Spencer and I visited Dempsey’s Po’boys, a place a little outside of my usual Baton Rouge stomping grounds (Coursey/Sherwood) on the recommendation of another BR blogger. This blogger named Dempseys’ French Dip and Gumbo one of Baton Rouge’s best dishes, but I’m not sure that I agree.
Dempsey’s is a locally owned place specializing in po’boys with other typical South Louisiana fare making appearances on the menu. On our visit, the place was packed with a lunchtime crowd and we had about a 10 minute wait for a table. Service was a little slow, but I didn’t see many staff and most tables had parties of 5 or more, so with that volume, a little slowness is forgivable. Spencer and I both ordered the “soup and half”, a cup of soup/gumbo and a half po’boy for $10. I tried the soup of the day, cream of corn and crab, and Spencer had seafood gumbo:
First bites and more after the jump.
Neither of us were especially wowed by our soups, but we weren’t turned off either. My cream of corn and crab was creamy and well seasoned, but could have used less corn and more crab. I thought that maybe a nice pile of lump crabmeat in the center of the bowl would have helped with presentation and taste. Spencer, who commented that he almost never orders gumbo at restaurants (our mom makes a great one), thought his could have used more seafood as well. All he was able to identify were a few shrimp floating around.
For our “half”, I had the aforementioned French Dip (roast beef, mayo, mozzerella, side of gravy), and Spencer tried the oyster po’boy.
I’m not even going to put first bite photos up for these, because both of our faces were basically expressionless. Nothing special about the oyster po’boy, and as for my French Dip, I had to season the gravy with what was available at the table and thought the roast beef could’ve used some seasoning as well.
Overall, Dempsey’s didn’t make for a bad meal, and at $10 the amount of food we got was impressive. However, is it deserving of a Top 5 spot on the “Best of Baton Rouge”? Not in my opinion.