Friday, March 2, 2012

Joe's OK Bayou

Cheeseburgers.  This blog is not about cheeseburgers, but rather the quest to ignore my craving for one and follow lent on a Friday.  It seems like anytime you can’t have something you really want it.  This was no different.  All I wanted was an amazing burger with fries.  Instead I was committed to a no mammal no poultry Friday in March.  With so many choices in the Ville that are seafood places alone I knew there was something I could find to eat on this stormy night.  My thought on lent fish specials is that they are normally exceptional, I don’t know if it’s because the restaurants bring their A-game when they think someone bigger is watching or what, but for the most part they are normally always good.  I didn’t want a great piece of fish though, I wanted an experience.  I’m about to head to California for most of March and I know there will be plenty of fish available.  So J and I ended up at Joe’s OK Bayou.  Now I have been here once before, with my parents, and to this day if you ask my father what his favorite restaurant in town is he will say Joe’s.  I think it is because he really likes frog’s legs and there aren’t many places to get them. 
As we walked in we noticed it was busy, and there was a guy playing guitar and singing in the corner.  We were quickly sat at a table; both ordered an Abita Golden (beer from Louisiana) and started mulling over the menu.  Now there were a bunch of different fish options as lent specials, but I was looking for something a bit different.  I thought about the soft shell crab, oysters, and my father’s favorite frog legs.  Eventually I settled on the boiled crawfish.  Now being that my mother’s family is from Louisiana I am always down for Cajun, and I know that in order to eat crawfish you must suck the juice from the head and eat the tails.  The honey mustard dipping sauce was a great additive even though the crawfish itself had great spicy seasoning on it.  J decided on the Cajun Combo and ordered Crawfish Etouffèe and Crawfish Creole.  She said it was the way to go because by the time she started getting tired the ettouffèe she switched to the Creole and the tomato base really came alive. 
Although we both thoroughly enjoyed our meals there were a few things we wished were different.  For one the menu is huge, with so many options and sizes.  Then, as far as we could tell, there are no “normal” side options (fries, things of that nature).  Everything comes with an option of a side portion of the Cajun Entrees.  So, it’s a lot of food with more food on the side.  If you are looking for a place with lots of food for your money, you are in the right place.  I am sure that during Mardi Gras this was the place to be in the Ville, and I would have loved some Zydeco music this particular evening.  Nothing like a washboard, an accordion and a plate of crawfish (which is the largest freshwater aquaculture industry in the US by the way) to make you feel like you are really near the gulf.  Overall this was a successful quest for a lent friendly Friday, good food, good beer, and a good friend to hang out with.

Joe's OK Bayou on Urbanspoon

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