If you are reading this from outside of New Orleans and Louisiana, this blog is about Mardi Gras. Yet, it has nothing to do with New Orleans. Sure New Orleans and Metairie are great places to catch a parade. But so are Houma, Luling, LaRose, Golden Meadow, and Thibodaux. In fact, my two of my favorite parades growing up were the Lockport and Gheens parade.
Archive for the ‘Louisiana’ Category
Posted by Kurt on February 7, 2013
Posted by Kurt on January 31, 2013
From the outside, La Magazine looked like the last place on earth to serve a great roast beef poboy. Well, looks are deceiving. La Magazine made a great roast beef poboy one that would stand up to most poboy shops around New Orleans.
This poboy was the first poboy that I had that didn’t use deli roast beef. This was a real roast cooked down until it fell apart. It was full of flavor and if I remember correctly it had quite a bit of garlic. I wish I could give more specific details but it’s been over ten years since I had one, and it’s impossible to get one now. Yet what I do remember is that I never got a bad poboy. I never got one that had too little meat or too much that the bread couldn’t handle it. It was always just a perfect sandwich. I remember loving their sautéed shrimp poboy (a poboy that deserves to be more widely served) and I’m sure I tried a few other things on the menu, but I would always come back to the roast beef poboy.
I keep trying to find one that comes close. The first two poboys I had from Parasols came damn near this poboy, but it’s still not quite there. I guess, I’ll have to keep doing some research.
Posted by Kurt on January 21, 2013
One of my favorite hamburger places posted this quote by Calvin Trillin on Facebook: “Anyboy who doesn’t think that the best hamburger place in the world is in his home town is a sissy.” Mr. Trillin is right. The best hamburger I ever had was from Noah’s Drive-In in Lockport.
The hamburger was just perfect. Juicy and tasty, a Noah’s hamburger was perfect in just about every way. A cheeseburger was even better because it truly forced a cohesive bond between the patty and the bread. When I got older and bigger, then it was time to have the gourmand burger. This, proving Mr. Trillin’s rule beyond a doubt, was no hamburger for sissies.
Noah’s was more than a hamburger place. Sunday after church lunch was always a special event. The broasted chicken was always delicious. My sister would be content with just the mac and cheese. After Junior High sporting events, it was a great place for a celebratory meal. The sundaes were a tradition in my house. I am sure their roast beef poboy was made with deli roast beef, yet it was the only roast beef poboy of that style that was as good as the debris poboys of New Orleans.
Not only was Mr. Noah a familiar face when you went, so was the entire family. After Mr. Noah’s tragic death, the place stayed open under different ownership, but it was not the same. It wasn’t that the food changed much, it was that the experience changed. Mr. Noah fed my family and if you are from Lockport, he probably fed yours too. That is what could never be replaced.
Posted by Kurt on January 2, 2013
Growing up in the Lockport area, we didn’t have many ethnic restaurants. Well, we had Cajun restaurants but we just called them restaurants. Eventually we got a Chinese restaurant (which I compare all other Chinese restaurants to…even the one in Chinatown NYC didn’t compare. What can I say, I’m loyal). Then the area got a Mexican restaurant – well after I moved away. Then a second Chinese restaurant opened, then a second Mexican restaurant opened. I keep hoping for a Middle Eastern restaurant, while my sister would settle for a Taco Bell.
Well, since we spent Christmas in Florida this year, my family had a belated Christmas meal at El Paso, the second Mexican restaurant in the area.
(New Years Resolution: Must report on the other three restaurants. They are all good).
Now, before I get to far into this, I truly can’t give a good review of the food. I am not a fan of Mexican food. In fact, I usually opt for a burger since they are usually really good at Mexican restaurants. However, this restaurant did have one item with a mole sauce, which shows ambition. A lot of high volume Mexican restaurants in the New Orleans area neglect this sauce. I would have gone with this, but I didn’t properly prepare for Mexican food. Instead, I ordered half rack of ribs. My dad went with a steak, my wife with a steak fajita (so she could have lunch the next day) and my mom and sister split a combination fajita. My dad enjoyed his steak which was cooked a true medium well. Cristina raved about the steak fajita. My mom and my sister loved their fajita. My ribs, which came with way too much sauce, were also cooked perfectly. They didn’t fall off the bone, which usually means they are over cooked. The sauce is an easy fix for me; I’ll just ask for it on the side. The sangria was just what I needed. The deserts looked delicious, especially since they all had something fried, but I passed.
