by Ronny Green
The Diamond Grill is a true gem of Central Louisiana. It is as rich in history as it is in flavorful cuisine. Originally opened in 1931 as a jewelry store and recipient of the 2006 Louisiana Preservation Award, now Scott Laliberte and The Diamond Grill Krewe are enhancing the dining experience by combining French techniques with Cajun flare along with warm, inviting, accommodating, personal service all under enchanting chandeliers and candlelight.
It’s hard to miss The Diamond Grill as I turn the corner onto 3rd Street, dressed with lights in the colors of the Mardi Gras season, the exterior is shining as brightly as its name implies. Inside the ambiance is giving “top drawer” vibes.
At our table, the wedge salad is bursting with robust mouthfuls of diced tomatoes, red onions, bacon and blue cheese crumbles with a made in house buttermilk blue cheese dressing tag teamed with a balsamic reduction. My introduction to buerre blanc sauce was on a previous visit to The Diamond Grill.
This time around, I’m having the crab cakes: panko fried, loaded with jumbo lump blue crab meat, sauteed artichokes, topped with shrimp and micro arugula and bathed in lemon beurre blanc and white remoulade sauce.
If you’ve ever had the tomato basil soup at The Diamond Grill, then you know it isn’t your typical condensed pop top can of soup. Now take that same tomato basil soup goodness, add some big boy gulf shrimp, toss in the linguine and you’ve got yourself a serious tomato basil seafood pasta situation featuring sauteed green beans on the side and a special red fish en papillote. En papillote basically means “cooked in a bag.” However there is nothing basic about this red fish with rosemary and lemon butter prepared using this classic French method of cooking.
For dessert, we’re treated to vanilla creme brulee. The Diamond Grill’s crème brulee lives up to its reputation as it is a well-known conversation starter among travelers who stop through the Diamond Grill as they gallivant around Louisiana.
Whether this is your first time visiting or you’re a regular like myself, The Diamond Grill’s exceptional service professionals are always eager to make your night on the town a night to remember. You may also want to take a walk up the grand staircase as the unparalleled service extends to the mezzanine bar. Danny and Trisha are always holding it down behind the bar pouring from the over 30 wines available and mixing up some of the best hand-crafted cocktails in the state.
RONNY GREEN, FOOD REVIEWER EXTRAORDINAIRE