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I love New Orleans and it seems to come up a fair amount here on MidtownLunch.com. My wife and I were married there, I’ve written about it a few times, and 3 of our Profiled: Midtown Lunch’ers mentioned it as a place they’d rather be (Liz, Elizabeth and Nick). But for some reason, it didn’t sink in- until recently- that Two Boots was part Cajun. That’s right. The NY pizza chain with the strange decor and the weird, slightly overpriced slices of pie is actually half Italian, half Cajun… hence “Two Boots” (Italy & Louisiana).
Now, I’m sure some of you “smart” “observant” people, who don’t walk around with your “head up your ass” might be saying to yourself- “Gee Zach… what are you an idiot?” And to that I say, “Yes. Yes I am.” Alright, so I’m not that quick. I’ve gotten pizza from many of the various Two Boots locations around the city, and in all that time I never really noticed the Po’Boys or Jambalaya on the menu painted on the wall… just the pizzas in the glass case.
I’m not sure who clued me into the whole “Two Boots” thing, or the fact that they have things other than pizza… but as someone who is constantly on the lookout for quality New Orleans style food, I figured it was time to give the non pizza boot a try.
What I ordered, a run down of the pizzas and the +/- after the jump…
I remember when my wife was deciding where to go to Law School. She had been accepted into a few different schools, and it was between Tulane and some other places. I can’t remember the other ones, because the choice seemed pretty clear to me- go to New Orleans. I remember saying “When are you going to have another opportunity to go, and live somewhere as cool as New Orleans for three years of your life”. The truth is, I had no idea what I was talking about. I had never been there, and didn’t really know anything about the place… but as luck would have it, I ended up being right.
We both ended up falling in love with the city, and got married there when she graduated in May of last year. I’d like to say it was the rich culture and history of the city, the awesome music, the great people, or the beautiful scenery that made us want to get married there. But everyone who knows us, knows the truth… it was the food. I visited as often as I could, and when I did, we ate our way across the amazing city like there was no tomorrow.
Raw oysters and boiled crawfish at Harbor Seafood (in Kenner) , The Roast Duck Po’Boy at Crabby Jack’s, Fried Chicken at Dunbar’s (the greatest fried chicken I’ve ever eaten), Raw Oysters at Casamento’s, the unbelievable Bread Pudding Souffle at Commander’s Palace (that you have to order at the beginning of the meal), Beignets at Cafe Du Monde, Coffee at Rue de la Course, a muffallatta at the Central Grocery, Chocolate Pecan Pie at Camellia Grill, great meals at Dick & Jenny’s, Clancy’s, Upperline, Lilette, Emeril’s, Bayona, and the awesome Valentine’s Day Dinner 2003 at Jacques-Imo’s.
I mention that one last because when we moved to NYC, we were incredibly excited to hear that there was a Jacques-Imo’s on the Upper West Side. And while the restaurant isn’t owned by Jacques (according to the website they “licensed the concept”), they serve his famous fried chicken. The food is not terrible, but it’s more like a frat boy sports bar then anything that resembles the culinary destination that is the real Jacques-Imo’s. Despite being disappointed by the dinner at the UWS restaurant, we still decided to try Jacques-Imo’s To Geaux (get it?) in the Grand Central Terminal Food Court. We figured, how hard can it be to make fried chicken and a decent po’boy? (Especially when you don’t have to worry about losing points because of the decor…)
What we got, pictures, and the +/- after the jump…