Monday, March 31, 2008

Restaurant Review - Jockamo's New Orleans Kitchen, 3042 W.Sand Lake Rd, Orlando, FL

Jockamo's Crawfish BoilThis weekend we headed to Jockamo's New Orleans Kitchen, at the corner of Sand Lake Road and John Young Parkway, because Grandpa wanted to try their crawfish boil. Jockamo's holds a crawfish boil every other Saturday starting in January and running until the season ends. They start selling the crawfish in one or two pouLive crawfishnd servings starting at 11 am and then keep going until they are all gone. We went on Saturday around 12:30 pm and by 2 pm, they had completely sold through the 500 lbs. of crawfish they started with. The crawfish come in straight from Louisiana so one day they are swimming around the muddy waters and the next day they are sitting in a vat of boiling water and spices at Jockamo's. Not good for them but great for you if you like the spicy little (and some were not little) mud bugs.

Grandpa decided to get the one pound serving for $6.29. It was an extremely generous portion and he declared the crawfish sweet and spicy at the same time. There is also a twBoiled crawfisho pound serving which comes with potatoes, corn, onions and garlic for $12.49. A couple near us got it and I can't imagine not sharing since it is such a huge portion. The crawfish boil happens outside the strip mall in the parking lot in front of the restaurant. The rest of us went inside to find other items on the menu for us to eat. Due to the crawfish boil, the restaurant was pretty crowded and there were a few empty tables that had not been cleaned up yet. We sat down at one and did our best to clean it until a table runner came and started to wipe it down for us. Then, with Grandpa picking through his crawfish, the rest of us got into line to order at the counter.

Jockamo's definitely has a N'awlins menu with Po' Boys, Muffulettas, gumbo, jambalaya, and fried everything else on the menu board (even gator). For dessert, there are beignets and bread pudding, with chickory coffee to drink. The Kid's "Little Jester" menu has fried Baskets (choice of fried chicken tenders, shrimp, catfish, grouper, Kid's Fried Shrimp Basketor crawfish tails served with fries) or Po' Boys (choice of ham & cheese, fried shrimp, chicken, catfish, or crawfish plus one side), all for $4.49 which includes a drink and a beignet for dessert. BB choose the shrimp basket and said he was okay with the fries, which was strange because he usually doesn't like fries. LB was very undecided but finally went with the frieKids Chicken Po' Boyd chicken tender Po' Boy, with nothing on it. His side dish choices were fries, rice & gravy, chips, beans & rice, or buttered rice. I knew he would go for buttered rice as soon as he heard it and he did - he loves anything with butter. I was stuck with not knowing what to get. I love muffulettas -- a special deli meat and olive salad sandwich -- and I also love Po' Boys sandwiches. Po' Boys won out this time and I ordered the original Hot Roast Beef & Gravy, fully dressed for $7.59. At Jockamo's fully dressed means with mayo, shredded cabbage and pickles on it. It also came with a side and I chose the red beans & rice. Grandma wasn't very hungry so she went for dessert getting an order of three beignets for $2.82 and a chickory coffee for $1.39.

Not long afterwards, the table runner called our name and placed our food on the table. The fried shrimp and fried chicken tenders had a light batter on them and were very good. BB ate all but one of his shrimp and then, as expected, decided he didn't want the fries after all. Grandpa Beignets!obligingly finished them off for him by dipping them in the remoulade sauce available at the condiment counter. LB ended up eating half of his buttered rice and then plucked the chicken tenders off of the bun they were on and ate them plain. I have no idea why he decided he wanted the chicken sandwich instead of the chicken basket because he did not eat any of his bread. He did a good job though and was ready for dessert. LB then happily ate his beignet, a square, puffy, fried doughnut topped with a very generous amount of powdered sugar, and proceeded to cover everything in his immediate vicinity in the white sugar. BB claimed he was full and couldn't eat the beignet so he said I could have it. What a good boy!

My Roast Beef Po' Boy was a huge sandwich, loaded with slices of roast beef, ladles of beef gravy, Roast Beef Po' Boy, fully dressedand topped with the cabbage, pickles and mayo. Definitely messy to eat but very good. The taste really took me back to the time I visited New Orleans for Spring Break in college. We had just gone to the local market and asked for a roast beef po' boy, fully dressed, at a counter in the back. This sandwich had the same exact taste. The mayo and the gravy mix together and the cabbage and pickles add the tanginess and crunch. I couldn't even eat the whole thing and had to bring half the sandwich home. I tried the red beans & rice but the taste, after eating the roast beef gravy, just didn't go together well. I realized I should have gone with my gut and gotten the fried pickles. Next time, I certainly will.

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