A Nice Little Place On The Chee-Funky River

Tchefuncte River signThis weekend, The Civee and I went to Louisiana to visit my grandparents. We had a good time and went at the right time of year. The weather was in the low 80s, clear and dry.  Any later in the year and it would be oppressively hot and humid.

My grandparents live an hour north of New Orleans, across Lake Ponchartrain.  This was my first time to the area in four years. My grandparents’ area was hit by Hurricane Katrina (as was pretty much everything else down there), and while life is back to normal, things definitely look different than a few years ago.

We spent most of the weekend with my grandparents, eating breakfast (The Civee and I are not regular breakfast eaters) and doing family things, but for a few hours Sunday, The Civee and I had a few hours and a car to ourselves.  We didn’t have enough time to go into the city, so we decided to drive around in the backwoods and not-so-backwoods of the North Shore of the Lake. 

While driving around, we drove over a bridge spanning the Tchefuncte River (pronounced Chee-Funky) into a small town called Madisonville. On one side of the river was a large marina. On Madisonville side, a row of restaurants.   We parked and walked around for a while, eventually deciding to stop at Morton’s, a bar and restaurant with an outside deck facing the river.

Morton's Restaurant signI have to admit, one of the things that drew me to Morton’s (considering all the restaurants had decks facing the river) was the sign to the left, promising hot boiled seafood.  The Civee and I got an outside table and just enjoyed ourselves by talking and watching the boats and the moving bridge.  The bridge we passed over was a Swing Bridge (check out the wikipedia link for a cool animated image), which would open every half hour for about five minutes to let marine traffic through.  While watching the bridge was fun, the fulfillment of the advertised seafood was even better. 

Because we had breakfast a few hours earlier, I didn’t think I could finish off a whole tray of boiled crawfish, so I opted for two broiled soft shell crabs, which were damn good.  I also helped myself to some of The Civee’s Mahi Mahi, which was also superb. 

After eating and sitting around for a while, we found our car and started to head back.  But as we got the car going, we noticed we had just a minute or two before the next closing (or opening, depending on your point of view ) of the swing bridge. So we high-tailed it out of Madisonville, lest we be held up.

Even though we sped out of town, it was a nice place, one I wouldn’t mind going back to (if only to polish off a plate of boiled crawfish).

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