Among the many cultures that have defined the distinctive and diverse cuisine of New Orleans, the lesser-known immigrant groups are now gaining recognition for its culinary influences. Notably, the Greek community first graced the city in the 1800s, making it the first Greek, immigrant settlement in the Western Hemisphere. Throughout the years, the Greek population living in New Orleans has maintained its devoted ties to the flavors of their beloved Mediterranean homeland and contributed to the city’s distinct gastronomic landscape.
ROCKROSE, named for a Greek wildflower shrub, is born from a desire to offer the city of New Orleans a contemporary Greek-American restaurant — one that evokes the best of that coastal culture and capitalizes on the bounty of local Louisiana ingredients, together with artisanal products from Greece. This is the first collaboration for native New Orleanians, proprietor Nick Asprodites, of Greek descent, and Chef Brian Doyle. With an impressive culinary pedigree, Doyle immersed himself in numerous kitchens throughout Greece for six months - prior to this, he had gained extensive experience working in some of the top restaurants in the U.S. Collectively the team paints an authentic picture of modern Greek-American cuisine with uncomplicated, herb-forward dishes. Crispy Chickpea Fries and a Roasted Red Pepper with Feta Spread stand alongside a range of Cheeses, Flatbreads, Salads, and Pastas. Hearty, braised Lamb entrées and plates showcasing local seafood, like the Whole Flounder with Asprodites’ Lump Crabmeat Stuffing and Lemon Potatoes, are just to name a few. These soon-to-be signatures and the artisanal cocktails are timely and innovative, but always begin with a deep appreciation for the past. The wines are handpicked for their boutique qualities and origins - specifically from the regions influencing the cuisine including Greece, Italy, and Spain.
Design inspirations are drawn from the seaside, urban escapes that dust the Mediterranean coastline, featuring a palette of deep blue and ink-gray hues, soft and smooth textures, and a raw backdrop created by the exposed brick wall. Velvet and leather banquettes with a base made of reclaimed timber, sourced from dredging the 185-year-old New Basin near Lake Pontchartrain, anchors the east sidewall. A lengthy, communal bar with a dramatic, sleek marble top lines the west sidewall, encouraging those gathering to engage in spirited conversations. The eye is drawn towards a large half-moon shaped ceiling lamp with a decorative inlaid pattern interpreting archetypical Greek artistry.
ROCKROSE is a stylish new restaurant with an unmistakable Greek identity found in its dishes that are both respectful and bold – a place that challenges the status quo and acts as a leader in its vision to honor a culture that has been deeply rooted in New Orleans for centuries.
ROCKROSE, an annex to International House hotel, serves lunch seven days a week and dinner six days a week, Tuesday–Sunday. Monday evenings will be a dedicated, service industry-oriented night that is also open to the public, featuring ‘geeky’ cocktails, new wines, and experimental dishes chef Doyle is testing (prices will vary.) ROCKROSE will be providing breakfast and catering to the hotel 30-60 days after its October 2019 opening.
ROCKROSE | 217 Camp Street, New Orleans, Louisiana | 504.369.3070 | @rockrosenola