Corner Bar Continues To Thrive: Surviving The Pandemic To Come Back Stronger Than Ever

Stanley Lerille was ready for a new challenge. He wanted to open a midtown bar. He wanted to do things no one else was doing. “We opened Lafayette’s first smoke-free bar, and we were the first to offer a wide selection of 24 beers on tap,” he said. Nine years after opening a club in Downtown Lafayette, he sold it. “I really wanted to get out of the downtown area, and I wanted something that would be just a bar,” he said. Stanley set his sights on a building at the corner of Johnston St. and Doucet Rd. In 2010, Corner Bar was born.

From New Iberia Busboy to Google Grand Openings: Local Chef Moves North for Exciting Management Role

New Iberia native, Stu Gonsuron, has enjoyed a long and varied career in the culinary industry which began when he worked as a busboy in high school. After working as a waiter and prep cook, he next attended culinary school in Lafayette and enjoyed several more years as a respected chef in several Acadiana restaurants.

J.T. Meleck Distillers: Rice Vodka, Industry Game-Changer

When distilling his rice crop to make vodka was suggested to Mike Frugé, his wheels started turning. “I didn’t know anything about distilling,” he said. Frugé was a farmer, not a distiller. He’s a fourth-generation farmer on the same land his great uncle, John Meleck, planted his first rice on 20 acres in Branch, La. “I’d never made beer, never made anything. I just Googled it, and it turned out there was a convention on craft distilling in Baltimore. This was in 2017. I signed up for it immediately, and my wife and I flew out there,” Frugé said.

Saving Cajun: The Rebirth of Prejean's

When Lafayette restaurateur Tim Metcalf bought Prejean’s, his goal was to continue attracting diners — locals and travelers alike — who appreciate and seek out the 40-year-old restaurant’s food and overall Cajun experience. He has since done that and more. Metcalf and his partners, his son, Greg, and friend, Ken Boudreaux, are welcoming guests to fresh renovations and a menu reflecting Prejean’s classics and new creations.

Sunrise Coffee: Let The Good Vibes Roll

Boo Freeman’s beach life started when he moved from Lafayette, Louisiana, to Santa Rosa Beach, Florida, running a beach chair rental service, and making his own chairs, paddleboards, and umbrellas. “It’s my church,” Freeman said of his connection to the beach, “I pray every day there. It relaxes you. People are down there, and they’re relaxed, so you get to talk and communicate way better than in the stressful life of an office. It’s just good vibes.”

Tsunami Sushi: Michele Ezell Leads the Way

It seems surprising that Tsunami Sushi Managing Partner Michele Ezell, who practically introduced sushi to her hometown of Lafayette, La., then later expanded to Baton Rouge and New Orleans, felt undeserving when selected to join the prestigious James Beard Foundation Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Program (WEL).

Pi-YAHHHHH!: The Cajun Ninja's Path to Fame

Known as The Cajun Ninja, Jason Derouen has gone from an everyday guy, following his passion for cooking, to a social media sensation. He has attracted followers in his home state of Louisiana, across the country, and around the world.