A friend of mine recently sent me an email asking about the nature of the supposed greatness of New Orleans po-boys. So, this is a quick description and a little bit of a 'don't you tell me your yankee subs can beet out po-boys any day of the week.' In the spirit of our friendship, I posted the response and am keeping her name anonymous for her own safety from the po-boy patrol. It begins like this:
Your question about Po-Boys is not such a simple one to answer because the greatness of New Orleans Po-Boys is such a "great thing" that it cannot simply be explained. It has to be understood in such a way that you've experienced it. And, experienced it in the right places. But, if were to sum it up in a quick, let's cut to the artery on things, it's all in the French Bread. Sure, the northern mind could say that it's nothin' but like a hoagie bread. However, it's nothing like a hoagie bread. It's like the sandwich bread that Jesus would have made had he been a baker instead of a carpenter. We make all sorts of sandwiches together with them and when I figure out how to do it, maybe I'll send you a half loaf of french bread. I say a half loaf because the full loaf is a yard long. I'll try to go to one of the bread places so that it is freshly made and it'll won't be all grody and shit by the time it get to you. Since I got a bunch of stamps, I may even try and send it overnight (d'pending on the price) so that you can then understand. We even have french fry po-boys that the dress and poor roast beef po-boy gravy on. Yum. You are missing out on food like all-fuck down here! But, yes, it IS much different that a hoagie and a sub. So, the simple answer is da bread.
And, what's the rage? No rage, we just always done rolled like d'at. And as for your commentary about your subs beating our po-boys...Only a philly cheese steak from Philly could beat one of our po-boys (if the bread is fresh). So don't get all uppity on d'at one. And if I could send you a roast beef po-boy, dressed, 'extra sloppy' without the end result in the mailbox being tragic...or a fried oyster po-boy...or even a french fry po-boy, you'd have a change of heart. What I'd normally write is that%2