There are a few things that Christopher and I love about New Orleans:
1. Beignets from Cafe du Monde
2. Surf and turf po’boy from Parkway Tavern and Bakery
3. The St. Louis Cathedral (it looks like a Disney princess castle!)
We went to NOLA for our two year anniversary and we fell in love with those three specific things. We’ve been back to New Orleans twice since then and every time we’re sure to hit each of these spots. So as you can imagine, we take authentic Cajun food pretty seriously. When we heard about Bayou Bar and Grill in midtown, we decided that we needed to pop in and check it out!
This place is in Midtown on a stretch of trendy restaurants. I’ve blogged about Local and Young Ave Deli which are both within close walking distance. After eating here, we’ve discovered that in general, restaurants on this strip are pricey and the food just doesn’t meet our expectations (except for the Local Burger – that was amazing – pricey, but amazing).
The red beans and rice were up next! This is normally a favorite of mine, so I was pretty disappointed. It was over salted and the beans seemed mushy (over cooked). Granted, I still think my mom makes the best Red Beans and Rice (her recipe here) so that might be why I’m so picky about it. ;)
I was most looking forward to my Shrimp Po’Boy and I was sadly pretty let down by it. The tomatoes were mushy, the bread was soggy on the inside and the shrimp-to-sandwich ration was kind of pitiful. On the bright side, the shrimp itself was seasoned well and was tasty so I ended up just eating the shrimp off the sandwich. I still had an enjoyable lunch. :)
Christopher got the muffuletta which is one of his favorite sandwiches EVER (in fact, if he were writing this blog post, he would’ve added that as thing #4 that he loved most in NOLA). So he has pretty high standards when it comes to a good muffuletta. This one unfortunately didn’t meet his expectations. He said “I didn’t care for it. The muffuletta left me wanting and disappointed.” Sad, right?
So does this place compare well to New Orleans? No, not so much. But I have yet to find GREAT Cajun food outside NOLA anyway. So with that in mind, this place isn’t the worst food ever. We just have high standards for Cajun food. There are a couple of other Cajun places here in Memphis that I need to try out. When I find a great one, I will definitely let you guys know! :)
Have you been to New Orleans?
Do you have a good local Cajun place in your city?
Memphis friends, is there a better local Cajun place I should try?