Off the menu for Jan. 17, 2013

Photo provided by Brack MayChef Brack May presides over Cowbell, a New Orleans diner on Oak Street.
Photo provided by Brack MayChef Brack May presides over Cowbell, a New Orleans diner on Oak Street.

The crew behind Baton Rouge’s popular Curbside food truck are bringing their grub to a brick-and-mortar store in New Orleans.

Owner Nick Hufft said the bar of Barcadia, 601 Tchopitoulas St., will open soon. The menu will feature Curbside’s burgers — known as repeat offenders — and some of their best-selling specials, including the KGB, a burger topped with a fried egg; and the Brian, which features the truck’s popular pork belly preserves.

“We’re taking the concept of (a) smaller menu with lots of weekly specials,” Hufft said in an email. “We have access to so many amazing farmers that have so many amazing products here in Louisiana.”

Hufft said Barcadia will also offer appetizers, such as fried pickles, pork cheek meat pies, Vietnamese wings and more.

Furthermore, the restaurant will take the food a step beyond the truck. Barcadia’s frites, for instance, will be fried in duck fat.

Food truck showdowns

Speaking of Curbside, Hufft and Taco de Paco owner John Snow are holding Saturday Food Truck Showdowns each Saturday, much like the Wednesday Food Truck Wround-ups, which Hufft also hopes will grow in 2013

“We’re shooting for a mobile food truck park combined with a community event space,” he said. “We’re booking acoustic music acts to set the vibe. And we’re looking at all sorts of artists to come and participate. It’s taking the Wround-up to the next level and giving our customers, who have given us so much, more of a reason to stay and hang out.”

Cristiano comes to N.O.

Kelly Barker and Cristiano Raffignone, owners of Martinique Bistro, 5908 Magazine St., New Orleans, are bringing a taste of its sister restaurant, Cristiano Ristorante, Lounge & Wine Boutique, 724 High St., Houma, to New Orleans with a pop-up restaurant.

Starting Jan. 28, Martinique will become Cristiano from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Monday nights as executive chef Lindsay Mason serves northern Italian food with a south Louisiana flair.

The menu includes chargrilled oysters, a crudo of venison tartar with a juniper port reduction and truffle frittes, a porcini risotto, black truffle raviolini with crab and fontina, pappardelle with slow-roasted lamb ragu and other dishes.

Call (504) 891-8495.

Cowbell adds brunch

Cowbell, 8801 Oak St., New Orleans, is open for brunch on Saturdays and all day on Monday, except from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Chef Brack May’s brunch menu will include dishes such as sourdough pancakes with Vermont maple syrup and fresh berries, corned beef hash with poached eggs and Irish aioli, huevos rancheros with house-made chorizo and buttermilk-fried chicken and waffle with maple sausage gravy and chipotle-raspberry preserves. The bar will also be open, featuring Bloody Marys and Irish Coffee featuring PJ’s Coffee.

“We’re an upscale truck stop on one of New Orleans’ coolest streets — a purveyor of simply prepared, exuberant, American food and lucky recipient of locally, hand-raised products grown with integrity and heart,” May said in a news release. “Cowbell is a fun, chef-driven, smile-causing, happiness-raising American diner on the way in and on the way out of one of America’s coolest cities.”