The minute we put a foot on the race track that hosts JazzFest, we knew it would be a good day! And it fulfilled all its promises.
As every year, my first dish was the Gumbo (Quail, Pheasant and Andouille). I don’t know if I raised the expectations too high for that dish, but I wasn’t that impressed this time. It may just have been that my cup didn’t have enough meat, so I will try it again today to confirm. Stay tuned on that one.
My friend Joe has a tradition. His first dish is always the Fried Soft-Shell Crab Po-boy. This year, I decided to join him (that was after the Gumbo!) and was not disappointed at all! This was delicious! Very meaty, and tasty which is not common for fried food. You can judge yourself just by looking at the picture!
Quickly after that, we made our way to the grandstand, where you can find the oyster bar. That place is quite interesting: it’s the same guys shucking, sweating (a lot!), and giving you those huge oysters. Oysters here are very different from the ones I’m used to. Much more milky, less salty. It makes them perfect for baking or frying, but not necessarily really nice as such. The secret is to make a very hot sauce, with horseradish, tabasco, and tomatoes. Then, they just become truly perfect! I still prefer my traditional fines de claire from Bretagne, but those oysters are such an experience in New Orleans.
A couple of hours later, I was hungry again! It was time for crawfish! I’m sure you’ve all read my angry post at Whole Foods about their crab. Well, those guys at JazzFest know how to boil shellfish. It was cooked perfectly, peppery and salty and obviously, the crawfish themselves were meaty and fresh. That combination was the best dish of the day.
I will try many more dishes today, but I really want to give another chance to the Gumbo. I don’t know what went wrong, but that was not as good as it should have been. The rest was delicious!