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CRAWFISH TYME

It’s Lent again, and poor Catholics must be dreading their sacrifice of not eating meat, except seafood, on Fridays. It means they’re going to have to go to Olde Tyme Grocery at the end of each week and order up all the fried shrimp and oyster poboys. If that wasn’t penance enough, now Olde Tyme has introduced a fried crawfish poboy special to the mix. It’s got all the elements that make Olde Tyme poboys so insufferable: the chewy bread, gobs of mayo and ketchup and perfectly battered and fried seafood. Whole crawfish poboys sell for $8.95, only through Lent, a small price to pay for a religious experience. Call 235-8165 to order ahead, a good idea during the lunch stampede. — Nathan Stubbs

SOUP FOR YOU

When we say crawfish bisque here in Louisiana, it means a deep brown roux based soup, filled with crawfish tails and stuffed heads. So when a bowl of creamy corn and crawfish soup under the aegis “bisque” was served to diners, confusion ensued. Adding to the enigma, bisque, in French cooking lingo, does mean a creamy soup, so outsiders to the Cajun cooking nomenclature protested when they got a bowl of the brown stuff. Poor Boy’s Riverside Inn decided to settle the matter by dubbing its corn and crawfish dish with the generic title “soup.” Needless to say this bowl of hot liquid is neither generic nor broth; it’s a rich, spoon coating bowl of sweet corn soup chock-a-block with crawfish tails. Corn and crawfish soup comes as a cup, $6.95, a small bowl, $9.25, and a large bowl, $11.95. Both bowls come with a green salad. Call 837-4011 or check out the menu on Riverside’s Web site, www.poorboysriversideinn.com. — Mary Tutwiler

CIAO DOWN

Can’t get enough crawfish now that the season, albeit slowly, has begun? While boiled crawfish are still tee-tiny and très cher, Charley G’s has come up with a crawfish dish that is delish and a great deal. Homemade tender ravioli stuffed with four cheeses — ricotta, mozzarella, provolone and parmesan — are topped with a calvados-laced cream sauce binding together slices of shiitake mushrooms and our local crawdad tails. While it’s listed on the appetizer menu, it’s a big rich dish, and accompanied by one of Charley G’s hearty salads would make a great meal and fall into the moderation category, my new mantra since the excess of Mardi Gras. Another treat, this time on the wine-by-the-glass list, is the King’s Estate Pinot Noir. Pinot Noir is a wonderful food wine; much lighter than the big cabs and zins, it won’t fill you up too much to enjoy your dinner. The King’s Estate is full of bright red fruit notes, especially fresh cherry, with just enough of an earthy undercurrent to give it some gravitas. Crawfish ravioli will set you back $12; call 981-0108 or go to the Web site at charleygs.com. — MT

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