Sep 222017

Pickled Shrimp and Deviled Eggs (Kristine Froeba)

Fall diners in New Orleans know how to capitalize on balcony breezes and craft cocktails. Root offers both in a trendy setting with a menu to please the most exacting gastronome. Tucked above the more well-known (and difficult to book) Square Root is simply, Root.

Root, a separate entity, juts out over the sidewalk with a small industrial-chic dining room, a Magazine Street balcony, and an inspired menu. Continue reading »

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Sep 142017
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

A mysterious new anti-Desiree Charbonnet hit piece that selected voters began receiving yesterday is just the latest effort to take full advantage of voter polarization that begins in Washington and trickles down to the local level. With “undecided” still the largest voting block in many of the October elections, candidates and their handlers are doing their best to develop messages that resonate with voters and build consensus. Continue reading »

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Sep 012017

Quinoa breakfast bowl of seasonal roasted vegetables, quinoa, pickled carrots, ginger lemon sauce, and fried egg with avocado and egg. (Kristine Froeba)

The revival of the Wisner Playground neighbourhood was a long time coming. Now, it’s here, and our childhood little league haunt has officially joined the gourmet coffee scene. Not the chain scene, but a real haven for lovers of the bean.

Cherry Espresso Bar, across from the playground, can be found steaming and pouring inside the confines of Engine 37 seven days a week. Uptown’s old and abandoned 1910 craftsman Firehouse, built by notable city architect E. A. Christy, has found new life. The feedback from neighbours is good. Continue reading »

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Aug 312017
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

Westbank native Derrick Edwards is leading every poll in the race for State Treasurer. As the only Democrat, he is almost sure to make the runoff against one 0f three Republicans- former Commissioner if Administration Angele Davis, State Senator Neil Riser or former State Rep John Schroeder. The election will be held October 14. Continue reading »

Aug 242017

Albert Ledner (submitted photo)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

When the Louisiana Architectural Foundation decided to bring the 9th annual Architecture & Design Film Festival to New Orleans, foundation director Stacey Pfingsten knew that the festival must include the world premiere of “Designing Life: The Organic Modernism of Albert C. Ledner.”

The nation’s largest film festival devoted to architecture and design, the ADFF “celebrates the creative spirit behind many of the world’s most innovative architecture and design projects and the larger-than-life personalities who create them.” Ledner, a spry 93-year old native New Orleanian who still practices his craft, certainly fits the bill. Continue reading »

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Aug 182017

Rosa Mezcal Apache, Mezcaleros, and Notenos Tacos (Kristine Froeba)

Magazine Street winds itself along the river down the center of old New Orleans from the French Quarter to Audubon Park.

It’s our Main Street. It is also our restaurant row.

Along its corridor, diners can explore our unique local culinary styles and culture, and experience both regional and international food.

What makes this plethora of restaurants unique is their individuality. Each is a small business with a chef, a menu and a soul. Our restaurants, big and small, represent the histories, tastes, and dreams of the owners and chefs. Continue reading »

Aug 172017
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

Candidates for elected office – especially after qualifying – are usually out kissing babies, shaking hands, and attending numerous events seven days a week. But not the highly popular New Orleans Coroner Jeffrey Rouse, first elected in 2014 after having served as deputy chief coroner and head of the office’s mental health division for twelve years. Rouse is being challenged by Dr. Dwight McKenna in the October 14, 2017 election. Continue reading »

Aug 102017
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

The buck stops with Mayor Landrieu and the entire City Council for the mounting problems at the Sewerage & Water Board. Citizens who mopped up last weekend or are worried about today’s lack of pumping capacity have no one to blame but their elected officials – all of whom have clearly failed them. Continue reading »

Aug 032017
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

When three of the Republican candidates vying to become state treasurer made their pitch this week to the Orleans Parish Republican Executive Committee (OPREC), they were seeking not only an endorsement — but also greater access to the city’s close-knit network of Republican donors. Continue reading »

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Jul 272017

Breast cancer survivor Corinne DuCre-Villavasso, pictured with her family, started a foundation to help other cancer victims. (submitted photo)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

A consummate wife, mother and urban planning consultant, Corinne DuCre-Villavasso, was living the life she always dreamed of when in 2014 she tested positive for the Braca 1 gene mutation commonly associated with breast cancer. DuCre-Villavasso had just given birth to her third child and was visiting her physician for a post-partum check-up when told of her diagnosis. Continue reading »

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Jul 202017

Louis Gurvich (courtesy photo)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

New Orleans business leader Louis Gurvich, a long-time member of the Orleans Parish Republican Executive Committee and the Republican State Central Committee, wants to be elected chairman of Louisiana’s Republican Party, now 900,000 members strong. If elected, Gurvich will succeed current state party chair Roger Villere, who is retiring after overseeing the Republicans’ rise to dominance in state politics over the last 14 years. Villere is the longest-serving state GOP chair in the U.S. and is vice chair of the Republican National Committee.

“When Roger first became chair, the Louisiana Republican Party was a much smaller, less powerful organization,” said Gurvich, who also previously served on the Orleans Parish Board of Election Supervisors. Secretary of State Fox McKeithen was the only Republican statewide elected official. Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards is the only statewide elected Democrat. The number of parish-level and regional Republican elected officials has also grown significantly. Continue reading »

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Jul 132017

Candidates for mayor by noon Thursday were (from top left) Michael Bagneris, LaToya Cantrell, Desiree Charbonnet, Charles Anderson, Bryon Cole, Matthew Hill, Johnese Smith. (photos by Danae Columbus for

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

For anyone who loves politics, qualifying days for the October 14 election are exciting. It’s a time of reckoning when those who have been telling the public they will run have to pay the qualifying fees. All is revealed.

Close to 40 candidates along with family and friends and a large contingency of local media have already crowded into the offices of Clerk of Criminal Court Arthur Morrell, where the process takes place. Each candidate first completes the necessary paperwork and then raises his or her right hand to swear the accuracy of information presented. Candidates whose information – including compliance with residency and tax requirements – later proves to be inaccurate often face legal challenges. Continue reading »

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Jul 102017
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

When it comes to the day-to-day concerns of ordinary New Orleanians, it has become increasingly clear that Mayor Landrieu has, to put it mildly, completely tuned out. Gone are those halcyon days when Landrieu at least gave lip service, if not substantive effort, towards governing our fair city.

It’s becoming clear that Landrieu’s attentions have been completely diverted, and his efforts have tilted entirely in favor of preening for a national audience. Continue reading »

Jul 062017
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

When state Sen. Karen Carter Peterson told Gambit last week she was “doing all the due diligence that a serious potential candidate has to do” before entering the race for mayor, one of her chief tasks was a meeting with her protégée, City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell.

Cantrell felt betrayed, disappointed, and hurt, according to sources close to the family, and the ever-feisty Cantrell quickly responded that she was in the mayor’s race to stay. Last night, the popular senator reversed course and announced that she would not join the mayor’s race after all. Continue reading »