Gabrielle will re-open on Orleans Avenue this fall.
It’s been 12 years since chefs Greg and Mary Sonnier’s beloved restaurant Gabrielle closed after Hurricane Katrina and the levee failures, but the restaurant will reopen this fall at 2441 Orleans Ave.
Gabrielle will take over what was once the Chinese restaurant Wok and Soul. The Sonniers bought the building in May and have been renovating the space. The new restaurant will seat 65 diners.
“We did have to throw out a wok stove,” Mary Sonnier said Friday.
The news, first reported by NOLA.com
on Thursday, spread fast, with friends calling to congratulate the couple, and a few eager diners trying to snag reservations for the restaurant’s opening night.
“I have to tell them, I don’t even have a phone number yet. I don’t even have a reservation system,” Sonnier said with a laugh. “But most of it has been really heartfelt and I’m really grateful.”
After their restaurant was damaged in the flooding, the couple sold the building and have been looking for a new permanent spot ever since.
“It’s a little scary, to be honest, but it’s exciting,” Sonnier said. "We’re ready — we’ve been ready. We looked for a very long time, but it was hard to find the perfect spot.”
At Gabrielle, the menu changed frequently, and diners can expect a similar setup at the new spot, with dishes carrying a strong Louisiana and New Orleans influence.
The couple named the restaurant after their oldest daughter, who will be managing the front of the house.
Gabrielle will serve lunch and dinner.
Sonnier says they would like to open Aug. 29, the anniversary of their closing date, but says the opening likely will happen in the beginning of September.