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Lafayette and Lake Charles

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Momma May 16, 2006 08:01 AM

We are coming to the Lafayette and Lake Charles areas for the first time. Is there a good, casual place in Lafayette for Sunday lunch? We'd like to try cajun/creole/seafood. Any recommendations for the Lake Charles area? We'll be there a few days. We won't have kids with us, so sports bar type places would be okay. We don't like chain restaurants, and would like to try "locals" places.

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  1. m
    Mikey May 16, 2006 11:28 AM

    Lafayette has all kinds of places all over the city. Generally, people rave about Prejean's and Cafe des amis in Breaux bridge.
    For Lake Charles, there are three good places whose names are now escaping me! UGH! I will say that the higher end restaurant at the Auberge du lac casino hotel is absolutely delicious. I am blown away everytime I eat there. Get the duck crepes and the lamb chops. Excellent.

    1. m
      mikey May 17, 2006 12:14 PM

      I remembered the other restaurant. It is called La Truffe sauvage. Very good.

      1. u
        underworld gourmet May 18, 2006 04:42 PM

        Calvin Trillin tells the story of going into the cajun country--he finally found a Lafayette native who was doing his medical residency in NYC, called him for advice on restaurants, and was prepared for all sorts of arcane directions like "go two miles past the old Gulf gas station, take a right at the big oak tree, then...." but instead got the advice:

        "eat anywhere". And his source hung up.

        Trillin decided to put the advice to the test and found it utterly accurate.

        I'd kind of recommend La Fete du Lafayette, on N. Johnson St., but be warned--it's buffet style and everyone I've ever seen eat there has a tendency to gorge, which at this state of life and waist I can no longer afford. Up to you. But it is excellent, and a good intro to the local cuisine.

        1. r
          Roadtrippers May 18, 2006 09:46 PM

          I would reiterate Cafe des Amis, they are a favorite Sunday lunch spot for my family. Either Don's Seafood location, Johnston St. or Vermilion St., also has very tasty traditional South Louisiana cuisine. Blue Dog Cafe on Pinhook has been a favorite with many out of town guests. They feature a buffet-style brunch on Sunday and will usually feature live entertainment. As for Lake Charles, my favorite "restaurant" is actually a bar called "Darrell's" (sp?) off of I-210 which serves outstanding Po-Boys. The "Special" is not to be missed.

          You will find other Lafayette references on the general "South" board.

          1. p
            patti May 20, 2006 02:05 PM

            In Lafayette I like Gator Cove (but I've only ever had the boiled crawfish or crabs), Dwyer's Cafe (plate lunch, or off the menu), T-Coons on Pinhook (plate lunch), Hub City Diner, Olde Tyme Grocery for po-boys, and the oft recommended Prejean's. I know it's sacrilege to mention a chain, but Zea's is purty darn good.

            Maybe you're not thinking of pizza, but Deano's Pizza is very good - get a sampler pizza that includes the Marie LeVeaux (crab meat), and Crawfish a la Deano's, and Shrimp a la Deano's), or maybe the Jacques Boudreaux (crab, crawfish, and shrimp), and be sure to get it with the seasoned olive oil instead of tomato sauce. Then there's the Cajun Executioner or the Seafood Seizure; it's all good.

            1. p
              patti May 20, 2006 03:18 PM

              In Lafayette I like Gator Cove (but I've only ever had the boiled crawfish or crabs), Dwyer's Cafe (plate lunch, or off the menu), T-Coons on Pinhook (plate lunch), Hub City Diner, Olde Tyme Grocery for po-boys, and the oft recommended Prejean's. I know it's sacrilege to mention a chain, but Zea's is purty darn good.

              Maybe you're not thinking of pizza, but Deano's Pizza is very good - get a sampler pizza that includes the Marie LeVeaux (crab meat), and Crawfish a la Deano's, and Shrimp a la Deano's), or maybe the Jacques Boudreaux (crab, crawfish, and shrimp), and be sure to get it with the seasoned olive oil instead of tomato sauce. Then there's the Cajun Executioner or the Seafood Seizure; it's all good.

              1. t
                Tom May 23, 2006 11:36 AM

                While I don't know if they are open on the weekends, I had a wonderful crawfish etouffee at T-Coons (Pinhook) last week. I also love their smothered rabbit.

                1. m
                  MB May 23, 2006 10:24 PM

                  I hesitate to let the cat out of the bag, but here goes... In Lake Charles, I would definitely not miss Mazen's (217 West College, 337-477-8207). That place is fantastic!! I was there last week and had the best soft shell crab ever. And at an unbelievable price. I am very picky about fish, and Mazen's is one of the only restaurants where I'll order fish. Fish Alladin is especially good. The following dishes are also winners: crab and avocado salad, fried asparagus, grand marnier souffle. I live in Houston, but have family in Lake Charles. I really can't think of a restaurant in Houston that tops Mazen's, and that includes some of the big names. Mazen's usually runs around $50 per person. Also, you can BYOB and they will just charge a corkage fee.

                  For pizza, you might try Tony's Pizza on Prien Lake Road. There is a great pick up place for crawfish on the corner of Country Club Road/University and Lake Street. It's called the Boiling Point or maybe Boil and Go. They have fantastic boiled crawfish. There is also a seafood restaurant recommended by a lot of locals but I can't remember the name. It's in the 2200 block of Enterprise Boulevard, I think. It used to be called Crab Palace.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: MB
                    m
                    MB May 23, 2006 10:40 PM

                    Also, check out the 5/4 edition of the Times for an article about where locals eat in Lake Charles...

                    Link: http://www.timessw.com/archive/

                  2. s
                    sweet sue May 30, 2006 12:18 AM

                    One restaurant I would not miss is Cafe Vermilionville in Lafayette. The crab cakes are divine, as is the corn and crab bisque. The white chocolate bread pudding is exquisite, too. I haven't eaten anything there that wasn't good. They even have crawfish beignets.
                    Also, for a Sunday brunch that is flavorful and casual, try Lafayette's Restaurant on Kaliste Saloom.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: sweet sue
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                      cervisiam Mar 31, 2007 06:06 PM

                      is there any hope in lake charles for a sunday night dinner? or am i destined to eat at l'auberge du lac hotel if i want a good dinner?

                      1. re: cervisiam
                        h
                        Hungry Celeste Apr 2, 2007 07:57 AM

                        L'auberge's high-end restaurant is good, but at casino restaurant prices. I thought that the Asian place (can't remember the name--Asia something or other) inside the casino had better-than-good stuff, with a little viet, a little thai, some chinese. I had a stir-fry dish with wonderful fresh greens, homemade dumplings...a refreshing change from the "kentucky-fried-chinese" that prevails in south LA.

                        1. re: Hungry Celeste
                          c
                          cervisiam Apr 4, 2007 06:18 AM

                          thanks for the recommendation--a friend is roadtripping across the country, and lake charles is his sunday night stop. unfortunately, since he's coming from el paso, he won't get into lake charles until very late. at least the casino has a 24 hour restaurant, if all else fails.

                    2. malenky Apr 2, 2007 08:20 AM

                      Prejean's is a must. If you're lucky, they will have live cajun music.

                      1. k
                        kdbroussa Apr 5, 2007 07:47 AM

                        Definitely Prejean's in Lafayette. Don't miss this one! Don's in Lafayette is also very good. You might also want to consider Mulate's in Breaux Bridge (a neighboring town to Lafayette) and Pat's in Henderson (a little drive down Interstate 10). Ask your local hotel staff for directions.

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