Nola’s DTB, which stands for Down the Bayou, has quickly become a hotspot thanks to its reinterpreted coastal Cajun cuisine and a vibrant bar scene. The playful restaurant concept, which tips a hat to the Cajun roots of Co-Owners Jacob Naquin and Chef Carl Schaubhut – both of whom have family ties to the coastal towns of southern Louisiana – features a menu rooted in inventiveness and approachability that we got to try firsthand.
The menu, developed by Schaubhut and Chef de Cuisine Jacob Hammel, focuses on modern interpretations of Southern Louisiana’s coastal cuisine, recreating the region’s antiquated dishes with refined technique and a lighter, more creative twist. Menu categories are divided into Sociables, T-Plates, Beaucoupe Plates and Lagniappe. Highlights from the sociables section were the Mushroom Boudin Balls, which just happen to be vegan, and are a doppelganger of the classic but utilize three types of mushrooms, charred eggplant, and Louisiana jasmine rice, served with a smoked tofu mayo, and collard pickles. Other favorites included the Fried Cornbread served with ham hock marmalade, goat cheese, and jalapeño, and the Charbroiled Oyster Gratin filled with smoked oysters, parmesan béchamel, gremolata.
Moving onto the larger T-Plates, our favorites were the Oyster Toast topped with crispy oysters, brisket debris, gruyere, and horseradish aioli, and the Cornmeal Gnocchi made with hot sausage, broccoli rabe, pecorino romano, lime. Moving onto the even larger, beaucoup plates our favorite was the Louisiana Rice Bowl filled with soft shell crab, shrimp, pork belly, mirliton, tasso XO, and egg yolk.
Drinks at DTB shouldn’t be missed, and are made with local products like Cathead Vodka (first distillery in Mississippi) and homemade ingredients like brown butter infused bourbons, and homemade peach shrubs. The sippable Fire on the Bayou made with vodka infused with DTB’s pepper jelly, Lillet, and citrus served with a draft pony beer was certainly a favorite.
For a sweet ending to the meal we dined on the White Chocolate and Vanilla Bean Semifreddo with lemon, mint, pretzel streusel, and Louisiana blackberries, along with the local Cured Peaches with cane syrup cookie, freeze dried blueberry, and chantillí.
Next time you’re in New Orleans give DTB a try, and until then, check out the down home delicious photos below.