About the Quarter
The Quarter is a family owned restaurant. We hope to provide the most authentic Creole dining experience outside of the New Orleans French Quarter. We use the finest ingredients and have multiple generations of family cooks that influence our food.
From the Press
There’s “good,” and there’s “lick-the-plate good.” The food by chef Norm Theard formerly of Roux Creole Cuisine in Laguna Beach isn’t just the latter; it’s pot-licker good. I told the waiter as much when he asked how I liked the Shrimp Yvonne I’d just finished. I said if it weren’t going to embarrass everyone around me, I would’ve cleaned the bowl with my tongue. Thankfully, I didn’t have to. Theard served the sautéed shell-on shrimp and its garlic-thyme sauce with plenty of hot, crusty bread. By using it to squeegee the last precious drops, I saved my fellow patrons from the awkward sight of a grown man burying his face in the restaurant’s china.
And I think Theard already knows how good his dish is without having to see that. It’s his signature meal, one so personal he named it after his mother. In fact, his whole restaurant is personal. The chef traces his roots to New Orleans, and before this, he was the chef/owner of Creole Chef in Los Angeles. But above all else, Roux feels like a neighborhood joint made for locals who know one another by name. There’s a noticeable lack of ego here, not just from the staff, but also from the customers. When the hostess asked me how I was doing, she did it while putting a soft hand on my back. On another night, I encountered a couple that was leaving as I was coming in. “You’re in for a treat!” the woman told me as they walked to their car.
“Try the crawfish biscuit! They just put it on the menu!” the man said while patting his belly and giving a thumbs-up.“I will!” I said, waving to them. “Thanks for the recommendation!”
The Crawfish Biscuit is phenomenal. The dish—which starts with a green-onion-and- roasted-garlic biscuit smothered in a chunky sauce of crawfish tails and andouille sausage—has so much actual crawfish meat it amounts to at least an hour’s worth of work at the Boiling Crab.
No matter what I’ve tried, I’ve not met a dish here that I didn’t want to savor slowly and last forever. Even the lowliest side of red beans and rice is scrumptious and addictive, with every forkful of legume and grain bursting with the flavors of ham, andouille sausage and Creole alchemy. And there’s the revelation of the Stuffed Crab, for which Theard hollows out a blue crab shell, crams in its sweet-sweet meat cooked with a brown butter sauce, and lays the whole thing on top of what tasted like red cabbage cooked down to sugar. The dish made me question why anyone still bothers with crab cakes.
If you’re not yet convinced Roux isn’t the best new restaurant in Laguna Beach, try the Garlic Salad. Yes, even the salad is spectacular. It’s layered with too many components to list here, but one of them is melted Brie. And yes, I also squeegeed that plate clean. However, since societal norms still frown upon doing it with my tongue, I used my fingers. My apologies to Judith Martin.