As I checked into the Old No. 77 Hotel and Chandlery in New Orleans, I couldn’t help but notice all the chatter and laughter coming from Compére Lapin located just off the lobby. As I stared into the restaurant from the front desk located nearby, I was excited about what was in store for me when I have dinner there the following evening.
Taken from a mischievous rabbit named Compére Lapin, French for “brother rabbit”, Chef and Owner Nina Compton opened the restaurant in June 2015 with a menu combined of cultural influences including Caribbean, Creole, Italian and French cuisine.
Located inside of the renovated Old No. 77 Hotel and Chandlery, the industrial look takes on the characteristics of its location in the warehouse arts district, just a few blocks from the French Quarter. Chef Nina was one of my favorites on Top Chef Season 11: New Orleans and I stalked the menu online for weeks before my arrival.
New Orleans is known for it’s traditional dishes like po’ boys and gumbo, but Compére Lapin offers a modern take with its cuisine with dishes like the newly added conch croquettes, that has just a bit of spice served with a mild flavored pickled pineapple tarter sauce topped with the fresh taste of caviar.New Orleans is known for it’s traditional dishes like po’ boys and gumbo, but @comperelapin offers a modern take with its cuisine. #foodie #followyournola Click To Tweet
I arrived at dinner promptly at 6 pm where the warm and friendly hosts seated us at a perfectly situated table where we had a complete view of the restaurant. As I looked around, there were tables with groups celebrating birthdays, you could hear drinks being shaken and stirred at the bar and the table right behind me was a family who inquired about every dish we ordered. We enjoyed being able to mix and mingle with them as well as other locals and share our recommendations for dinner which included the lightly seared local grouper served atop a flavorful buerre blanc with potato pearls topped with fresh truffles shaved over the dish right at the table, which was a delightful treat.
In addition to the spectacular dishes, Compére Lapin’s mixologists are serving up carefully curated cocktails. I interviewed Chef Nina recently where I asked her what was her favorite cocktail and she mentioned the TCB Sour currently on Compére Lapin’s menu made with bourbon, lemon, almond, cherry and shaken with egg whites, which leaves a beautiful foam on top. It was indeed light and refreshing, yet perfect for the chilly weather outside.No meal is complete without dessert. #foodie @comperelapin #followyournola Click To Tweet
No meal is complete without dessert and Compére Lapin far exceeded my expectations. As Aaron, our waiter, described the dessert options for the evening, he mentioned the Bolivian chocolate cake and I was sold. Arriving at my table was a deconstructed chocolate cake with passion fruit curd and spiced cocoa soup (chocolate sauce) that was drizzled over the plate at the table, making for a beautiful presentation. Since the temperature had dropped outside, I thought it was befitting to enjoy a warm after dinner cocktail of a delicious Irish Coffee to compliment dessert.
I skipped over dinner to show yall this bomb ass dessert!! @ninacompton I am obsessed with your restaurant @comperelapin ❤️ Everything and I mean everything was amazing! Thank you so much for having me! #comperelapin #neworleans #followyournola #hiphospitality #millatravels #willtravelforfood #lifewelltraveled #wanderlust #travelwriter #soultravel #soulfoodies #travelnoire #travello #blacktravelhackers #travelisthenewclub #blackgirlswhoblog
The attention to detail with the cocktails, menu and service provides the ultimate dining experience in a relaxed and comfortable environment. I can certainly see why Compére Lapin is a New Orleans favorite.