Coffee Ganache, and the Apple and Pear Salad with Camembert and the most amazing Salted Pecan Tuile.

 Butternut Squash Beignets
The fabulous Apple and Pear Salad with Camembert and Salted Pecan Tuile at SoBou

I am never quite ready to leave the wonderful Southern hospitality of my adored city, but am delighted to return to and recreate some wonderful memories with this recipe.


2 ounces vodka
2 ounces pink lemonade
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 ounce midori

Mix all ingredients together and serve.

Recipe adapted from Drinks Mixer