A storefront where people used to drop by to hit the speed bag is now a place to grab a sandwich or maybe go a few rounds at the bar with small plates and drinks.
Wayfare (4510 Freret St., 504-309-0069) opened recently along the Freret Street restaurant row. The building had been the Freret Street Boxing Gym, which relocated to Central City and still hosts its popular Friday Night Fights events.
The father-and-son team of Ray and Vincent Arnona opened this combination casual restaurant/deli, citing Cochon Butcher as their inspiration and working a lot of Italian flavors into the operation.
The menu is designed around sandwiches, salads, small plates. There’s a Rueben, a BLT made with fried green tomato and a rendition of a Cuban sandwich (the media dia). The porchetta sandwich is made with fatty pork belly and salsa verde on a toasted hoagie roll and there’s an Italian sausage sandwich with fried egg on ciabatta. Sweet potato hot sauce spikes up a number of these. Vietnamese fish sauce goes into a shrimp salad with pickled vegetables and house-made mozzarella, blood orange and tomato make up the Wayfare salad.
Look for arancini (rice fritters), duck sliders, meat and cheese boards and bruschetta under “bar fare” and sides like oyster dressing, faro with quinoa and greens and peperonata, a Sicilian salad of peppers, onions and garlic.
The spacious dining room is finished with recycled lumber and found objects, and the full bar has local drafts. Wayfare serves lunch and dinner daily.
4510 Freret St., (504) 309-0069