|Walk-On's Tuna Tini|
|Spinach and Artichoke Dip|
When the company decided to expand into Lafayette, they knew the food had to be better. After all, Lafayette is the Cajun capital of Louisiana, and they couldn't afford to open up there and have the same start they did in Baton Rouge. The Lafayette Walk-On's got a new menu. While certainly not totally different, it featured new dishes, revamped entrees, and more attention to finer details. Despite their reputation in Baton Rouge of having food more along the caliber of a Chili's, Lafayette embraced Walk-On's from the beginning. The sports bar provided at least adequate food to go with the adult beverages, and truly all accounts that I heard about the restaurant were that the food impressed. I questioned if it was the same Walk-On's. In many ways, the answer was no.
|Abitarita with Abita Strawberry|
Not only had Walk-On's always been a place that I wasn't proud of, but I nearly felt embarrassed about calling it a Baton Rouge restaurant. We're better than that. Or I'd like to think so. So how could it be doing so well in Lafayette and New Orleans? How could this restaurant that I don't care to patronize be winning awards in other cities? Of all Baton Rouge restaurants to expand out of BR and successfully integrate into our cultural neighbors, how did Walk-On's do it? What am I missing?
Truth be told, I've never been to the one in Lafayette. I've stepped foot in the New Orleans location, but that's about it. I think I drank a beer and left, not wanting to eat anything from Walk-On's in a city like New Orleans. So I don't know how to compare those locations to the Burbank and Coursey spots. However, after the revamped Lafayette and New Orleans menus, the two locations in Baton Rouge are now, as of March 2013, fully on board with the upgrades. For the first time, all four Walk-On's have the same menu, and I set out to see if it really improved.
|Duck and Andouille Gumbo|
|Cajundilla with Red Beans and Rice|
Selection of Salads at Walk-On's
|Burgers and Waffle Fries|
We capped off the evening with one of the most amazing ideas I've ever heard of in all my culinary experiences. Krispy Kreme... Bread Pudding. That's right. Krispy Kreme Doughnuts turned into a bread pudding. No, it can't be good for you. And yes, it is a little on the sweet side. Okay, a lot. But damn. Damn! It is delicious. And to me, it is nostalgic. I remember as a kid stopping at Tony's Seafood on Plank Road for boudin balls then swinging into Krispy Kreme when the Hot Now sign flashed red neon into the night sky. This. This Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding. This is something that Walk-On's could be known for. This could be a signature dish featured on traveling food TV shows. This shows the forward thinking of a national food trend that's happening with collaboration between brands, to be proud of and show off a product that paved the way. Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding. Yes, indeed.
|Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding at Walk-On's|