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Willie Mae's Scotch House (N.O.)


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#61 hathor

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Posted 23 April 2007 - 10:14 AM

Hey..you guys got linked to aSalon article.
What a wonderful story, and a way to keep New Orleans in the press. Seems like there is still a long road in front of you.

#62 Mayhaw Man

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Posted 22 May 2007 - 09:56 AM

I am pleased to announce that Willie Mae's Scotch House will be open for lunch tomorrow and, happily, the day after that and the day after that, hopefully ad infinitum.
The family has come to an operating agreement that will allow the place to operate on a daily basis with (hopefully) as little familial rancor as possible. All permitting issues have been dealt with and they are ready to serve all comers beginning tomorrow at 11.

Take that all you naysayers and haters and take that USA Today.

This project was done with private labor, private financing, and a great deal of hard work from people who didn't know the Seatons and who in most cases had never even heard of Willie Mae's Scotch House. It was done with hard work and love from many people and they all deserve a great deal of credit and thanks, as do the thousands of other volunteers who have helped out all around the Gulf Coast, in so many ways, since Aug 29, 2005. THIS is the way that this place will get rebuilt. Waiting around on our government officials (on every level of government) to do it is not only a waste of time, but a Quixotic exercise is futility and frustration. We are NOLA. We're not like you and we like it that way.

Thanks for everything to everybody and hopefully I'll see you at lunch.
Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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#63 TAPrice

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Posted 22 May 2007 - 10:06 AM

Happy day! Happy day! I'm going to get myself some fried chicken this week.
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#64 Mayhaw Man

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Posted 04 June 2007 - 03:28 PM

Lunch today on a very rainy Monday.

After a long weekend in Oxford attending the nuptial ceremony for John Currence and Bess Reed, I was tired and didn't feel like fixing lunch. The solution? Willie Mae's Scotch House for butterbeans, breaded pork chops, snap beans, fried chicken, rice and gravy, and a big glass of tea to wash it down with.

The food was really good. Go there. It's open, really nice, and operating more or less like a Swiss watch. They have plans to open the back dining room soon (their plans hinge on employees rather than money or construction-so now they are just like every other restaurant in town and that in itself is kind of nice.

The place is busy, but things move along pretty fast (excepting chicken-they fry to order, so if you get chicken, prepare on about a 25 minute delay between ordering and eating. Chat with your neighbors as they are probably pretty interesting people and you might learn something. Today there were a couple of uptown (though clearly kinda hip beyone the norm) lunch ladies, a couple of guys who were clearly big shot politico types (loudly discussing how Bill Jefferson is going to fry), some contractors and a few of their employees, a film crew from CA who had come from the airport STRAIGHT to the place, luggage and all, and literally cheered when the food hit the table, and a couple more guys who likely didn't make their living in a very legal manner. All in all, it was a great crowd of people with one thing in common, if nothing else-everyone in there liked to eat. I had a great time and I am sure that most of you will too.
Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

#65 TAPrice

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Posted 25 October 2007 - 11:18 AM

Kim Severson of the New York Times visits New Orleans and tries the chicken at both Dooky Chase and Willie Mae's click). This blog entry includes a video of Kerry Seaton in the kitchen, but she won't give away Willie Mae's secret.

[Note: I cross posted this on the Dooky Chase thread.]

I was there a few weeks ago on a Saturday. It was pretty outstanding. Not just the chicken, but everything.
Todd A. Price aka "TAPrice"


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#66 MJP

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Posted 07 January 2008 - 02:45 PM

Quick question: is Willie Mae's lunch-only or do they do dinner as well?
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#67 TAPrice

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Posted 07 January 2008 - 08:15 PM

Quick question: is Willie Mae's lunch-only or do they do dinner as well?

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Lunch only. Mon-Sat, although I'd call to double check that they're still serving Saturday.
Todd A. Price aka "TAPrice"


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#68 Mayhaw Man

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 05:35 PM

Take out from Willie Mae's today (happily, I work not far away in Treme/Gentilly). While I am kind of known for being a fan of the place (weigh your opinions with this fact), I can tell you that it ain't no joke. Kerry is frying chicken (or Slim, her son) that the tough as nails Willie Mae would not have EVER objected to. It's pretty awesome. White beans were really perfect and we had some bread pudding for dessert.

