The French Quarter is like the world’s coolest uncle. Weathered by the rolling of countless good times, smelling faintly of exotic tobacco and hard spirits, it takes you places you shouldn’t be; places that it would flabbergast your mother to know you’ve not only visited, but immensely enjoyed, and that you never knew existed until you arrived there. And if the Quarter is the coolest of your father’s brothers, then Bourbon Street is the geographical equivalent of that last piece of Easter candy that you preserve for as long as possible, hungering to devour it utterly, but resigning instead to enjoy it in covert, tiny bites that savor its gifts. This has been my New Orleans experience. And after multiple visits at various times of year including Mardi Gras, like the song says, every time I go away, I take a piece of it with me.
The smoky heat of blackened alligator tail. The fried, powdered sugar-piled pastry called the beignet. The happy hours that begins at noon and last past sunset. If these were all that existed of bon temps to be had, they would be enough to keep me coming back to the Quarter. But there’s so much more to enjoy, particular for those who enjoy good food rooted in the blending of many cultures, French, African, and Creole cuisine being not the least of these. This Fall, New Orleans will celebrate its colorful history, and will do so in the manner that has become its custom; through the enjoyment of delicious food and music so cool, it’s hot.
The 2010 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival will return to New Orleans, Louisiana October 16-17, 2010. Participating vendors and restaurants will include:
Ba Mien Vietnamese Restaurant
Boswell’s Jamaican Grill
La Divina Gelateria
The Joint BBQ
Loretta’s Authentic Pralines
Lucy’s Retired Surfer Bar
The Praline Connection
Vaucresson’s Sausage Company
Now in its fifth year, the Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival was established in 2006 by the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and Foundation. Musicians hailing from Louisiana and Mississippi are scheduled to perform, and as with so many New Orleans festivals, visitors to this event (at which attendance is free) can look forward to enjoying a multitude of food and visual arts. Scheduled musical performers includeTaj Mahal, Mem Shannon, Little Freddie King, Ruthie Foster, Grandpa Elliot, and Otis Taylor with Don Vappie, among other talented artists.
The fun will take place 10:30am – 8:15pm on Saturday 10/16, and 9:30am – 7:00pm on Sunday 10/17 in Lafayette Square Park. For more details about this festival, visit http://www.jazzandheritage.org/blues-fest/.