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Mayhaw Man

DIGEST: Louisiana Food in the Media

38 posts in this topic

This space will serve as a place to deposit reviews and news on the New Orleans Restaurant scene. Hopefully many of you will find it of use when planning travel to the Crescent City and surrounding areas.

The Times Picayune is the only local daily in New Orleans and the Lagniappe is the Friday entertainment pull out.

Gambit Weekly is a long running weekly newspaper. It is one of the best done weeklies in the US and I reccomend that the first thing you should do when you arrive is to find a copy (any local coffee shop, bookstore, etc. will have it). It's free and not only can you get the scoop on when and where to eat, but you can read about our favorite local contact sport-Politics.


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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There was an interesting article in the New Orleans Times Picayune today about BBQ in New Orleans and South Louisiana in general. It was written by Brett Anderson, the food critic for the Picayune. I thought that it was odd that it did not contain any opinions from Lolis Eric Elie, given that he wrote what I believe to be the ultimate BBQ Bible, Smokestack Lightning, an incredibly well researched book covering BBQ from the Rio Grande to West Virginia and all points in between. The link to the book is to a review written by John Edgerton for Southern Food.


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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We smoke everything on pecan wood here.

Music to my ears.


Dean McCord

VarmintBites

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The Picayune for today, 12/18/03, has a couple of articles about buying cookbooks for the holidays and some short reviews. The first article has a listing for an excellent book about how to fry turkeys and not kill yourself, your friends, or burn down your home while doing it.

Louisiana Cookbooks

A Bakers Dozen

Marcelle Bienvenue, one of my favorite food writers, has an article in today's paper (as she does every Thursday) and it concerns cream soups. Her stuff is usually pretty user friendly to cook and is truly authentic South Louisiana Fare.

Cream Soups

Marcelle's Fudge


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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The following article is the first installment of an excellent article that appeared in the Picayune earlier this year. There are a number of interesting links (including parts two and three of the article) at the bottom of part one.

A change of cultures


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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Brett Anderson, food critic for the Picayune, compiled this list of all of his published reviews for the year.

It is an interesting list (one I do not endorse wholeheartedly, but I am liking BA more and more and think that his understanding of what this place is all about is pretty good and getting great) and one that many of you travelers may find useful. Where they exist, you should also be able to link directly to the places website for phone info, etc.

John Besh, formerly of Artesia in my bucolic little hometown, comes out on top with August. A really cool feeling place in the 300 block of Tchop with some pretty snappy food.

This list uses beans instead of stars, in case you are not familiar with the system.

5 beans means that you are not likely to become a "has bean" :raz:


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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Review of Tommy's by Picayune Critic Brett Anderson

Tommy's on Tchop

News from the Crescent City. I am going to the "Art Dinner mentioned in the Article. John Besh is a great guy, but this is pretty dicey as the facilities are a bit lacking where he is doing this dinner

New Orleans Dining News 1/2/03

The Sooners are glad to be able to get a decent meal, but still insist on bringing their own (which is a good thing because we have generally terrible BBQ)

Okies Can Cook

But they've got nothing on us

Rather than chips and dips, we munched on fried pork skins, chunks of hogshead cheese, and myriad pork sausages. You could tell the day of the week by Mama's menus -- Monday was smothered round steak and onions with rice, Tuesday featured panéed meat with mashed potatoes, spaghetti with lots of meaty sauce was Wednesday's fare, Thursdays might bring smothered pork chops with macaroni and cheese, and on meatless Fridays we really blew it out with fried fish, fried shrimp and fried oysters, all accompanied by French fried potatoes or potato salad! On Saturday we had hamburgers or po-boys, and of course the Sunday meal usually meant perfectly roasted chicken and pork, rice dressing, vegetables from the garden cooked with salt meat or ham, and lots of fresh baked bread and cornbread

This is another excellent piece of work by Marcelle Bienvenue. A great food writer.

Marcelle's New Year's Column

Geaux Tigers!


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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Well you did it! Your band of tigers and ref's beat us Sooners fair and square. we are humbled but not ashamed of the Sooners.

But this dosent change the fact that "If you know beans about chili, Chili has no beans". :biggrin::biggrin::biggrin:

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Today's food section in the Picayune is a bit thin, but there is one excellent piece by Marcelle Bienvenue about her love of oysters and the article includes a few interesting recipes.

