About Opal Basil on the Trace
Chef Vasquez utilizes his background in Southwest cuisine to prepare Southern ingredients in a fresh, new way. Truly unlike any other local dining experience!
**The restaurant is a second floor walk-up. We will happily accommodate any guests in the first floor cafe. Please make a note in your reservation or call #985.778.2529 to let the hostess know to expect your party on the first floor.**
Tapas / Small Plates, Southwest, Southern
Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Thursday - Saturday 5:00pm - 10:00pm
Open for Special Occasion Brunches
$30 and under
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Wine
Opal Basil on the Trace Ratings and Reviews
We dined 7/16/16. My wife has severe glu ...
We dined 7/16/16. My wife has severe gluten allergy, plus a lactose intolerance. The waiter and the chef/owner both came to the table to discuss options, and explain the preparation. Many items on the menu could be modified to accommodate her needs....which is the exception in the NOLA area. Food was excellent, both in presentation and flavor. If you want / need personal attention.....this place can provide it. If you don't need special attention, you will enjoy the fresh ingredients and efforts of the chef to create some very nice dishes that bring divergent flavors together in a very harmonic manner. Could not ask for a better experience.
The owners are very caring and want to m ...
The owners are very caring and want to make your experience memorable. They make sure that you are happy when you come and will do everything they can to do just that. There is a reason this place is becoming the "Hot-Spot" in Mandeville.
Our service was impeccable. The hostess seated us promptly at the time of our dinner reservation, and we were greeted by the owners, who recognized us from our last visit. Chris, our server, was quick, knowledgeable, and not overbearing.
The food was really good, and each dish had unique flavor combinations that we haven't found anywhere else in the area. They are fresh, and best of all Tasty. The complimentary cornbread is distinctly different, and from the Creaux-Nut, Sea Bass, and Shrimp & Gnocci, that my wife had (each was better than the last) to the chef's tasting menu that I had, literally nothing disappointed me.
Overall, this was an anniversary dinner we won't forget!
Northshore Nest Egg
If you eat with your eyes first, then you will surely enjoy this delightful restaurant. It is so quaint and quiet. I truly think I could be content with just 1 tapas plate. . Their tapas plates are the largest I have ever had. You are served a complimentary slice of cornbread and you must get the Creaux- nut for dessert, so 1 tapas plate in between will be just perfect. Great atmosphere and both my husband and I enjoyed every bite. We are planning to go again very soon
Nice romantic place. Hail TAPAS :)
For a place that caters to healthy, organic, fresh food and allows you to customize your food to be paleo, gluten free, or any other way you prefer, the menu is fantastic and the food was great. The place has a nice atmosphere, a great balcony to dine on during nice evenings, and the chef was extremely personable and spent about 30 minutes expressing his passion for good food and determination to cook good, healthy foods for kids with limitations, but making it taste great too! Nice place that I would definitely recommend to friends. And we will be back.
It was our first dining experience at Opal Basil and we will definitely be back! The food and drinks were fantastic! The service could be a bit more polished but overall there were no complaints! I highly recommend the sea bass! One of the very best fish dishes I have ever had and don't forget about dessert! Either the brie cheesecake or the creaux-nut! Both will knock your socks off!
This establishment is a rare gem.
This establishment is a rare gem. They serve small plate ( individual courses ). And, they a have the chefs special tasters meal. The chef/owner and his wife are very pleasant and will stop by your table to chat. It has a pleasant overall ambience.
I believe that anyone would find multiple enjoyable dishes served here. One of the best restaurants I have frequented in my 60 plus years of dining out.
Fab mix of flavors to delight the senses
We began the evening with a nice glass of wine and were served complimentary cornbread/sauce appetizers. I chose the tasting menu so I could enjoy some surprises and we ordered 3 other small plates for my husband. The shrimp was particularly juicy and tender and the sauces complicated, flavorful and creamy. The appetizers of cilantro lime shrimp and gnocci were incredibly delish! The pork carnitas with fried green tomato was a great mix of textures. We enjoyed every morsel and will return. The service has always been good.
Great first experience and we will be ba ...
Great first experience and we will be back. The chef and the bartender made sure we were happy. I recommend their Mojito- flavored seasonally and even their water is basil/lemon infused. This isn't a kids spot but older kids should find something to enjoy.
