Our Story

Take one city steeped in tradition and fortified with a tenacious spirit. Combine it with a cross-cultural fusion of food and flavors built on the culinary history of seven nations that contributed to its unique flavor and what do you get? Restaurant R’evolution, offering modern, imaginative reinterpretations of classic Cajun and Creole cuisine. Located in the heart of the French Quarter at Royal Sonesta New Orleans, Restaurant R’evolution is a favorite for locals and visitors alike, featuring award-winning cuisine set in an atmosphere offering a dining experience that’s beyond compare.

This partnership also delved into Louisiana history, exploring the significant culinary contributions of each of the seven primary nations that inhabited the state, bringing raw ingredients from their native countries and cross-pollinating with their gastronomic traditions. The result will be a fresh and contemporary translation of Cajun and Creole cuisine, using Louisiana’s raw ingredients and building upon the history and traditions that define New Orleans.

Chef John Folse, Executive Chef

Chef John Folse, born in St. James Parish in 1946, learned early that the secrets of Cajun cooking lay in the unique ingredients of Louisiana’s swamp floor pantry. Folse seasoned these raw ingredients with his passion for Louisiana culture and cuisine, and from his cast iron pots emerged Chef John Folse & Company.

When Folse opened Lafitte’s Landing Restaurant in 1978 in Donaldsonville, he set out to market his restaurant by taking “a taste of Louisiana” worldwide. He introduced Louisiana’s indigenous cuisine to Japan in 1985, Beijing in 1986 and Hong Kong and Paris in 1987. In 1988, Folse made international headlines with the opening of “Lafitte’s Landing East” in Moscow during the Presidential Summit between Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev. In 1989, Folse was the first non-Italian chef to create the Vatican State Dinner in Rome. Promotional restaurants also included London in 1991 and 1993, Bogota in 1991, Taipei in 1992 and 1994 and Seoul in 1994. In 1988, the Sales and Marketing Executives of Greater Baton Rouge named Folse “Marketer of the Year” and the Louisiana Legislature gave him the title of “Louisiana’s Culinary Ambassador to the World.”

The international success of Folse’s cornerstone property, Lafitte’s Landing Restaurant, spawned the incorporation of several other Chef John Folse & Company properties. White Oak Estate & Gardens in 1986 established Folse’s catering and events management division. Chef John Folse & Company Publishing, since 1989, has produced ten cookbooks in his Cajun and Creole series, plus a novel, two children’s books and a religious memoir by other authors. His Can You Dig It vegetable cookbook won the Benny award for Best Cookbook, the highest honor in the 2015 Premier Print Awards. “A Taste of Louisiana” is Folse’s international television series produced by Louisiana Public Broadcasting since 1990. Chef John Folse & Company Manufacturing, since 1991, is one of the few chef-owned food manufacturing companies in America producing custom-manufactured foods for restaurants as well as retail and foodservice industries. In January 2005 he opened a USDA manufacturing plant in Donaldsonville, and in 2007 growing demands pushed the plant to expand. In 2008, Folse cut the ribbon of his expanded 68,000 square-foot food manufacturing plant.

The Chef John Folse Culinary Institute at Nicholls State University (NSU) in Thibodaux, La., opened in October 1994 and is devoted to the preservation of Louisiana’s rich culinary and cultural heritage. In August 2015, an independent culinary arts building was dedicated.

In August 1996, Folse began broadcasting his radio cooking talk show, “Stirrin’ It Up.” In 2001, “Stirrin’ It Up” expanded to a television cooking segment during the 5 p.m. newscast on WAFB-TV Channel 9 in Baton Rouge, La.

The bakery division was launched in 1996 to create specialty desserts, pastries and savories. In October 1998, a fire destroyed the 200-year-old Viala Plantation, which housed Lafitte’s Landing Restaurant, and in May 1999 Folse opened his former Donaldsonville home as Lafitte’s Landing Restaurant at Bittersweet Plantation offering fine dining and bed and breakfast accommodations. In the year 2000, Folse incorporated Digi-Tek Productions, a full-service digital recording studio.

