Long a New Orleans institution, I had eaten lunch at Mother's Restaurant when I managed to beat the long lines and crowds, but I had never eaten breakfast there. I was advised by my good friend, and fellow New Orleans foodie, Tim McCormack to go there and try the morning fare.
My buddy Tim was working on the Carnival cruise ship that was moored in New Orleans during Katrina. He spent a lot of time downtown and in the French Quarter, and got to know some of the best places to go, along with many of the local downtown merchants themselves.
Back to Mother's, I walked in with no long line to contend with. Ordered at the counter, and found a table in the back dining room. The restaurant was nearly full and the back room was pleasant and a bit cooler than the rest of the building.
I ordered a biscuit with debris gravy and an order of Mother's "World's Best Baked Ham." The pleasant waitress brought my meal to me and there was a big, pretty, "cat-head" biscuit piled high with the shredded beef debris gravy.
The side dish of smoked had a hefty portion of, honestly some of the best ham I have eaten. Nice big, thick chunks of ham, so tender you could actually cut it with one of those dull, non-serated, restaurant knives.
The beef debris was generous and was tasty on that biscuit, especially when I added a bit of ham to make an improvised "Ferdi Special" biscuit. The "au jus" from the debris made the biscuit nice and moist. (The "Ferdi Special" is a ham and debris roast beef Po-Boy that Mother's made famous.)
On the way out I met Joe Amato, the owner of Mother's and found him to be friendly and welcoming. He is the man that makes the hams and beef roasts everyday. Recently on "Man -vs- Food" Joe revealed his secret glaze for the ham. Very inventive indeed. He's quite a familiar character in New Orleans.
So, when in New Orleans, be sure to get by and try Mother's for breakfast. They have eggs, grits, waffles, and all the other items I have mentioned here, to name just a few. Lunch starts at 11:00 am. It's located on the corner of Poydras and Tchoupitoulas, just look for the sign that says "World's Best Baked Ham", and say Hello to Joe for me!