We had supper one night at Jacques-Imo’s – it was a wonderful experience! The restaurant was started by Jack Leonardi who grew up in upstate NY but fell in love with New Orleans when he was stationed there with the Coast Guard. He got started at K-Paul’s and eventually opened his own place. From 1995-2004, Austin Leslie worked there (see here for Austin’s famous fried chicken recipe).
Jacques-Imo’s doesn’t take reservations, so we came a little earlier than we usually would and were lucky enough to get a table right away.
When you come in, the dining rooms are situated past the kitchen, so you walk right through the kitchen (on the left). We were seated in the first dining room. It is really neat because all the tables are covered in different oilcloth designs, and it’s just a big eclectic mishmash of decorations:
Av started with the gumbo, which he liked, and I had the seafood cheesecake. The first time I ever had seafood cheesecake was at Dick & Jenny’s (that post here) and it was delish.
I had “Godzilla Meets Fried Green Tomatoes” – which is a fried soft-shell crab on top of three or so fried green tomatoes. Look how they make the crab look like a happy little monster!
Well that was just amazingly good. The soft shell crabs are in season right now (so get them when you see them on a menu – this hasn’t been a ‘good year’ for them in terms of supply) and of course the fried green tomatoes were perfect.
We didn’t have dessert, but had a lovely (and very entertaining) time chatting briefly with Jack who is a real character – like…the crazy uncle you wish you had. Later on, Jack turned the radio up, came back into the dining room, and we all sang a couple of songs together! Here he is outside when we were leaving – you just have to love him!