Author: Errol Laborde

March! The Month Deserves Better

  March is arguably New Orleans’ best month. Lately it has also been the most picked on. Though there is stiff competition from February and April, March is the culturally richest month, especially toward the middle when St. Patrick’s and…

Pain Perdu’s New Status

At first glance the French breakfast dish pain perdu doesn’t have much to recommend it, especially if you only speak English. The word “pain” is not what one would be looking for in a breakfast selection, and the English name…

COVID and the Cannoli

March 19, 2020 and I craved a cannoli. Actually, I crave a cannoli anytime, but on this afternoon the desire was heightened because the day was the Feast of St. Joseph, patron saint of the Sicilians. There would be a…

Episode 28: A Man and His Movies – Louisiana Stories

Glen Pitre’s first film “Belizaire: the Cajun” (1986) starring Armand Assante was backed by Robert Redford’s Sundance Institute. Pitre would go on to have more successes, including “The Scoundrel’s Wife” (2002) starring Tatum O’Neal. Roger Ebert, the late film critic…

Carnival '21: Oaks, Floats and a Joke

  Last week, on Ash Wednesday, we had lunch at Venezia’s on North Carrollton Ave. I was fortunate to be seated in such a way that I could see through the front window across the restaurant. Somewhere between the fettucine…

Episode 27: A Spanish Liquor That Louisiana Saved

Hardly anyone knows it, but the Louisiana-based Sazerac Company has become one of the top liquor brand distributors in the country. Plus, it operates the amazing new Sazerac House museum in New Orleans. Rhiannon Enlil, a historian for the museum,…

Lundi Gras - The Making of a New Old Tradition

  There are some old traditions in Carnival. There are also some traditions thought to be ancient, but really are not. One of the latter is “Lundi Gras.” While the practice of Rex arriving by boat on the day before…

When Rex Met Zulu: A Lundi Gras Evening

  Lundi Gras 1999 had extra excitement to it, at least for those gathered at Riverwalk near the stage at Spanish Plaza where Rex, King of Carnival, and his entourage would soon be arriving. What was different that year was…

S2, Episode 8: The Pussyfooters Party with a Purpose

  Take a trip down the Pussyfooter's parade route with Laura Cayouette, actress and long-time member of the dance krewe. We'll dance our way through the importance of the female dance krewes, how they "party with a purpose" and some…

S2, Episode 7: Krewe du Vieux

  Krewe du Vieux has been making merry in New Orleans for many years. This year, they have adapted to COVID in typically tasteless fashion.    

Vaccine For The Carnival Blues

  Sometimes hard times, such as this year’s Carnival, inspire positive genius. Making its way along the internet is a brilliant parody of “Masquerade,” the stirring song from “Phantom of the Opera.” The parody absorbs the melody; plays with the…

The Best of Carnival

  This weekend would have been the march of the Krewe du Vieux. The rowdy krewe’s theme brilliantly matched the world of COVID:“We’ve got no taste.” No group maximizes tasteless as much as KduV. For all of us who do…

Butterfly Wings

For those who write regularly about Carnival, the quote to the right is both a source of beauty and frustration. The beauty comes from author Perry Young’s butterfly of winter metaphor and his skillful use of language (“tattered, scattered, fragments…

Ashes to Ashes

On the morning after Mardi Gras, the streets in the Quarter, particularly those closest to Canal Street, have a crunch to them. City workers with shovels and brooms are busy pushing the debris left from the day before into piles.…

Midnight Trains

  *This article originally published as Laborde's editor's note in the January/February 2021 issue of Louisiana Life Magazine    Let us pause a moment to consider midnight trains: Winston Hall is a Shreveport musician, song writer and music history buff.…

S2, Episode 3: The Music of Carnival

In this episode, Rich acts as "Mardi Gras Beyond The Beads" musical director, and with Errol explores the music behind the greatest free show on Earth.

Some Good News About Carnival – Finally

  So far this season, finding good news about Carnival has been about as easy as trying to catch a Zulu coconut in a crowd, but every so often circumstances take a fortunate bounce in our direction. Challenging situations sometimes…

S2, Episode 2: COVID Carnival

In this episode, Errol Laborde and Rich Collins take a look at how the coronavirus has impacted Carnival in 2021 and what this means for the future of Carnival in New Orleans.

Episode 23: Cajun Navy - Riding Rough Waves

They’re not all Cajuns nor are there any admirals in the bunch, but they have certainly experienced battles on the water and on the land. Rob Gaudet, the founder of the Cajun Navy, joins Louisiana Life executive editor Errol Laborde…

Season 2, Ep. 1: Carnival Around The World

It will be a different Carnival this year, not just in New Orleans but the world, as people are forced to wear different types of masks. Still, the traditions survive, if only in memory.  Carnival expert Errol Laborde, with interviewer…

The Presidency and New Orleans

  Joe Biden once spoke at UNO. I know because I was there. As I recall he spoke in the University Center's auditorium. The room was maybe half full, which was not bad considering that all that Biden was at…

King Cakes in the COVID Era

  I suspect that this is going to be a good year for king cake sales, BUT there is also going to be a major crisis over the allocation of responsibility: In other words, who gets the baby now? To…