What a difference a corner can make. If you’re in New Orleans and you decide to have a meal on the corner of St. Peter’s and Jackson Square in the French Quarter you may or may not be happy. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a corner restaurant to have lunch in, where there’s little chance of disappointment, you may want to stop at the corner of St. Ann’s and North Tonti in the Treme neighborhood.
The French Quarter option is The Corner Oyster Bar and my grandson and I had supper there recently. I debated between boiled crawdads or shrimp and went for the shrimp. Cyrus picked chicken wings. While he was satisfied with the wings I could tell that they probably came from a freezer. Being within spittin’ distance of the Gulf I was pretty sure the shrimp would be perfect. What I was delivered, however, was a half pound of dead cold shrimp still bearing their heads (not a problem) and veins (problem). Furthermore, they had been boiled so long the flesh had become tough and stringy. The only good thing I can say is their cocktail sauce was great.
Next day while on a driving tour of the city I took Cyrus to a place I knew of in Treme, Willie Mae’s Scotch House. It’s a simple nondescript white frame building wherein is found what is possibly the best fried chicken in the world. $10 will get you a 3-piece chicken plate with a side of red beans and rice. I don’t know their secrets but the end result will make you wish your grandmother had been Willie Mae.
I was there in 2012 and was blown away by the quality and hope to never go to NOLA without a visit to Willie Mae’s. Just be prepared to wait in line a while.