I recently spent a week on the Louisiana Gulf Coast. I had a great time with old friends at a reunion and I spent an extra few days with my parents. As is our custom, we spent some time visiting local attractions like the Global Wildlife Center in Folsom (my son's favorite) and this time we did a swamp tour with Cajun Encounters. Captain Mike entertained us with history, folklore, and tricks with wild gators.
We have some favorite restaurants that we like to visit whenever we come down. If we are going through North St. Tammany Parish, we will try to pass through Mandeville and stop at It's Another Beautiful Day. If we are still there in the evening, we may stop in Covington and eat gourmet Chinese food at Trey Yuen. We also try to eat at Copeland's if we are in New Orleans or another city with one. This time, we managed to visit all three restaurants (but not in the same day). Copeland's, unfortunately, was not up to par. The server was dedicated to her table--well, one of them--but it wasn't our table. While the Bayou Broccoli was as delicious as ever, the recipe for Ricochet Catfish had been tampered with--they cut back on meuniere sauce and added onion strings instead. I can't imagine that the onion strings cost less than the sauce, but I can tell you with certainty that they distract from the flavor. Cutting back on sauce was a big mistake. The meuniere sauce is the whole reason for the dish. The crab and corn bisque was delicious as usual and I finished my meal off with a fantastic bananas foster.
We tried a few new restaurants. Crawfish Paradise introduced me to the crawfish burger.
We also visited Steve's Marina where I had another dish with meuniere sauce and our very attentive server even brought me extra. I think Copeland's is officially bumped.
Captain Al's steak and shrimp has a flavorful decor to match a flavorful steak. The homemade salad dressings are a super bonus. (Cpt Al, get a web page so I can link to it.)
We also ate at the Times Grill, but I could not bring myself to attempt the 1.5 lb wall of fame burger. As for all the other burgers, I don't think you can go wrong with anything on the menu.
Another fine trip with great friends, great food, and great times with family.