The Iacovone kitchen returns – My New Orleans
My friend Bob Iacovone has one of those names you can’t pronounce when you first read him. Ya-ka-vohnee, that’s how I would write it, and dear baby Jesus, I hope I’m right.
He’s a talented chef with a gastronomic background who a few years ago opened a small storefront with his wife Joanna on Freret Street, Iacavone Kitchen, to cook the food he loves to eat and serve it – mostly – to take away.
I mention this because, like so many other businesses, Bob suffered damage from Hurricane Ida and had insurance issues. The good news is that they’ve reopened and, as Bob told me, he’s “happy to be cooking again.”
The menu changes a lot, but the current offering is fairly representative of what they do. There is a soup, chicken curry; a few salads, one with mesclun, marinated beets, goat cheese, sunflower seeds and herb vinaigrette, and one that adds homemade burrata cheese, cherry tomatoes and brioche croutons to the mesclun and marinated beets formula.
Entrees include what I guess you might call a “take” on chicken and waffles, but with slow roasted duck scraps in place of fried chicken, and a cornbread waffle made with fat from duck as well as braised greens and pomegranate molasses.
Then there are fresh pasta ravioli stuffed with pecans and ricotta served with butternut squash bisque, roasted green beans and sage gastrique. Star anise pork belly and poached clams in garlic prawn broth with French bread croutons are available as an appetizer as well as an entree.
Finally, there’s a roast beef scrap po-boy with Swiss cheese, sliced pickles and horseradish cream served with a side salad.
I could see these offerings on a pre-Katrina menu at Cuvee, to be honest, but in this case you won’t be paying for real estate or cloth tables. It’s a small menu, but it’s a very small place and Bob is the only one cooking. I look at Iacovone Kitchen as a small bistro in a small town in France or Italy, where the locals know they can always get a good meal.=
If you’ve never tried Bob’s food, I encourage you to give them a call and see what’s on offer today. It might be very different from what I described, but it will be just as good.
Iacavone Kitchen is located at 5033 Freret St., and it’s open Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and until 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. You can call them at 504-533-9742.