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Rene Bistrot 2.0

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  French chef Rene Bajeux has turned up at a few different restaurants in recent years, though some diners still associate him most with Rene Bistrot, the restaurant he operated in the CBD before Hurricane Katrina. After a short stay at the Rib Room (621 St. Louis St., 529-7046; www.ribroomneworleans.com), the chef recently announced plans to open a new Rene Bistrot as early as next month. It will replace LaCote Brasserie (700 Tchoupitoulas St., 613-2350; www.lacotebrasserie.com) in the Renaissance Arts Hotel.

  LaCote Brasserie will end a nearly nine-year run, which Bajeux helped begin in 2003. A spokesman for the restaurant says it will remain open until the transition is made to Rene Bistrot. He says the hotel has not decided on any major changes to the restaurant space. The cuisine will be similar to the French bistro fare for which the original Rene Bistrot was known, but with more local sourcing and Louisiana flavors.

  A native of Alsace, France, Bajeux has earned many culinary plaudits and is recognized as one of just 55 French Master Chefs in America. He built his local reputation at the Grill Room at the Windsor Court Hotel, and he opened the original Rene Bistrot in 2001. The new Rene Bistrot will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner daily.

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