In the city where the “Po-boy”, or as some say “Poor Boy”, originated, where did the name of the beloved “Po-boy” come from and why?
These culinary treats can be made with meats and cheeses, or seafood. If the wait staff asks you if you want your sandwich “dressed”, they are referring to putting lettuce, tomato, and mayonnaise (or another kind of sauce) on your sandwich.
Po-boys were originally made by the Martin Brothers, Bennie and Clovis, who moved to New Orleans from Raceland in the mid-1910s. Both brothers worked as Streetcar Conductors until the early 1920s, when they opened Martin Brothers Coffee Stand and Restaurant in the French Market.
Coffee stands have a long history in the French Market, beginning with free women of color. The Martin Brothers inclusion of a restaurant drew in their fellow street car workers and union members. However, when the carmen went on strike in 1929, Bennie and Clovis pledged to give the Carmen free meals until the strike was resolved. In order to fulfill their pledge, the brothers developed a unique creation that came to be known as the “poor boy” originally. They worked with the bakery that supplied their french bread to create a loaf that had a standard width from end-to-end, eliminating the “nose” or narrow ends that created waste. The crispy bread was the perfect vessel for a large sandwich to feed the hungry strikers. When a striker came buy to get a sandwich, they would call out, “here comes another poor boy,” as the striker approached. That’s how this New Orleans classic became known as the “poor boy” and was abridged to “po-boy”. The “po-boy” lives on at restaurants throughout the Metro New Orleans area.
Mulate’s serves up two specialty po-boy platters, the Muffaletta Po-boy and the Mardi Gras Shrimp Po-boy, and a host of traditional Po-boys.
The Muffaletta is another classic New Orleans creation with similar origins. However, Mulate’s serves up their version on crispy french bread. Shrimp are a popular filling for these sandwiches, and the Mardi Gras Shrimp Po-boy is no exception. Popcorn shrimp are coated with Cajun Spiced Honey Mustard to create a unique blend. Whether it’s seafood, sausage, or chicken breast, Mulate’s has a po-boy to satisfy anyone’s appetite.