A recent phenomenon here in the Big Easy is that many restaurants are sporting “spin-offs.” In most cases a highly acclaimed restaurant opens a smaller space nearby that sports more casual fare and a more casual atmosphere. Cochon has done it with Cochon Butcher, Arnaud’s has done it with Remolade and more recently famed New Orleans restaurant Antoine’s has pulled it off with Antoine’s Annex. However, unlike the other spin-off’s, the Annex focuses more on pleasing your sweet tooth.
The Annex's Pulled Pork Panini
The Annex is a full service chocolate shop, bakery, coffee shop and ice cream parlor. To top it off, you can also grab a bite to eat, as the Annex offers an array of salads and a handful of sandwiches. Thinking that this spin-off was much like the rest that had been popping up around town, I headed in to grab some lunch. Thankfully, although the lunch menu
is short, it is stacked with tasty options. I opted for the BBQ Pulled Pork Panini. The menu advertises this sandwich as part of its light fare, but I was satisfied for sure by the time I made it through the very large panini and chips. While paninis seem to have found themselves on every menu in the country by now, the Annex’s panini sets itself apart with the creative “panini relish,” a fine combination of bell peppers, onion, mushrooms, garlic and basil. The relish combined in with the BBQ sauce produced an interesting array of flavors for a panini. It was almost like a BBQ based cacciatore sauce. Unfortunately, the pork was cold in the middle. Clearly, the food served in the Annex are likely pre-prepared in Antoine’s main kitchen and simply warmed up (poorly) in the Annex. While the panini and chips were more than enough for me for lunch, I’ve heard from others that the salads are too small and left them hungry.
A sack of crawfish that is easy to carry!
The Annex’s strongest selling spot appears to be coffee, ice cream and candy. The chocolates do look like they’d make great gifts, as many are a whimsical reflection of New Orleans icons. A wide selection of ice cream can provide relief from a New Orleans summer day while a full selection of all the usual coffee drinks can give you the extra jolt when needed.
In all, the Annex isn’t a bad place to stumble into, but I’m not sure I’d head out of my way to get down there.
Monday – Friday ~ 7:00am – 10pm
Saturday – Sunday ~ 8:00am – 10:00pm
513 Royal Street
Some content from this post originally appeared on Go NOLA.