Despite the fact that it’s held in June – which, according to local standards, is a month with no “R” in it and therefore not good for oysters – New Orleans Oyster Festival rocks! I enjoyed attending because it doesn’t have the crowds that popular New Orleans festivals attract.
This particular festival was born out of tragedy in 2010. The BP Oil spill alienated Louisiana’s seafood industry – and still does – due to (in my opinion) consumer ignorance.
Using the same strength that helped this area come back from Katrina, the Louisiana Seafood Board and the Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries along with a slew of local supporters decided in June of 2010 to show that the Oyster industry was down but not out.
As the following photographs will show, there were plenty of oysters to be enjoyed, prepared in a variety of recipes. My only regret is that the local chefs haven’t come up with a good, cold oyster dish aside from shucked oysters.
We arrived at 11 A.M. knowing that the heat was going to continue to rise. The organizers of this festival did very well in providing a number of shady spots for diners and festival goers to get away from the heartless sun. Every table in the tents had linen table cloths and free fans to keep the festival goers cool.
Our first stop was one that got my attention: Redfish Grill’s Oyster Shooter with Grey Goose. Yum!!!
Here I am trying to take a picture of my oyster shooter. It was delightful, by the way.
Our next stop was the most visible sites of the fest: Drago’s with their charbroiled oysters.
Hungry for yet more oysters, we headed over to Luke for the Oyster Poboy with smoked tomato relish.
It did not disappoint us. In fact, there was a slice of bacon in the sandwich which we knew came from hogs raised on the northshore….yum, fresh pork!
By this time the Treme Brass Band had taken the stage and got the crowd into their fantastic New Orleans music.
By now we were ready for more oyster dishes, so we headed for the Court of Two Sisters Booth for both Oyster Pie and Crawfish Louise.
Our next choice of food was our mistake of the day.
The oyster shucking contest was next and was fun to watch, chiefly because Joe Cahn was the MC.
What follows next is a series of pictures of people I found “interesting”.
Later we ran into a friend that gave us access to the Acme Oyster House VIP area to watch the Bucktown Allstars. We found this group of derelicts interesting:
Eventually the NOPD ran them off
Our day didn’t go without catching a few local “celebrities”>
Monica Pierre, local radio host and award winning woman.
By this time it was 3 pm and we were as fried as the oysters, so we decided to head home. All three of us are sunburned in one way or another, but it was fun. We’re looking forward to next week’s Vieux To Do featuring three festivals in one.