Bring the colors, sounds and flavors of Louisiana into your own home with these perfect pairings!
Steel Magnolias & Natchitoches Meat Pies
Natchitoches’ two biggest claims to fame might just be the 1989 drama Steel Magnolias and its delectable meat pies. The Oscar-nominated film is based on a screenplay written by local playwright Robert Harling, and tells the touching story of a group of women (played by Julia Roberts, Sally Fields and Dolly Parton, among others) who form a bond in a small Southern town. Natchitoches (pronounced Nack-a-TISH) was the primary filming location, and the house where most of it was filmed is currently run as a bed-and-breakfast.
Three blocks away from the Steel Magnolias Bed & Breakfast is Lasyone’s, a downtown Natchitoches institution renowned for its meat pies. Meat pies, made with beef, pork, peppers and herbs, honor the region’s Spanish and American Indian legacies. Make your own with this recipe, courtesy of Louisiana Cookin’.
King Creole & Shrimp Creole
King Creole is a classic Hollywood film starring Elvis Presley, made at the height of Elvis-mania in 1958. The movie, in which Danny (played by Presley) winds up as a singer at a nightclub and becomes involved with gangsters and an unsavory crime boss, was a critical and commercial hit, and many scenes prominently featured New Orleans’ French Quarter.
Keep the Creole vibe going with a bowl of shrimp Creole, one of the classics of south Louisiana cooking. The dish is a thick stew made with shrimp (preferably from the Louisiana Gulf coast), a roux of oil and flour, vegetables and herbs, served over rice. Oak Alley Plantation Restaurant & Inn serves up some of the best dishes of shrimp Creole on River Road, and you can find a recipe for shrimp Creole here.
JFK & Pimm’s Cup Cocktail
Oliver Stone’s 1991 blockbuster film JFK was a beautifully shot, if controversial, cinematic masterpiece. Controversial, because it told an alternate history of the Kennedy assassination. A masterpiece, as indicated by the Best Cinematography Oscar it won. Napoleon House was one of many New Orleans locations where scenes were shot. And for good reason: The bar and restaurant is one of the most picturesque, historical locations in New Orleans’ French Quarter. Napoleon House’s history is movie-worthy itself — its former inhabitant, New Orleans mayor Nicholas Girod, offered Napoleon Bonaparte his home in 1821 as a refuge from his exile. Though Napoleon never took up Girod on his offer, the name is a nod to his legacy.
Napoleon House’s most famous cocktail is its Pimm’s Cup. The London-born drink is synonymous with the restaurant, so much in fact that restaurant owner Ralph Brennan claims that more Pimm’s Cups are served here than anywhere else in the world. You can recreate your own Napoleon House Pimm’s Cup with this recipe.