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How a 115-Year-Old New Orleans Institution Makes Oysters Rockefeller

Galatoire’s is known for its exceptional seafood dishes and having one of the most iconic dining rooms in the country

Galatoire’s is an institution in New Orleans, known for its fresh seafood dishes, classic Creole flavors, and creative takes on breakfast for dinner. “This is one of the most famous dining rooms in all of New Orleans right there,” says executive chef Phillip Lopez. “There are more contracts, deals, handshakes done on the tables of Galatoire’s than in lawyer’s offices or churches. Weddings and divorces [etc.] are all celebrated here.”

Among the restaurant’s signature dishes is its take on oysters Rockefeller. Lopez sources his oysters from shucking champions at Dragos, a nearby restaurant. “There’s a camaraderie in the city, the relationships that we build, this is the kind of stuff that we want to keep going. We’re lending a hand to someone else, and they’re hooking us up with some awesome oysters.”

Each box they recieve contains 14 dozen oysters, and the restaurant goes through about 12 boxes a day. That’s around 2,000 oysters, which shows just how popular the dish is. The dish has a designated chef preparing every portion. Each oyster gets piped with a spinach puree and herbsaint liqueur. The plates of six oysters are then broiled, and once they begin to brown, they’re removed to make room for the next order. “It’s a dance, all night long.”

That energy, dedicated to making every dish to perfection, is essential to Galatoire’s. “You walk outside on Bourbon street, and it’s just non-stop music and drinking and just revelry,” says Lopez. “That has to carry through into the dining room. So that chaos is really what makes Galatoire’s so special.”

Check out the video to see more on how the restaurant prepares its dishes, which are served to about 250 diners a night.

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