Read about slurping salty oysters here

There is also an article by Barbara Hansen of the LA Times on the uses of the poblano chile. There are several recipes including one on the making of poblano crema.

Chile News

This is an article from the archives of the Picayune concerning the production of headcheese and it includes a recipe that YOU can make at home. Many of you are enthusiastic cooks and like try new things. Just think how impressed your friends and family will be when you whip out this tasty treat!

Head Cheese Heaven is on the German Coast above New Orleans

There is an article on the front of the business section concerning the current situation at New Orleans 24 hour breafast landmark, Camellia Grill. They are battling with creditors who don't seem willing to trade for vanilla cokes and spanish omelettes.

Camellia Grill is having trouble paying the bills


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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New York wins, New Orleans is #2. What happened to the rest of ya'll?

We're # 2! We're # 2!

Cypress is located on beautiful Transcontinental Blvd. in the heart of beautiful Metairie.

Cypress is an interesting new place in a not very interesting place

New Orleans has a pretty good aisian food scene, although it tends to get overlooked by all of those people downing Gumbo and Hurricanes.

Thai me up and beat me with a wet noodle

People here sometimes don't eat meat, although it doesn't happen very often and you can never fully trust that sort of person.

And you thought that all we had was meat


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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Lolis Eric Elie's column in today's Picayune is about a lifelong preference for mustard greens over collards.

Collards cut the Mustards

For those of you that are not familiar with Mr. Elie, he is a longtime Picayune columnist but more importantly (imho) he is the author of the single best BBQ book ever written. I highly reccomend that those interested in this important subject seek out this volume as it covers virtually every style of BBQ prepared in North America. It would be a fine addition to any culinary library. The link below will lead you to a review by Ed Ward of the Austin Chrinicle.

Smokestack Lightning

Just for the record, I prefer turnips (with roots) over collards over mustards. :wink:


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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This article from Today's Times Picayne involves the tradition out in the Prairies of Louisiana of maskers riding from house to house collecting the ingredients for a big pot of Gumbo. They also drink beer, fall off of horses, and wear really cool masks and big pointy hats. THere are some excellent photos if you will punch them up after you read the article. Just go to today's photos.

Gumbo-The Hard Way


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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A few updates from local publications for your reading pleasure:

Drinkin with Tennessee -Food and Drink creations designed especially for the annual Tennessee Williams Festival in New Orleans.

A review by Picayune food critic Brett Anderson of Il Piato, a new Carrollton area Italian place.

In Vino Veritas- afew of this weeks wine events in and around New Orleans.

John Folse packs up Lafitte's Landing in Donaldsonville and moves it to Baton Rouge.

A review of Muriel's. The restaurant that took the space where Chart House existed for about 25 years. It is a great building with great views and apparently not a bad place to eat.

Brady's is right down the road and is conveniently located for lunch on the Northshore of the Lake (actually, with the complete lack of urban planning and the fact that a few families owns damn neat every piece of property in the Parish nothing here is conveniently located). I really like the place and they seem to be doing well.

In conjunction with this weekend's Tennessee Williams conference there will be a number of food related events (including one on Sunday morning featuring John T. Edge, Director of the Southern Foodways Alliance-I am going to this one).

Eatin with Tennessee

Sarah Moulton will be here for the conference as well

Marcelle Bienvenue (my favorite writer at the Picayune) writes about Mushrooms and Asparagus.

Split Pea and Shrimp Soup sounds like a good thing to me. I think that I might make this on Sunday. Shrimp are dirt cheap right now and we are eating them more than red meat.

Great news about the French market


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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Marcelle Bienvenue has a good piece in the Thursday Food section of the Picayine on Easter Bread

Marcelle Bakes

Here is a listing of food related events involved with this weekend's Tennessee Williams Festival

Tennessee Eats

And this is a listing of restaurants that are serving meals boradly in the spirit of the event: Tennessee Eats Some More

This article is not exactly food related, unless you decide to have picnic-but it is about a place near my house and is well worth the drive if you are ever in the city during the spring.

Zemurry Gardens


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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A few items to peruse during your weekend web surfing from New Orleans

Picayune critic Brett Anderson doesn't like Meauxbar very much, but you might.