If you are in town, and have some time (if you order chicken it will take 25 minutes-they cook it to order...no matter how full the dining room), I highly reccomend that you go. You'll see a part of New Orleans that you wouldn't normally see during a convention visit and, better than that, you'll see a place, and a life, I suppose, that was rebuilt by people that didn't even know the woman or her grandaughter, who is now running the place with style and aplomb.
Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

#69 TAPrice

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Posted 31 March 2008 - 06:26 AM

I was really happy to see in an ad for Willie Mae's that Kerry is also hosting some music at the restaurant. Last time I was there (pretty recently), that neighborhood was still largely empty. Doing some shows is just another way of getting some life back to the neighborhood.

And that was really the idea behind everyone helping. Trying to restore an anchor to the neighborhood. If it can be more than just a restaurant, all the better. The more activity that goes on at Willie Mae's, the better anchor it will be.
Todd A. Price aka "TAPrice"


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#70 hathor

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Posted 31 March 2008 - 07:47 AM

I'm coming in for the IACP conference (April 15-19) and I would really love to go here. ....anyone want to meet me for some fried chicken?

I've followed this story since the hurricane and it's incredible.
I've only been to New Orleans once, in the French Quarter, so I have no idea what neighborhood this is in.... but Willie Mae's is one of the reasons that I want to come to New Orleans.
PM me if you'll be around.
Judith

#71 Mayhaw Man

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Posted 31 March 2008 - 07:50 AM

She's also doing some sponsorship on WWOZ, one of the best radio stations on the planet, , which is a great idea for her. Talk about marketing to the target audience.
Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

#72 HungryC

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Posted 31 March 2008 - 07:56 AM

I agree that the 'OZ sponsorship is a great idea....on my last visit, Kerry had WWOZ cranked up in the kitchen, singing along and dancing as she worked.

#73 hathor

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Posted 22 April 2008 - 07:15 AM

OK. I'm a believer. Shatter crunchy crust on the chicken. Beautifully seasoned, soft melting pork chop. Hello! Butter beans! I should get out more often, these beans were sublime. Can you tell that I'm in a state of complete infatuation with New Orleans?
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#74 Toliver

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Posted 26 June 2009 - 09:40 AM

I thought I would bump this back to ask if anyone has eaten there lately and how is Willa Mae doing?

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#75 sickchangeup

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Posted 26 June 2009 - 10:54 AM

I thought I would bump this back to ask if anyone has eaten there lately and how is Willa Mae doing?

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Although, I can't tell you how Willa Mae is going, I did eat there the week before Fat Tuesday this year, and it was awesome, without a doubt the best fried chicken I've had. We purposefully went after the lunch rush with a large group of about 12, and they split us up into a couple different tables. People continued to spill in all afternoon, and probably as a result of our group, there was a wait even in between regular lunch and dinner hours. I guess it's no surprise that they were packed that time of year though.

The place struck us as very clean, and our server had a few (well earned I'm sure) laughs when describing what used to be there before the flood (mostly things that had now been moved onto the wall for decoration/keep sake) from what was now new.

Likely as a result of the time of year, getting a cab back proved to be a serious challenge. We were advised against walking back by the guys who drove us out there, but eventually we made it back in two separate cabs that we somewhat chased down.

#76 Toliver

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Posted 08 July 2009 - 01:41 PM

Thanks for taking the time to post an update! I appreciate it.

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'
Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”
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#77 weinoo

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 05:41 AM

Say Hey, Kid

Ahhh, the great Willie Mays. That was his nickname: The Say Hey Kid. You all remember him, right? The awesome Hall-of-Fame center-fielder for the New York slash San Francisco Giants, who finished his career with the New York Mets. With 660 home runs. With a .302 batting average. With a dozen Gold Gloves. Those were the days...but...don't worry; this post has absolutely nothing to do with him.

You see, I'm talking 'bout Willie Mae's. Willie Mae's Scotch House in New Orleans, to be precise...

Willie Mae\'s Inside Sign.jpg
Willie Mae's was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina, but with the help of the Southern Foodways Alliance and donations of time and money from friends and neighbors, was rebuilt and reopened two years after the tragedy...

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Doesn't look like much, I know, but Willie Mae's is famous for many things, and has stood on the same corner in the city's Tremé neighborhood for over 50 years, originally opening as a bar. Now, it's a food destination, notably for its fried chicken, and people come from all over to line up and get a taste. They're only open from 11 AM until 3 PM, so you can imagine that there's a wait sometimes, as there was the day Significant Eater and I went. But I'll bet the famous people don't wait as long...

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You gotta figure - if Barack likes it, it must be good, no? There were lots of happy faces, so he's not the only one.