I enjoy this restaurant so much, I've ea ...
I enjoy this restaurant so much, I've eaten here once a month since discovering Opal Basil. First experience was New Year's Eve, second Valentine's and lastly Saturday night. On the Holiday's we had a price fix Chef's tasting menu with wine pairing. I think that's a great way to see the variety of foods that is offered. My favorite experience was on a non-holiday Saturday night. We ordered three small plates each. Shrimp with gnocchi was a huge hit! Cheesy, citrus sauce made us want to lick the plate. The other favorite was the Lobster Tamale which is loaded with lobster and had a lobster claw on the side along with a nice crisp pickled mirliton salad. We also ordered the deviled egg which was served in such a creative way, it was creamy and delicious. We had the fondue which was creamy, mildly spicy and loaded with lump crabmeat. We also ordered the brisket and pork small plates, both were very well done! All in all its my new favorite restaurant! The chef always walks around the restaurant and says hello to every table, which makes the place feel warm.
Unique and really great find! Tapas!!
Our family was so pleased to find this restaurant. We spent an afternoon hiking in Fountainebleau State Park and did a quick search and found Opal Basil.
We sat outside and had just a lovely evening. We truly enjoy tapas restaurants and sharing as a family (although we always order too much as we want to try it all).
To top it all off our server was just simply incredibly professional and polite.
We will definitely recommend this restaurant to others and make a point to eat there when back in the area.
I found Opal Basil on Yelp. My husband is hard to impress, and I was looking for something different for his birthday dinner. We loved it. There are raised flower beds with herbs and lettuce growing in them outside. The kitchen was open to the dining room (which was beautifully decorated) and Chef Robert could be seen whipping up each course through the whole meal. I HIGHLY recommend the tasting menu. Three courses and a delicious dessert, paired with two wines or cocktails. The food is small portions but we did not leave hungry! I also tried the Tamarind Ginger Mojito and French Coffee Service after dinner. Amazing! The Citrus Sriacha Creme Brûlée was one of the best desserts I've ever had. I am dying to go back.
Modern jewel on the Northshore
Chef Robert Vasquez creates delicious tapas that reflect the flavors of his native Southwest, skillfully blended with flavors of Louisiana, his current home. The food at Opal Basil is fresh, beautifully seasoned, and consistently excellent. Chef Robert is passionate about the dishes he creates and this is reflected in the quality. Don't miss this wonderful place in delightful Old Mandeville.
Small Plates Winner
We have followed Chef Rob for a number of years and he never disappoints. Given his limited cooking area, he produces excellent, well-balanced plates with little or no wait. He makes sure each plate that goes out is just how he envisioned the dish. The wine list is modest and could use some additions to compliment flavor profiles. Excellent food value for the money.
Went on New Year's Eve. Had no idea the restaurant was on the second floor and there was no elevator . One person in our group had problems with her legs so we were concerned. We were seated immediately but the restaurant was extremely cold and the noise level was unbelievable.
First three courses were good but the entree,, Mahi Mahi was overcooked and the crabmeat stuffing was cold.
All five courses were tapas sized plates and the value just wasn't there.
The Christmas Dinner was amazing & a gre ...
The Christmas Dinner was amazing & a great value at only $39 per person. The service was great & the food selections interesting & delicious. Particularly memorable was the spinach florentine, queso cornbread, prime rib & chocolate bread pudding as well as the baked Brie. We will definitely be returning for another great meal in the future!
Not for holidays
Went for Christmas Eve dinner..., so excited to try this place! Waited 10 min for a server to come to the table, then to our dismay, it was a buffet only that night. We both selected the prime rib, which was the size of the palm of my hand. The items on the buffet had zero flavor.. Service not so good, we left hungry & after $140 we shouldn't have. Disappointed.
The food is fantastic. Quality ingredien ...
The food is fantastic. Quality ingredients cooked and assembled with care with surprising combinations and adventuresome results. Love the small plate concept. Service was slower and the environment more raucous than I would have thought, but it was a busy night. The only true negative was the fact that the restaurant REALLY smelled like grease and fried food. They're cooking in what is basically a residential kitchen, with residential level equipment. While it's impressive the results that are delivered out of that small kitchen, they are truly in dire need of a commercial ventilation system. That being said, we'll definitely go back, just not when we have somewhere else to be afterwards.
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