“It is the love for New Orleans that we are demon-strating in our food,” says May, who has three decades of experience in the restaurant industry. “It is part authentic and part ‘California Cajun,’ and we do it really well. We did a lot of research to create this melting pot of a restaurant with big and bold flavors.” May calls Cajun cuisine, “the true heart and soul of the American population”, and it is a concept he wanted to do for a long time. As part of his research, May and key staff members studied at New Orleans restaurants. “After being down there we realized the flavor better be jumping off the plate,” May says. He hired
a new chef in April to ensure that occurs.
The entrées are certainly ready for liftoff at French 25. The barbecue salmon is the newest entrée addition and has been extremely well received by guests. “O
nce we put it on the menu it has been blowing up in popularity ever since,” he notes. The barbecue theme is continued with the Barbecue Shrimp and Grits and Smoked Baby Back Ribs. For those who enjoy classic Cajun Po’ boy sandwiches, there is a wide variety at French 25, from the fried shrimp and fried chicken, to the ‘California’ style bayou-fuel
ed cheeseburger. The most popular item on the menu, not surprisingly, is the French 25 Jambalaya. “We’ll put up our jambalaya, chicken and waffles and Po’ boy sandwiches against anyone else’s,” challenges May. “The big and bold flavor profiles really stand out; they are great menu items without pricing everyone out.”
The lunch menu is equally as affordable and flavorful and includes the Bronzed Catfish, Big Easy Salad, Shrimp & Poblano Macaroni and Cheese, as well as the Fried Catfish. “Our menu items have more of a presence of vegetables t
han traditional Cajun entrées because that is what our guests have the taste for,” May explains. The guests also have a taste for French 25’s wide-ranging dessert menu, from banana and chocolate bread pudding options to classic beignets – French doughnuts tossed in powdered sugar. Bananas Foster Ice Cream Crepes, Flourless Chocolate Soufflé, Meyer Lemon Crème Brulé and Muddville Ice Cream Pie round out the dessert menu. The Muddville Ice Cream Pie features layers of mocha almond fudge and praline and pecan ice cream topped with house made caramel and chocolate sauces. French 25 also has a tremendous amount of pride in their cocktail menu, which includes exotic offerings and the more traditional options like the classic Hurricane.
The cocktails are a perfect match for the ambience created at French 25, which they describe as a “polished casual” feel enhanced by white marble in the bar, tin roof ceilings and a unique lighting structure. “It is very comfortable with an open feel,” says May. “Our environment is not uptight, quiet or pretentious, but we maintain our fine dining service. We have quality food without the price tags that generally go with it.” The price tag is also very affordable during the restaurant’s happy hour, every weekday from 4 to 7 p.m. when the entire bar is half-priced, along with select appetizers. “We all seem to gravitate to the culture of Southern hospitality, even though we are not from there,” he concludes. “You can come wearing jeans or a shirt and tie – you will still receive the same fine experience in a relaxed, yet classy environment. Whether it is for 30 minutes for drinks or three hours for dinner, we want you to make
the experience you want at French 25.”
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
110 N. El Dorado Street
Stockton, (209) 451-0617