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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Southern, Sandwiches
Casual restaurant

Mon–Thu 10:00am–10:00pm
Fri 10:00am–midnight
Sat 11:00am–midnight
Sun 10:30am–5:00pm

Features Kid-friendly, Wi-Fi
Bar None
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx
Reservations Not accepted


East Houston
2130 Jefferson St.
Houston, TX
(713) 222-8333
Calliope’s Po-Boy
Houston’s never tasted so close to N’awlins

New Orleans is a unique, seductive culture; America’s mischievous wink. It’s a culture kept alive by its people, and it fans out like a delta, nourishing Texans with an affluvial, muddy flavor that others can only weakly mimic. Calliope’s Po’-Boy feeds Houston authentic New Orleans food from its modest strip-mall storefront. The friendly staff is rightfully proud of its food. Although the neighborhood is a little rundown, the interior of pleather chairs and red tablecloths over cheap tables feels safely sterile—even mundane, like some of the best po’ boy shops in New Orleans. And like those, Calliope’s French bread is custom-baked in the style of the traditional Leidenheimer recipe—crunchy on the outside and soft inside. Soft-shell crab, catfish, shrimp, and oysters are fried artfully, maintaining their moisture inside a crispy cornmeal breading. The whole thing is dressed with the traditional mayo, tomato, lettuce, and pickle, to which you add as much hot sauce as you can handle.

The best po’ boy we ever had in New Orleans was dripping with salty roast beef and gravy, and this one is a fair comparison, if not quite as addictively salty. While the gumbo is thinnish, it has an excellent complexity of flavor and heat, one that is rarely produced with success outside of the Big Easy. Thankfully, we’re within reach.

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