Now that 2020 is behind us, the local restaurant industry is ready to move forward. Dining-in options are available with COVID-19 precautions, outdoor patios are open, and this year, new restaurants are eager to debut their offerings. After such an eventful 2020—and such a significant hit to our local restaurant and bar scene—we wanted to highlight some of the upcoming Baton Rouge bars, cafes, restaurants and other food places we’re looking forward to in 2021.
Soon, you’ll be able to view the downtown area from a new rooftop bar. Local investor Cornelius Quarels bought the former Hound Dogs bar on the corner of Main and Seventh streets. Quarels plans to lease the building as a lounge with a rooftop bar and aims to open it in April 2021.
Mid City is getting a new coffee shop. The cafe plans to open in the former Yvette Marie’s space inside The Market at Circa 1857 in January 2021. It will serve $1 coffee as well as breakfast, brunch and lunch.
Reve fans, wipe away those tears. The coffee shop is returning. After White Star Market shut down in March 2020, the Lafayette-born coffee shop’s Baton Rouge location temporarily closed with it. Reve Coffee Lab is expected to open its own storefront at The Settlement in Willow Grove this winter. The new shop will feature specialty coffee drinks, lunch and will have a full-size bar serving beer, cocktails and wine.
Anything is possible after 2020. Even a cannabis-themed sandwich shop. The toasted sub shop is expected to open on Ben Hur Road in spring 2021. The state’s first location will feature indoor seating for up to 50, an outdoor patio and bar seating.
Bring on the chicken. Joe Delpit, the owner of Chicken Shack, plans to open a new restaurant on Highland Road this year. Delpit plans to add more than 500 square feet of new dining space, a drive-thru and a covered porch to the space.
If you love Rotolo’s Pizzeria, you’re in luck. Owner of Rotolo’s Pizzeria Mitch Rotolo Sr. plans to open a new pizza restaurant in the Seigen Professional Plaza this year. The Seigen Lane restaurant will offer build-your-own pizzas and specialty pies.
Wings, anyone? Eloyace Wilson, an executive secretary at a local elementary school, is opening a fried chicken wing restaurant in Perkins Plaza on Perkins Road. The laid-back wing joint is expected to open in early 2021.
Pizza and wine? Yes, please. This Lafayette-based pizza place is expected to open in Rouzan Village in winter 2021. Customers can try build-your-own pizzas, specialty pizzas, pasta bread bowls, calzones and wine by the bottle.
The former Rum House building isn’t going to waste. Baton Rouge chef Peter Sclafani is partnering with Kiva Guidroz and Michael Boudreaux to open a new restaurant in the former Rum House space. The restaurant will serve Louisiana-inspired dishes and is expected to open in early 2021.
Baton Rouge can never have too many crawfish places. An Alexandria seafood restaurant is adding a new location in Mid City, expected to open in early 2021. Sammy Crawfish King will be located in the two buildings formerly occupied by All Star Catering on South Foster Drive.
Beer, wine and spirits? Oh, my. This giant liquor store plans to open the fourth Louisiana location in Baton Rouge. It is set for the Siegen Village Shopping Center, but more details about the opening date have not yet been released.
Millennial Park is on a roll. This year, owner Cameron Jackson plans to open a produce market called Millennial Park Produce Stand that sells fresh, locally grown produce. He plans to collaborate with Sweet Jones Farms for local fruits, veggies and livestock.
Shaq is back. Former NBA and LSU basketball player Shaquille O’Neal is expected to open a fried chicken restaurant at Hollywood Casino Baton Rouge in early 2022. The fast-casual spot will serve fried chicken, barbecue and adult milkshakes. O’Neal opened two other Big Chicken locations in Las Vegas and California.