Advertisement
  1. Food

New chef at Tampa's Roux makes things more Cajun, less Creole

Bonnie Breaux says she got her “culinary training at the institute of life.”
Published Aug. 27, 2015

TAMPA — She won them over from the stomach up.

Bonnie Breaux was competing in the World Championship Gumbo Cook-Off in New Iberia, La. Suzanne and Roger Perry, owners of Datz, Dough and Roux in Tampa, were in town to check it out. The night before the big event they made reservations at Clementine Café, executive chef Breaux taking the call.

"When you come in call me out and I'll do some samples of our food," she told them. "I did étouffée, seafood gumbo and shrimp and grits, I remember."

Those grits must have been something, because the Perrys called her in March and asked if she would be interested in guest-cheffing at Roux for a few days.

"Over the last year, we've had some excellent, iconic guest chefs — such as Leon Galatoire of the famed New Orleans Galatoire's restaurant — come through these doors," said Suzanne Perry.

Breaux came and made seafood Wellington and tasso-coconut encrusted shrimp with a spicy Asian glaze. And she did those shrimp and grits, her version with a fried grit cake with white cheddar, smoked gouda and chipotle, topped with blackened shrimp and a sherry cream sauce.

The grip of the grits grew.

On July 6 she arrived to take over the position of executive chef at the 1-year-old restaurant on MacDill.

"When I went back to Clementine I couldn't get over how much I loved it in Tampa," Breaux said. She aims to take Roux in a more Cajun and less Creole direction.

"Creole is more with tomatoes, Cajun is more with the dark roux," she said. "So I'm going to be doing Cajun with a flair, using gulf fish like catfish and redfish, which is my favorite."

She's got the street cred to do it: Breaux Bridge, a place known as the "crawfish capital of the world" was built by her great-great-grandfather, as "Cajun as they come," she says.

Roux has had a number of folks at the helm in the kitchen since it debuted, but this recent arrival, who received her "culinary training at the institute of life," has some tricks up her sleeve: Think pork tenderloin stuffed with smoked boudin and wrapped with bacon, topped with a mahaw pepper jelly glaze and served over shaved Brussels sprouts and sweet potato mash. Let the good times roll.

Contact Laura Reiley at lreiley@tampabay.com or (727) 892-2293. Follow @lreiley on Twitter.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1.            LORRAINE FINA STEVENSKI  |  Special to the Times
    It’s a hearty one-pot meal for the season.
  2. Cipresso is the modern Italian-American trattoria that recently opened at Tampa's Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. Seminole Hard Rock Tampa
    Aloha to Go, Kobe and Apple Spice also expanded locally, plus St. Petersburg’s Burrito Boarder has closed and a food hall is coming to Sundial.
  3. Death By Pepperoni Pizza. SCOTT KEELER  |  Tampa Bay Times
    Get ready for some dinner theater at this pizzeria. | Restaurant review
  4. There will be numerous salutes to the military today and Monday for Veterans Day.
    Veterans Day, Julie Andrews talks about her practically perfect career and country stars line up for Q-105′s Guitar Pull.
  5. McDonald's is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Happy Meal by re-releasing some of its most popular toys from Nov. 7-11. McDonald's
    From Power Rangers and Space Jam to Cowboy McNugget and Furby, McDonald’s is re-releasing some of the most popular Happy Meal toys from the last 40 years for a limited time.
  6. Dishes made with edible insects like ants, crickets, by Joseph Yoon of Brooklyn Bugs. Courtesy of Joseph Yoon
    Joseph Yoon will present a bug-centric dinner at the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg.
  7. John C. Pelczynski of Massachusetts untangles the lines on his kite at the Veterans Day Fall Fly on TI. Tampa Bay Times (2014)
    Museums and aquariums are offering free admission, plus there are parades on land on sea in honor of Veterans Day
  8. Michelle Stark and Helen Freund Tampa Bay Times
    Our food writers will share what’s on their plates every Wednesday.
  9. The designs for Starbucks' 2019 holiday paper cup Starbucks
    There’s also a giveaway of its reusable red cups Thursday with the purchase of a holiday drink.
  10. The Tampa Greek Festival will invade St. John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church this weekend with Mediterranean-style food, including pastries. Times (2002)
    Treat your taste buds at the Tampa Greek Festival, Chowder Challenge, Tampa Bay Veg Fest, Flavor of West Tampa, Florida Ferment Fest and more.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement