Discerning New Orleanians are skipping across Lake Pontchartrain to Covington, an artsy North Shore suburb. Here, the top addresses: Louisiana painter James Michalopoulos is the co-owner of Étoile (407 N. Columbia St.; 985/893-8873; dinner for two $54), a French-Asian bistro and wineshop. • Votive candles set the mood at Ristorante Del Porto (205 N. New Hampshire St.; 985/875-1006; dinner for two $65), for dishes such as homemade pappardelle with rabbit ragoût.• Locals get their daily gossip at Judice's (421 E. Gibson St.; 985/ 892-0708; lunch for two $18), a neighborhood café that serves a zesty shrimp rémoulade. • Area chefs pick up fresh provisions—sweet Ponchatoula strawberries, gulf crab—at the Covington Farmers' Market (609 N. Columbia St.; 985/898-4731), held on Wednesday afternoons and Saturday mornings. • Larger-than-life oils and mixed-media works line the walls of the Brunner Gallery (215 N. Columbia St.; 985/893-0444), a raw space that represents young Southern artists. • Eastco Trading (228 N. Columbia St.; 985/875-0739) imports custom furniture from Indonesia: sleigh beds, armoires, and planter's chairs.
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