Driving a piece makes the food taste better and we’re always on the hunt for a skilled deep fry man. Invariably the best are chain smokers who take breaks from tobacco to get a little work done in the kitchen of their employer.
We found one in 2014 way out on Chef Menteur Highway, past Little Vietnam and before you get to the Rigolets. We barely caught a glimpse of him but he looked the part: rough and tumble, time worn, tattoos, cigarette behind his ear. Our people.
Known locally as The Yellow Store, Hi Tide Bar and Grill uses hot fat to good effect putting out grease-less fried seafood platters, fried chicken and the best onion rings we’ve found in New Orleans.So we grew excited when we noted their sign at the big Plaquemines Parish Seafood Festival held last weekend on the West Bank of New Orleans.
“Crab Cake Po Boys” is the sort of thing that leads our heart aflutter when we’re rambling through a festival on the hunt.
We should’ve stopped right there.
Hi Tide’s crab cake po boy poses numerous challenges to the eater. The cakes are served at near-room-temperature which reduces their appeal substantially. The best crab cakes are bound with a whisper or a prayer-not copious amounts of bread crumbs. These cakes are big but the low-grade, canned crab meat is stringy and not delicious. We’d happily trade quantity for quality. Give us half the portion size, used good, fresh Louisiana crab and we’ll be boon companions with our sandwich.
We love Hi Tide and will not let their poor crab cake showing disqualify them from future visits. We love sitting on the deck out back on the bayou watching the gators float by while we eat fried seafood platters. And we love that if a fight breaks out in the restaurant there’s a fry cook who looks like he can give at least as good as he gets in the scrap.
It’s all part of the equation when you live in the 9th Ward of New Orleans.
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20824 Chef Menteur Hwy
New Orleans Louisiana 70129
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