Less than two months after opening, Warehouse District restaurant Briquette (701 S. Peters St., 504-302-7496) and its opening executive chef Robert Vasquez parted ways. Restaurateurs Anna and Anthony Tusa opened the restaurant with Vasquez and his wife Lindsey Jo Vasquez on Oct. 5. Anna Tusa confirmed Vasquez departed in November.
Now helming the kitchen is chef Hosie Bourgeois (pictured), who for 15 years served as executive chef at Beau Chene Country Club in Mandeville. Bourgeois' menu debuted Dec. 1 and features a long list of contemporary seafood dishes, including Gulf fish meuniere and snapper Pontchartrain topped with crab and hollandaise.
Not everything on the new menu hails from the sea. An Angus backstrap is served with pan-seared foie gras, smoked blue cheese, fig demi-glace and dauphinoise potatoes. Lamb shank puttanesca tops angel hair pasta served with a market herb gremolata.
The Tusas own several casual restaurants in the city, including The Crazy Lobster on Spanish Plaza and New Orleans Creole Cookery in the French Quarter.
Vasquez, who is originally from Scottsdale, Arizona, made a name for his Southwest-inspired New American cuisine at Opal Basil in Mandeville, which closed earlier this year. A new Opal Basil was supposed to open next to Briquette. That spot is being renamed Cuvee Bistro, Ann Tusa said. It will be a casual breakfast, lunch and dinner spot with grab-and-go options including sandwiches and salads. Bourgeois also is helming that operation.