I've been going down to Laffy (Lafayette, LA) for a few years now - - I love boudin, and I am eternally grateful to www.boudinlink.com for all the FAB recommendations. I drive around melting into the bayous and prarie with cajun and zydeco blaring from the radio, love small-town mardi gras. I get big sacks of crawfish and scarf them up when they are in season, enjoy the oysters, and particularly love the people from Breaux Bridge to New Iberia to Abbeville to Eunice.
But boudin (a frozen carry-on full, on the plane back to Wisconsin) is the ultimate draw. Keeps me happy for months. And here is my recommenation for travel-boudin - - the ones to stock up on, the ones that travel well, the ones that keep you smilin' through the snowy times:
* Some of the top butchers have found a new lease on commercial life putting up a shop by I-10, to pick up on the Florida-Texas interstaters. The Best Stop in Scott was an original, but I don't find their boudin the 'best'. Don's has really SPICY boudin also at Scott, and it travels well, even though there is a lot of MSG - -but it keeps great in the freezer and stays delicious. Billy's has a recently cobbled store at virtually the same location, but there is so much MSG in the mix that it is gag-worthy. One REAL gem is JW's in Breaux Bridge (just south of the interstate - - head east just past the WalMart - - a delicious, meaty, spicy wonder - - just be sure to check their opening hours). Cormier's just south of I-10 in Crowley also has great links (it's a touch hard to find - - worth mapping precisely).
That's it for the easiest I-10 stock-ups, for me - - but if you are driving around the area with more time and good GPS or maps, here's what I think is GREAT boudin that travels well, and does well in the freezer for many months:
Vautrot's in Church Point - smoky, meaty, rich, dry, delicious; rare, amazing boudin.
Cormier's in Cankton - juicy, gravy-rich links!
Charlie T's in Breaux Bridge - This is a richly meaty link, with nice spice, that is completely worthwhile to freeze, transport, and to keep.
Bayou Boudin & Cracklin in Breaux Bridge - - another richly flavored link that travels well.
Babineaux's in Breaux Bridge - north of the interstate, their boudin noir (boudin rouge?) is vastly complex, and a real rarity - - if you don't mind pig's blood in your boudin, it is wowsville;
Redlich's City Cash in Basile - - for some reason, this really travels well - - it has enough meat to keep it sumptious, and just great over-all balance;
Market Basket smoked boudin in Lake Charles - - this place is well off the interstate, but the smoked boudin is absolutely sublime, one of the most amazing substances you will ever bite into - - and although lots of Lake Charles boudin is highly rated, I find it nearly all disappointing because it is so rice-heavy - - mostly not worth buying, and definitely not worth freezing and transporting.
There are many others I enjoy, but few others worth stocking up on, freezing, and transporting. The links with lots of rice do NOT provide lots of pleasure when frozen and savored later on, the the 'meatier' links tend to be fantastic over time, and over distance.
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