Aug 17, 2023 - Food and Drink

Lengua Madre to close as chef opens new Bywater restaurant

Chef Ana Castro will open Acamaya in the Bywater neighborhood in spring 2024. Photo by James Collier for Paprika Studios

An upcoming shuffle spells the end for Lengua Madre, and the beginning for two new New Orleans restaurants.

Why it matters: Chef Ana Castro's Lengua Madre is a critical darling, having earned top nods from publications like Bon Appetit and The New York Times.

  • Castro's creative, thoughtful takes on the restaurant's tasting menus were inspired by her Mexican heritage — and inspiring for New Orleans diners.

Driving the news: Castro will open Acamaya, a new restaurant in the Bywater neighborhood, offering a "contemporary take on coastal Mexican seafood, utilizing the bounty of the Gulf of Mexico in a lively, laid-back setting" in spring 2024, according to a press release.

  • Lengua Madre will close Dec. 31, and in the Lower Garden District space, Coquette chef and owner Michael Stoltzfus will open a new tasting menu-only restaurant in early 2024.
  • Stoltzfus and Castro were partners on Lengua Madre, with Castro helming the kitchen and Stolzfus as owner.

What she's saying: "It has been one of the great honors of my career to create Lengua Madre and to meld the flavors of my adopted hometown with those of my home country of Mexico," Castro says.

  • "I look forward to incorporating the same passion, inspiration, and intention that have always fueled Lengua Madre."

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