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Guest Chef #5: Michael Stoltzfus and Kristen Essig

  • Existing Conditions 35 West 8th Street New York, NY, 10011 United States (map)

A la Carte Menu:

with Michael Stoltzfus and Kristen Essig from Coquette

  • Louisiana Bowfin Roe - shrimp crackers, bahn mi accoutrements. The dish also includes pork rillette, chicken liver mousse and pickled/marinated cucumber, jalapeño, carrots and kumquats. $25 Family Style Starter, Feeds 3-4

  • Louisiana Long Grain Rice - hogshead cheese, crawfish tails, giardiniera $14 Small Plate

  • Carrot Schnitzel - creole mustard, turnip greens, ginger fermented greens and herbs, soft herbs $13 Vegetarian Entree

  • Beef Hanger Steak - milk bread, pimento cheese, pickles $28 Entree

  • City Ham - smoked oyster aioli, filé, tete de moine, brown butter $15 Small Plate

Drink Specials

  • Antique Sazeracs

  • Stirred Harvey Wallbangers




Kristen Essig was born and raised in Florida. After graduating from the Johnson & Wales Culinary School in 1998, Kristen worked with James Beard award winning chefs, Chef Frank Lee of Slightly North of Broad and Chef Louis Osteen of Louis’ Charleston Grill. Seventeen years ago, Kristen made New Orleans her home, kicking off her Crescent City culinary career with Chef Emeril Lagasse at Emeril’s, followed by a four-year turn with Chef and mentor Anne Kearney at the famed New Orleans Restaurant, Peristyle. She joined the Crescent City Farmers Market as market manager where she cultivated strong relationships with local farmers, producers and vendors. She’s been a Louisiana Cookin’ Magazine “Chef to Watch” (2005), a sought-after private chef, and in April, 2013 Kristen returned full time to the restaurant kitchens. Since then she’s been named one of Coastal Living Magazines “5 Coastal Chefs to Watch” (2015), nominated as one of Food & Wine Magazine’s “The People’s Best New Chef” (2015), and one of Times Picayunes Chefs to Watch (2014). Kristen proudly joined the Coquette family in the fall of 2016 as a co-chef and partner with her love, Michael.



Chef / Owner

Although he grew up on a 140 acre working dairy farm on the Eastern Shore of Maryland and enjoyed the freshest products available, Stoltzfus never imagined a career in the culinary industry.

Fate or perhaps his mother’s intuition steered him in a fortuitous direction, when a couple of weeks before he was to begin college, his mother decided to open a bakery and enlisted Stoltzfus’ help in running it. Although he knew little more than how to scramble an egg, Stoltzfus found himself cooking breakfast and lunch at the family owned restaurant.

While working at the family bakery, Stoltzfus embarked on his personal culinary adventure, purchasing a variety of cookbooks and began cooking and experimenting at home. At 25 years old, after working at a few restaurants in Maryland, his talents were evident and he was hired to work at New Orleans’ esteemed Restaurant August, where six months later he was promoted to Sous Chef.

His entrepreneurial spirit flared, and in December of 2008, he opened Coquette in a gorgeous two-story Garden District building. Stoltzfus looks at Coquette as a culinary playground where he thrives on designing personalized tastings menus for guests and creating a menu that changes daily. His inspired cooking has earned his restaurant a spot on the Times-Picayune’s New Orleans Top Ten Restaurant List and Stoltzfus has been named a semi-finalist in the prestigious James Beard “Best Chef in the South,” award for the past four years.

Earlier Event: March 24
Guest Chef #4: The Meat Hook