In the words of the late, great Anthony Bourdain, "Garlic is divine. Few foods can taste so many distinct ways, handled correctly." This vegetable, also known as the stinking rose, has been a key ingredient in recipes around the world for millennia, and is rightfully deserving of the utmost respect and reverence. With this in mind, next Tuesday, April 19 is celebrated as National Garlic day within the U.S., and Where Y'at has got you covered with five local spots where you can celebrate this rich and savory staple.
Liuzza's by the Track, Garlic Oyster Po-Boy
Located just a few blocks from the Fair Grounds Race track, Liuzza's is a neighborhood favorite for po-boys and creole bites. They're known for their signature dish, the BBQ shrimp po-boy, as well as their hearty homemade gumbo; but the headliner for this next Tuesday will be their Garlic Oyster Po-Boy. A line up of succulent deep fried oysters spread over a crispy baguette smothered in garlic butter; this sandwich is guaranteed to satiate even the largest of appetites.
1518 N. Lopez St,. https://www.liuzzasbtt.com/ (504) 218-7888
Pizza Domenica, Garlic Knots
There are many places in New Orleans vying for the title of best pizza joint, and while it takes a higher authority than this humble writer to determine which is the finest, it's safe to say that Pizza Domenica would have to be in the discussion. Fixed with a custom-made oven brought straight from Italy, all three Pizza Domenica locations have a tasty selection of pizza, antipasti, and desserts available to choose from. Their pungent garlic knots in particular come paired with a creamy aged provolone fonduta, and make for a good side item to accompany your meal.
Multiple Locations, pizzadomenica.com
Mandina's, Garlic Bread
If you're looking for something more traditionally Italian, Mandina's is one of the most time-honored standouts in New Orleans. Offering a wide selection of food fare from both of the two "boots," a key side item here is the garlic bread. Now this may come across as a bit churlish, but it seems to me that there are two kinds of people in this world: those that like garlic bread and those that are wrong. Mandina's offers a few delicious options to pair it with like veal parmesan and supple red wine.
3800 Canal St, https://mandinasrestaurant.com/nola/ (504) 482-9179
Bayona, Garlic Soup
This next spot is so classy they don't even have a permanent menu. Since 1990, executive chef Susan Spicer has worked tirelessly to craft a menu that brings together culinary elements from all corners of the globe. As of writing this, their current menu is highlighted by entrees such as the mussel & shrimp fideos with pimentón sausage and grilled lamb loin with duck fat roasted potatoes. For the first course, they have a selection of salads and a creamy garlic soup served with pita chips. Just make sure you call ahead to reserve your seats in advance.
430 Dauphine St., https://www.bayona.com/cuisine/, (504)-525-4455
Mosca's, Spaghetti Bordelaise
Another heavy hitter on the Italian cuisine scene is Mosca's, a longstanding family-run restaurant in Westwego that first opened in 1946. Its longevity despite the out-of-the-way location is representative of its status as a premier destination. It is a culinary pearl to be dug up by anyone looking for good, authentic Italian food. Garlic has a strong presence on their menu, and their spaghetti bordelaise in particular makes good use of the stuff. As a cool side note, they also have a few of their recipes posted online for anyone who's looking to try their sauté-work at home.
4137 US-90 West, Westwego, https://www.moscasrestaurant.com/, (504) 436-8950