Moving and starting a new job are said to rank high as stressful life events, though the crew at the Carrollton-area restaurant Boucherie (1506 S. Carrollton Ave., 504-862-5514; http://boucherie-nola.com">boucherie-nola.com) are managing both tasks and making it look easy, or at least appetizing.
The day after Ash Wednesday, while others were still hauling sacks of Mardi Gras beads to the attic, Boucherie completed a planned move from its original cottage location to a new address just around the corner. And by next week, pending city approvals, they plan to open the former Boucherie space as a new restaurant called Bourrée at Boucherie (8115 Jeannette St.), a casual spot specializing in fresh fruit daiquiris and chicken wings, with a fuller menu to come.
Chef Nathaniel Zimet and James Denio opened Boucherie in 2008 after they’d gained a following for the Que Crawl, one of the city’s first modern food trucks (you can still find this popular purple chow wagon making a circuit of local events). They took over a tiny cottage that had been home to a succession of memorable restaurants (Iris, Mango House, the original Ninja sushi bar), but it became clear early on they would outgrow the space.
The new location (previously Café Granada), gives Boucherie at least a third more seating, a much larger bar and, eventually, sidewalk seating under a broad awning. The dining room is split by a series of booths as deep and cozy as theater boxes, which gives the open room a unique intimacy.
Zimet’s menu made the move intact. This is a reliably inventive combination of brawny Southern flavors (smoked Wagyu brisket, boudin balls, Krispy Kreme bread pudding) with more wide-ranging influences (Peking duck sausage with moo shu pancakes, sashimi with kimchi). Prices remain resolutely mid-range. Smoked scallops, recently prepared with a BBQ shrimp-style butter sauce with greens and gremolata, top the regular menu at $18.
Meanwhile, Bourrée at Boucherie was conceived with the creatively wrought snacks and street food of the Que Crawl days in mind. It will start with daiquiris and a variety of wings (the Buffalo wings, recently served as a special at Boucherie, were brazenly spicy and deeply smoky). As this new spot gets rolling, he plans to add more tapas-style small plates to the rotation.
Follow Ian McNulty on Twitter @IanMcNultyNOLA.