Folse has received numerous national and international accolades. In 1987, the Louisiana Restaurant Association (LRA) named him “Louisiana Restaurateur of the Year.” In 1989, Nation’s Restaurant News inducted Lafitte’s Landing Restaurant into its “Fine Dining Hall of Fame.” In 1990, the American Culinary Federation (ACF) named Folse the “National Chef of the Year.” In 1991, Folse was inducted into The Honorable Order of the Golden Toque, indicating a lifetime of dedication to the pursuit of excellence in the culinary arts. In 1992, Johnson & Wales University in Providence, R.I., CHEF JOHN FOLSE, CEC, AAC recognized Folse with an Honorary Doctorate of Culinary Arts, as did Baltimore International Culinary College in 1995. In 1994, he assumed the role of national president of the American Culinary Federation, the largest organization of professional chefs in America. In 1995, Folse was one of 50 people recognized in Nation’s Restaurant News’ “Profiles of Power.” In 1996, Lafitte’s Landing Restaurant received the Award of Excellence from Distinguished Restaurants of North America. (Folse served two terms as DiRōNA Chairman.) In 1998, Chef John Folse & Company Manufacturing received TGI Friday’s Inc. Procurement Product Development Award for assisting in the development of Friday’s Jack Daniels© Glaze; in 2011 and 2016, Folse received their “Food Vendor of the Year” Award; and in 2012, he received TGI Fridays Purposeful Innovation Award. In 1998, Food Arts magazine awarded Folse the “Silver Spoon Award” for his sterling performance and contributions to the food service industry. In 1999, the Research Chefs Association (RCA) named Chef John Folse & Company “Pioneers in Culinology” because of the efforts of Folse and his culinary research team. In 2001, Folse was elected to RCA’s Board of Directors and served as RCA president from 2005-2007. In 2006, Folse was inducted into the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation’s College of Diplomates. He was appointed by Louisiana’s Governor as the Marketing Specialist for the Louisiana Seafood Promotion & Marketing Board in 2008, and also served as Chairman in 2013.

In November 1999, the Acadiana Chapter of the American Culinary Federation inducted Folse into the Louisiana Chef’s Hall of Fame for his lifetime contributions to the promotion of Louisiana cuisine. Additionally, Folse received the Antonin Carême Medal in November 2000 and has served on the National Dairy Council Chef’s Advisory Panel. In 2007, Folse served as the American judge for the Bocuse d’Or World Cuisine Contest in Lyon, France. In October 2008, Folse was awarded the Louisiana Governor’s Cultural Economic Development Arts Award and Southern Foodways Alliance Lifetime Achievement Award. In August 2011, Folse was honored with the Grace “Mama” Marino Lifetime Achievement Award by Baton Rouge Epicurean Society and in December he received an Honorary Doctorate of Commerce from NSU.

Folse opened Restaurant R’evolution in June 2012 at 777 Bienville St. at the Royal Sonesta Hotel in New Orleans, a highly acclaimed, award-winning restaurant. In November 2019, Folse opened Folse Market in the state-of-the-art Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport. As the anchor restaurant of Concourse C, Folse Market serves a traditional taste of New Orleans cuisine to travelers.

