While visiting family in Louisiana this past week, we happened to be in town for my aunt and uncle’s wedding anniversary. To celebrate, we decided to grab lunch at Nash’s Restaurant in Broussard. Nash’s follows in the well established practice of converting an old home to a restaurant. For some reason, this seems to always give me the comfortable feeling of being in someone’s home rather than lost in a busy or non-descript building. Nash’s decor reminds me of restaurants such as the Veranda in Fort Myers and, the now closed, Strawberry Mansion in Melbourne. Nash’s is an Italian and Cajun restaurant with an Acadian influence who’s head chef is very well known. My cousins couldn’t recommend this restaurant enough to us, so I was stoked to try out the menu.
Even though we had been on a non-stop seafood eating marathon for the entire trip, you just cannot travel to Louisiana and eat anything but seafood; at least a true Cajun should not. I started with a cup of the Seafood Gumbo (~$6) and, trying to stay in the theme of the cuisine, ordered the Shrimp Creole (~$13) with the Italian Olive Mix (+~$2) salad. Others at the table ordered cups of the Shrimp, Crab, and Corn Bisque (~$6) and Chicken and Sausage Gumbo (~$6) along with the Crab Cakes (~$13), Mini Seafood Platter (~$13), the Open-face Roast Beef Sandwich (~$10), and the Seafood Salad (~$13). The seafood gumbo didn’t miss a beat although I did have to season it a bit more than expected. It was a combination of lump crab meat, shrimp, and crawfish made with a traditional roux. It was also served with a large de-shelled crawfish claw which was the perfect garnish for the dish. I heard similar comments about the other soups at the table. The salad was made from a bed of Italian greens with tomatoes, many different type of pitted olives, a quarter of a boiled egg, and dressed with a muffaletta olive mixture that brought every bite together. I will say that for the entree I was a bit disappointed. When I typically think of Shrimp Creole, I picture a sort of rustic dish made with large Gulf shrimp and generously cut portions of pepper and onion in a tomato-based sauce that has a bit of a kick to it. This dish had relatively small pieces of pepper and onion, the shrimp were much smaller than I expected, and without a spicy kick in the sauce, the tomato flavor was a bit more than I expected. That being said, the overall flavor of the dish was still good. The other meals at the table were extremely delicious. The crab cakes were served on a fried eggplant and I believe were made with blue crab meat, so they were had that savory and sweet combination going for them. The “mini” seafood platter was much larger than we expected having fried oysters, shrimp, and catfish. The seafood salad was also a good portion coming with grilled shrimp, salmon, and another seafood item over a bed of what looked like romaine and other veggies. At the end of the meal, our waitress brought out fresh-baked French bread rolls which she had forgotten to bring earlier. We were all full, but the bread was so fresh and hot, we each had to sample a bit of it, just so it didn’t go to waste.
We skipped out on dessert, but I have to say although the lunch entree wasn’t everything I expected, the meal as a whole did not disappoint. If you like spicy food, make sure you request it when you order, but don’t let that discourage you from the great flavors on the menu. The Amberjack with Seafood Au Gratin sauce looked amazing, so I’ll have to make my way back one day. I’ve been told that every occupant of this building has done an amazing job with their food, and Nash’s Restaurant is no exception. Although, it’s a bit of a hike for those Lafayette folks, it’s definitely worth the visit. Don’t be coo-yôn; give Nash’s a try.
Nash’s Restaurant is located at 101 East 2nd Street Broussard, Louisiana.