The menu during Banana Blossom (2112 Belle Chasse Hwy., Gretna, 504-392-7530) starts with fine-tuned Thai cooking yet keeps expanding, adding flavors from BBQ shrimp to Nutella to a cupboard of coconut milk, chiles and ginger.
These days, a grill itself is scheming to grow in a opposite way.
Jimmy Cho initial non-stop Banana Blossom in 2009. It’s a little cafe, effectively camouflaged within a vast frame mall circuitously Lapalco Boulevard. But now, Cho is building a new home for Banana Blossom about dual miles away, during 500 Ninth St., in downtown Gretna. Work is underway to renovate an aged dilemma store. The new grill is slated to open around October, during that indicate Cho will tighten a strange location.
The pierce will give Banana Blossom some-more than twice a space and a some-more manifest location. It will have a semi-open kitchen, a screened square and a dedicated bar for drinks and dining (at Banana Blossom today, a fridge in a dining room with bottles built on tip serves as a bar).
But while Banana Blossom is relocating on up, a also staying in a West Bank village where it initial sprouted.
Cho looked during other locations, and he deliberate relocating a business to New Orleans. But with so many other restaurants now open in a city proper, and with a possibility to buy and redevelop his possess genuine estate in Gretna, he motionless to stay put.
“The business is all local, we don’t get any tourists here,” pronounced Cho. “I live nearby, we wish us to prepare for people here. we feel like here we will have some-more control of where a business goes.”
Meanwhile, a strange Banana Blossom is gripping on with business as usual, yet these days that doesn’t always meant normal Thai.
The menu still starts with pad Thai, yellow curry and tom yum soup. From here though, Cho has gradually introduced opposite dishes, consistent Thai styles with inspirations from his travels around a world.
For instance, a outing to Hawaii, and dishes from Oahu’s swift of “shrimp truck” food vendors, led to a “Hawaii 504,” a play of coconut shrimp, boiled egg and pineapple over Thai grill sauce. After visiting Bali, where ramen is a daily staple, he combined bowls of a stretch noodle. A new chronicle had pig shoulder underneath a Chinese 5 piquancy massage and a slow-burning chile heat.
Traditional Thai roti bread — chewy here, crinkly-crisp there — now fields many opposite roles on a Banana Blossom menu. It becomes something like a Natchitoches beef pie, filled with Thai-style minced pig and crimped around a edges for a spicy, really greasy turnover. For another dish, a bread is folded around spiced duck for “Thai tacos.”
Banana Blossom’s chronicle of BBQ shrimp tastes buttery, like the New Orleans original, yet uses no butter. Instead, it starts with unfeeling oil and coconut divert and big, head-on shrimp.
“It’s all Thai ingredients,” pronounced Cho. “That’s how we prepare here, yet we can move in other influences, too. We can adapt.”
That thought extends to dessert, where a contingent of crème brulee brings vanilla, Thai tea and espresso custards to a table. And a roti earnings too, piped with Nutella, a hazelnut/chocolate spread, for something that tastes like an East-meets-West dessert crepe.
2112 Belle Chasse Hwy., Gretna, 504-392-7530
New plcae designed for 500 Ninth St., Gretna, projected opening Oct 2017
Lunch and cooking Mon.-Sat.
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