Oh how I love the Nablopomo theme for January. It makes my life so much easier to think of something to blog about.
As I mentioned we spent the week between Christmas and New Year's in New Orleans. While we were there, I had the privilege and the honor to wrap my lips around the best bbq EVER. As all of you meat eaters out there know - grilling and smoking is a ruthless and competitive -dare I say- sport.
St. Louis is my home base and my old stomping ground, spent a lot of time in KC, MO eating their bbq, visited Memphis frequently and indulged in bbq there too and now I live in Texas. So to say that New Orleans has the best bbq - I think is an educated statement. Although I understand that before I die, I must have authentic South Carolina bbq (for their mustard based sauce ... and boy, do I love me some mustard! I do declare!)
Ok, enough small talk.
Voodoo BBQ on St. Charles Street.
We found this place totally by chance. We had just left the Audubon Zoo (a must see in New Orleans) as we were driving to the general vicinity of our condo, B said, "point out anything that looks good." So I just said, "There!" (pointing to Voodoo) because I was hungry and wanted to stop. There was no line and almost no waiting for our food. Also a New Orleans first. But again, that was probably by chance.
And I will tell you something else: this stuff is so good that we stuffed ourselves full of it at 3pm, then went back at 8pm for more! We ate at many top notch restaurants while we were in New Orleans (and by the grace of God I only gained a half a pound - He is merciful) this is the only place we went to twice.
We both ordered a Graveyard Platter. This is a good way to try a sampling of several menu items. You get two 2 meats and 2 sides - each. If you go with a few people, I bet you could try everything on the menu! But as it were, B and I went with the kids who shared chicken strips (kids, you can't take them anywhere without someone asking for a chicken strip).
Slow Smoked Brisket: smoked for 18 hours and hand carved to order. This stuff melts in your mouth.
Slow smoked Pulled Pork: again with the melting in your mouth! I am not a huge fan of pulled pork but this was hands down the most amazing I have ever had.
Cajun smoked Sausage: highly recommended by the delightful waitress and I am happy to report that she was totally right. It is delicious and so worth the calories of eating sausage!
Caribbean Jerk Chicken: I admit, they were a little heavy on the jerk sauce - however, I was still able to taste the smoky flavor from the bbq - still a victory for Voodoo.
Rattlesnake Beans: good, had a little bite to them but not "knock your socks off" good. I give them a B+
Corn Pudding: I swear - this was like a dessert all dressed up for dinner.
Cole Slaw: I am so picky about cole slaw. When it is good it is great - but there is such a delicate balance of milky texture and vinegar-y flavor with the crunch of fresh, cold cabbage combined with the fact that every customer on earth has a different idea of how good cole slaw should taste. I always order this under the most critical intentions. But oh my stars, their cole slaw rocked my taste buds!
Potato Salad: sounds simple, right? "Oh, and I guess I'll order a side of potato salad, whatever." No no no! If you only get one side - get this one! It is creamy and garlicky and for all I know they put crack in it. I couldn't eat enough of it!
So yeah, they cast a spell over me. I almost can't wait to go back to New Orleans for the bbq alone!
Point of interest: one block over from Voodoo is a daiquiri place. They make a MEAN daiquiri. Really.
If you make it to my neck of the woods and you are looking for some slow smoked meat, check out Rudy's. There are several locations in Texas, a couple in New Mexico and one lonely location in Oklahoma.
Tell me about your favorite bbq. Is it in your hometown? Your current town? Or somewhere you traveled to?