Before our foray for crawfish, we spent the better part of our day in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana – a charming small town in the heart of Cajun country where the street signs are still in French and the place where Scott Boswell gets his boudin for the wonderful "Beaux Bridge Benedict" he serves at his Jackson Square restaurant, Stanley. That place, a small grocery called Charlie-T's, makes their boudin artisanally daily in two varieties – pork and seafood. We bought some along with some Cajun spiced cracklins' and sat outside to sample them.The seafood boudin is good, but the pork is amazing. Even more amazing were the cracklin's – crisp, flavorful, nuggets of wonderful pork.
We arrived in Breaux Bridge on a beautiful spring day in time to have lunch at their most well known restaurant, the lovely Cafe Des Amis, owned by the former Louisiana state legislator, Dickie Breaux. The restaurant is well known for its Cajun cooking and crawfish, in particular is everywhere on the menu, as it should be given that Breaux Bridge is the home of the Breaux Bridge Crawfish Festival coming up in the beginning of May. Needless to say, we ordered a bunch of different dishes to try.
Some of the standouts included the duck and andouille gumbo, which came with sides of deviled mashed potatoes and rice to add to the gumbo, fried catfish with shrimp and crawfish etouffees, BBQ shrimp Pont Breaux Style, fried green tomatoes with crabmeat imperial sauce, crawfish cornbread with crawfish etouffee, crabmeat stuffed mushrooms and shrimp kidder. Desserts really stood out as well, especially the white chocolate bread pudding and gateau sirop, a Cajun cane sugar syrup cake with pecans.
The food was excellent, but even more fun was chatting with Dickie
Breaux and another prominant local, Roy Therriot, who founded a number
of technology companies in Breaux Bridge as far back as 1973. They gave
us a wonderful sense of what makes Breaux Bridge a very special place.
Roy also brought us to his favorite place for cracklin's, Goula's Grocery, a small store on the outskirts of town. While there, we enjoyed a Cajun French serenade from a local songstress, a fitting cap to a wonderful afternoon.