Take a Culinary Tour with Cocha

From the custom-made tables with built-in ice basins designed with Sunday brunch in mind, to the locally made eclectic artwork adorning the walls, Cocha perfectly reflects owners Saskia Spanhoff and Enrique Piñerua.

Like many other Baton Rouge natives, Saskia and Enrique recently decided to return home after a lengthy stint in Los Angeles where Saskia was Vice President of Sales for a premier wine distributor and Enrique served as the Director of Marketing and Talent Relations for a local television station. Over the course of several years, the need for a new culinary concept became evermore apparent to the couple after each visit to Baton Rouge. In 2016 they decided to take the leap and return to the downtown area to fill that need.

The name Cocha came to the couple one night as they were discussing different possibilities. Enrique enthusiastically recalled the story for us, “While we were having wine one night I said, ‘Cocha, pass me my wine glass.’ Saskia shot up and said, ‘That’s it! That’s the name!’” Cocha is an endearing Venezuelan term meaning “honey” or “dear” and it is Enrique’s choice name when referring to Saskia.


Cocha’s Executive Chef, Jourdan Fulbright was trained at The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. She brings a wealth of knowledge and talent and has produced exactly what Saskia and Enrique wanted, a globally diverse menu. While Saskia’s family heritage is Dutch, Enrique’s family comes from Venezuela and Spain. Their cultures, and their love of travel, are what inspired their desire to showcase global flavors through local purveyors at their true “farm-to-table” restaurant. This is a claim they can certainly make, as they are located only blocks from the downtown Red Stick Farmers Market. Once returning to Baton Rouge, Saskia and Enrique quickly began to establish relationships with the local farmers and proudly use their products in Cocha’s seasonally rotating menu.

The couple’s love of the local community is even evident in the design of the space. Cocha boasts a beautiful open kitchen to allow customers a first hand view as they dine. All of the artwork they have chosen has deep meaning or history, and most is local to the area. Saskia and Enrique have created a beautiful, family-friendly environment where you can feel relaxed and welcomed. You can’t help but feel at home at Cocha.


You’re not in Chelsea’s anymore!

When Chef Kelley McCann begins talking about his new endeavor as Executive Chef of Kalurah Street Grill, you can feel the passion resonate from within him. He loves what he does and you can see that love in every plate that leaves his kitchen. Clearly this is what co-owners Brad Watts and Chad Hughes were drawn to as well when they handpicked Chef Kelley to lead their latest venture.

In this new, vibrant space, formerly home to the iconic Chelsea’s Cafe, Watts and Hughes knew that significant changes had to be made to be successful. Today, there is little left that would remind you of what once was. Kalurah Street Grill is here to stay. When you walk through the doors you will be blown away at the beauty of the entire space. It’s soft and comfortable, yet elegant and sophisticated at the same time. They have created a space that welcomes patrons of all ages and backgrounds, and their menu has been developed in the same, unique way.


Though Chef Kelley has never had formal training, his hard work and dedication to his craft is what brought him success. He began working as a server assistant in the original Galatoire’s Bistro where he held every job as he worked his way up to Executive Chef. When he joined the team at K. Street, he used those years of real life training to develop his self-described Modern American Menu. He knew that he wanted to bring something fresh and unique to the community he has been a part of his entire life. Born and raised in the Garden District, Chef Kelley knows the importance of giving back and building relationships with his customers, “[Being relational] with guests is what makes a city great. Showing you care makes them care. We want to see the community prosper.”

Being relational and providing quality service. This is a principle that everyone, from the top down, believes in. Not only will you be welcomed into a warm space, have remarkable food from a gifted chef and his staff, but you will be blown away at the level of service they offer. Watts and Hughes know that these three aspects must come together to create an amazing experience. And an experience is what you will have when you visit Kalurah Street Grill.

Check out the video from Louisiana Weekend! A Look at Kalurah Street Grill

food, Restaurants

Eliza is your home away from home

If you haven’t tried Eliza Restaurant and Bar yet, you’re missing out on what has proven to be an immediate neighborhood favorite!

When you arrive, you will most likely be warmly greeted by a member of the Davis family. Every hand-crafted table in the house is prime seating and not one person is overlooked. Instrumentals of classic NOLA music fills the room with a fun, but refreshing vibe. This place feels like home. That’s because it’s personal for owners, Russell and Sally. After all, their latest endeavor is named after their daughter, Eliza.


Russell and Sally met while working at Commander’s Palace, a New Orleans staple. Russell, who is originally from Boston, relocated to NOLA specifically to train with the Brennan Family. In his 25 years of experience, Russell has had almost every job in the industry. While working with Ralph Brennan, he was eventually was put in charge of opening multiple restaurants in the French Quarter.

In 2004 Russell and Sally had an opportunity to open their own restaurant in New Orleans, the popular Saltwater Grill. Russell was finally able to get in the kitchen and hone his skills as Chef. Saltwater Grill proved resilient as they survived historic Katrina, but in 2010 the Davis’ had the opportunity to fulfill another dream. They moved back to Russell’s hometown of Boston where they spent several years opening various restaurant concepts all over the Northeast.

After enduring several years of bitter winters, the Davis’ decided it was time to return to the South and get back in the kitchen. What they have created is a cozy place, welcoming young and old alike. Eliza’s food is fresh and almost everything is made in-house daily. Their menu boasts a variety of foods including vegan and vegetarian options, not to mention it won’t break the bank.