I’ve never actually been to Antoine’s, but from what I’ve heard from the people I know, it’s a really nice restaurant. I love the history of it and the menu and the floor plan, and next time I’m back home in Louisiana, I plan on visiting.


The main dining room


But, since I’m writing this book from the other L.A., I can only visit it virtually and on the written page.

[And, just to make clear, there is no disrespect intended for this prized New Orleans treasure. I only described it as such in an attempt to stay true to this fictional world and to these characters.]

The Tabasco Room

Unfortunately, Tori was intimidated by everything else she had been introduced to that night and the menu at Antoine’s only put her over the edge. On any other day, and in any other circumstances, I’m sure she would have been happy to try the huiteres (oysters), crevettes (shrimp), or ecrivesses (crawfish). As a resident of south Louisiana, those items would be a normal part of her regular diet. But, in that moment, in a private dining room at one of the nicest restaurants in the city, and under the piercing gaze of a sexy Hollywood actor/director, Tori cracked and panicked*.

Haven’t we all at some point?

And, you know, maybe once all is said is done, maybe Tori will let Nate have a do-over and they’ll go back to Antoine’s and laugh about their first time as they Eat. All. The. Food.

The Dungeon

*I had originally outlined the scene to where Nate orders everything on the menu and he wines and dines and seduces Tori over amazing food. However, as I was going over the scene in my head, I realized that Tori wasn’t at that part in her journey where she would be able to accept his attempts of seduction. She barely trusts herself, much less him, and there’s no way she would be receptive of his attempts. But, like many of us, Tori is a simple woman with simple pleasures and sometimes, the thing that sounds best on the menu is a hamburger.


[And I might still use the idea, just with one of the other brothers. I could see Chance doing it and fucking up or Leo doing it to his Pet. . . who would love it.]

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