Many of our best restaurants are still open, but there is a new normal. Inside dining is a thing of the past, at least for a while. Curbside, takeout and delivery is what is happening now. To be sure, it is a struggle for the restaurants, but most are doing their best to keep the kitchen going, and, what almost every chef I talked to said, keep their employees getting a check.
It was not an easy transition to make. The corporate fast food places have a leg up with built in takeout windows, but in the difficult times, the local restaurants are the ones that need your help. The big change for some fine dining places is a shift to comfort food, served family style. Vestige in Ocean Springs is offering meals for 1,2,4 or 6 people, with emphasis on comfort. Their Easter menu was roasted pork rib loin with red eye gravy, Lyonnaise potatoes, herbed vegetables, carrot and sumac soup, spring salad with beets, radish, farm egg, Kumi’s brioche rolls and butter, Italian cassata cake. The Pillars in Biloxi is offering braised leg of lamb, a whole chicken that is trussed and seasoned, ready to take home and bake, grilled asparagus salad, mac and cheese, rosemary mashed potatoes and much more.
The Marathon Station in Ocean Springs and the Fillin’ Station in Biloxi are making a statement by offering boiled crawfish to go. It’s a novel idea, but a good one. Orchid Indian Cuisine in Gulfport is offering 10% off takeout orders. If you want to go Cajun, Parrain’s in Biloxi serves up jambalaya, boudin, cracklings and hogshead cheese. And that is just a small sampling!
If you do not want to go out to a restaurant for take out, a more affordable option is the deli at Rouses, Winn Dixie or even Walmart. Buy a rotisserie chicken. There are dozens of things you can do with that, from chicken curry to chicken and dumplings. Rouses has the best selection of prepared foods and the best cheese selection. Get a good bottle of Italian red wine and a good cheese, like a Taleggio and a loaf of bread.
We have all been through tough times before, this one is just new to us, so there is more uncertainty. But, we will get through and what a marvelous day that will be. Blessings to you all.