In St. Rose, a chef’s new Southern tavern gets smoking by the levee _lowres

Advocate staff photo by Ian McNulty - Truck Farm Tavern opened this week on River Rose in St. Rose.

Chef Brack May and Krista May are known for Cowbell, their burger destination and art-filled café by the levee in the Riverbend. Their new project also has a levee view (and a burger), this time about a 20-minute drive upriver in St. Rose.

Truck Farm Tavern opened this week, bringing what chef May hopes will be a regular stop for nearby residents and a casual dining destination for people making a quick road trip from New Orleans.

“We’re going to try to be that fun place where you can come for different reasons,” he said. “We have the room to do a lot of in-house production, we can do private events and we’re also a bar and tavern.”

Barbecue is a major part of the menu, with the smoker contributing to entrees and sandwiches. Look for ribs and smoked pork poutine, BBQ mussels, and shrimp and grits with rabbit sausage, along with grilled tuna muffulettas, turkey neck gumbo, steaks and, naturally, a burger.

“We’re a Southern tavern, with my interpretation of the food that you’d find in a farmhouse setting,” said May.

Once home to St. Rose Tavern (which is now located nearby in New Sarpy), the historic property gleams after a dramatic renovation.

The address, originally built as a hotel along River Road in the 1920s, still has the contours of a roadhouse. But now it looks like every inch of the place has been retooled. There’s a large bar under a historic mural, a wine room carved out for private dinners or lunch meetings, regional art and repurposed industrial pieces worked into the décor and large kitchens ready for daily restaurant use and for catering and special events.

Truck Farm Tavern

11760 River Rd., St. Rose, 504-699-0099; truckfarmtavern.com

Initial hours: lunch Tue.-Sat., dinner Fri. and Sat. Expanded dinner service and brunch to come in the weeks ahead.

Follow Ian McNulty on Twitter @IanMcNultyNOLA.