In August 2012, Folse was honored to represent Louisiana and the Gulf Coast with BP’s Spirit of the Gulf campaign at the London Olympics. He led a group of eight Gulf region chefs who prepared and served seafood dishes to guests at USA House in an effort to promote Gulf Seafood. In spring 2013 Folse received the Lifetime Achievement Award from Research Chefs Association. In March 2014, Folse received St. Joseph Cathedral Community Award given by Bishop Robert Muench, Bishop of the Diocese of Baton Rouge. In August 2015, LRA honored him with the Hall of Fame award. In July 2017 Folse was inducted into the American Academy of Chefs (AAC) Culinary Hall of Fame, the highest honor AAC can bestow upon any individual. He also received the Châine de Rôtisseurs Academie Brillat-Savarin Medal at the same time. In 2019 he was awarded ACF’s Hermann G. Rusch Chef’s Achievement and Humanitarian Award. In January 2020, New Orleans Wine & Food Experience (NOWFE) honored Folse with the Ella Brennan Lifetime Achievement in Hospitality Award. The Greater Baton Rouge Business Report also inducted him into its Hall of Fame in 2021. In May 2023, Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities named Folse Humanist of the Year. In July 2023, Chef Folse received the Chef Good Taste Award from the American Academy of Chefs. Currently, he serves as President of the Sister Dulce Foundation Board of Trustees.

For 25 years, Folse has owned and operated White Oak Estate & Gardens, a catering and events management facility in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The 22-acre property of lush oak trees, gardens and lakes is the premier destination for weddings and cooperate events in greater Baton Rouge region.

Folse offers an extensive selection of hors d’oeuvres, cold and hot appetizers, soups, entrees and carving stations based off his world famous, authentic Louisiana Cajun & Creole recipes. White Oak is also the exclusive home to Folse’s very own distillery where he produces his original Still’Water Bourbon and Still’Water Rum.

Forty-five years of culinary excellence later, Folse is still adding ingredients to the corporate gumbo he calls Chef John Folse & Company, which is as diverse as the Louisiana landscape, and he would not want it any other way.

Chris Anderson, Chef de Cuisine 

Born and raised in Washington, North Carolina, Anderson developed a profound love for food from an early age. Growing up in the South, this affection for culinary arts became deeply ingrained in his way of life. Intrigued by the transformative power of food on the human soul, he pursued his passion by attending the International Culinary School at the Art Institute in North Carolina. During his time there, Anderson became a member of the competition team and achieved a silver medal at the American Culinary Federation (ACF) Junior Hot Foods Competition.

Upon graduating with a bachelor’s degree in culinary management, Anderson embarked on a journey to Europe to immerse himself in classical cooking and techniques. He spent a year in Lyon, France, where he lived and worked at the esteemed 2 Michelin Star restaurant Auberge de L’Ile, under the mentorship of Jean-Christophe Ansanay-Alex. Under Jean-Christophe’s guidance, Anderson learned the importance of listening—to people, to food, to moments, to emotions.

Upon returning to the United States, Anderson was determined to further refine his culinary craft. He sought opportunities to work with some of the most innovative chefs in the industry, individuals who not only pushed the boundaries of food but also redefined the dining experience. His quest led him to Chicago, where he spent the next three years honing his skills at renowned fine dining establishments across the region—Alinea, Moto, and L2O—before finding his true culinary home at Moto. It was at Moto that Anderson earned his own Michelin Star. 

At Moto, working alongside Chef Richie Farina, Anderson gained invaluable management experience and cultivated a strong work ethic, propelling him from a passionate cook to a skilled chef.

Under Anderson’s leadership, the Restaruant R’evolution kitchen has reached new heights. He has instilled a culture of creativity, passion, and precision among the team. Dedicated to sourcing the finest local ingredients, Chef’s mastery of culinary techniques have resulted in dishes that not only tantalize the taste buds, but also tell the story of New Orleans tradition, and innovation.  

Danielle Vitale, Executive Pastry Chef

Danielle Vitale is the creative force behind the pastries at Restaurant R’evolution, and The Royal Sonesta New Orleans. Vitale embarked on her culinary journey as a pastry cook at The Royal Sonesta eight years ago. Through her dedication, she has risen the ranks to become the Executive Pastry Chef.

From New Jersey, Vitale studied at Johnson & Wales University in Rhode Island where she honed her skills and nurtured her love for the art of pastry. She found her way to New Orleans in 2014.

