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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Dock & Dine: Bite and Booze does Orange Beach Brunch at Fisher's Dockside

Fisher's Upstairs
Fisher's Upstairs
Fisher's Upstairs
Fisher's Upstairs

There are plenty of places to get great Gulf seafood in the resort destination of Gulf Shore and Orange Beach, but Fisher's is stepping things up a notch. Their downstairs oyster bar is great for families, large groups, and anyone looking to have a few good bites and a good time. Fisher's Upstairs is a completely different feel. It's fine dining, but Chef Bill Briand says you should feel just as comfortable in shorts and flip flops as you feel in a button up and tie. The attention to detail in the atmosphere is absolutely impeccable and I can't wait to experience a dinner upstairs. It will happen for sure, but for now I'll settle for brunch at the dock. I know, life is hard.

A couple of $3 mimosas, a bushwhacker, and some delectable dishes from Chef Bill and I was set for the trip back home on a Sunday afternoon. We started out with a tour of the upstairs restaurant and then he treated us to some excellent Gulf smoked tuna dip and deliciously fried crab claws.

The fried crab claws and smoked tuna dip at Fisher's Brunch
The fried crab claws and smoked tuna dip at Fisher's Brunch

Creamy, crispy, and fresh all at the same time... that's what to love about a friend oyster. Gulf oysters are one of my favorite things to eat. While I typically favor them raw, when they are masterfully fried it is hard to go wrong. The Fried Oysters Benedict featured some of the succulent fried oysters with wilted spinach, poached eggs, and hollandaise. This sort of brunch dish can set any Sunday morning right!

Fried Gulf Oysters Benedict
Fried Gulf Oysters Benedict

Grits and grillades are a hearty Southern brunch favorite. The pan fried veal covered in a thick gravy over creamy grits is an automatic score in my book any day. The gravy really may have been the star of this dish. As great as the grits and veal were, the rustic brown goodness tied it all together.

Grits and Grillades
Grits and Grillades

Fisher's smoked brisket hash brings another comfort dish to the table which can do no wrong. Served in a cast-iron skillet, the brisket is smoked in house then cooked down with some peppers, onions, and home potatoes before getting topped off with sunny side up eggs. This dish is like a hug for your hungover soul.

Smoked Brisket Hash
Smoked Brisket Hash

Fisher's makes me happy to eat bread pudding again. Okay, I'm usually pretty happy to eat bread pudding. But in Louisiana you can barely go out to eat without seeing it on a dessert menu. While bread pudding typically boasts delicious sweetness, it rarely presents something new and refreshing. But not here. Fisher's bread pudding is light and creamy. The toasted coconut brightens the entire dish. You will definitely want to save room for this on your trip!

Toasted Coconut Bread Pudding
Toasted Coconut Bread Pudding

Fisher's at Orange Beach Marina on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Distiller's "Whiskey Deconstructed" Part 2 - The Distillation: Whisk(e)y Wednesday presented by Lock & Key

Last week I shared with you part one of Distiller's 'whiskeygraphics' called Whiskey Deconstructed which featured the ever-important mash. This week we take a look at step two: distillation. The distillation is of course what makes a whiskey different from a beer. Okay, well, that and hops. But still, after fermentation of the malt, whiskey is distilled. However, not all distillation is equal. This 'whiskeygraphic' shows off the two types of stills used to make whiskey, pot and column stills, and then details the rest of the process from there.

While these whikseygraphics are great for a visual representation of whiskey making process, nothing compares to actually tasting different whisk(e)ys and enjoying the unique products themselves. Head on over to the Lock & Key Whiskey Bar if you're in Baton Rouge and enjoy a whiskey flight, flight school or Women & Whiskey for yourself!

whiskey deconstructed

Monday, September 15, 2014

Don't Tempt Me with a Good Time: Louisiana Brewers Bash


The modern Louisiana craft beer scene got its start in 1986 with the Abita Brewing Company. Last year the Louisiana Brewers Guild, comprised of the owners and brewers of Louisiana's breweries, along with craft beer enthusiasts, got state legislators to approve the first Louisiana Craft Brewers Week. This September there will be a plethora of LCBW events across the South celebrating local brew, but perhaps the event with the biggest bang for your buck is the Louisiana Brewers Bash at The Irish House on St. Charles in New Orleans on September 24th.

