June 22nd, 2010
06:44 PM ET
You can give a gal a po-boy, but it doesn't mean she'll stay in New Orleans.
On the season finale of "Treme," Davis McAlary tried to persuade Janette DeSautel to stay in the Crescent City with a day filled with the magical moments that he insisted would never happen to her in Manhattan, and which she countered were just plain moments.
The morning began with a John Boutte serenade, complete with Café du Monde beignets. The couple drove among the live oak trees, napped on the Mississippi, danced at Le Bon Temps Roule and lunched at Domilise's, where they debated the merits of a New Orleans classic.
"It would have been Uglesich's for lunch, if they were still open," Davis said, referencing a famed Garden District haunt that closed in 2005. "Or Parasol's, but I know you prefer the shrimp over the roast beef. You can't get these in New York City."
"They have sandwiches - heroes, subs," the Alabama-born chef replied. Davis, always the native New Orleanian, then made a statement that rings true for anyone claiming to be a po-boy connoisseur.
"Po-boys aren't sandwiches," Davis said. "They're a way of life."
All the characters were coming to terms with loss and new beginnings. Katrina left Albert Lambreaux and his gang struggling to finish three costumes by St. Joseph's Day. Toni Bernette had to deal with the suicide of her husband, Creighton. Annie seemed ready to ditch her cheating, drug-using boyfriend, Sonny. And LaDonna was finally burying Daymo.
Amid the sadness, there were laughs, as when Antoine Baptiste met Troy "Trombone Shorty" Andrews over hamachi at Sake Café.
"Antoine Batiste is strictly a cooked-fish eating [expletive]," Antoine said, declining the raw fish. "Hell yeah. You got roll that [expletive] in some batter and drop it in some grease before you talk to me, brah."
When his order of tempura appears, Batiste asked, "where's the hot sauce?"
Filming for season two of "Treme" begins in New Orleans in July. If you get a chance, fly to New Orleans to try some of the restaurants and dishes featured in this very tasty first season. For more food news, check out CNN’s new food blog, http://eatocracy.com.
Here are the restaurants and haunts featured in the "Treme" season finale:
Columns Hotel: Yes, it's where they filmed the turn-of-the-century prostitution flick "Pretty Baby," but it's also long been a favorite for college kids who appreciate porch-front drinking with a bowl of free happy-hour red beans and rice.
Domilise's: This nondescript Annunciation Street haunt is famed for the shrimp po-boys, made for years by Dot Domilise.
Le Bon Temps Roule: Live music is the draw at this Magazine Street club, but free oysters lure in folks too.
Parasol's: This Irish Channel po-boy restaurant and bar gets jam packed for St. Patrick's Day. But expect a wait any old time for the roast-beef po-boys.
Sake Café: This cavernous sushi restaurant on Magazine Street has a Jazz Roll and a New Orleans Roll, but it's the tempura that keeps Antoine Baptiste happy in the season finale.
Uglische's: Locals still salivate over the thought of this tiny lunch spot renowned for the shrimp "Uggie" and fried green tomatoes smothered in shrimp remoulade. It closed in 2005.
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