evan ducharme/special to the S.F. ExaminerStuffed with tasty seafood and more

evan ducharme/special to the S.F. ExaminerStuffed with tasty seafood and more

Queen’s Louisiana Po-Boy Cafe is a true taste of New Orleans

Home from an eating binge in New Orleans with a hankering for a proper po’boy, my options were few. Sure, our city’s seen a recent wave of bayou-themed menus, but they all read a tad precious. Words like “aioli” and “chipotle” didn’t pop up at Parkway, Liuzza’s or any of the other shabby po’boy temples I visited in New Orleans.

Luckily, Queen’s hasn’t bowed to local propensities. On the tail end of a yet-to-be-gentrified commercial strip near the ’Stick, this shop looks very much the part of a hole in the wall far outside the French Quarter.

The crumby tables are crookedly arranged and topped with half-full bottles of Crystal hot sauce, orders are placed to the no-nonsense owner at the front counter, and silverware and napkins are a do-it-yourself affair. In other words, the place is picture perfect.

A proper po’boy starts with a pistolette, a New Orleans-style French roll in which the ultra-thin crust easily flakes, giving way to a pillow-soft interior. Queen’s imports the rolls from Gambino’s bakery, a southwest Louisiana institution.

Sandwiches are then “dressed” with shredded lettuce, wonderfully out-of-season tomato slices, pickle coins and a healthy dose of mayonnaise.

What to stuff your pistolette with? Opt for the fried oysters, lightly battered and overflowing with briny liquor that tastes of the sea.

Portions are generous with a full po’boy containing at least eight mollusks. When splitting with a friend, the other go-to is the hot sausage, featuring a couple of fiery links shipped in from Patton’s in tiny Bogalusa, La.

Almost as worthy is a fried catfish po’boy loaded up with a moist, fleshy filet. It’s the aristocrat’s Filet-o-Fish sandwich.

Skip the run-of-the-mill fries on the side and instead get a Styrofoam cup of extra creamy coleslaw, the perfect foil for the heat from the sausages or the hint of grease from the fried seafood.

No one-trick pony, Queen’s also serves solid renditions of the Cajun classics. On a recent rainy night, a colossal bowl of smoky, Andouille-studded red beans and rice hit the spot. Of course, the beans themselves are Camellia brand, from Harahan, La.

Three dense, corn-laden hushpuppies made for a perfect snack for the table, especially with a liberal spread of the accompanying honey butter. Another side order of sweet potato fries needed an extra minute or two in the fryer, as they were lukewarm and limp.

An impressive selection of Abita beers is served ice cold and out of the bottle. Along with the more common Amber and Turbodog, Queen’s showcases Andygator, an 8 percent alcohol-by-volume Heller Bock, as well as Strawberry Harvest Lager, one of the rare fruity brews that I thoroughly enjoy no matter the season.

Only an under seasoned jambalaya was a complete miss, its texture so mushy that it brought to mind the Quaker oats I’d eaten earlier for breakfast.

Yet the gumbo was as deep and soulful as the jambalaya was bland. Chock full of shrimp and sausage, this gleaming roux demonstrated a complexity not revealed by the watery varieties being put out by more pedigreed chefs around town.

Shirts dusted with powdered sugar, the result of us scarfing a trio of dense beignets, we left our last meal at Queen’s thankful that the Excelsior district is a whole lot closer than the Faubourg Marigny.

Queen’s Louisiana Po-boy Cafe

Location: 3030 San Bruno Ave. (at Dwight Street), S.F.

Contact: (415) 656-0711, www.queenslapoboys.com

Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays

Price range: $2.49 to $14.99

Recommended dishes: Fried oyster po’boy ($14.99), hot sausage po’boy ($10.49), gumbo ($9.49), red beans and rice ($6.95), hushpuppies ($2.49)

Credit cards: All major

Reservations: Not acceptedFeaturesFood & DrinkFood and WineQueen’s Louisiana Po-Boy Cafe

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

A warning notice sits under the windshield wiper of a recreational vehicle belonging to a homeless man named David as it sits parked on De Wolf Street near Alemany Boulevard on Friday, Aug. 31, 2018. A proposed SF Municipal Transportation Agency law would make it illegal for overnight parking on the side street for vehicles taller than seven feet or longer than 22 feet. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SFMTA to resume ‘poverty tows’ amid calls to make temporary ban permanent

Fines and fees hurt low-income, homeless residents, but officials say they are a necessary tool

Diners eat in a Shared Spaces structure outside Sotto Mare restaurant in North Beach. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SFMTA director says Shared Spaces serves transit agency’s financial interest

$10.6 million price tag for program raises concerns among transit agency’s board members

A broad coalition of tenants and housing rights organizers rally at Stanley Mosk Courthouse to protest eviction orders issued against renters Stanley Mosk Courthouse on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020, in Los Angeles, CA. (Irfan Khan/Los Angeles Times/TNS)
Federal judge strikes down CDC’s national moratorium on evictions

David Yaffe-Bellany, Noah Buhayar Los Angeles Times A federal judge in Washington… Continue reading

San Francisco Unified School District spends less in the classroom than other large school districts but has more senior administrative staff.
Data shows SFUSD behind other districts on tax funding, classroom spending

With spending cuts on the horizon, school board members are taking a… Continue reading

City Attorney Dennis Herrera is seeking injunctions preventing those arrested on drug dealing charges in the Tenderloin from returning to the area. 
Examiner file photo
Judge to rule on Herrera’s new plan for tackling Tenderloin drug dealing

A San Francisco judge heard arguments Tuesday on whether City Attorney Dennis… Continue reading

Most Read