Friday, May 14, 2010

My po' boy adventure

I went to Parkway Bakery and Tavern.  I didn't see any loaves of bread for sale but I did see the bar and I did get a sandwich.  It's an old shop in Mid-City, easy enough to find if you know where it is.  I had passed it once before and it was mentioned in the Times-Picayune the other day and I was hungry so there was no time like today since it's not Tuesday.  Parkway is closed on Tuesdays.
The shop opens at 11:00 so I killed some time touring.  No surprise there.  I headed up Marconi Drive (presumably named after Guglielmo Marconi) alongside City Park and hit the shore of Lake Pontchartrain.  I haven't seen an ocean since I left Dorchester two weeks ago.  Let me tell you, Lake Pontchartrain is so big it looks like an ocean except for the causeway.  No one has yet built a bridge over the Atlantic.  The causeway stretches to the horizon and disappears.  You can't see the other end.  It's that long.

I travelled along Lakeshore Parkway (presumably named for its location) and there wasn't much traffic.  The Little Ninja hasn't had a chance to really rev in the past week so I pulled on the throttle and leaned into the gentle curves, cruising along the straightaways.  The motorcycle and I enjoyed the ride so much that we did it twice.  Then it was time for lunch.

For those who don't know, and I didn't on my first visit to New Orleans years ago, a po' boy is a sandwich.  They are for sale everywhere usually advertised with the adjective "overstuffed."  It's a submarine sandwich, or, where I come from, a grinder.  Some people will tell you the submarine sandwich was invented in New London, Conn. by an Italian immigrant inspired by the naval base across the Thames River, but that's a story for another day.  They are called grinders in New London though so I don't know how much I believe this legend.

As a fan of Royal Roast Beef in East Boston, I ordered the hot roast beef with gravy po' boy, regular size (as opposed to large) with lettuce tomato and pickles on rye.  Every picture I've seen of a po' boy has the sandwich served on french bread but I prefer rye to white flour.  I also had an iced tea.    Po' boy: $6.65.  Iced tea: $1.85.  The roast beef po' boy is the first listed on the menu so I figure Parkway stands by it.

It was a big, juicy sandwich.  It was so big I could only finish half.  Unlike the roast beef sandwiches you find around Boston (or at Arby's for that matter), the meat was more shredded than sliced.  It was thick and there was plenty of it.  It was messy but not overly so.  I did use a fork to finish up the meal.

It came wrapped in butcher's paper and I rewrapped what was left over and put it in my satchel for later.  It was so juicy that after driving from Toulouse Street to Napoleon Avenue, the sandwich had bled through the paper.  Now the inside of my satchel smells like roast beef.  The copy of the newspaper I was saving for later is soaked through two sections.  The corner of the foam bag that holds my laptop is moist.  Most distressing of all, the cap that I carry for when I'm not wearing my helmet is damp and smells like savory meat.  As I walked down Magazine Street with my cap shading my eyes, dogs looked at me hungrily, straining at their leashes to follow me.

Oh well.  It will make a nice dinner.

4 comments:

Anita said...

I have to admit I laughed. Oh, well. Now you have your very own my first po' boy story.

By the way, when you travel out of New Orleans, Louisiana becomes a southern bible belt red state kind of place. I sometimes think the only people more suspect there than yankees are New Orleanians.

Whalehead King said...

Great. I've got a double whammy against me. Thanks for the tip

Michael said...

We were over by the Museum (and the Parkway Bakery) -- on a Tuesday (when the museum was also closed). Oh well, the sculpture garden had just re-opened (and was free). And the grilled shrim po boys at Mandinas, just down the way, were quite good. (My wife and I split a half loaf) ;~}

Whalehead King said...

I mean to visit the Art Museum this week. I guess it won't be on Tuesday. Thanks.

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