The official opening night of Ruffino’s on the River in late May followed a week of warm-up invitation-only trial runs that already had the buzz going up and down the bayou and across town. Owner Ruffin Rodrigue worked the room like the restaurant pro he’s become after years of successful operations in Baton Rouge. He was so excited about the new Lafayette gig he even brought his own grandmother, Rita Anastasia Rodrigue, so he could show off his latest creation. Two of his fellow Capital City-based restaurateur luminaries drove in to spread the love: Raising Cane’s founder Todd Graves and Walk-On’s co-founder Brandon Landry. To round out the décor, Ruffin added customer portraits on the walls, and in a brilliant move is already talking about a separate parking lot for the golf carts so popular in the ’hood. IND faves on the menu? Love the lightest crab meat cheesecake ever, shrimp corn dogs (you really gotta try ’em), a variety of pasta selections and the Fish Katie ... plus Sterling Silver aged heavy beef that literally melts to the touch of a knife, the particular pride and joy of executive chef/partner Peter Sclafani. And check out the beautiful glass vessels of infused vodka that gleam like jewel cache pots above the bar.
1. Ruffin Rodrigue and Peter Sclafani
2. White chocolate brownie and Kleinpeter vanilla ice cream
3. Vohn Mosing, Ryckman Callais, Ben Degatur, Chuck Degatur and Bryn Mosing
4. Grilled oysters
5. Brandon Landry, Ruffin Rodrigue and Todd Graves
6. (top) Kami Landry, Melissa Naquin, Kathryn Howard, Jamie Henry and Gretchen Bodin
(bottom) Jarod Landry, Andy Naquin, Craig Henry and Chad Bodin
7. Gab and Carolyn Camardelle, Ruffin Rodigue, Gene Trahan, and Bonnie and Wayne Hebert
8. Brandon Landry
The Heymann Center buzzed with foodies June 19 during the EatLafayette Kickoff that included 45 of the more than 70 restaurants that participate in the campaign, which runs through Sept. 2. Eateries served up a taste of signature dishes from crowd favorites like Charley G’s smoked duck and andouille gumbo and Café Habana City’s fresh mojitos to Sophi P’s cupcake tower filled with raspberry cream cheese confections. Thoroughly Acadiana tunes from Chubby Carrier put folks in the mood for local food — not that it took much prodding. We spotted Sandra and Steve Moore munching on Rusted Rooster’s hand-battered chicken biscuit lined with a habanero pepper jelly (see photo) while Sterling LeJeune helped himself to Café Vermilionville’s braised green tart.
1. Julie Calzone and Robert Callahan
2. Sophi P’s tower
3. Charley G’s smoked duck and andouille gumbo
4. Andrea Veron and Sterling LeJeune
5. Tiffany Cotton and Briana Brown
6. Steve and Sandra Moore
7. Cindy Phillips and Connie Collins
8. Sheryl Granger and Susan Boyle
9. Z Cajun Foods staff
Going once, going twice, sold to the lady in the second row! Locals gathered at Scandals Nightclub for the third annual Bid on a Bachelor event to benefit The Children’s Shelters of Acadiana Youth. The 21 eligible gents entertained the crowd with a promise to be at the beck and call of the highest bidder. Randi Landry and Trevor Chapman emceed the event and encouraged the crowd to be generous with their checkbooks. Troy Guy was the bachelor who sold for the highest bid of $4,500. After the bidding was done, some of the lucky ladies were spotted dancing the night away with their bachelors. All funds raised help Acadiana Youth provide a safe living environment for troubled youth and therapeutic and educational services to the residents of its shelters.
