In the heart of the French Quarter in New Orleans, a fabulous restaurant called GW Fins is tucked away on Bienville Street. Their cocktails are some of the best in the area (I only say ‘some of the’ to be safe, but they are, by far, the best cocktails I had while in New Orleans) and their food is the kind of stuff you hope to get each time you dine out. Their staff is warm and welcoming, their chef, Tenney Flynn, is talented and charming–and nothing short of an expert taste creator, and their windows are wide and romantic–providing views onto the street that are entertaining through a meal.
I tried just about everything my stomach could hold while at Fins. I initially went in only for appetizers and cocktails, but found myself so pleased with the quality of their food that I left the restaurant unbearably full–with no room for dinner.
On a recommendation, I made sure to try the lobster dumplings. White fish and lobster mousseline, shaved fennel, tomato concasse, and lobster butter make up these delicious dumplings that you can’t ignore should you find yourself dining out in the French Quarter. But the lobster dumplings were only the beginning. Order the Smoking Sizzling Oysters and you won’t be let down. Our waiters brought them over to us, proudly, as the huge oysters literally sizzled on a bed of salt. With a steak-like consistency, I already know this is going to be a dish I’ll be trying (repeatedly) to recreate myself from here on out. Chances are strong that I’ll fail. Miserably.
The Bigeye Tuna Tartare and Sashimi comes with wasabi vinaigrette and crispy wontons. As is my tendency, I dabbed on so much wasabi that my eyes watered when trying this tasty appetizer, but hey, I wasn’t complaining. The tuna might as well have melted in my mouth, so seeing clearly wasn’t my first order of business at the moment.
The Chilean Seabass was likely the favorite dish of both myself and my friend dining out with me. It came to us braised in a hot and sour shrimp stock with Enoki mushrooms, baby bok choy, and sauteed spinach. The dish was…how do I put this…FLAWLESS. The fish was cooked absolutely perfectly and gave us both a newfound appreciation for Chilean Seabass–probably because no one had ever done it quite as right as Fins did.
Although the Chilean Seabass took home the prize for best entree at Fins, the Wood Grilled Pompano was most certainly good–served alongside fresh artichokes, roasted red peppers, kalamata olives, roasted eggplant, and saffron cous cous.
We had shrimp in a chipotle sauce that was smokey and buttery and thoroughly worth your buck when you’re in New Orleans.
Trust me, New Orleans is a food town, yes, but a lot of restaurants just don’t get it. Fins GETS IT and they get it perfectly. Do yourself a favor while you’re there. Try the Raspberry Lemonade and Espresso Martinis. They’re what dreams are made of. And for dessert? Have the Apple Pie. It’s freshly baked with a cheese straw top and served with ice cream. As I sit here writing about Fins, thinking fondly back on my dining experience, I’m sad. I’m sad because I know that most restaurants can’t live up to the standard Fins has now set for me.
By: Elizabeth Seward