Antoine Restaurant (Louisiana states) : The oldest family-run restaurants in the United States


( Antoine's is a Louisiana Creole cuisine restaurant located at 713 rue St. Louis (St. Louis Street) in the French Quarter of New Orleans, Louisiana. It has the distinction of being one of the oldest family-run restaurants in the United States, having been established in 1840 by Antoine Alciatore.

A New Orleans institution, it is notable for being the birthplace of several famous dishes, such as Oysters Rockefeller, Pompano en Papillote, Eggs Sardou and Pigeonneaux Paradis. Antoine's Cookbook, compiled by Roy F. Guste (the fifth-generation proprietor) features hundreds of recipes from the Antoine's tradition. It is also known for its VIP patrons including several U.S. presidents and Pope John Paul II.

Antoine's features a 25,000 bottle capacity wine storage and 15 dining rooms of varying sizes and themes, with several featuring Mardi Gras krewe memorabilia. The lengthy menu (originally only in French, now in French and English) features classic French-Creole dishes. By tradition, it's closed to the general public on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Mardi Gras. It can be reserved for private parties on these "Closed Days". Advance reservations are required for dining during Mardi Gras and on weekends. The executive chef as of November 2012 is Michael Regua.

Antoine’s was founded by Antoine Alciatore in 1840 and run by him until 1875. After his death at the age of 55, Julie Freyss Alciatore, his wife, took over while their son Jules Alciatore got culinary training in France. Upon his return in 1887, he took control of the restaurant until 1934. During this time, Jules also acquired property around the original restaurant as it became available, including a former slave quarters and carriage house. Antoine's eventually could accommodate 800 people in its 15 dining rooms. Each dining room was decorated according to a theme, many of the themes referencing a Mardi Gras krewe, such as Rex, Proteus, Twelfth Night or Maison Verte. Later, his son, Roy Alciatore, took over until 1972. After Roy’s death, William Guste Jr. and Roy Guste, both Antoine Alciatore’s great-grandchildren, took over for a brief three years before appointing Roy Guste Jr., who managed the restaurant until 1984.

For the next twenty years, between 1985 and 2004, the restaurant would be managed by Bernard “Randy” Guste, Roy Guste Jr.’s cousin. Rick Blount, son of Yvonne Alciatore Blount who is Roy’s daughter, was brought in as owner and manager in 2005 as an attempt to save the restaurant from a critical economic state. Under his management, the restaurant recovered after Hurricane Katrina. He saw to many renovations in its infrastructure, as well as menu changes and changes in the dining rooms.

The current owner, Rick Blount, describes Antoine's food as "Haute Creole", characterized as innovative and sophisticated Creole cooking with strong French traditions. The restaurant has a non-seasonal à-la-carte menu that features dishes with regional influences such as turtle, pompano, redfish, and shellfish, with preparation techniques that reflect a French aesthetic. Throughout its history and changing menus, Antoine's has had very little Cajun influence, and featured no Italian foods.

According to wikipedia

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