Taste the wonders of Louisiana
Southern food restaurants are opening up across the UK & Ireland, serving classic dishes and it’s easy to see why this style of comfort food is so popular.
Ask any visitor what they like the best about Louisiana, and they will say either “the food and the music” or vice versa. Louisiana is famous for iconic dishes like gumbo and jambalaya and this culinary State is now inviting visitors to explore the local food across each region. Read on to discover regional specialities, local distilleries and freshly cooked local produce.
Visitors will find a wonderful mixture of history from the French, African and Caribbean cultures which is reflected in its renowned spicy cuisines.
New Orleans – the birthplace of Creole Cuisine
For mouth-watering food, a vibrant atmosphere and beautiful balcony lined streets, visitors to Louisiana should make a start in New Orleans. Iconic restaurants blend with cutting edge chefs serving a new spin on Southern classics.
A must try is the traditional submarine sandwich called po-boy usually containing fried oysters, fried shrimp or roast beef, served in New Orleans style French bread.
New Orleans reputation for diverse and exciting culinary offerings is enriched with cocktails. The first cocktail was made in New Orleans and there are a variety of exceptional cocktails visitors can sample such as the traditional Sazerac to a modern-day muddle cocktail; the Hurricane. The cocktail bar, Cure on Freret Street has put New Orleans on the map for cocktail lovers.
Baton Rouge -Louisiana’s Culinary Capital
Louisiana’s capital city is home to an eclectic mix of cosmopolitan flavours and Cajun cooking. From boiled, broiled, blackened and fried, visitors can try food, especially local fresh seafood, prepared countless ways at one of the many restaurants the city has to offer!
A food truck many visitors enjoy is the Chicken Shack Express, where the Delpit family, who have been serving some of the best fried chicken in Baton Rouge for more than 75 years, have now taken it to the streets. Their traditional fried chicken is served with southern style vegetables or signature shack balls (boudin balls) lightly coated in batter.
Lafayette – Tastiest Town in the South
Cajun food rules in Lafayette, the heart of Cajun Country, with local family owned joints, high-end dining and just about everything in-between. Cajun food in Lafayette is all about crawfish which are easy to catch in this part of Louisiana with its swamps, ponds and ditches.
The traditional crawfish boil is an all-time favourite with boiled crawfish, potatoes, onions and corn. Visitors will also find famous Louisiana styled dishes such as gumbo, bisque, étouffée and jambalaya with crawfish in this part of the state. Gumbo, Louisiana’s best known indigenous dish, is a hearty, stew-like soup. Louisiana gumbos are built around shellfish, chicken or pork sausage.
Less than an hour away from Lafayette, the famous Tabasco sauce is produced on Avery Island.
Lake Charles – Craft breweries and Boudin
When in Lake Charles visitors must try Boudin, a finger food similar to sausage containing varying quantities of pork, liver, rice, onions, parsley, black pepper and garlic powder. Many recipes have been passed down through families and are closely guarded secrets.
Lake Charles is also home to local craft breweries. RikenJaks Brewing Company has made a comeback in the area after first debuting in the 1990s. Crying Eagle Brewing Co. has recently completed construction and is offering free tours. It features indoor and outdoor stages, outdoor beer garden and three new craft brews on tap.
Natchitoches – Meat pies Heaven
The oldest settlement in Louisiana and the original French Colony, Natchitoches is a city on many visitors’ bucket lists. The historic city is famous for its meat pies – try them in the Lasyone’s Meat Pie Restaurant, a family owned restaurant renowned for its creole meat and crawfish pies.
Shreveport Bossier – Texan and Louisiana flavours
In Shreveport Bossier visitors can enjoy a variety of casinos, museums, camping, fishing and many outdoor activities. As Shreveport Bossier is verging on the Texas border, visitors can experience the blend of Texan and Louisianan flavours.
As well as the traditional Louisiana cuisine with a mixture of Creole and Cajun dishes visitors can enjoy the legendary pit barbecue culture of Texas in Shreveport Bossier. Try it at Dickey’s Barbecue Pit.
** Try it in London!
Po-Boy – Hank’s Po-boy
Sazerac and Hurricane cocktails – NOLA
Catfish and Prawn Jambalaya – The Blues Kitchen
A great way to eat your way across the state is Louisiana Culinary Trails. It includes eight road trips focusing on food in different regions of the state.
For more information on Louisiana please visit www.louisianatravel.com. For updates on Louisiana please follow Louisiana Travel on Facebook www.facebook.com/LouisianaTravel or on Twitter @louisianatravel.