French Louisiana Fare
Savor the charming cultural spice of Lafayette and New Iberia.
Take a break from the regular breakfast chains and pull up a chair at Victor's Cafeteria on Main Street in New Iberia. It's where the natives eat. Don't be surprised to find patrons dousing eggs, toast, or even grits with hot sauce. The famous Tabasco factory lies 6 miles away on Avery Island.
After the Civil War, Edmund McIlhenny began his hot sauce business with only a few pods of capsicum pepper. Today, people from all across the globe enjoy this Southern-based condiment. Tours of the Tabasco Factory and Visitor's Center tell how the pepper must be the perfect shade of red, or it isn't picked. The factory's gift shop even sells pepper plants for $2.50.
Eat lunch at the Blue Dog Café in Lafayette, home to the largest collection of artwork by Cajun artist George Rodrigue. Those who share a Popeye-like affection for spinach should order the Crabmeat Florentine ($10.95).
Find more artwork by George Rodrigue at the gallery of Acadian Village, which houses a painting of former President Bill Clinton, Vice President Al Gore, and the famous blue dog. The gallery also contains paintings that portray the Acadian saga. The village itself showcases authentic homes, a chapel, and a blacksmith shop.
When the dinner bell rings, answer the call with jumbo barbecue shrimp at Café des Amis in Breaux Bridge (approximately 6 miles east of Lafayette).