ANNOUNCING: Change is part of life, and apparently, it's part of blogging, too. As of September 5, 2013, I'm merging The Virtual Goody Plate with Disco Mom Takes on the World and whatever else may henceforth spill from my fingertips (and kitchen), into one great new blog. I hope you'll join me there in exclaiming, "THIS IS AWESOMELAND."

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Bayou Bakery

The other day my 9-month-old and I had a free morning (what?!) so we headed off to a place I've heard about from two different people in the last week: Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar and Eatery. I'm so sad to not be a professional restaurant critic. Don't seem to have the writing skillz. But I like to pretend, you know - considering the menu carefully, soaking in the ambiance, sneak-taking pictures for the little blog.

Bayou is a New Orleans style eatery, featuring a variety of hot drinks, southern pastries and treats, pressed sandwiches on French bread, soups, salads, and daily specials.

The Place: Cement floors, large ceiling fans, enameled tin and stacks of Steen's Cane Syrup for decor. Some tin awnings and plank shutters along the upper walls. New Orleans sounding ambient jazz. Poppy really loved the fans, the tabletops, and the Mason jar pendant lamps. Each table had a napkin holder, a shaker of salt, and a bottle of Crystal Hot Sauce instead of pepper. After placing my order, the guy handed me a laminated card and said, "Orleans is your parish."

"Excuse me?"

"Orleans is your parish. They'll call it when your order's up."

Cute. My card said "Orleans" and that's how I knew my order instead of a number. No question of theme.

The Food: I ordered a sausage and egg biscuit, beignets and hot chocolate even though it wasn't on the chalkboard. You'd be amazed how many coffee houses forget to make great hot chocolate. It's rather a peeve of mine. But Bayou passed the test. Perfect score, really. Their chocolate was fantastic and my only complaint was the cup too small, or the price too high - 8 ounces for $3? C'mon.At the counter was a display with "Porkorn" for sale - bags of popcorn made with caramel, Benton's bacon, cayenne and Virginia peanuts. Something to try next time. Also a sign said the sweet special of the day was Chocolate Pudding with whipped cream and bacon peanut brittle. Still waiting to see something I don't like.
My food was wonderful. The biscuit was tall, buttery and not too crumbly. The beignets probably perfect though I have no prior reference. Perfectly fried squares of dough - practically identical to scones I got on campus at BYU - blanketed in just enough powdered sugar to sweeten them up. But careful! Poppy and I both had the misfortune of inhaling at the wrong time and choking on sugar dust. She didn't want any beignet after that, but I recovered quickly and tucked back in.
As we ate, I perused the lunch/dinner menu and was sorry we were there before 11. I suspect that although my spread was lovely, the best of Bayou comes out later. Bayou chopped salad with mustard vinaigrette, Creole Pilgrim sandwich (shaved blackened turkey, arugula, smoked gouda, dijonaise), Heavenly Hash (chocolate fudge, marshmallows, roasted pecans), Creole Cream Cheese (with pepper jelly and petit buttermilk biscuits), and chilled gulf shrimp (with green onion remoulade) are just a sampling. Mmm.

There are a few recipes on their website, and as an icing on the cake, as it were, a cookbook - DamGoodSweet: Desserts to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth, New Orleans Style by David Guas, Bayou's pastry chef. (Folks from New Orleans or that went to school in Louisiana get 10% off the cover price in the store.)

I think I'll be going back to Bayou Bakery, Coffee House and Eatery. The hot chocolate alone could beckon me in, but the promise of treats untried, daily specials, fairly easy parking, and good shopping down the street practically guarantee it.

*Bayou Bakery is located at 1515 N. Courthouse Road, kitty corner from the AMC theater parking lot.

P.S. It's my birthday.


ARLENE said...

Happy belated Birthday. I wish I could visit BB. I'm going to peruse their recipes. I adore biscuits and beignets and agree that a lunchtime visit is in order.

Lindsay said...

That looks so fun! And oh man -- beignets! I fell in love with them in college when I ate at the Cafe du Monde in New Orleans during a visit to my roommate's home in Mississippi. I need to learn how to make those because they are divine.

Lindsay said...


Heather M. said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! You should have called me when you went!! Maybe I take you to lunch there, a late bday celebration?? :)

Anonymous said...

Happy birthday! Glad you could reward yourself for your hard work on the blog.

Lara said...

Happy birthday! Thanks for the restaurant critique; I'm going to plan a trip there ASAP! :)

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