We went to Duane Park Cafe last night. They reopened on Thursday after renovations. The decor is very different. The room is more open. It has a formal, venetian feel (blue and white). A large, crystal chandelier is in the middle of the room, white columns and black and white venetian wall paper on several walls. I missed the wall that provided some separation between the bar and dining room, also the large vase of branches, flowers that was just past the host station. The menu has changed. Same staff and service. Now on to the most important part, the food.
White bean dip and bread.
Quail appetizer - Grilled or barbecued, very good sauce. Served on black eyed peas (and faro?). Our server advised that the red wine-braised short rib ravioli app was a popular choice. Based on the quail app, other New Orleans influenced dishes may be the way to go.
Roasted beet salad - red and golden beets on a bed of soft ricotta, toasted hazelnuts, mache. Good, especially if you like beets.
Duck "special" - duck was okay, cooked perfectly. on a bed of white beans and roasted fennel. Sauce was delicious.
Pan-seared scallops - parmesan gnocchi, balsamic red onions, celery root puree. The standout. Gnocchi was browned nicely, combination of flavors was a winner.
We were happy to see the return of one of our local favorites. Duane Park Cafe is small, consistent and has satisfying American cuisine (more New Orleans influences on the menu now).
Duane Park Cafe