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Wayne Baquet’s New Orleans roots stretch back two hundred years, and his family’s history in the restaurant business there is three generations strong. Wayne thought about leaving the business in 2004, when he sold Zachary’s, a restaurant once known for its fried chicken and Sunday brunches in the Carrolton neighborhood. But his passion for the food of his Creole heritage runs deep: soon he was opening a Lil’ Dizzy’s Café in the Treme neighborhood, and then another one in the Central Business District.
The Creole filé gumbo ladled out at Lil’ Dizzy’s is the same gumbo that his family has been serving at its restaurants for decades. It builds upon a pre-made, seasoned, dry roux mix that Wayne and his father developed so that they could reproduce the essence of their gumbo anywhere they traveled, be it to another family restaurant or a family reunion.