For starters, all I can say is “Oh, what a night!”
The Bayou Block Party at La Colombe d’Or, presented by Louisiana Culinary Trails + Texas Monthly, simply put, brought the culinary flavors of the Bayou State (Louisiana) to the Bayou City (Houston). To this event, Louisiana Culinary Trails brought twelve chefs from all across the regional expanse and Louisiana’s flavor palate with tastes of Cajun, Creole, and Gulf Coast cuisine.
The chefs and their culinary creations reflected the diversity of Louisiana’s culinary heritage, see below):
The trouble giving an event like this proper coverage is you can’t show everything – it was all that good. But, one thing I can definitely say is that I didn’t taste anything that didn’t please my taste buds, and I mean REALLY PLEASE. The flavors melded, evolved, and re-evolved. They entered through my mouth traveled down to my stomach, and then seemed to percolate then traveling through my entire body to the ends of fingers and toes. I guess that this description may sound a bit silly. I will describe a few of my experiences the best I can so that we both might be motivated to travel the actual Louisiana Culinary Trails and taste for ourselves what they have to offer.
Click here to check out Louisiana’s Culinary Trails.
First up, nearly immediately after entering the event, was Chef Robert Autin of Lafayette featuring his Cured Cochon de Lait and Rice. The French may have named it, but Louisiana chefs have perfected the technique of curing and pit roasting a pig with delicious results. Chef Autin’s preparation was complete with big thick hunks of pork – tender, juicy and flavorful. Not only was the resulting taste out of this world, but the aroma was intoxicatingly good.
After walking through the meander of the event on the 10th Floor of the Tower at Hotel La Colombe D’Or, I found another delight, Chef Jim Urdiales of Baton Rouge and what he called his Lousiana-Mexican mash-up, his Grilled Shrimp and Cauliflower Mash with a splendid helping of avocado. Sorry for not showing Chef Jim in the flesh, but his simple yet inviting presentation lured me back for seconds and, I can’t seem to recall, but perhaps one more.
I’ll give you one more fave on my evening’s “hit list”. It was by Chef Robert Vasquez of Lousiana Northshore; his Jumbo Lump Crab Souffle with Aged Smoked Gouda and Verde Pesto. That’s both a mouthful to say and a mouthful to taste. Petite round souffles into and on which crab meat, gouda cheese, and green pesto played to create tantalizing “palatary” excitement.
But wait, I can’t leave this blog without showing you one of my videos from the event. It features Chef Meg Bickford from Commanders Palace in New Orleans explaining her Cyrstal Mash Smoked Speckled Trout and Louisiana Blue Crab with Celeriac-Chicory Slaw, Creole Cream Cheese Pearls, Ramos Gin Fizz Vinaigrette, Cajun Cavier, and Mint Oil served in a Blue Crab Shell! Click here to play the Youtube video. It is not to be missed. Can eating get any better than this? See you on the trails… Louisiana Culinary Trails, that is. Plan your trip now!