Straight from the River Parishes Tourist Commission (RPTC) is a new event that will be showcasing and celebrating Louisiana's varied culinary culture. The event, dubbed the Andouille Trail, is focused on showcasing the titular dish—everyone's favorite and multi-faceted sausage-like meat (locals know it's technically not a sausage)—and its variations in different parishes. Several notable figures, such as Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser and RPTC Chairman of the Board Garret Monti, will make an official appearance to jointly commemorate and kick off the event, beginning Tuesday, September 22, at 3 p.m.
Part of the spirit of the Andouille Trail is to celebrate the culture behind the food by exhibiting the process by which it is cooked. Decades-old recipes will be resurrected and put in the spotlight alongside traditional wooden smokehouses, to make this a true celebration of a long-standing part of Louisiana cuisine. On the Louisiana's River Parishes Facebook page, the event will be livestreamed, for those looking to ensure their social distancing. Besides that, the event also has a website dedicated to it. The website tells of every facet of the project imaginable, from a history of andouille itself to a list of participating restaurants and caterers. Considering that andouille can be used in so many dishes, in addition to being eaten by itself, many producers are also coming up with uncommon and inventive ways to prepare it, as a way of adding to the celebration.
Events like these are a good change of pace from what has been a droning past few months for many. With all the participating restaurants and personalities, this is a homegrown and very Louisianian way of reminding residents that the world is, in fact, still turning round and round. Hopefully, the buzz generated from this event will be enough to stimulate people to begin eating out in local restaurants again, while practicing safe social distancing. As we know all too well, hospitality as an industry is in dire straits. So, events like these that promote experimenting with all sorts of producers and establishments can only do good for our various culinary communities.