Hawesville residents have a taste for New Orleans flavor, Tre’
Vione’s is looking to satisfy the desire.
restaurant, which holds its grand opening July 6, held a soft opening
June 6, allowing residents to get their fill of red beans and rice
and other New Orleans-cuisines Wednesday through Saturday. On
Sundays, the restaurant opens for breakfast. The remaining days are
reserved for employee training and talks about how to improve the
owner, George Banks, said he initially wanted to open Thursday
through Sunday but found that he was turning away a lot of people on
Wednesdays and changed the days. Banks said he was surprised by some
of the dishes that were selling such as jambalaya and gumbo, but a
lot of people have been ordering it. In fact, he said, the restaurant
has sold out of them twice.
restaurants will hold soft openings for a few days to ensure the
kinks have been worked out before they hold the grand opening.
However, Banks’ soft opening is going on for a month to train
servers and cooks to make and serve dishes most have yet to taste for
soft opening was met with some angry guests upset by the long wait
time. Some guests had their meals comped during this time –
although Banks and the staff explained the idea behind the soft
said everything that is made in the restaurant is made in-house –
no dishes come from a box. He said hamburger patties are not frozen;
they’re made fresh by hand.
who is a native of New Orleans, opened his first Tre’Vione’s in
the city. He said many menu items are from friends and family with
some of the recipes dating back to two centuries. Banks said his
mother, Gwen, provided him with the family jambalaya and gumbo
recipes while a friend of the family provided him with secrets to her
to Banks, his aunt provided him with an amazing praline candies
recipe. He said giving someone a recipe is sort of like trusting them
with one’s life.
will also have a “living menu” – a menu that will change with
the seasons. For example, speckled trout will become available when
it’s in season. Right now, crawfish is on the menu, but that will
soon change to crabs, Banks said.
said customers can try the New Orleans Po’Boy, which is a jumbo
sandwich with lots of crawfish tail, shrimp or catfish. They can also
sink their teeth into any one of the gourmet burgers such as the Deep
Water Shrimp Burger, New Orleans Burger or the Blue Moon Bacon
the appetizer menu, customers can try fried gator tail, Louisiana
wings or catfish bites. Gator tail will also be available as an
New Orleans is well-known for its spices, Banks decided to ease up
for local customers. However, if guests want real New Orleans taste,
they can request an increase in the spices.
restaurant is located near the county’s historic courthouse and
adjacent to the Hancock County administration building. Banks took an
iconic building, which was once home to Irby’s, near the area and
renovated it. The building and the surrounding bistro Banks created
out of an unused storage room can hold 155 guests at one time.
is also hiring musicians to come on Fridays and Saturdays 6 p.m. to
10 p.m. to entertain the dinner crowd.
to Banks, the changes he made to the building and all the finer
things he is doing is all to make sure that Hawesville residents
enjoy the restaurant.