by Ronny Green
If you’ve been grinding hard all week, meeting deadlines, finishing projects, beginning new projects and doing numbers while continuing to navigate this 2020 dystopian space, you deserve this.
A quick forty–five minute trip north on I–49 with a fantastic playlist and you arrive at Mariner’s in Natchitoches, La. Nothing tickles my fancy more than dining and day drinking with a view. As we walk up the sidewalk to the entrance, we’re escorted in by a picturesque sunset over Sibley Lake. Inside the table is set; champagne and chardonnay on top of white table cloths. As the evening sky has transitioned into hues of purple and orange, our servers bring out Shrimp Cerveche, popping with robust colors of mango, red onions, etc., etc., along with a new entry into the “my favorite appetizer” category, Smoked Salmon Dip.
More chardonnay, more champagne, this time, accompanied by a dozen beautiful fresh, raw oysters. At this point in the dinner, with moonlight now cascading over the ripples in the lake, Mariner‘s ambiance and personal attention from the servers has blown my first time expectations completely “out of the water.“ Did someone say surf and turf? Yes, please. A 7 oz. steak prepared perfectly medium well, paired with buttery lobster tail, served with spinach and more of the smoked salmon dip because … why not?
More champagne and chardonnay to wash it all down before we are treated to an intensely flavorful key lime pie, I definitely could’ve taken one to go. Speaking of to go, would I be too obnoxious if I expected every restaurant to box my to go snacks for me like my server insisted? That small gesture was the icing on the cake to a spectacular night out. Mariner’s also does Sunday brunch, before we leftI was already looking at my calendar to confirm which Sunday I shall return.
After speaking with owner Ben Fedelic, I learned I was already familiar with his culinary exploits via the Levee Restaurant in Alexandria. In just nine weeks, he and his crew transformed Mariner‘s with bright, refreshing additions that are sure to wow you, especially if you are previously familiar with Mariner‘s.