As Executive Pastry Chef at Restaurant R’evolution and The Royal Sonesta New Orleans, Vitale’s creations are a true testament to her expertise and creativity. From delicate pastries to decadent confections, each creation bears Danielle’s signature touch while honoring the Restaurant R’evolution name.

Ashley Daniels, General Manager

Ashley Daniels is the dynamic General Manager of Restaruant R’evolution. Daniels provides each guest with warm service and hospitality. Her unique blend of experience, passion, and creativity supports each team member.

Daniels came to New Orleans via New Mexico over a decade ago. Her journey to the world of restaurants and hospitality took a serendipitous turn, guided by her eclectic background and diverse interests. With a background as a project engineer and a master’s degree in music, she embarked on a path that ultimately led her to the intersection of good food, good wine, and good people.

She discovered her passion during her college days when she worked in a restaurant part-time. The hustle and bustle of the kitchen, the camaraderie among the staff, and the joy of creating memorable dining experiences ignited a spark within her that would shape her career trajectory.

Her dedication and commitment to excellence have been evident throughout her career. She honed her skills and expertise at some of New Orleans’ most beloved establishments, including Emeril’s and Doris Metropolitan.

Johnny Slamon, Director of Beverage & Fine Wine 

Johnny Slamon leads the bervage & wine program at Restaurant R’evolution. Originally from San Francisco, Slamon traveled to New Orleans seven years ago, bringing with him expertise and a passion for fine wines and spirits.

He’s spent time working with Kimpton Hotel & Restaurants, where he studied under the tutelage master sommelier Emily Wines of Cooper’s Hawk. Their collaborative relationship refined his palate and deepened his understanding of oenology.

Since arriving in New Orleans, Johnny has worked at culianry hot spots Lilette Restaurant and Doris Metropolitan. At Emeril’s, Johnny was Sommelier, showcasing his expertise in curating exceptional wine selections and guest service.

Slamon brings a wealth of knowledge and a discerning palate to our table. He meticulously selects each wine to complement the Restaurant R’evolution menu. He brings in new wines, while keeping inventory from the restaurant’s orignal wine menu from 12 years ago, continuing the standard for fine dining in New Orleans.


Jenera Herring, Private Dining Coordinator

Jenera Herring is the dedicated Private Dining Coordinator at Restaurant R’evolution. Born and raised in New Orleans, this local’s journey in the hospitality industry began eight years ago when she joined the team at Restaurant R’evolution as a hostess.

From her very first day, Herring’s passion for food, hospitality and New Orleans culture was evident. She enjoys showcasing the city’s rich culinary heritage to guests from around the world.

As the Private Dining Coordinator, she brings a combination of local knowledge and attention to detail to every event she coordinates. Whether it’s a small gathering or a lavish affair, she goes above and beyond for each event.



What People are Saying

“Wonderful Fine Dining!”

We were here with a couple of friends from the UK and we had a wonderful meal with impeccable service…

— Patrick O on TripAdvisor

“High Class”

… This place is very elegant and beautiful inside. The food was exceptional. …

— brooksjamie on TripAdvisor

“Among the best in New Orleans”

One of the best New Orleans meals that you will ever experience. It elevates the local cuisine to a fine dining experience

— jetsboy on TripAdvisor

“What a great evening !!”

… Menu is vast lot of options including some vegetarian options too like pasta and burrata salad. …

— 93mayurs on TripAdvisor


The Royal Sonesta New Orleans, a part of Sonesta hotels, is located in the heart of the historic French Quarter on one of the world’s most famous entertainment corridors, Bourbon Street. Each of the 483 guest rooms are newly renovated and offers views of vibrant French Quarter life, a stunning pool and patio terrace, or the lush tropical courtyard and fountain.

In addition to the Restaurant R’evolution, The Royal Sonesta New Orleans boasts several dining and entertainment venues. The hottest jazz club in town, The Jazz Playhouse, offers live jazz music five nights a week. The perfect spot for an after dinner drink and live entertainment, it’s located just steps away from the restaurant in the lobby of the hotel.