Industry & Education: Breaking Ground on the New Orleans Culinary & Hospitality Institute
Last month, New Orleans Culinary & Hospitality Institute officially broke ground on a $32 million culinary school that will take over the shuttered Louisiana ArtWorks building on the corner of Howard Avenue and Carondelet Street. Support from sources like the North American Association of Food Equipment Manufacturers, Tulane University, Ernest N. Morial New Orleans Exhibition Hall Authority and other investors ensured the financing to fund the renovation of NOCHI’s historic five-story building in the CBD that is already underway by Woodward Design+Build.
Already licensed by the state, NOCHI will offer rigorous, hands-on post-secondary, 650-hour certificate programs in Culinary Arts and Baking & Pastry Arts designed to provide a greater return on investment of time and money for aspiring chefs seeking higher wage jobs in the industry. Another key aspect of NOCHI’s programming is driving culinary tourism with publicly offered, immersive seminars and classes like Knife Skills 101 and New Orleans Cocktails. NOCHI founders Ti Adelaide Martin and Dickie Brennan and others joined Mayor Mitch Landrieu and Governor John Bel Edwards for the official groundbreaking ceremonies sporting shovel-sized spoons and aprons Jan. 19. The institute is slated to open in 2019. nochi.org
Breakfast & Lunch: Blue Line Sandwich Company
Chef Bradley McGehee and his wife Stephanie have launched the second incarnation of their beloved breakfast and sandwich shop in Old Metairie, but this time they’ve left the burbs for the CBD. Taking over the brick building on South Rampart Street that was once home to Las Margaritas, Blue Line Sandwich Co. “part deux” features a ton more space — 5,000 square feet that includes an outdoor patio and a bar. Though the menu has expanded at both locations, you can still get their buttermilk pancakes, famous broken yolk sandwich and the St. Patty’s Day Massacre with house made corned beef, duck pastrami and remoulade aioli. 514 S. Rampart St., (504) 581- 4966, bluelinesandwichco.com
Nightlife: CBD Social
A new bar, pop-up space and event venue opened up just recently on St. Charles Avenue. Located in the space that once housed cibugnù, CBD Social offers cocktails, wine and local brews, and it serves as a home for pop-up Ramen Y’all, a creation from Commander’s Palace alumni Chef Yutaka Hitomi. Ramen Y’all is serving Tonkatsu Ramen and red bean beignets Thursday through Saturday nights from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., but the kitchen will also play host to other pop-ups the rest of the week. CBD Social will also offer a monthly gallery night with rotating exhibitions from local artists. 709 St. Charles Ave., (504) 679-1635, facebook.com/cbdsocial
Events: Mardi Gras — Throw me Somethin’ Mister!
Starting Feb. 2, the parades will be rolling through Downtown beginning with Oshun and ending Mardi Gras Day, Feb. 13, with the Krewe of Crescent City. Roll with all of them or pick your favorites! Noteworthy carnival tidbits include Endymion’s announcement that Rod Stewart and Jason Derulo will be performing at the 2018 Extravaganza. Plus, the grand and glamorous Krewe of Bacchus have crowned Academy Award-winning actor J.K. Simmons king of their 50th anniversary parade rolling Feb. 11. Have a safe and happy Mardi Gras! mardigrasneworleans.com/schedule