Southern Road Trip Part 1


I’m a little late on writing this but I wanted to at least attempt to share a bit about our trip from a couple of weeks ago. We spent a couple of days outside of Charlotte, NC before driving down to the Florida panhandle. We spent a week in Pensacola, teleworking rather than taking time off. This turned out to be a great decision because the aside from the first day, the weather was pretty crappy for most of our time there. I can’t complain too much though, because we had some nice views and most of the restaurants we picked food up from were pretty good. The Pensacola beaches were nice, during the brief moments where it wasn’t raining, and they had some dog-friendly areas.

From Pensacola, we made our way west to Louisiana. If you saw either of my EVO rally car videos, you know that we spent some time in the city of Pineville: “a great place to call home”. There we visited our friend Jorge, the owner of the awesome EVO we got to drive. We also spent some time walking around Pineville’s neighboring city, Alexandria, and ate some of the best doughnuts on the planet from a place called Harlow’s. If you’re ever within close proximity of Pineville, LA, it’s worth a stop just to get these doughnuts. The crawfish from HotHeads was pretty awesome too.

There were a lot of firsts on this road trip. It was our first extended road trip with our dog Lady, our first road trip in our 2021 Subaru Forester, and our first time visiting Louisiana (at least in my adult life), and my first time eating crawfish. It was also our first trip to New Orleans, a place that both my wife and I had wanted to visit for a long time. We weren’t sure how things were in NOLA with the Covid-19 pandemic or how the weather would be so we initially only planned on staying for a couple of days before taking our time heading back to Virginia. After the first day in New Orleans however, we knew we needed to stay for another day or two.

First….the food. Oh lord, the food. It’s not an exaggeration to say that everything we ate was delicious. All of it. I had high expectations for the food in New Orleans because everyone I know who had spent time there talked about the food. “The Big Easy” did not disappoint. Our first stop in the city was a seafood restaurant called Frankie and Johnny’s in the West Riverside neighborhood. Street parking was surprisingly easy to find close by and they had outdoor seating. I had a catfish po-boy, my wife had seafood gumbo, and we had white chocolate bread pudding for dessert. It was all fantastic.

We stayed at the Alder Hotel in uptown, which ended up being a great location for the duration of our time in the city.

The view from our small balcony at the Alder Hotel

Once we got checked into our hotel, we took Lady for a nice long walk to Audubon Park, which is close to Loyola University. It was a beautiful area and the weather was lovely for our first evening in NOLA.

One of the highlights of Audubon Park was the “Tree of Life”:

We enjoyed seeing the many unique and beautiful homes on our trek back to the hotel, before stopping at The Company Burger for dinner. Awesome burgers, awesome fries, and a top notch cookies and cream shake. 10/10, would absolutely return to this place again and again.

Categories: Cars, food, travelTags: , , , , , , , , ,

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