by Max Brantley
... to miss New Orleans?
Sometimes, there's nothing for it but to get in the car, drive 7 hours and get an oyster po boy. This one is from Deanie's in Metairie (or Bucktown, the fishing community on the lake). Close to perfect. Side note: The amuse bouche (freebie appetizer) at Deanie's is a bowl of new potatoes hot from the pot of highly seasoned crawfish and crab boiling liquid. They provide some packets of butter to oil them up a bit. Inspired.
More stops follow:
There was the Morning Call, once, with Cafe DuMonde, one of the mainstays of the French Quarter. It relocated to Metairie years ago, but took its old fixtures — mirrors, wood paneling and other adornments. It still delivers the same good cafe au lait — milk and coffee poured together from massive kettles — and beignets. Servers must be required to have that distinctive New Orleans accent that I love so much because they all did. When I was a kid, three beignets were a dime and coffee was a dime. Now each is $1.85. Still a good deal.
We had lunch at Parkway Bakery and Tavern, a Mid City stalwart for maybe 75 years. It's worth a trip for the collection of signs and political memorabilia of years gone by. Lots of stuff from the Pontchartrain Beach amuseument park, for example.
The roast beef po boy with gravy is a masterpiece. With Barq's and Zaps chips, naturally.