Chefs Tell Us The Best Places to Satisfy your baked Good Cravings

September 5, 2017
By: Alia Stearns, UPROXX

The chefs included in this installment of Chefs Tell Us pushed past the urge to dub a family member’s baked goods as “the best” — instead they offered business that we can all put on our personal Must Try lists. There are over 20 entries here, which means a lot of delicious descriptions and inviting images. Try reading this post in its entirety without wanting to get your carb on. But, before you run to the nearest bakery or break out your apron, leave a comment about baked goods or your mom. I mean you can try writing about my mom, but you don’t know her like that.

I think Kelly Fields is the most talented baker and pastry chef in New Orleans. I can’t say enough about her and her talent. Her restaurant, Willa Jean is a great spot in the city. You can get great savory food and, obviously, the best items – her breads, cookies and cakes. They are unmatched. Go and have an amazing coffee and choose from a wide selection of pastries for breakfast or brunch. You won’t be sorry. -- Chef Isaac Toups, Toups Meatery and Toups South


Where to Eat the Best Fried Chicken in New Orleans

September 7, 2017
By: Nora McGunnigle

Fried chicken— America's favorite tender, juicy, crispy, and sometimes spicy dish — pretty much embodies the best of southern foodways. And though New Orleans is its own very special part of the South, the fried chicken offerings in town are some of the finest in the country, hands down.

The fried chicken options on this map cover the bases — from casual to fine dining, with take-out-only and large-order catering specialists included. Some places serve the classic bone in style, and others serve up fried chicken in sandwiches, with biscuits, and on waffles. Some are all chicken all the time, and some offer specials and plates once or twice a week.

Fried chicken thighs can be found for every meal of the day at Willa Jean. For breakfast and brunch, enjoy the chicken with a biscuit, topped with a Tabasco-spiked honey. For lunch and dinner, the fried chicken sandwich comes on a Hawaiian roll with a serrano chili slaw.



House and Leisure: The Big Easy is Back

August 2017
By: Mary Holland, House and Leisure

Renowned as the birthplace of jazz and distinctive Caribbean-meets-the-South style, New Orleans has never needed trendy hot spots to attract travellers. If anything, the trendy spots needed New Orleans. Yes, there are hip hotels and artisanal coffee shops, but there are also stalwart jazz clubs, graveyard tours and dingy dive bars. In New Orleans, Louisiana (or NOLA for short), you can have both your craft coffee and your authentic jazz experience -- with a side of cheap beer to boot. 


Willa Jean 

There are a number of foods you shouldn't leave NOLA without eating, and biscuits (baked goods that are basically like large scones) are among them. Local favourite Willa Jean is so serious about biscuits, it has an entire menu section dedicated to them. The modern Southern restaurant does breakfast, lunch and dinner, but the most unforgettable meal is weekend brunch, which has a menu peppered with comfort food such as crawfish and grits, BBQ shrimp, cornbread, fried chicken -- and biscuits, of course. 

Printed: August 2017 

pasted image 0.png

Vogue: Top Female Chefs Reveal Their Best Summer Grilling Tips

July 28, 2017
By: Jenn Rice, Vogue

Summertime and the living’s easy. . .and by now, the grill should also be christened and ready for some serious grilling. But beyond gourmet patties and dogs—or, as is perhaps more au courant, a ton of vegetables—there is a bounty of other unexpected items to grill and techniques to try, as several of our favorite lady chefs reveal. Here, they their favorite things to toss on the grill this summer along with their favorite grilling tips.

Kelly Fields, Willa Jean "I've been really excited to [grill] desserts and bread this summer! I've got a new open flame cooker (the KUDU grill) and it has all these fun accessories like a Dutch oven and a bread maker, so I've officially been giving summer grilling an overhaul. I took a Dutch oven last weekend, set it straight into the coals, placed coals all around and on top of it and, literally, baked a peach cobbler while grilling pork chops, peaches, and onions above it. I've been working on a shortcake to bake on the grill, that would then be topped with all sorts of grilled summer stone fruits and berries and whipped sour cream."



Why Popeyes Is Always Better in New Orleans

July 26, 2017
By: Jelisa Castrodale, Vice Munchies

"In New Orleans, Popeyes doesn’t even qualify as fast food."

My restaurant, Willa Jean, is named after my grandmother, and everybody wants that really nice Southern story about how my grandmother taught me how to cook, but in reality she was absolutely terrible in the kitchen. She was the one who was always my champion, like, 'Yeah, move to New Orleans,' and 'Yeah, you should cook, and I'm going to help you.' She taught me how to be myself and put myself out there without apologizing for it. She's badass. 

New Orleans is one of those cities that you either love or hate. It's part of who you are, or it's not, and there's rarely an in-between. I snuck down here for the first time in high school and felt like I was part of it from that first time. I used the idea of college as an excuse to leave home and come down here, and then I started cooking. 


Meet Kelly Fields, the James Beard-nominated pastry chef of Willa Jean

April 28, 2017
By: Todd Price, The Times Picayune

Kelly Fields spent years making high-end desserts as the executive pastry chef for John Besh's restaurant group. Now, she makes humbler fare, as the chef and partner at Willa Jean, the Southern bakery and cafe she opened with Besh in 2015.

In 2017, Fields is a James Beard nominee for outstanding pastry chef in the nation.

Fields sat down with | The Times-Picayune to talk about her career making sweets.