What really impressed me was the size of the space. It’s large and can fit a number of people without being cramped. There is a large bar with three large TVs that makes it a good place to get a drink, some wings, and watch a game. The night we were there, a band was playing. At first, I was a little worried we would be able to talk, but the duo, French Bred, played at the perfect volume. They also played a nice selection of music and let the kids in the restaurant help with the percussion.
I want to go back and try the dish with the mole sauce. I know Cristina wants to go back. And judging from the crowd that Saturday night and the few patrons that I talked to, quite a few people are going back. Good. The area needs more restaurants that are close to the good people of my hometown. For people who are traveling on HWY 90 its right off the Raceland exit in the strip mall with Rouses.
Posted by Kurt on April 20, 2012
Back in October of 2011, Cristina and I went to prison. Voluntarily. Actually, we paid to get in.
Every October, the Angola State Prison opens its doors to the public. What the public get is basically two things: a rodeo and an arts and crafts fair. All participants are prisoners serving time for various, but in most cases, violent crimes. That’s what really makes this event special.
First let’s talk about the rodeo. Late in the afternoon, you find your seats and get ready for a show. And a show you will get. The afternoon we were there, we got to see the normal rodeo stuff: bull riding, calf wrestling and the like. Like a rodeo, it can get violent in a second. Quickly, you forget these men are prisoners and start worrying about them. There are other events such as bull in the ring with real bulls. There are rodeo clowns for the kids. My favorite part was when the monkey’s were riding the dog’s herding sheep into the back of the truck. Since you can’t take cameras into the prison, you will just have to trust me, it happened.
I know people who go to the rodeo every weekend in October. But not to see the rodeo. You see the rodeo is what pulls you in. The crafts are what keeps you coming back.
The first thing that Cristina and I talked about on the way home was how we needed a truck. Some of the items you can buy: swings, smokers, patio furniture, armoires, paintings in custom-made frames, custom-made belts and wallets, and entire bedroom sets. The level of craftsmanship is extremely high. These guys truly have nothing else to do. Most of the prisoners will be behind a fence barking at you to try to buy their wares. Others, who have earned the right with their good behavior, will be next to their products acting as salesmen. When they have sold you on an item, they write you a ticket that you take to the point of sale booth. There you will receive your receipt and the go pick it up from its creator.
The only downside of the day was that when everyone decides to leave, there is only one rode out. Make sure you have a full tank.
Even though the Angola Rodeo is every weekend in October, they do open their doors every spring for one weekend, and that weekend is this weekend.
- Darryl Richardson at Angola Prison Rodeo (prisonphotography.wordpress.com)
Posted by Kurt on April 19, 2012
Festival season continues with two festivals that are close to home….well for me anyway.
If you have been paying attention to media news lately, you should know that the south Louisiana area has become a mecca for the movie and media industries. I’m proud to live and work in a parish (St. Charles) that had the foresight to include new media in their curriculum. The school board has invested in the future by building a Satellite Center to serve as a place for high school students to receive intensive instruction in Health Sciences, Engineering, Education, as well as other classes. The Digital and Interactive Media as well as the Advanced TV departments of the Satellite Center have come together to create the http://www.scvaf.org/”>Satellite Center Video and Animation Festival. The festival will be held this Friday, April 20 from 4-8 at the Professional Learning Center in Luling, LA.
Starting out just locally, the festival now includes numerous schools from the region. Students work on animation (2d and 3d) as well as film projects such as PSAs and documentaries. Trust me, if you can afford the $1 admission and the time, you will be impressed. I always am. Besides being a showcase for student work, this truly is a film festival. Judges are professionals from the business from around the world. The keynote speaker this year will be from the Academy Awarding winning Moonbot Studios.
If you are looking for a more traditional fair, this weekend my hometown of Lockport is throwing it’s annual “swamp pop extravaganza.” While the food is very good, I tend to always get the grillades. The fair is very laid back and features a lot of local music. In other words, it’s a great way to pass a good time.
Posted by Kurt on September 13, 2011
On September 11, we traveled down to Lockport to run a 5K Fun Run to help with Cancer Awareness. The only problem was that Cristina woke up sick that morning. However, we were going to complete the 5K no matter what.
