Food museum set to spice things up
By Emma Weissmann
Given its rich culinary history, it’s no surprise that New Orleans is the home of the South- ern Food and Beverage
Museum (SoFAB), an institution
dedicated to the food and drink
of the South.
Five years after its opening, the museum
is in the process of expanding and relocating, a decision that Kelly Schultz, vice
president of communications for the New
Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau,
believes will offer tourists and residents a
richer way to experience the city’s culture.
That expanded experience will include
multiple opportunities to taste Southern
foods or do some cooking.
“No matter whom we are marketing to
— the convention planner, the leisure trav-
eler — the food is the common thing they
experience when they come to New Or-
leans, and they absolutely love it,” Schultz
ern regional favorites, all with French
twists. It’s the next really hot, hot cuisine.”
Additionally, visitors will have the op-
portunity to taste Southern finger foods as
they browse the exhibits, Hughes said.
“We feel that you can’t be a food museum without being able to [offer samples],”
Williams said. “If visitors are coming to
New Orleans because they like to eat,
they’ll be learning a lot about the food.
There are so many things about food that
connects us, [the museum] is an impor-
tant place people can go to just to learn
NewOrleans4Agents.com It’s Here!
A rendering of the Southern Food and Beverage Museum’s
new location, set to open in the fall.
said. “Having this monument is very ap-
propriate, and the plans to expand are go-
ing to make it even better.”
The museum, formerly at the Riverwalk
near the French Quarter, will move to a
30,000-square-foot building at 1504 Oretha
Castle Haley Blvd. in the Central City area.
The relocation is set for completion by this
Liz Williams, museum director, said,
“We were outgrowing the [previous] space,
and it made perfect sense. Now, the [new]
neighborhood is right in the middle of
the city, and we have some wonderful old
buildings that are attracting people’s atten-
tion because [the buildings] are lovely.”
On weekdays, museum-goers are 70%
tourists and 30% locals, while those numbers
are reversed on the weekends, Williams said.
New attractions in the relocated museum will include a Culinary Innovation
Center, a demonstration kitchen that will
also offer cooking classes; a children’s gallery; extensive exhibits on every Southern
state; an updated “SoFAB pantry”; and a
new restaurant, called Purloo.
“It’s classic French with a Southern
twist,” said Ryan Hughes, Purloo’s execu-
tive chef. “The menu is going to be South-
JUNE 24, 2013