As promised, I am back with a few other highlights from New Orleans ! While we spent quite a bit of time at the official Essence Festival events, we did make a few escapes to local restaurants. One spot that had been on my list for awhile was Cochon New Orleans ! So I gathered with a few foodie friends from Houston and we dined at the highly rated restaurant which focuses on cajun pork inspired dishes! So please enjoy my review of Cochon New Orleans!
The Location and Setup
Cochon operates two restaurants, the more casual Cochon Butcher and the more upscale spot next door. The butcher side was packed as we walked by, but we planned to dine at the other restaurant. Once inside, we were greeted by a bright restaurant decked out in natural wood furnishings. While this side is known as the “fancier” side, it does still have a casual feel. Oh also, Cochon is walking distance from the convention center! So if you are attending Essence Fest this is a convenient spot to go during a break from the festivities. I would probably call ahead for a reservation because it is a popular spot!
I like to be honest and will say that while the food was amazing, the service lacked! I have come to expect friendly down home service when I dine in this part of the country. Much of the staff including our waitress gave me east coast coldness for most of our lunch! Then to top it off, they do not split checks. Now I have explained the why for this before, but it still HATE when restaurants do this. You leave the work up to the guests and they generally walk away from the table annoyed at the math problem they just had to solve.
Our crew was famished by the time we rolled up to Cochon SO we made sure to order just about everything on the menu. For appetizers, we went for a round of oysters and a crawfish pie. The pie reminded me of an empanada! It had a nice pie crust and packed with great flavor. Then those oysters?? I am not an oyster expert by any means, but I did like these! The color and flavor led me to believe the sauce lathered on top came from a hot sauce. It worked well!
For my entree, I was drawn to the simplicity of the oyster and bacon sandwich. This dish came out on thick toasted sandwich bread, with delicious thick cut bacon and crisply fried oysters. It was SO good. The use of sandwich bread made it feel like a dish I would make at home, but there were elements that made it a step above what you could make at home. I gladly ate that whole thing!
Then because I am greedy, I ordered the mac and cheese casserole as a side. I’m not sure why the tack “casserole” to the end of it, because it tasted like standard mac and cheese to me! It was nice gooey cheese and tons of flavor. It won for me!
The food definitley lived up to the hype and we were able to try dishes that are not as readily available back home. When you are out of town, that is basically all you could ask for. While I said the service came with a bit of an attitude, don’t let that dissuade you from going! The food is good enough to overcome that, trust me!