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Me helping prep for a crawfish boil circa Mardi Gras 2011

Me helping prep for a crawfish boil circa Mardi Gras 2011

Happy Lundi Gras ya’ll!  At this moment, thousands of people are reveling in the awesome debauchery that is Mardi Gras in New Orleans.  Tomorrow is Mardi Gras, also affectionately known as Fat Tuesday, but the parade season has been going on since January 19.  As Fat Tuesday is the biggest day of the Carnival season, most people plan their Mardi Gras trip around this day, but travelers really have over three weeks to take part in the world-famous parades.  In fact, I have friends participating in the Krewe of Orpheus parade tonight!  Gooo Laura!

As a former participant in Mardi Gras 2011, I can honestly say that no other celebration compares to the real deal in NOLA. That said, I don’t have a teleport so I’ll be celebrating here in DC! Here are a couple of my favorite places in the DC area to laissez les bons temps rouler!

Bayou Bakery - Arlington, VA

Bayou Bakery – Arlington, VA

Bayou Bakery: BB (nickname status!) is one of my favorite places regardless of what day it is.  Fortunately, this bakery is all New Orleans everything, making it the perfect place to celebrate Mardi Gras! The restaurant serves classic Cajun dishes on the regular and features the best beignets I’ve tasted since fighting for a table at Café du Monde.  Tomorrow, they’ll be celebrating with a Bayou Gras Block Party from 5 to 11pm complete with gumbo, King cake and beads! Tickets here.

Acadiana: Acadiana describes itself as a “contemporary Louisiana fish house” located in downtown DC.  I took my Louisiana-born mother here one year for Mother’s Day brunch and we were in Cajun country heaven.  The food is legit – a celebration of the culinary jewel that is Southern Louisiana.  Acadiana will celebrate Mardi Gras with a prix fixe Mardi Gras menu at $50 per person tonight and tomorrow. Check out the menu here.

Mom's Mardi Gras wreath turned centerpiece

Mom’s Mardi Gras wreath turned centerpiece

Mom’s house: Let me be honest. Will I go out tomorrow to participate in Mardi Gras madness? Probably not. My previously mentioned Louisiana-born mother has transformed our house into Mardi Gras central so chances are, we’ll be two-stepping in the living room to zydeco music in our various strands of beads and Mardi Gras masks.  Sounds like a plan to me!  If you want to transform your place, I’ve included a small album of our decorations. P.S. My mom is totally going to kill me hahahaha

For more places to celebrate Mardi Gras in the DC area, check out this super comprehensive article from About.com.  It even mentions BB! Have a great time!

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