1. Wesley Sun Chee Fore, Luke Lawton and Terry Veillon
2. Gabrielle Mergist, Ashley Menard and Brandi Darbonne
3. Shawna Rasmussen, Paul Bosworth and Hayley LeJeune
4. Yvette Naquin and Michelle Boudreaux
5. Wesley Sun Chee Fore, Pablo Estrada and Kevin Stein
6. Joey D., Dwight Pitre, Monique Comeaux and Bill Stagg
7. Erin Kellogg and Belinda Smith
8. Dr. Leslie Jacobs and Angie Simon
9. Terry Veillon and Kerry Naquin
In just its second year, Village of Hope Gala doubled its number of tables sold, driving a relocation of the festive event to the Lafayette Hilton. Event Rental swathed the ballroom in turquoise and white from the draperies to the tables, which were donned with towering centerpieces topped with white-feathered flames. Chef John Folse cooked up a fabulous feast of corn and crab cappuccino, grilled black drum, veal osso buco and Ponchatoula strawberry cheesecake. Sen. Fred Mills led the lively auction, with items including a 20-person dinner prepared by Chef Folse, two fishing trips and three shotguns signed by the cast of Duck Dynasty. The Rev. Glenn Meaux’s SOLT Kobonal Haiti Mission, in partnership with Cross Catholic Outreach, presented the event, which raised more than $438,000 to help build houses in Haiti.
1. Barry and Julie Bleichner
2. Debbie Dore, Molly Mouton and Boni Ritter
3. Mike and Jean Coluzzi
4. Tyron Picard and Blane Comeaux
5. Hope and David Hebert
6. Sen. Page Cortez and Veria Samaroo
New menu items ready for the Lenten season
The Cane Fire Film Series screens “MaidenTrip” on Monday, March 10, at the AcA.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The vibe of the tribe done modern
The Louisiana Workforce Commission said Friday that initial claims rose to 2,125 from the previous week's total of 1,964. There were 2,887 initial claims during the comparable week in 2013.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has stalled action on a $3.5 billion annual school funding formula due to state lawmakers by March 15.
The New Orleans Saints have yet to make it official as of this writing, but popular wide receiver Lance Moore has reportedly been cut by the team to free up salary-cap space on the roster.
While two medical marijuana bills are slated for the upcoming legislative session, what some Louisianans might not know is that the plant was approved for therapeutic use by state lawmakers in 1991.
The agenda is shaping up to be lighter than in previous years. But Jindal is term-limited, with fewer than two years remaining in office, and he saw his last big initiative — a proposed rewrite of Louisiana tax law — collapse without getting a vote in 2013.
Sharper has been held without bail because of an arrest warrant issued by Louisiana authorities accusing him and another man of raping two women.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday, March 07, 2014:
Two Lafayette men have been revealed by police as the infamous duo behind a caper that shook our fair city to its core.
She’s the daughter of the legendary Johnny Cash, but she’s been a gifted artist in her own right for three decades, and she’s coming to Lafayette.
The Lafayette Parish School Board has received a second letter of demand related to last year’s insurance debacle, this time from Key Benefit Administrators claiming it’s owed $93,000 from the school system.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The Louisiana coastline is vanishing faster than mappers can keep track.
A bill that would have overridden local ordinances prohibiting public and private employers from discriminating against lesbian, gay and transgender people has been pulled within less than a week of being filed.
The panel that selects nominees for a controversial New Orleans area flood control board — a board that is suing more than 90 oil, gas and pipeline companies — is set to discuss legislation affecting its independence.
State prison officials cannot keep secret the seller and manufacturer of the two drugs purchased for executions at the Louisiana State Penitentiary, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.
State lawmakers will not appeal a judge's ruling that it was improper to use $3.7 million from a probation and parole officers' retirement fund to balance the state's operating budget.
Prepare yourselves for sun
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Conservatives have been losing their minds over this satirical bit on the Colbert Report.
Due to the chaos of Mardi Gras and the weather, the entry deadline for this year's INDesign Awards has been extended by one week.
The Lafayette Parish School Board leaves a lot to be desired, but is scrapping the election process in favor of an appointed board the answer?
Queen Evangline and King Gabriel ruled Tuesday night
The House approved legislation Tuesday night to roll back a recently enacted overhaul of the federal flood insurance program, after homeowners in flood-prone areas complained about sharp premium increases.
IND Style does Gabriel
Newsy bits for the fam
The NFL has formally designated New Orleans' Jimmy Graham as a tight end for the purposes of his franchise tag value, which is now set at $7.05 million next season unless Graham and the Saints subsequently agree on a long-term deal.