In many ways, Lilette is a physical manifestation of a lifetime of culinary experience. Born out of chef and owner John Harris' desire to create an intimate dining environment, Lilette enjoys both a loyal local following and a steady stream of visitors from around the country.

Cheerful and sunny at lunchtime, at night the dining room takes a turn toward the romantic, awash in wine-colored walls and soft lighting. But decades before Travel and Leisure magazine dubbed it "the sexiest dining room in New Orleans," the space itself began as an apothecary. Nestled in one of New Orleans' most verdant and vibrant neighborhoods, when Harris discovered the location in late 2000, he embarked on a two-year restoration project. The building, which over time had been broken up and repurposed to serve the specific needs of its occupants, was revitalized and returned to its original open floor plan. The feel is classic New Orleans -- with tin ceilings, cast iron columns and tile floors.

Whether it's a quick lunch in the midst of a Magazine Street shopping excursion, a romantic evening, or a family celebration, Harris' goal has always been to make sure every guest has a memorable experience. From its quietly elegant dining environment to thoughtfully prepared dishes and top-notch service, Lilette does not disappoint.

Chef John Harris

john harris

chef & owner

Chef John Harris and his staff at Lilette celebrated their tenth year in 2010. He has been a James Beard finalist for Best Chef South in 2009, 2010 and 2011. He was included in Food and Wine magazine's list of America's Best New Chefs in 2002 and was named Best Chef New Orleans by New Orleans Magazine. In addition, Lilette has been named a Top Ten Best Restaurant six of the last eight years by the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

John began his passion for cooking growing up in the kitchen of his italian mother. Working in restaurants during college, he couldnt resist the allure of cooking school. He attended the Pennsylvania Culinary Institute, which would lead him to stints at Café Allegro in Pittsburgh, and Spiaggia in Chicago.

John moved to New Orleans to work as Sous Chef at Bayona in the French Quarter under famed Chef Susan Spicer. While there, Spicer offered him the opportunity to travel to France and apprentice at Amphyclese and Le Pre Catalin -- both Michelin rated 2-star restaurants. During this time in France, John lived with the Mauri family, whose matriarch Lilette instilled in him a love of traditional French cooking.

After returning to New Orleans, John became Executive Chef at Gautreau's Restaurant, then worked with Gerard Maras of Gerard's Downtown. In December of 2000, John fell in love with the intimate space at 3637 Magazine Street that would soon become Lilette.

In 2010, John brought another vision to splendid fruition with the opening of the much-acclaimed Bouligny Tavern. Located in a century-old New Orleans cottage adjacent to Lilette, Bouligny Tavern combines a sophisticated, mid-century modern environment with a diverse offering of fine wines, classic cocktails and high-end food service featuring a sumptuous small plates menu.

Edward Charles

edward charles

executive sous chef

Edward has 15 years of experience in the restaurant business. He has worked at Bayona Restaurant with renowned Chef Susan Spicer and also served as John Folse's Sous Chef at White Oak Plantation. Edward joined the team at Lilette 8 years ago and has been the Executive Sous Chef and a steady hand behind the stoves since 2005.

Louis Wolf

louis wolf

restaurant manager

Louis is originally from Haddonfield, New Jersey, but has called New Orleans home for many years. He holds a B.A. from Loyola Marymount University and earned an M.A. from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. Louis began his restaurant career at the legendary Commander's Palace in New Orleans and has worked at prestigious establishments such as Gotham Bar & Grill in New York City and Zinc Bistro in Scottsdale, Arizona. He has been with Lilette since 2008 and a mangager since 2010.