Meauxbar Review

But he's crazy for Tapas

Vega Tapas Cafe

Susan Tucker, food historian, gives a lecture at the Ogden Museum of Historical Cookbooks and Keegan Gerhard, Chef at the New Orleans Grill at the Windsor COurt, cooks at the Beard House (which should open a branch in New Orleans given that everybody here but the guy behind the grill at Waffle House has cooked there).

Assorted Food News

Can't figure out where you want to dine tonight? Here are 100 great places

100 Great Places to Eat

Marcelle Bienvenue digs onions. She cooks them, too.

Marcelle tarts it up

Sara Roahen of The Gambit Weekly likes Harbor Soul Food and she is flat crazy about their bananna pudding.

Harbor Soul Food

And Sara tees off on lunch at the Audobon Golf Course Grill

Eating at the Links

Sara also likes the cut of Guillory's Meat and Grocery Market in Metairie

You can't beat Guillory's Meat.

If they're open, I like (and so does Sara Roahan) this place for a great mexican breakfast.

Taqueria la Mexicana


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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The Sunday Magazine section has a standard series of articles about travel in New Orleans. The author does mention some interesting places, however, and the read might be worth your time if you are planning a trip.

Oddly, he spotlights the Spotted Cat. This place is a tiny hole in the wall on Frenchman that has an odd assortment of music and can be a pretty interesting place to get a cocktail and listen to a little music without paying a cover. I was there last night and there was a girl singing 30's and 40's caberet type stuff while backed up by a small band that was in a time warp set in about 1935 Berlin or Paris.

The author does get one thing however and I, of course, agree wholeheartedly with this assertion

this remains a fabulous eating town, right up there with New York and San Francisco and maybe superior to either because of the distinctive nature of the indigenous cuisine.

New York does New Orleans


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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True enough, I think. I walked out the door of my wife's family's place last night about 11 (on my way to Frenchman St., 2 blocks away) and there were 25 tourists blocking my way taking a "ghost tour" of the neighborhood. We kind of take this stuff for granted (or get annoyed by tour guides yelling in the street in the middle of the night, but the guides have improved their methods and I don't mind them so much now) but for an American city New Orleans has a rich and old history, much of it dealing with death. Our funerals here are more like celebrations really, as I think that they should be everywhere. (I mean really, everybody should have a brass band and second line dancing their way from church to graveyard-there is nothing more joyous that when the band closes out "A Closer Walk with Thee" and the drummer strikes up the first few beats of "Didn't He Ramble?" on his snare. You might not be glad your friend is dead, but you are damn sure glad to be alive!)

Certainly much of the literature coming out of here has been dark (most recently Ann Rice, but she is hardly the first to deal with the subject of the dead in New Orleans).

Everything here rots, is eaten by bugs, or otherwise falls apart in a short period of time if it is not maintained. I think that this adds to the perception that New Orleans is obsessed by death, as all things, animate and inanimate, are constantly in a state of demise. This is probably why we spend such a rediculous amount of time dedicating ourselves to having fun while we are upright-we all know that we will, soon enough, be in a big concrete box to be observed daily by tourists on holiday. Say what you want, but you don't get lonely in a New Orleans cemetary. Between the tourists and the spirits wandering around our burial grounds, there is not much time for the departed to get lonely. :wink::laugh:

Also, I think that the fact that New Orleans is primarily Catholic adds to it's obsession with death (as the acceptance of various saints as more or less living spirits lends itself to this). The whole Catholic thing is mixed up with Afro-Carib traditions involving spirits and the undead and many of these things and traditions are part of daily life for many here.

So yeah, I could go on but I basically agree with the assertion. Although I don't know if obsession is the right word, probably the situation is more like a healthy acceptance of the circle of life and an attitude of "live it while you can, because tommorrow you might be the one in the hearse". It's one of the reasons that I love the place.


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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Gutreau's Chef one of Top Ten according to Food and Wine Magazine. He joins a long list of other New Orleans chefs with the same award. Frank Brigsten won the award the first year that it was given.

