Vegans and vegetarians, please move along. This line up is for carnivores only, meat eaters who appreciate the old school art of charcuterie. All around town you can find alchemist butchers taking the humble pig and honoring every bit of him snout to tail. In eateries humble and haute, find their mouth watering cured meats, silky terrines and cracklin’ that resonate with every crunch. From locally owned butcher shops to higher end restaurants and mom and pop purveyors, this array of meat artisans delivers solid gold.Read More
A Charcuterie Lover’s Guide to New Orleans
Carnivores will be in heaven at these spots
1. Ancora Pizzeria & Salumeria
The thin-crusted Neapolitan style pizza that comes out of the wood burning oven is reason enough to pop over to this eatery Uptown on Freret Street. But check out Ancora’s back curing room, where heritage breed pigs are used to create salumi and a rotating array of delectables like sanguinaccio, lonza, and coppa.
2. Creole Country Sausage Factory
Fab and her husband Frederick “Ricker” Schmitt started Creole Country in 1979, the Mid-City sausage company still run by their son, Vaughn and his partner, Deanie Bowen. Cajun charcuterie, from alligator and andouille sausage to tasso and hogshead cheese, is the specialty here, slow-smoked, cured, and vacuum sealed. Guaranteed, you’ll take that gumbo to higher heights with andouille made here, the old-fashioned way. The hogs head cheese is Deanie’s recipe — bright with lemon and available mild of spicy.
3. Toups’ Meatery
Isaac Toups comes by his passion for meat honestly — this new guard chef hails from Rayne, LA, in the heart of Cajun country a place where hunting and fishing naturally dictated land and river to table. His Toups’ Meatery board is a thing of beauty, a repast of fresh and cured meats and condiments. Don’t miss out on his cracklins’, then again the boudin balls are no joke.
4. Piece Of Meat
Leighann Smith is one badass butcher. Come into the shop and cafe she runs with partner Daniel Jackson, and you might find her wrangling a goat or making some particularly spiced sausages. Piece of Meat takes pride in working with farmers that raise animals humanely and responsibly. Start with the boudin egg rolls oozing pepper jack, then move into a serious meat board, butcher’s choice. Try to save room for the smoked tri tip cheesesteak.
5. Bayou Wine Garden
Although Bayou Wine Garden is best known for its impressive selection of wines by the glass, the separate meat and cheese menu is sure to satisfy. Offered by the portion all the way up to five for $37, options include sausages and terrines, cured meats like bresaola, coppa, and bacon and butter-fueled spuma to fiery ‘nduja (spreadable pork salume), a Calabrian specialty.
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6. Terranovas Supermarket
New Orleans, LA 70119
Three words: Hog’s head cheese. That terrine-like velvety pork spread is just one of the specialties at this family-owned supermarket in Bayou St. John. Terranova’s is adored for its authentic sausages — the hot Italian is the bomb. Pop in early on a on Saturday and you might score a muffuletta piled high with meats, cheeses, and olive salad on airy rounds of seeded Italian loaves.
7. Emeril's Delmonico
Fans of Emeril’s Delmonico rave about the dry aged prime beef with good reason. But it would be a shame to miss out on chef de cuisine Anthony Scanio’s charcuterie and salumi. Although mostly Italian style, including soppressata, ‘nduja, and capicola, Cajun andouille makes the cut. The daily happy hour from 5 p.m. offers meaty treats like candied bacon, sausage and pancetta wrapped dates for $5, and bubbles, wine, and some cocktails half price.
8. St James Cheese Company - Warehouse District
It’s not all about the fromege at the St. James Cheese Company, with locations Uptown and in the Warehouse District. Paired with runny, gooey, sharp and hard cheeses of note, the charcuterie selection changes daily, with selections like capicola, rosemary ham, and rosa salami. Served with bread and accompaniment, the charcuterie board is best savored full on, 10 items for $32. Drink wine with and enjoy.
Filed under the boucherie section of the menu, Cochon’s Cajun style charcuterie is a love letter to all things porcine. Although the list changes with the seasons, it might include pork belly confit with sweet apple relish, fried boudin with pickled peppers, and port braised pork cheeks with pumpkin puree. From snout to tail, Cochon honors the pig most deliciously.
10. Cochon Butcher
Cochon Butcher is so serious about its swine that the restaurant has its own cross breed of Berkshire Blue hog used exclusively for its meat. A team of five full-time butchers break down 2,000 pounds of meat each week, taking care to utilize every part of the pig — skin for cracklins’, fat for rendering, bones for stock. All the sandwiches are to die for, or order something from the meat case, a treasure trove of salami, sausages and fresh cuts. Pescatarians are not turned away — the smoked salmon is fantastic.
11. Shank Charcuterie
This modest shop on St. Claude Avenue in the Marigny can barely contain Kris Doll’s impressive skills, butchering chops sparked by childhood hunting trips with his grandfather in the Colorado Rockies. There’s a case of fresh and cured meat up front that can handle an order of prime rib for 10 or all combinations of sausage, bacon, terrines, ham, galantines, pâtés, and confit. Take a seat at Shank’s and start with the charcuterie plate, a mash up of meats, cheese, accoutrements, and crostini for $16. Move on from there — the pimento cheeseburger is damn good.