Sure there’s etoufee ‘n jambalaya and crayfish and other Cajun and Creole delights to enliven one’s taste buds in the Crescent City, but my appetite’s got a date with a fried oyster po’boy.
Folks say it was the Martin brothers who invented it, two streetcar drivers who opened a restaurant down about St. Claude Avenue way in the ‘20s, and that during the streetcar labor strike of ‘29, the brothers tried to come up with an affordable offerin’ for their hungry brothers that was out walkin’ the pickets.
They come up with chunks o’ roast beef, smothered in gravy, on crusty French bread and--as they’d see somebody approachin’ from the pickets--they'd call out, “Here comes another po’boy!”
Stuffin’ for the classic po’boy has evolved, with po’boy menu offerin's like smoked or hot sausage, ham ‘n cheese, and even hamburger.
While the fried seafood po’boy is the runaway pick o’ locals these days, the cheapest you gonna find around is the French fries po’boy, yes, gravy-topped fries, ordered ‘dressed’ (with mayo, pickles, tomatoes an’ shredded lettuce) and stuffed on that crusted bread they know ain’ like no other.
If you lucky, you jus’ might catch yourself sidlin’ up next to me [’bout 4 miles up from the Doubletree] as I savor the Parkway Bakery & Tavern’s fried oyster po’boy dressed to kill and goin’ down with a smile and icy-cold Heiner Brau (since the storm put 10-foot o’ water into the legendary Dixie Brewery killin’ ‘em off and, if that wasn’t enough, their 16-foot copper kettles bein' carried off by looters).