The start and end of the race was at the Bayou Side Park on the Company Canal. The town of Lockport has done a great job in making this an attractive place for people to meet. The park has a nice walking track, sign posts explaining the history and science of the region, benches and plenty of shade. The only thing the park doesn’t have, and there really isn’t a way to correct this, is ample parking. The event had a DJ, health screening and plenty of treats for sale.
The race started earlier than we were told it would so we didn’t get a very good warm up. It really didn’t matter because Cristina truly wasn’t feeling well. So we power walked most of it. I pointed out where friends of mine grew up, where relatives lived, and where I went to school. We passed in front of the church where we got married. We actually finished the race in forty-seven minutes. The first couple of weeks that we started the Couch to 5K (C25K) it would take us thirty-eight minutes to run walk two miles. When we are both feeling well we are confident we can break the forty minute mark.
Even though we really only ran about three-quarters of a mile, we know we can be successful at our next 5K: The Wine and Dine 5k in DisneyWorld.
Posted by Kurt on July 11, 2011
Because I’m a great husband and also because I’m the best brother ever, I recently accompanied my wife, sister, and sister-in-law to Lafayette for the NKOTBSB concert. I had one condition for the torture that would befall my ears in form of young girls and older women shrieking: a shrimp po-boy from Old Tyme Grocery.
I found out about this place by coaching basketball. The coach who I was an assistant for loves this place. He also loves shrimp and has pretty high standards especially since his brother trawls for a living. He always has a freezer stocked. He is right, this place makes a great fried shrimp po-boy. It is set up like a grocery but with only chips and drinks to buy besides the sandwiches. They also server oyster po-boys as well as meatball, ham and roast beef ones. I have no report on these other sandwiches for I always get the shrimp po-boy.
They use large 10-20 shrimp on their sandwich and even though some fall off you never just get a bread bite. The bread is toasted yet still soft. I don’t like much on a fried po-boy, just a little hot sauce and mayonnaise. However, I would eat this one plain. The shrimp taste fresh and the batter is seasoned just enough. If you are in Lafayette, check it out. However, they are cash only.
As far as the concert goes, it wasn’t all that bad. I was in high school when the New Kid’s were popular so it brought many memories of hating the band yet always trying to find the right girl to dance to when one of their slow songs came on. I bought my sister a ticket as a present and she loved it when Donnie took off any clothes. And to be brutally honesty, they have aged a lot better than most of their fans. My wife adores the Backstreet Boys and to see her get so excited when she saw them made it worth it. Except for when she looked at Nick Carter. Then, I got a little jealous. Just a little.
Posted by Kurt on April 19, 2011
Saturday morning, I headed to the German Coast Farmer’s Market at the Ormond Plantation to get my vegetables for the week. I came home with some fresh green beans, sweet potatoes, broccoli, carrots and some spicy hog’s head cheese. All for better prices than I would have paid at Winn Dixie. I also came home with a new obsession: Mama Mary’s Apple Cinnamon Pepper Jelly.
The jelly is the perfect amount of sweet and heat. I made sure we have had something to spread it on at every meal since. Biscuits for supper and dinner, just on plain bread for a snack, or with some fresh ground peanut butter from Whole Foods for lunch. My only problem with is that I bought a small jar, and I will be out-of-town this Saturday.
Posted by Kurt on April 5, 2011
Looking for something to do Friday? Well there is the Strawberry Festival and the French Quarter Festival which are always to great events. However, if you are looking for something more low key yet still showcasing some great art then take a chance on the Satellite Center Video and Animation Festival.
The Satellite Center Video and Animation Festival (SCVAF) has been around for six years now. The festival, the brain child of the St. Charles Parish Satellite Center teachers Brian Gough, Rhitt Growl, and Albert Dupont, showcases student films. The festival has grown from just represent St. Charles Parish students to having schools from all over Louisiana. It is now one of the largest high school film festivals in the country.
Having had students enter in the completion in the past, I can definitely say how amazing it is to see some of the work that comes from these young people. The judges are all people who work in the industry and from all over the world. Dr. Stacey Simmons, founder of Red Stick International Animation Festival & BRADIC, will be the guest speaker.
And money shouldn’t be an issue, since the cost is only a dollar. The Festival will be held at the Professional Learning Center in Luling on Friday, April 8, 2011. The general showings will be from 4-7 with the awards ceremony being held from 7:15-8 pm.