As a city, New Orleans understands that tourism is its bread and butter, or perhaps its gumbo and jazz, where business is concerned. Great food and music are paramount among NOLA's many attractions.
This week, some folks from the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corp. are on a swing through Texas with a chef, a jazz trumpet great, and a Mardi Gras Indian, inviting the neighbors over for a visit. The Follow Your NOLA food truck will be parked in a lot at the corner of Congress and Seventh on Friday, May 9, from 10am-5pm.
They had planned to be Downtown today but the much-needed rain foiled those plans, so they dropped by the Austin Chronicle offices with some food samples. The Downtown workers' loss was certainly our gain. Brian Landry, executive chef of the John Besh seafood restaurant, Borgne, knows his way around some seafood, chere. Not surprising, since before joining the Besh group, he did a stint at the iconic Galatoire's in the French Quarter and also worked for the Louisiana Seafood Board. His Louisiana white shrimp with sugar snap peas, sweet corn, and orecchiette pasta is wonderful – a tasty and attractive bowl of spring. Not sure exactly what he'll be serving Downtown, but I'm betting it will be good.
Great food is only one aspect of NOLA tourism, though, and the truck will be providing a sample of some of the other attractions, as well. There will be a live performance by trumpet great "B.I.G. Al" Huntley of the Hot 8 Brass Band and spirit dances and chanting by Mardi Gras Indian chef Donald Claude of the Blackfoot Hunters, representing NOLA heritage and culture.
The truck's 8-foot compass in the shape of NOLA's fleur-de-lis symbol will greet guests in Downtown Austin. They'll be encouraged to spin it for prizes and giveaways that include food, cookbooks, passes to NOLA attractions, NOLA restaurant gift cards, cooking classes, and four very impressive travel packages. If the compass lands on Flavor and "cooking demonstration" is the prize, chef Landry will whip up an open-faced fried oyster and pork belly BLT. Sounds like there could be some flavor there.
Follow Your NOLA Food truck appearance
Friday, May 9, 10am-4pm
103 E. Seventh (parking lot)
Copyright © 2017 Austin Chronicle Corporation. All rights reserved.