New Orleans, Louisiana
It was on the In Flames, Trivium, Veil Of Maya, Kyng North American tour, where we had aday off in New Orleans. I've never had a proper food experience in NOLA, so it was time we straightened that out. On this tour, we had quite the all-star line-up as far as food-friends go for me: Joey B (Trivium's tour manager), Rob Suchan (now ex-Trivium merch) and Paolo. Amazingly, pretty much most of our band and crew wanted to hang and chow during the day, so we all headed out to our first spot, Cochon Butcher.
Cochon I believe has two restaurants: a sit-down, and a sandwich spot (sort of a deli); we wanted to hit Butcher so we could eat and drink, then repeat throughout the day in multiple locations. Everyone grabbed beers and placed their orders. The place is a very cool, contemporary take on the deli; you can see the meats curing, a chalkboard displays all their specials and regulars; sleekly modernized little renovated old-place (I assume for the last part).
I was stoked. Anytime I walk into a place that comes this highly recommended from my friends and Rob's friends alike - I know I'm in for a treat. My only bummer experience was when I was asking the girl at the register what she recommended, alongside a few other questions about the place, she very shitty-ly responded "man. You ask a lot of questions don't you?" I won't hold it against the place, since bitchiness is typically inherent before a vocational choice.Anywho, I ordered: an LA 31 Pale Ale, the Cochon Muffaletta (house made meats, provolone, olive salad; iconically New Orleans), hot boudin with pickles and mustard. The hot boudin (white sausage) was perfectly delicious, the pickles and mustard went very well with it; the muffaletta was fantastic: salted, cured meats stacked high with cheese and olives - a real treat (I unfortunately don't have the picture of this elusive and legendary NOLA staple).
All of us happy and full of some fantastic food, we next hit Napolean House for their house specialty: A Pimm's cup cocktail (a quite tasty one). We then hit Apple Barrel Bar for some Abita Ambers (New Orleans' most well-known beer brand); then hit R Bar for some more beers; then rounding off our food and drink trip-'round-New-Orleans with beignets and cafe au laits from Cafe Du Monde. A super-touristy spot, but with a nice beignet and coffee nevertheless.
For dinner, we hit a place Rob's friends recommended and would be meeting us at: Bacchanal, a food truck in the backyard of a bar. This setup is not unlike something you'd see in Austin, Texas; Christmas lights were the only source of lighting over-head, picnic tables and happy people eating and drinking greet you on your entry to the backyard.
Now, locationally and population-wise, this is sort of a paradoxical universe for my band mates: it was generally mostly populated with hipster kids, and now in come four dudes who obviously look like they don't fit in (I think I heard the vinyl of Grizzly Bear come to a screeching halt). I feel like I can fit into any environment when talking about food, but I could see steam rising off of Corey and Nick's heads.
I went for White Bordeaux, a frisee' salad, polenta, steak, then a Saint Arnold Stout. The food orders are all taken at the truck, tucked in a far part of the backyard. Once you order, the chef brings you your plate at your table. The food here was unstoppable: as great as anything you'd expect in a sit-down restaurant; the dishes humbly served on paper plates. This place makes you think of being at a friends' backyard cookout.
So we had Rob, his pals, my band mates and myself. One of the female dinner guests we had was oddly rude to Paolo (a snide remark about polenta or something), then later on with Rob (I think when they left the restaurant it involved Rob getting out of the car in traffic or something). Maybe the ladies are just extremely passionate about their food in this town? Who knows.
From here, the Trivium's parted ways with our other guests and headed to Musical Legends to meet the In Flames band and crew for a couple drinks, then we all eventually headed off to Erin Rose for way-too-many Abitas. It's always a treat to be reunited with our extended family, the In Flames band and crew.
New Orleans did us right this time around.