Significant Eater and I both ordered the fried chicken; there are also fried pork chops and smothered veal chops on the menu, but today was a chicken day. Along with our chicken, we had sides of red beans and rice as well as green beans with rice and gravy...

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I haven't had green beans like this...well, at least since my mom opened up that can of Green Giant...but, let's also say the green beans were helped along by the perfectly cooked rice and scrumptious gravy. Okay - I'll say it - they were. But really, are you here for the vegetables?

Nope - you're here for the fried chicken...and when our platter arrived, it looked like this...

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Crunchy, juicy and moist - and even somewhat delicious once you get past the salt, which there is no shortage of. Would I eat this stuff every day? No, probably not - unless I brought my cardiologist with me. But if you're heading to New Orleans, give it a try - I'm betting you won't be disappointed.

Willie Mae's Scotch House
2401 Saint Ann Street
New Orleans, LA 70119

(504) 822-9503
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#78 HungryC

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 05:46 AM

I feel compelled to mount a defense of the meltingly tender, long-simmered, southern-style green bean. Seasoned properly (ie, with a good, smoky pork of some sort), those beans are a revelation. I wonder if Kerry is leaving out the meat in hopes of offering a vegetarian item? (pure speculation)

#79 weinoo

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 06:38 AM

I feel compelled to mount a defense of the meltingly tender, long-simmered, southern-style green bean. Seasoned properly (ie, with a good, smoky pork of some sort), those beans are a revelation. I wonder if Kerry is leaving out the meat in hopes of offering a vegetarian item? (pure speculation)

Do you know if she starts with fresh green beans or perhaps frozen ones. I make long-simmered green beans, and they still have a lot more texture than these did.
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
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#80 HungryC

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 08:46 AM

I have no idea whether she's using fresh or frozen. I use frozen all the time; they're as good as fresh for smothering. The key is seasoning--without the judicious application of savory (tasso, andouille, smoked turkey wings, salted pork, or something similar) and salt, they're just mushy snap beans. My favorite version of the dish includes chunks of new potatoes simmered along with the beans; the potatoes get all creamy & soak up the smoked meat & vegetable flavors. The dish of green beans & potatoes is standard home cooking in this region.

#81 Holly Moore

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 09:36 AM

Chef Jack McDavid, who hales from the hills of Virginia, gave me a short history lesson on southern, stewed-for-hours, green beans. Like a lot of southern dishes it ties into the poverty found in parts of the South. Housewives would add a bit of meat to green beans to add some meat flavor - a way to extend a small piece of meat for a large family. Up to a point, the more the meat stewed with the beans, the meatier the beans became.
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#82 HungryC

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 09:40 AM

I dunno about "stewed for hours"....I cook frozen beans about 30-45 minutes. Fresh beans take just a bit longer, depending on whether you've bothered to french 'em or if you've left the beans in fairly large snaps.

#83 Toliver

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 11:14 AM

Chef Jack McDavid, who hales from the hills of Virginia, gave me a short history lesson on southern, stewed-for-hours, green beans. Like a lot of southern dishes it ties into the poverty found in parts of the South. Housewives would add a bit of meat to green beans to add some meat flavor - a way to extend a small piece of meat for a large family. Up to a point, the more the meat stewed with the beans, the meatier the beans became.

That's the way my mom makes them. Stewed-for-hours until they're limp and lose their vibrant green color. They swim with bits of bacon until, when done, the bacon and the beans are one in flavor.
And don't forget the salt. :wink:

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'
Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”
– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”


#84 syoung68

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 11:22 AM

smoked pig tails are pretty good in them too.

#85 heidih

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 06:45 PM

That fried chicken looks like it has an incredible crust on it - almost roof of the mouth scraping. Can you describe the thickness and crunch factor?

#86 weinoo

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 07:30 PM

That fried chicken looks like it has an incredible crust on it - almost roof of the mouth scraping. Can you describe the thickness and crunch factor?

It was totally thick and majorly crunchy.
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#87 Kent Wang

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Posted 28 February 2011 - 01:56 PM

I've been there twice and approve. The fried chicken is up there with "best in the world" as Nubian Queen Lola's in Austin. The style is quite different from anywhere else that I've had. Crispy, but not grainy (from cornmeal), or flakey (like KFC). I think there may be some egg in the batter.

I would guess that the beans are canned. They always look like that at Southern restaurants. I honestly prefer something fresher, with a better texture.