Thursday, November 24, 2011

I Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans

Having said good-bye to Merlot Boy and Margarita this morning, it was now Boo's and my final night in the Big Easy. And our plan was to not worry so much about the "big," but to look to and accentuate the "easy."

Kelly, our Southern Belle of a hostess at the Royal Barracks Guest House, paid a final visit with Sugah and graciously helped us finish off what little wine and Grey Goose we hadn't succeeded in polishing off - either on our own or with MB and Marg. The girl has some capital "S" stories to tell and she gave us a tour of the guest rooms that we hadn't seen since each of them has a different decor and theme.

It won't be a hard sell for us to stay at Royal Barracks again should we be lucky enough to make it back to New Orleans again.

As mentioned, Boo and I were taking it easy on the evening's activities and we decided to try Coop's, one of the local haunts, since both Kelly and our Aussie pair highly recommended it. Its popularity certainly didn't come into question. There was healthy line-up to get in and the waitress seem to be in endless demand. The little shot of food porn was to document the most delicious jambalaya we'd run across on our journey. You can also see that we passed on the wine tonight - as the choice was pretty slim and we didn't really need a full bottle - but the photo accidentally shows a Guest Alcohol that we should grace on these pages.

There were more than a couple bottles and pints of beer quaffed back during the trip. After all, we were less than a block away from Bourbon Street where beer is just another word for breakfast, but we were travelling with Aussies as well. I needn't say more about that correlation to beer. I think that in almost all the circumstances where a beer was in order, it was inevitably an Abita - a local, small batch, craft brewer. The brewery offered up a comprehensive array of beers and ales that seemed to be readily available all around town - the choice was expansive enough that you were generally best served by trying to match a brew to your meal, same as you do with wine.

I don't know if Abita ever makes it across the border into BC but I'd definitely keep an eye open for it.

There was only one other stop we had to make time for and that was to take in a bit of old time N'Awlins jazz. It wasn't the old Preservation Hall but the Maison Bourbon Jazz Club is a stalwart of its own. Bourbon Street, itself, is more known for loud rock & roll, strip clubs and hi-jinx than jazz nowadays, but Maison Bourbon is a bit of throwback to music clubs of yore.

It's not going to be everyone's cup of tea (Boo's?) but it's a definitive face of what I think of when I remember New Orleans. Everyone should take in at least one set. But that set spelled the end of our stay.

God willing and the creek don't rise, we'll make it back for a little more Southern decadence and hospitality. Until that happens, I'll take a riff on an old jazz classic and continue to know what it means to miss New Orleans.

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