Chef Don Bergeron has long been known as a caterer and provider of to-go meals, but in recent years, he’s carved out an additional niche as a restaurateur with a popular lunch business, opening the 75-seat Bergeron’s City Market on Jefferson Highway near Bocage in 2016.
About half the restaurant’s business is dine-in; the rest is take-out, including to-go lunches as well as prepared meals in onsite coolers. Event catering remains a key part of Bergeron’s overall business.
Lunch service is one of City Market’s key dayparts, but dinner is also served between 5 and 7 p.m. on weekdays and brunch is offered most Saturdays. The menu changes daily and week-to-week and includes entrée-only options or entrées with two sides. Bergeron focuses on Southern and Cajun/Creole fare, often following south Louisiana’s culinary calendar. Mondays usually feature red beans and rice, and seafood is a year-round theme on Fridays.
A popular lunch dishes in the fall is the cranberry and sage-stuffed chicken. Bergeron butterflies a chicken breast, stuffs it with sage-studded French bread stuffing and tops it with cooked down fresh cranberries. Sides change weekly, too, but there’s a good chance you can find traditional Thanksgiving sides during November, including green bean casserole.
Thanksgiving, in fact, brings a big surge in Bergeron’s catering business, particularly in by-the-dish orders that customers use to supplement what they’re cooking on their own.
“Everybody is so busy nowadays, they might want to get a little help with the turkey, the sides, or with the whole meal,” says Bergeron. “We get really busy about two weeks before the holiday, but I had people start calling this year in early October.”
Bergeron brings in two refrigerated trucks to support the increase. He sells three different sizes of commonplace Thanksgiving side dishes, including south Louisiana favorites like spinach Madeleine, yam crunch and shrimp and mirliton casserole. Fried turkey breasts, whole roasted turkeys and sliced turkey by-the-pound, are also big sellers, Bergeron says.