The best Creole Italian restaurant
by TulaneLSU on 2/29/12
Impastato's is a cut above the rest. There's a good reason it's not easy to find a table on the weekend in this strip mall restaurant located on the north side of Lakeside Mall, directly in front of Morning Call. Walk in and you might be overwhelmed by the plethora of photographs showing the proprietor, Joe Impastato, with celebrities, politicians, and especially Saints players. Chances are you will run into a current or former Saints player while dining here.
There are two main dining rooms. The front is near the bar and has a lounge singer. He's a crooner, but fun to listen to. He adds to the experience, that's for sure. He's quick to tell you that Mr. Joe doesn't speak good English, but he speaks good money sense. If Mr. Picou didn't help the bottom line, he wouldn't be there. The back room is more formal, with nice table cloth dining and a few booths. A beautiful stained glass light fixture hangs from the ceiling.
You can order single items off the menu, but the real draw at Impastato's is the five course meal, which in 2012 ranged from $29 to $37 depending on the entree you order. You start with Italian loaves from one of the finest Italian bakeries in America. These loaves make great dipping bread for the sauces to come. Your appetizer is a selection of crab fingers in a deep butter sauce or shrimp scampi. Both are heavy, rich and make you appreciate living in New Orleans. The second course are two types of homemade pasta with red and alfredo sauce. Both are among the best pasta dishes you will have on this side of the Atlantic. Following the pasta is a romaine salad with tomatoes. A great homemade house dressing is on top.
The main courses range from pan friet trout to veal to soft shell crab to steak. Most of the entrees are covered in lump crab meat and butter sauce. By this point you're probably feeling a bit full. Then it's time for dessert. Some of the desserts come from Brocato's. Others, like the chocolate mouse and blueberry banana cream pie are house made. It may be because of the richness and size of the meal that the dessert always feels like a let down. Unless you can eat 2500 calories in a sitting, it's probably best to get your dessert to go.
It's like Italy, in Metairie!
by busbeepbeep on 3/10/11
Well cheesy commercial tagline aside, this place really is good. 5 course dinner specials ranging from $25-$35. I've had everything from Veal Parm, to Redfish topped with crabmeat to softshell crabs and I've never been disappointed or left the place hungry.