Monday, August 17, 2009

The Dry Dock Cafe

Well, I've been through dry dock before, but that usually pertained to a refurbishment of a cruise ship. The Dry Dock Cafe is a great meeting place and restaurant across the river from New Orleans downtown in an area called Algiers. My friend Mangesh Desai, an Indian magician from the ship, and I took the ferry over to Algiers Point to meet two other magician friends, Trini Montes, Trini's darlin' wife Amy, and card magic legend Jon Racherbaumer.

I first met Trini and Jon years ago when I first started coming to New Orleans, then Trini, an excellent magician on his own, came on the cruise and we got together later to do some magic. Jon is a prolific author, writer, and performer. I always feel humbled when I get to see Jon. He is as friendly as can be and will absolutely blow you away with mind-blowing card magic, especially for magicians.

I had been to The Dry Dock Cafe before with my magician friend Joe Harrison, it must be popular with magicians for some reason. Just right off the ferry platform on the corner of Bouny & Delaronde, The Dry Dock Cafe is serving a great menu from seafood to cajun and creole specialities. I had the seafood gumbo and a fried shrimp and oyster platter for my meal and they were both great.

The gumbo, was brown and thick with great crabmeat and other seafood. The flavor was some of the best I've had in town. Believe it or not, it is hard to find good gumbo in New Orleans, since so many restaurants (rumored to be over 50) are using an institutional gumbo made by hundreds of gallons, and passed off as made in-house. This is a welcome change to have this great bowl of gumbo with it's little gumbo crab reaching over the edge of the bowl.

The fried shrimp and oysters were really fresh tasting and fried perfectly. The slaw and hushpuppies were great, and the fries, although I ate only a couple, were good enough. The meal was capped off by some nicely brewed ice tea. All in all a great meal.

Getting together with my magician buddies was a special day and the food was equally magical. I recommend The Dry Dock Cafe for their food and pleasant atmosphere. You can get there from downtown by heading down to the end of Canal Street, crossing the tracks there at the World Trade Center to the Spanish Plaza, and then walking up the ramp to the ferry. The best part is... it's FREE! Check it out when in New Orleans, you can even take your car over on the ferry.