Creole Cooking done right in Encino.
You look at Stevie’s, and it looks down and dirty, but that’s half the charm. But it only looks down and dirty.
Inside, Stevie’s does Southern Cooking the way I like it. Heck, they do it the way I love it. They sit you down. Immediately out come the warm cornbread and butter. Your drink order comes, and odds are it’ll be in an old jelly jar. When your food comes, it’s hot and poppin’. Everything is served up in generous, just short of maddening portions.
Yeah, just how I like it.
Stevie’s serves Creole style New Orleans cuisine, basically the Cuisine of African-American Louisiana. The Gumbos, and the Jambalayas are cooked not in a spicy tomato roux (sauce), but a creamy, milky, but still spicy roux. Can’t lose either way. You are more likely to see Collard Greens and Mac and Cheese as sides. The deserts are Bread Pudding and Cobblers instead of Beignets.
Now, Stevie’s bread and butter (forgive the pun) is Live Music on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. The place, I am told, can get packed. The good news for you comes in the form of lunch. They serve it, and it’s the good stuff on the menu, but they’re not well known for it. They’re not tremendously busy at Lunch. They can be in spots, but its not often. You can walk right in, and have yourself a fine time.
WHAT SHOULD I GET?: I’ve tried a lot of the menu, and it’s a damn good menu. Love the Gumbo, love the Red Beans and Rice, love the Po’ Boys. But if you don’t get the Smoky Fried Chicken, which is the best Fried Chicken Plate I have ever had outside of my very other Mother’s, you are doing yourself a disservice.
IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP, PEOPLE: I have not been to Stevie’s yet on a Friday or a Saturday night, when the Live Music is going. So I have no idea how crowded it gets, but as I said…it gets pretty damn crowded. I usually go for Lunch, where its nice, peaceful and…of course…delicious.
Also, they don’t seem to have a Website anymore. No big deal, but that’s why there are no links on this page.
PARKING: Better than it looks. Stevie’s has it’s own lot, if you want to call it that. It has all of three…count ’em three…spaces. Failing that, you can use the meters around the length of Encino Park just next door. (Encino Park is just off Ventura Blvd., between Paso Robles and Genesta Avenues.)
I believe during Live Music Hours, they’ve got a Valet Service going, and that may be your best bet.
Stevie’s Creole Café
16911 Ventura Blvd.