Feb 12, 2024 - News

An authentic taste of Mardi Gras on the South Side

A mannequin and tables intricately decorated in Mardis Gras colors  (purple, yellow and green)

A mannequin and tables named after New Orleans streets and neighborhoods are among the decor that greet you inside this Mardis Gras-inspired restaurant. Photo: Alissa Widman Neese/Axios

👋 Alissa here. I've never visited New Orleans, but after trying a South Side staple for Creole cuisine, I'm thinking I should just for the food.

Dining the news: With Mardi Gras just around the corner, I headed to Way Down Yonder, opened by a NOLA native in 2017.

What I ate: A heaping plate of crawfish étouffée with two fluffy rolls ($20) and a side of creamy mac and cheese ($8).

  • Served over rice, étouffée is a creamy stew with a kick, containing peeled crawfish tails (think shrimp or lobster-like flavor), onions, bell peppers, celery and green onions.
  • My husband ordered a po'boy ($20) filled with enough perch for two sandwiches and a side of sweet potato casserole ($8) that rivaled his Nana's recipe — very high praise.

Pro tip: The fruit-topped Who Dat Punch is a must ($4, includes refills).

Two white plates (with a po'boy and crawfish étoufée) on a yellow tablecloth next to a Mardis Gras crown decoration and glass of punch
Portions, flavor and theming are all plentiful at Way Down Yonder. Photo: Courtesy of Brandon Neese

Quick take: The flavor alone blew us away, but the staff's hospitality and the vibrant decor made the dinner even more memorable.

If you go: Noon-8pm Sunday. Noon-9pm Wednesday-Saturday. 3847 S. High St. Drive-thru available.

😋 What's next: I'm now planning a visit to Way Down Yonder Beignets & Coffee, an extension of the restaurant on East Main Street that serves breakfast and beignets.

A list of other Black-owned restaurants and businesses from Experience Columbus, in honor of Black History Month.

The exterior of Way Down Yonder at night, painted in purple and yellow
Way Down Yonder, inside a former Long John Silver's, embraces the purple, yellow and green theme inside and out. Photo: Alissa Widman Neese/Axios
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