Chef Jim Richard Opens Trenasse in New Orleans
November 19, 2014 by SoWal Staff
South Louisiana has a long culinary legacy that stretches back for centuries. Trenasse, which will open on Friday, November 21, 2014 at the newly renovated Intercontinental New Orleans, embraces innovation without abandoning the traditions that built South Louisiana's menu.
That's unsurprising given the restaurant's goals and pedigree: a focus on Gulf Coast cuisine pushed by Chef Jim Richard, who has been giving customers in the region a taste of its bounty for decades.
Richard's biography traces the contours of the Gulf Coast in all of its staggering diversity. Born and raised in Lafayette, Louisiana into a family that started the frog import and export business, crossing generations in the restaurant and catering business and cutting his chops as a sous chef at Commander's Palace, still one of the grande dames of the classical Creole culinary universe.
His career then shifted moved to Florida, where he headed up kitchens across the Panhandle, including the Flamingo Cafe, The Lake Place, and most recently, Stinky's Fish Camp, an establishment known for balancing rustic casualness with the finest in Gulf seafood.
Trenasse will draw from this wide ranging experience, which references ingredients, flavor profiles and techniques throughout the Gulf Coast, while firmly rooting Trenasse in the muddy soil of New Orleans. Richard along with his collaborating Chefs Todd Misener and Brannon Janca will be joined in the kitchen by New Orleans native Tommy Finch, who has also worked as a sous chef at Commander's.
So what will set Trenasse apart from Richard's past projects? South Louisiana has deep rural connections, which makes local Gulf Coast cuisine accessible to the average diner. But the area is also cosmopolitan, a longstanding melting pot for immigrants, exiles , aristocrats and slaves from France, Germany, West Africa and beyond. That makes for a menu that's balanced with a depth of influence connoisseurs will appreciate.
Ultimately, it is this dance of local ingredients and high level cookery that has the New Orleans culinary world eager to sample Trenasse. The restaurant will open in a store front at the Intercontinental New Orleans, at 444 St Charles Avenue Suite 1 00, in the heart of New Orleans' CBD.
Justin Gaffrey's art brings a touch of South Walton to Trenasse.
Trenasse means “a man made path through the marsh that leads to directly to the honey hole (or fish goldmine).”
The 13 story Hotel Intercontinental at 444 St. Charles Avenue has undergone a major multi-million dollar renovation to its lobby, atrium and second floor. Trenasse will open on the first floor.