New Orleans is unquestionably a food and beverage city—locals and visitors are accustomed to having their every food whim met with readily available, flavor-packed dining experiences.
The last four months, however, have delivered night after night of home-cooked (and likely microwaved) meals at the same old kitchen table. This month, the Downtown seafood and spirit specialists of Briquette are looking to change all of that.Briquette’s new Staycation Dinner Series welcomes residents tired of their own worn-out recipes to stop in for some socially distant, contemporary coastal food and fun. The series kicked off on Thursday, June 25, with a special dinner featuring Wagner Family Wines / Caymus Vineyards. On Wednesday, August 19, Briquette will host an Italian-themed wine dinner featuring wines from Italy’s sun-kissed, Mediterranean regions. The dinner is presented in conjunction with the New Orleans Wine & Food Experience (NOWFE).Meanwhile, partnerships and preparations are underway for July and September events, which Proprietor Anna Tusa guarantees will be “spirited” affairs. It’s important to note Briquette’s commitment to the safety of guests and staff—the entire restaurant has been professionally cleaned by COVID Cleaning using the PURTEQ system, which kills viruses for 90 days, according to Tusa.In addition to hosting an extensive wine collection from vineyards around the world, Briquette has also established itself as a New Orleans hub for Bourbon enthusiasts and adventurous sippers of hand-crafted cocktails. As another get-out-of-the-house, staycation offering, the restaurant is excited to add private cocktail classes to the summer schedule.“With a maximum of 10 guests and minimum of two, the intimate craft cocktail experience provides an in-depth lesson for those looking to expand their bar skills from a Briquette mixologist,” says Tusa. The classes can be paired with a meal or center on drinks alone. Perfect for small celebrations, date nights, or an outing with close friends, the private classes focus on your choice of “Traditional,” “Classic New Orleans,” or “Bad & Boujee” cocktails.While birthday, anniversary, wedding, and other celebrations have been tamped down in recent months, Briquette’s Wine Room, a private dining room, is now available to provide spaced, socially distant celebrations for small groups who are ready for a comfortable, stylish gathering place. Briquette’s Wine Room has its own entrance, restroom, and kitchen—relax knowing your guests will be the only ones in the room.Brunch, another beloved New Orleans tradition that many have missed, is back in action at Briquette’s sister restaurant, The New Orleans Creole Cookery, from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. The French Quarter restaurant brought back live entertainment to its open-air courtyard to complement dinner Thursday through Saturday evenings.“The courtyard has been a popular destination in the re-opening of in-house dining, and the return of our Oyster Happy Hour from 3 – 6 p.m has been a local favorite of late,” says Tusa.Looks like sticking around for the summer won’t be so bad after all!