Fall in Abbeville brings the tantalizing aroma of cinnamon-laced yams bubbling in the oven with brown sugar and the caramel-flavored Steen’s cane syrup that’s produced locally from mid-October until Christmas. At RiverFront a Louisiana Grill, people are jump-starting the holidays in the handsome new bar with the recently introduced Spiced Yam Whip cocktail. Warm up near the fireplace with a festive craft cocktail and observe an array of black-and-white photos reflecting Abbeville’s storied past or enjoy a drink outside on the patio.
This elegant seafood haven opened 120 years after Joseph Dupuy gave birth to the town’s first oyster house in 1869. His raw bivalves, sold for 5 cents a dozen, were served near the banks of the Vermilion bayou. Prior to RiverFront’s devastating fire in September of 2012, patrons overlooked the same riverbank while dining. Like a phoenix, a far more beautiful RiverFront arose from the ashes in February, 2016. It was reborn in a larger, lodge-like building with vaulted ceilings, a separate bar area, a wrap-around screen porch and a patio where diners could “cut da rug” on Saturday mornings to live music on the bayou.
On cool autumn nights, locals gather in the handsome bar while nibbling on fire-roasted oyster bubbling with garlic butter and smoked gouda, steaming bowls of sweet corn and crab bisque, and buttery eggplant medallions with plump lump crabmeat blanketed in a luscious, creamy béchamel.
RiverFront a Louisiana Grill
530 Park Ave., Abbeville
Spiced Yam Whip Cocktail
Combine 3 bar spoons Louisiana sweet potato puree, 1 oz. Frangelico, 1½ ounces sweet potato vodka and 1½ ounces heavy cream in a shaker. Dry stir to break up sweet potato puree. Add ice and shake vigorously. Coat the inside of a martini glass with swirls of caramel syrup and strain into the glass. Top with whipped cream, a drizzle of caramel syrup and a dusting of Cajun Power Sweet Treat powder.