Mahony's Po-boy Shop (New Orleans)

Location: New Orleans, USA
Address: 3454 Magazine Street
Type of Meal: Lunch

After seeing Mahony's Po-boy Shop featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives, it became a must-do during our visit to New Orleans. There are many po-boy institutions in the city but what sets Mahony’s apart is there inventive creations. Sure, you can eat the traditional fried oyster and shrimps variety but they also have alligator sausage, hamburger and French fries with roast beef gravy amongst others.

Between the four of us, we ordered two of the large po-boys (a little more than a foot long each) with sides to share. Their award winning creation, the peacemaker ($14.95 for a regular or $21.95 for a large) enticed us with the promise of fried oysters, bacon, real cheddar cheese slices, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles and mayonnaise. The bite sized oysters were lightly dusted with corn meal adding nice crunch. Surprisingly, the flavour that stood out the most for me was the cheddar and for some reason the bacon became lost with everything else. The peacemaker is a good sandwich but needed another sauce for my taste, luckily the hot sauce on the table helped satisfy that a bit.

Although it didn't win any accolades, the favourite for our table was the grilled jumbo shrimp ($14.95 for a regular or $21.95 for a large). Topped with juicy cornmeal crusted fried green tomatoes and remoulade sauce it was such a great combination with the smoky char from the juicy shrimp, crunch from the tomatoes and the flavourful spicy sauce. The remoulade is essentially Louisiana’s take on tartar sauce except with a kick from the addition of cayenne pepper, paprika and/or hot sauce. This sandwich was not dressed, so doesn’t include the traditional lettuce, tomato, pickle and mayonnaise combination but had more than enough flavours and textures in it. Why isn’t this winning any prizes?

On the side, we ordered the small creole coleslaw ($1.95) dressed in a light mayo based sauce with a bit of seasoning. For me, it needed a bit more creole seasoning and the addition of this coleslaw (with more seasoning) on the peacemaker may have been an even better combination; alas, I ate the sandwich before I could try it.

Meanwhile, the small order of onion rings ($2.75) was gigantic compared to the coleslaw (says something about trying to eat “healthier”). Mahony must have used Vidalia onions as they were light and slightly sweet. Rather than thick rings, these were in a thin shredded form, lightly battered and topped with a liberal sprinkling of sea salt. I’m normally not a huge fan of onion rings but these were good. I could simply munch on them even as a snack.

Seeing Mahony’s was my one and only experience having a po-boy, I can’t comment on how it compares with the other popular shops. But, if Emeril Lagasse stands behind it, you know it can’t be that bad.

Overall mark - 7 out of 10

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Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!