Culinary Showcase serves big bites of fun, entertainment

Next Wednesday (Aug. 21), several of the Houma-Thibodaux area’s finest restaurants will serve some of their best dishes at the Louisiana Restaurant Association (LRA) Bayou Chapter’s 7th Annual Bayou Culinary Showcase at Cypress Columns, 157 Tourist Drive in Gray. 

“In Louisiana, good food is a way of life, and we’re fortunate to live in an area that is populated with so many authentic and tasty restaurants,” reads a statement by the LRA. “We are grateful to continue this tradition of showcasing the best of the Bayou with our 7th annual family-friendly culinary showcase.”

After the doors open for the event at 5:30 p.m., guests will be able to sample an impressive array of foods from participating LRA food establishments that include Malt ‘N Burger, Flanagan’s, DTB, The Ground Pat’i, Cinclare Southern Bistro, Dominique’s Wine Boutique & Bistro, Alumni Grill, Big Mike’s BBQ Smokehouse and Golden Dragon, among others. 

In addition to feasting on the delicious foods, attendees will also witness live cooking demonstrations by Chef Marshall Welsh of Chef John Folse Culinary Institute, students from the local Lafourche Parish Career Center ProStart Program and Chef Logan Boudreaux of Cinclare.

Boudreaux will prepare a fried soft-shell crab with an orange vermouth sauce and a soft herb salad for his demonstration.

“It’s a little take on something familiar from down here, which is fried soft-shell crab — which tends to be a lot of people’s favorite seafood around here…,” he said. “The sauce and the herb salad are definitely a take on classic French cuisine, with a little spin on our usual seafood option of choice.”

Guests will also have the option to bid on dinner for four at Restaurant R’evolution in New Orleans and/or an airboat tour with dinner for two at Spahr’s Seafood in Des Allemands, among other big-ticket items, during the live auction at the Showcase. 

The band Jazmine will provide the live music for the evening. 

Not only is the Showcase an exciting event but it also raises money for the LRA Education Foundation (LRAEF). “…The LRAEF, in turn, will use monies raised to further promote the restaurant industry as a career choice through its restaurant management and culinary arts program, ProStart®, offered at 55 high schools statewide, and three in the Bayou area,” the LRA continued. “It will also enhance the restaurant community through expanded educational and career opportunities, including culinary and hospitality scholarships.”

The public event has VIP tables of 10 (wine included) for $500 and advance general admission tickets for $25 per person available to purchase at Tickets at the door are $35 per person. 

“This is such an awesome chapter of the Showcase with the Louisiana Restaurant Association…It hosts the school, from which I graduated, which is the Chef John Folse Culinary Institute {at Nicholls],” said Boudreaux on the importance of the Bayou Culinary Showcase. “… Also, there are a lot of restaurants in this Bayou Chapter that don’t get the spotlight, as much as they should. So, this is a huge chance for them to showcase exactly what they do.”