Restaurant Development & Design

July-August 2017

restaurant development + design is a user-driven resource for restaurant professionals charged with building new locations and remodeling existing units.

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2 0 • r e s t a u r a n t d e v e l o p m e n t + d e s i g n • J U L Y / A U G U S T 2 0 1 7 DESIGN MARKET BY AMELIA LEVIN, CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Seaworthy Set in a Creole cottage built in 1832, Seaworthy is a partnership be- tween Ace Hotel and the trio behind New York's award-winning Grand Banks: New Orleans natives Alex and Miles Pincus and nightlife impresario Adrien Gallo. Designed by Ace Hotel's in-house team, hOmE Studios and Grand Banks, the oyster and cocktail bar pulls inspiration from the Pincus brothers' sailing trips along the Gulf Coast waterways as well as from the city's many galley bars from the 19th century where Gulf fishermen would tell stories over grog and Meriton Latroon's Bantam Punch. With 88 seats indoors and 42 on the court- yard patio, the roughly 3,200-square-foot restaurant features custom brass pendant lights and cracked, crumbling walls decorated with a mix of vintage paintings and pictures that add to the maritime aesthetic. Seating is an eclectic mix of blue tufted leather booths; midcentury chairs; and wood, marble and alabaster tables. Bentwood speaker boxes, weath- ered mirrors, zinc bar panels, a slate oyster display and a dramatic steel-and-glass back bar further set the scene. Nationally acclaimed Executive Chef Kerry Heffernan and Chef de Cuisine Daniel Causgrove showcase wild-caught and sustainably harvested seafood from American coastal waters. Award-winning bar director Lauren Schell presents celebrated craft cocktails and proprietary session drinks meant for day drinking, especially during Sunday crawfish boils. Photos by Rush Jagoe NEW ORLEANS Compère Lapin The inspiration for the name Compère Lapin ("brother rabbit") comes from Chef/Owner Nina Compton's child- hood in St. Lucia, where she read traditional Caribbean folktales featuring the mischievous namesake rabbit. Drawing on the stories' themes of exploration and play, the restaurant — which opened in June 2015 in the Old No. 77 Hotel — features a whimsical design coupled with historic charm. Influenced by the building's history as a warehouse serving the Port of New Orleans, James Beard Award finalist Parts and Labor Design retained the original warehouse architecture while adding elements of classic French decor and a modern, bohemian flair. The 86-seat, indoor-outdoor eatery has a relaxed atmosphere that combines materials and textures ranging from warm caramel leathers and honey oaks to tan tweeds, cool bohemian blues and English greens. Original floor-to- ceiling wood-and-glass French doors along Tchoupitoulas Street open to an outdoor seating area, illuminating the space with natural light. An impressive 80-foot cocktail/raw bar provides open views into the kitchen, where guests can take in the action. Walnut and brass blown-glass light fixtures complete the look. "The rabbit is everywhere; it's stenciled with bitters on one of our cocktails, and we have our logo on the original wood planks that are over 100 years old," says Compton, who was recently named a finalist for the 2017 James Beard Awards, Best Chef: South. "It is one of the most popular backdrops on Instagram. We have many rabbit figurines that were given to us from guests, and each has its own name." Photos courtesy of Compère Lapin

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