After our fabulous bayou tour with Cajun Encounters we were very glad that we had 9:30 dinner reservations at Toups Meatery.
Not that it would be unusual for us to eat that late, but after a day in the fresh air we were starving. And we picked the right place to go hungry. Obviously the menu is meat centric and we were salivating at the thought of MEAT!
As we entered the restaurant we commented on the casual and rustic atmosphere with wood paneling on the walls and wood topped tables. It felt like what I picture a hunting lodge would look like. Toups Meatery is a contemporary Cajun restaurant where Chef Isaac Toups presents fabulous food inspired by deep-rooted Louisiana family traditions. As stated on the website “When you eat with the Toups family, it’s an experience. They’ve been in Louisiana for over 300 years, so they’ve developed an incredible relationship with the food and the land. Inspired by these deep-rooted Louisiana family traditions, Isaac and Amanda opened Toups’ Meatery restaurant in the Spring of 2012 to share that unique eating experience with the food-loving people of New Orleans.” Isaac Toups is part of the new guard of Cajun chefs and has become well known for his updated sophisticated approach to a cuisine that’s well known for intense rustic flavors. Since opening Toups’ Meatery with his wife Amanda in 2012, Chef Isaac Toups counts among his accolades being a three time James Beard Best Chef of the South nominee where he’s been both a Semi-finalist and finalist.
We started off our meal by sharing a fabulous salad of arugula and red cabbage. I loved the crunch of the cabbage with the tenderness of the arugula. A really great flavor combination that was a really good harbinger for what would follow.
For our entrées Steve chose the Raines Farm Wagyu Beef served atop Cheese Curd Fondue with Roasted Corn and Chimichurri and I selected the Venison which came with Caramelized Onion Barley, Horseradish Creme Fraîche and Seasonal Jam. All I can say is that I had to beg and plead for even a tiny forkful of Steve’s beef and I was even less happy to share my venison! Our meals were so good that we wanted to lick our plates clean. Truthfully when no one was looking we sort of did.
We finished off our meal with a great big slice of Doberge Cake. What a treat that was. The many layers of sponge cake were filled and frosted with salted caramel, peanut butter, bacon and a hint of cayenne. That cayenne was what made this dessert so special and interesting. I could feel the tingle of peppery heat on the roof of my mouth and the back of my throat. The cayenne and the saltiness of the bacon and salted caramel really helped offset the sweetness making it the perfect finish to an amazing meal.