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Friday Night in the French Quarter: Deanie's Seafood

This entry is part of a series, New Orleans Scene»

CrawBaby

With the conference well and truly done, and a long road trip home planned for early the next morning, it was high time we all went out and let it all hang out. (Well, not Everything, of course.) We’d been spending some time in the Quarter, of course; you can’t be THAT close and not. However, there’s nothing quite like Bourbon Street and environs on a Friday night. ANY Friday night. And with mild, dry weather and two big conferences closing down in the Big Easy, we fully expected to see things our momma warned us about lots of interesting sights.

First, though, we had to tank up on sustenance. Deanie’s Seafood sounded just about right for that…

Deanie’s is just off Bourbon Street, on Iberville Street, and surprisingly not that easy to find if you don’t already know where it is. We went past the turnoff a couple of times, actually. Not to worry; we were gawking like first-time tourists fresh off the farm enjoying the stroll and the early-evening street acts on Bourbon. That’s the polite way of saying we weren’t quite hungry enough yet. Once we saw the sign up Iberville, we turned right as smartly as a Mardi Gras Marching Club and made our way up the half-block to the inviting portal at Deanie’s.

The place was nearly full, even given the early hour; it wasn’t yet 7 P.M. The bar seating was completely taken up, with several groups standing nearby and fortifying for the evening ahead. We were considered a large group (eleven diners), so we had to take a number and wait in line. The wait wasn’t that long, though, and they found a couple of nice tables for us. One larger, long one for the “kiddies” and a next-door table, square and out of the way, for the “adults.”

It was a good thing we came when we did, too! The place got to really rollicking within minutes of our seating, with a big line out the door and groups of over 20 celebrants scattered about the large dining room. The wait staff was beginning to be Really Challenged. Apparently a standing situation on Friday nights at Deanie’s, and with good reason (as we found out).

Big Crab

The small throng we brought with us began to order food and drink right away. Crawfish, crab claws, soups and salads were the initial offerings, with plenty of refreshments. I had a big mug of Abita Dark, and others had Turbo Dogs and the like. The kiddies (all underage) had to settle for more appropriate bracers.

After that small order was squared away it was time to get down to serious business. Dr. T had the Stuffed Flounder while I had a big ol’ Top Sirloin Steak. The new grad students visiting with us ordered Crawfish Etouffee, a bowl each; which appeared excessive once they were brought out, but the hungry youngsters made out all right in the end.

The undergrads tried out several interesting dishes. An order of the Soft-Shell Crab Dinner, with crabs at least as big as pictured above. Stuffed Shrimp, Stuffed Crab, the Crawfish Quartet, and several dishes I never found out the names of. The tables groaned under the load, and since we were worried about a safety incident should one of them collapse on somebody, we set to work to lighten their strain. It worked, after a fashion, although we had to slow down quite a bit after the initial rush. We soon learned that eating dinner at Deanie’s is a marathon and not a sprint. Which was fine, once we adjusted our pace. To our surprise, most of the dishes got down to the sauce-licking stage by the end, and nobody had to have a doggie box. It was clear that the group was not well-fortified for the night’s festivities.

As we paid the bill and collected up front to be sure we hadn’t lost somebody (under a table, for instance), we all declared Deanie’s to be a great choice for seafood in the Quarter. Stop by if you’re in the area, we think you’ll be pleased. Even if it isn’t Friday night…

Deanie's Seafood on Urbanspoon

Deanie’s Seafood Restaurant, 841 Iberville St., New Orleans, LA 70112 Phone (504) 581-1316 Open seven days a week, Sunday-Thursday 11 A.M. – 10 P.M., Friday and Saturday 11 A.M. – 11 P.M. Plenty of garage parking nearby; sorry, no reservations…

Enjoy the (Big Easy Fish) Heat!

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