Two national publications feature my homes
Julia Reed, and Garden & Gun....details below
Julia Reed celebrates New Orleans & south Louisiana culture in her new book. Front cover shot in my courtyard.
Julia Reed's New Orleans: Food, Fun, and Field Trips
for Letting the Good Times Roll
All photos are courtesy of Paul Costello Photography
It's an instant classic and should be part of any southern cookbook collection. I'm so excited for my dear friend Julia Reed's accomplishment. What fun it was to be part of her effort. So when Julia called asking to shoot a chapter in her upcoming book at my house in the French Quarter, my quick answer: Well of course!
I have to believe that we inspire each other. Years ago, Julia Reed walked into my antique store in the French Quarter. She fell in love with some esoteric prints of bugs. They were ridiculous. After all, who buys pictures of bugs? I did and she did! Then, I realized that she lived nearby and I closed the shop and went over there for a drink, and the laughs and good times have been ceaseless since.
Julia's classic Seafood Gumbo is below along with a Rum Pecan Pie. That's my kitchen stove and though it's something of a relic, countless memorable meals have been created in that galley-sized kitchen. Most days begin with a strong cup of chicory coffee made in the French drip pot sitting there on the stove. Of course, they're sweetened with natural cane sugar from my family's mill in Patoutville and it makes me think of my French heritage.
Julia Reed is a world-class tastemaker and has an extraordinary talent for bringing people together. The other New Orleans celebrations she includes are magical: phenomenal settings with wonderful dishes featuring her recipes along with favorites from prominent chefs and home-cooks...and, it's a great cultural read. Paul Costello's photos are the perfect accompaniment to her narrative.
I particularly appreciate Julia's love for my home in South Louisiana. And as she started thinking about her forays over the years with me in Cajun country (we've shared many great adventures!), she decided to include a chapter at my country house in Patoutville set amongst the sugar cane background.
She penned this sweet note to Patoutville:
There's no bad time to visit Patoutville, but it is especially beautiful in summer and early fall, when the sugarcane is wait-high in the fields. In late fall and winter, the trucks full of cut cane form miles-long lines at the mill and there's twenty-four hours-a-day drama as great clouds of smoke fill the sky.
Ancient Oaks at BAyside Plantation
My cousin's nearby Bayside Plantation, was another destination in this chapter. As a realtor specializing in historic properties, I'm representing the sale of Bayside (click the above Bayside link for more images and listing details.
The culmination of the South Louisiana photo shoot was this fabulous meal celebrated with dear friends. I love that Julia was inspired by Teche country artist George Rodrigue's Aioli Supper Club and chose to recreate that celebration in her book. It's based on old Creole Gourmet Society traditions....another homage to the rich culture of South Louisiana.
Among the most cherished compliments I've known,
shared here from Julia:
... she's first referring to George Rodrigue and her vision to recreate the Aioli Dinner from his painting:
I think the artist would have approved of our
gathering under the live oaks. He so respected the traditions of his ancestors, and Peter, with his
antiques-filled houses and love of the land,
honors the past and his own Louisiana history
with more joie de vivre and élan than anyone I know."
Thank you Julia Reed!
As always with you, life is a magnificent celebration.
I recommend: reed Smythe & co.
Beyond her book, you'll also want Julia's favorite items to enhance your life celebrations.
She and friend Keith Smythe founded Smythe & Company: artisanal goods for uncommon spaces.
See: Reed Smythe & Company
Wait: That's my house!
Imagine my surprise when I was leafing through the April/May issue of Garden and Gun and saw the image above - the painting of my Bourbon Street house!
The photo is part of a story about New Orleans artist and rum distiller James Michalopoulos by New Orleans (and Maine summer) resident writer Wayne Curtis.: The Colorful, Far-Out Vision of James Michalopoulos: The most recognizable painter in New Orleans is on a mission: to make sure the City doesn’t forget the artists who keep it funky.
Though it's a great read, I disagree with the caption's 9th ward mention. While there are other examples of Creole cottages with the same color scheme, I don't believe you'll find another bearing the same architectural fenestrations, the same morning glory vine along with the left placement of the lamp post, and the low red wall...elements which are all peculiar to my streetscape. I've not seen this painting before and am delighted to know it exists!