This is the only event during LCBW where all nine breweries distributed in south Louisiana will be under one roof (the only Louisiana breweries that are unable to attend are Great Raft and Red River Brewing in Shreveport, LA, because they aren't commercially distributed in New Orleans). Tickets to the event are $45 and that covers beer-inspired Irish pub fare by Chef Matt Murphy, pours of eighteen different beers, and the opportunity to mix and mingle with other beer enthusiasts as well as some of the owners and brewers themselves! You can buy your tickets at brewersbash.eventbrite.com.

We've asked the breweries to supply a flagship, seasonal, or new release beer in addition to a one off specialty brew. This event will completely over take The Irish House and beers will be flowing both upstairs and downstairs throughout the night. This is the craft beer event you cannot miss! Here are the beers we have confirmed so far:






Friday, September 12, 2014

Day's Smokehouse: Your One Stop Shop on the way to a Boudin Food Coma

A look inside Day's Smokehouse in Denham Springs, Louisiana
A look inside Day's Smokehouse in Denham Springs, Louisiana


Owner Kendall Day and I at Day's Smokehouse in Denham Springs
Owner Kendall Day and I at Day's Smokehouse in Denham Springs
In July, team Bite and Booze was invited to visit Gulf Shores/Orange Beach, Alabama. While we were aboard the Wild Hearts Dolphin Cruise we met a couple of nice folks from Denham Springs! It always amazes me how small this world can be. As it turns out, Kendall and Monica Day own a little place called Day's Smokehouse. We immediately hit it off talking about all things Bite and Booze, barbecue sauce, and smoked meats. After our trip on the water, Kendall gave me a pack of their boudin and invited me to stop by if I ever got the chance. While in the area running some Jay D's Louisiana Barbecue Sauce over to the Oakpoint Fresh Market in Watson, I stopped in to have lunch at Day's. 

Day's has everything you could ask for in a Cajun grocer/smokehouse. Their freezers are stocked with everything from garfish balls, rabbit, and quail to stuffed jalapeños, bell peppers, and boudin balls. They also sell USDA choice cuts of meat and do deer processing for their customers. They start early over at Day's Smokehouse (6am on weekdays) and stay open through the drive home. Here's some of the fresh food that they're serving up:

Barbecue ribs, one of my all-time favorite foods in the world, washed down with a tennis-sized boudin ball and a side of their twice baked mashed potatoes sounds like one heck of a lunch...but wait, there's more!

Ribs, Boudin Ball, and Twice Baked Mashed Potatoes
Ribs, Boudin Ball, and Twice Baked Mashed Potatoes

Barbecue Smoked Chicken Wing
Barbecue Smoked Chicken Wing






The smoked chicken wings at Day's pack flavor to the bone. I definitely demolished the succulent wings they served up. Some things are done a little differently at Day's, and I like it.











Deer Burrito
Deer Burrito







Not only do they prepare and pack bacon wrapped jalapeños and other goodies for you, but they also sell and prepare their own deer burritos. It's unique, gamey, and delightful.


Like Blair said that day, "I'm eating so much boudin right now, but I'm not mad about it." This plate was full of Day's smoked boudin, another humongous boudin ball (this one was filled with cream cheese and jalapeños), and a large helping of hog head cheese. I'll definitely be heading back to Day's when I'm in the area. Most people were grabbing lunch to go while we were there but there's a nice little table to sit at inside if you want to stay and feel like part of the family!

Smoked Boudin, Cream Cheese & Jalapeño Stuffed Boudin Ball, and Hog Head Cheese
Smoked Boudin, Cream Cheese & Jalapeño Stuffed Boudin Ball, and Hog Head Cheese

Day's Smokehouse & Specialty Meats on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Distiller's "Whiskey Deconstructed" Part 1 - The Mash: Whisk(e)y Wednesday presented by Lock & Key

In the spirit of National Bourbon month, Distiller has put together a 3-part whiskeygraphic series called "Whiskey Deconstructed,” showing the entire process of making whiskey—what ingredients are used, how they’re combined and altered, and the various steps that lend to the final product and affect each taste profile.

Graphic #1 details the mash process beginning with grain selection. This is obviously a step of ultimate importance in the whiskey process as styles such as Bourbon and single malt Scotch are defined at least partially by the mash bill. Don't know what I'm talking about? Check out the image below and learn something about whiskey! And of course, if you want to learn even more about whiskey, attend a Women in Whiskey or Flight School event at the Lock & Key Whiskey Bar in Baton Rouge!


The United Way's Jambalaya Jam Jams on October 9th!