Food and Wine Awards

Here is a list of neighborhood places that some of you might want to try

Neighborhood Spots around New Orleans

THis is an article about Dickie Brennan and his new Crepe Place. It is an intersting article as it covers his training in the rest. biz (aside from his family having two of the Flagships in New Orleans)

Dickie Brennan


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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New Orleans has a huge Latin American Population and we have a bunch of great places to eat that relate to those cultures. It is nice to see the Picayune running a review on one of them

La Macarena Review

Marcelle Bienvenue has an interesting article on Farmer's Markets in Acadiana. I would reccomend this to anybody thinking about making a weekend drive around in the Lafayette area. There is an interesting feta and tomato salad recipe at the end of the article.

Marcelle Goes to the Market

More from Marcelle. This time about herbs fresh from the garden

Growing and eating Herbs

Some general food News from Brett Anderson of the Picayune

Food News

Sara Roahen of Gambit reviews Clementine's Belgian Bistrot. She likes the fries.

Clementine's Belgian Bistrot


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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New Orleans is one of those towns where big shots feel comfortable because nobody really cares who they are. There were tons of people in town for The Jazz Festival, The PGA Tournament, The Basketball Playoffs, and a couple of other events last week and Chris Rose (a funny guy and New Orleans modern day version of Walter Wincell) dishes the dirt. I walked down the track at the Fairgrounds with Harry Shearer (Simpsons, Mighty Wind) and in a 1/2 mile walk not one person stopped him. No time for big cheeses when there is crawfish bread to be had.

Big Shot Dining

There is a home cook featured every Thursday in the Food Section of the Picayune. I usually don't list it because the recipes are pretty unremarkable, but today's is pretty great. I often make a similar dish and I reccomend you try it. White beans are a major part of the cuisine here (but more in Southwest La than in New Orleans-where red beans are king) and if you use good shrimp stock and decent shrimp, this will knock you out.

White Beans and Shrimp


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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Kevin Vizard, a highly underrated longtime chef in New Orleans, has a new place to shine-The New Loew's Hotel on Poydras. Brett Anderson thinks that the place has serious potential.

Cafe Adelaide

Marcelle Bienvenue covers garden fresh vegetables with a focus on Cucumbers ( I love this woman's columns. She has a seriously informed, but down home style that I really like. Plus, her recipes work!)

Marcelle cleans out her neighbor's garden.

How about some grilled desserts?

Last but not least is a very funny sign off story from long time Times Picayune Food Editor Dale Curry. She tells a very funny story about the first that she ever wrote as editor. It involves frying turkey and, in a strange twist of fate, was the inspiration for the turkey frying disaster that I described here in the "Turkey Terror of Oak St."

It turns out that two houses burned because of this article (no fault of hers, incidentally) which shows you the absolute power of good journalism. SHe retired after yesterday's column and with the recent exit of Constance Snow this will leave the Food Section open to all kinds of changes (hint, hint!) to be made by new Food Editor Judy Walker. Hopefully there will be some expansion of the section and more dependance on local writers as opposed to wire service stuff.

Burning Down the House, A Stirring Story!


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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Mayhaw Man-sorry if I'm a bit off-topic:I was wondering if you've eaten at Hawk's recently.Paid my yearly visit three weeks ago and I'm very sorry to say that there's trouble in paradise.Based on my visits to Guiding Star,R&M Boiling Point,Cajun Claws,D.I.'s Restaurant and Hawk's,I'm afraid Hawk's has fallen behind ,in both size and taste,Cajun Claws in Abbeville as well as D.I.'s in Basile.What gives?For close to fifteen years now Hawk's has ruled on my humble quest for the best in boiled crawfish.Tell me it's an aberation Mayhaw Man.Will I have to drop Hawk's from annual pilgrimage?What's afoot in Robert's Cove?Help me. :cool:

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This week's news from the Picayune and Gambit Weekly-

Local Chefs (and an expat from West Monroe) make mincemeat of the James Beard Awards-

Local James Beard Candidates

Apparently the management at the Sazerac likes California

Judy Walker, the new editor of the Picayune Food Section is off to a great start with this well done article about cooking schools in New Orleans (the kind that tourists come to and spend a few days, not the "get a job" kind)

New Orleans Cooking Schools

And conveniently here is a list of the schools:

Cooking School Directory

Marcelle likes frittatas! (with recipes)

Frittatas

Dale Curry (retiring editor of the food section) writes about wine, women, and....wine:

Women and Wine

Sara Roahen is crazy about the beef at Kim Son in Gretna:

Kim Son Review


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

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

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