It is estimated that more than 150,000 people will descend on New Orleans for Super Bowl weekend as they prepare to host the 47th championship game. If your head isn’t spinning yet, have a Hurricane that Patty O’ Brien would be proud to drink and consider this: 1.2 million people attend Mardi Gras festivities in NOLA each year—that’s three and a half times the population of the city.
With cuisine as iconic as the city itself, it is nearly impossible to mention the Big Easy without thoughts of Cajun and Creole. Not planning to party your way down Bourbon Street this Super Bowl Sunday or for Mardi Gras? “Laissez les bons temps rouler,” (that’s French-Cajun for let the good times roll) right here in San Diego at one of these local hot spots:
Get Your Beignet Fix
Creole comes to California at Union Kitchen and Tap. This Encinitas establishment is serving up New Orleans classics for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Pop in for brunch, when they are serving up hot House-made Beignets, dusted with powdered sugar and served with a side of jam for dipping. Or stop by for dinner and sample their classic gumbo recipe. Loaded with andouille sausage, chicken and green onions this dish packs all the flavor of the Louisiana staple. Check out Chef Jason Gethin talking about his Louisiana roots in this video:
Italian Twist On Cajun
Longing for the flavor of the French Quarter? Save yourself the travel expenses and make your way to San Diego’s Historic Gaslamp Quarter instead. For an Italian take on a Cajun favorite visit Toscana Café & Wine Bar and indulge in their Sausage and Pepper Penne. Grilled sausage and sautéed yellow and red bell peppers are tossed in a hearty pomodoro sauce and piled atop a bed of penne pasta.
Shrimp And Grits
For Cajun cuisine with a modern twist, check out The Duck Dive’s Bacon, Shrimp and White Cheddar Grits. Grilled shrimp and crispy strips of bacon pair up with cheesy grits in this delicious dish. A spicy tomato-chipotle butter sauce finishes this dish with a little So-Cal flair. Pecan. Bourbon. Bread Pudding. Could three words more perfectly sum up a quintessential New Orleans dessert? Smothered in caramel sauce and finished with a smooth vanilla bean gelato, The Duck Dive delivers a touchdown with their Pecan Bourbon Butterscotch Bread Pudding.
Creole With A View (And Beer)
You may not be able to look out over the bayou, but you can still enjoy Creole with a view! Grab a seat on the rooftop deck at the Pacific Beach Alehouse and make sure to get an order of the Drunken Shrimp. Made with Andouille Sausage, roasted tomato and the Alehouse’s own amber beer, this dish is the perfect West Coast homage to Louisiana cuisine.
Have a favorite place for New Orleans grub in San Diego? Do share.