Charley G's sous chef Matt Hebert created his Pecan Encrusted Oysters as an appetizer about six years ago while working downtown at now-defunct restaurant, The Bank. "We were looking for an oyster dish, and I started playing around," he says. "I've carried it from place to place." Hebert's inspired oyster appetizer has graced the menu at CafÃ© Vermilionville, Nash's and the former CafÃ© Roux, before making its way into Charley G's appetizer selections about three months ago at the start of oyster season. Hebert's upscale version for Charley G's sells for $8 and includes Grand Isle oysters battered in pecan meal and flash fried, served on the half shell, with sweet potato frites, tomato and caper relish and finished off with cayenne pepper aioli. The texture of the crunchy coating is contrasted with the tartness of the capers and the cayenne pepper's heat, resulting in an appetizer that quickly became a hit. (It was featured in Southern Living while Hebert was working at The Bank.)
"I like upscaling classic dishes of the South ' the fusion of southwest flavors with Creole flavors," Hebert says. The 24-year-old chef has no formal training but has been cooking since the age of 14. He started off at Deano-O's Pizza, then moved to CafÃ© Vermilionville as a fry cook, The Bank as sous chef, and worked at Charley G's for the first time in 2001. From there, he went to Nash's and CafÃ© Roux, then moved back to Charley's last year when the cafÃ© closed.
Whether they're fried, en brochette, or in the shell, oysters are always in demand this time of year. According to Patrick Banks, biologist in charge of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries' oyster program, oyster season is going well. "We've seen a nice-sized harvest already," he says. "Hurricane Ivan did set us back at the beginning of the season, but it has picked back up. Things are looking good so far." The months of September, October and November produced 1.5 million pounds of meat, Banks says, about $3 million worth of oysters. That's good news for Charley G's, which plans to keep its Pecan Encrusted Oysters on the menu through the beginning of April, when oyster season comes to a close.
New York Times poll shows Obama, Jindal have identical approval and disapproval ratings in the state.
See which events are taking place during INNOV8 Lafayette this Friday, April 25.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Lisa Boudreaux come and get your goodies.
OK, so they’re bentgrass, the type used on golf course greens. But grass is grass.
Jefferson Street restaurant and pub debuts during Festival with limited menu.
The Senate Finance Committee approved the bill Wednesday, despite opponents who argued it would shut down the storefront lenders.
A measure to allow the state to implement its own, less stringent plan for limiting carbon dioxide emissions unanimously passed the Senate.
FDA to regulate e-cigarettes, Jodie Foster gets married, Vermont to require labels on genetically-modified food, and more news for today, April 24, 2014.
Thursday's Blogs from the Bog!
A push to expand Louisiana's Medicaid program as allowed under the federal health care has been overwhelmingly rejected by the Senate health committee.
See which events are taking place during INNOV8 Lafayette this Thursday.
It’s on, y’all. Fest fIND, our annual Festival International de Louisiana reader contest, is now accepting photo submissions.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Louisiana welfare recipients would be prohibited in state law from spending the federal assistance at lingerie shops, tattoo parlors, nail salons and jewelry stores, under a bill that received the support Wednesday of a House committee.
Senators will consider whether to prohibit private businesses in Louisiana from paying unequal wages to employees of different genders for the same job.
Rep. Joel Robideaux has delayed bill hearings and said unless a compromise can be reached, he won't bring up the legislation this session.
Once again, Lafayette Parish School Board President Hunter Beasley is focused on an issue that has nothing to do with the educational well-being of our public school children.
Fashion and music make great bedfellows
Producers, manufacturers, restaurants and chefs host roundtable and tasting
After exhausting his appeals all the way to the state Supreme Court, the owner of the Tiger Truck Stop in Grosse Tete has no legal remedy left save one: do an end run around the high court via a bill that would grandfather his “right” to keep a 550-pound tiger enclosed in a pin at his roadside business.
Louisiana poet Darrell Bourque has won the 2014 Louisiana Writer Award, given annually to recognize outstanding contributions to Louisiana's literary and intellectual life.
Drivers would have to secure dogs riding in truck beds while on interstate highways, if the Senate agrees to a bill backed by the House.
The easy one-piece way to style
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Don't forget: our annual Festival International contest begins Thursday! Win. Cool. Stuff.
An effort to prohibit employers from discriminating based on sexual orientation or gender identity was shelved Tuesday for the legislative session.
Louisiana won't lessen its penalties for marijuana possession, keeping laws on the books that allow people to be jailed up to 20 years for repeat offenses of having the drug in hand.
State bar foundation bestows honor on founder and managing partner of NeunerPate