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Feb 21, 2008 03:26 PM

Marcela's Cookery (SEA)

Anyone tried this new cajun/creole place at 106 James St.?

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  1. Went to Marcela's for dinner tonight. We were the only folks in the place, but had a good meal. For starter, we had fried crawfish tails, served with a cocktail sauce and a remoulade. I also had a cup of the shrimp file gumbo, which wasn't quite as flavorful as I might have expected, but still tasty. For entree, I had butterflied shrimp served with a crabmeat stuffing that was excellent. The pecan pie was also quite good. Marcela's has a really nice atmosphere, with exposed brick and murals on the walls, and the owner was friendly and chatty (he's a recent New Orleans transplant who moved to Seattle just 6 months ago). Overall I'd definitely recommend giving the place a try!

    2 Replies
    1. re: TravelHound

      I tried Marcela's last night, and was quite pleased overall. We tried several appetizers. The crab stuffing in the stuffed mushrooms and prawns was quite good, and the crab cakes were thin but adeptly spiced, with a very nice remoulade. Shrimp Antoine (known in New Orleans as "BBQ Shrimp") was nice too, with the copious molten butter luxurious fodder for bread. My companion formerly lived in New Orleans, and we enjoyed sharing stories with the owner/waiter. Given our experience there, he warned us against ordering the etoufee, which he admitted was not right yet. He gave us a sample of this and we agreed, appreciating his honesty. I would say the same for the jambalaya; the texture of the rice was overly squishy-maybe it was the wrong type? Beans and rice were much better. Pecan pie was excellent, and the chef was rightly proud of it. I appreciate the efforts Marcela's is making to improve on what is already quite authentic and well-executed new orleanian food, a welcome addition to the scene.

      1. re: equinoise

        I liked it for lunch. Didn't note any squishiness problem w/ jambalaya. Only a few tables occupied when I went.

    2. Has anyone been to Marcela's in the past few weeks? How are they doing at lunch?

      4 Replies
      1. re: kkbriggs

        I was there on Thurs. I had a tasty shrimp po'boy and my friend had the muffuletta which he thoroughly enjoyed. There were only a couple other diners. I think he'll need to drop the prices to do much of a lunch rush.

        1. re: kkbriggs

          I went for lunch yesterday with two friends. Muffuletta and hot sausage po'boys were great; red beans & rice was very good; gumbo was flat out inedible - very little flavor except file which overwhelmed any other possible flavor. I don't think there was a grain of salt in it. We didn't have time for dessert.

          Prices were okay, but it wasn't very busy (only one other table while we were there) and I think they'd do better with lower prices at least for lunch. I probably won't rush back, but the food was very good and the service was very friendly.

          1. re: kkbriggs

            Had the gumbo and shrimp po-boy for lunch; B minus. I prefer my gumbo a little more thick, less watery with sausage and plenty of seafood; bonus points if there's a crab leg sticking out of the cup, anyways the gumbo here was uneventful, room temp, and could use some inspiration - creole seasonings, something. A good gumbo, for me, makes me break a sweat. The bread used for the po-boy was a good choice, light and from a local baker. Although the ingredients were there, my expectation for a po-boy, is one stuffed with shrimp. More shrimp, less bread. It's a po-boy, afterall, stuff it with cheap shrimp, it's fried, no need to make it gourmet, the sprinkled garnish around the plate adds no value, this is sandwich you eat with chips, and a little cajun seasoning to the fry batter wouldn't hurt either...this place has the right intention, just needs to work on better execution, staying middle ground to please the masses doesn't work for a speciality, it's cajun style - got to add the seasonings, and lots of it.

            1. re: mistermeech

              I felt the same disappointment. Almost as if a "specialty" chili parlor dished up Hormel out a can, homogenized for the mass-market.