A Darrell’s roast beef poboy with jalapeno mayo and gravy. (Michael Cooper / American Press)
Darrell’s is at 119 West College St. in Lake Charles and 3282 La. 108 in Sulphur. (Michael Cooper / American Press)
Last Modified: Thursday, May 09, 2013 10:55 AM
Many restaurants in Southwest Louisiana offer a sandwich they claim is special.
But only one has cornered that market — Darrell’s.
If you’ve lived in Louisiana for any length of time, you’ve heard of the Darrell’s Special.
In fact, many of the “special” sandwiches at other restaurants are attempting to replicate the Darrell’s Special.
The special is a ham, turkey, roast beef and cheese po’boy. But it’s the bread, gravy and jalapeño mayo that make it special.
Our waitress wouldn’t tell us where the restaurant purchases its bread, but she did confirm that Darrell’s bakes it on site.
When it’s all put together, the sandwich is drenched with roast beef gravy.
It’s messy and delicious.
Those who move away often still crave the taste. My high school buddy Jean Paul Osteen, now a minister in Beaumont, Texas, often looks me up when he comes back to Lake Charles to meet up for a sandwich.
Although the Special is Darrell’s pièce de résistance, the restaurant offers a full slate of po’boys — roast beef, turkey, ham, shrimp, barbecue brisket, barbecue sausage, and surf and turf.
On a recent weekday, my co-workers Coop and Laura and I all had Darrell’s po’boys. I got the Special, Coop the roast beef and Laura the turkey.
While I prefer the Special, they said they enjoyed the respective sandwiches they ordered.
A word of caution here about the jalapeño mayo; while it is delicious, I often order it on the side so we can decide how much to administer.
There’s always a nice-sized stack of bar napkins on each table in the restaurant and one bite of a sandwich and you’ll know why. The healthy dousing of roast beef gravy drips from the po’boy with every bite.
Sandwiches come in two sizes — full ($9.95) or half ($6.50).
They’re not cheap, but they’re worth being fit into the budget, as least occasionally.
Each sandwich comes with a pickle, and chips can be purchased.
I would be remiss if I didn’t also mention Darrell’s soft drinks. I don’t know what makes some establishments’ carbonated beverages taste better than others, but Darrell’s has the touch.
The restaurant/bar becomes a full bar at night, and no one under age 21 is allowed after 10 p.m.
Darrell’s has opened a bar in Sulphur, and Coop has confirmed that the sandwiches there are just as good as the ones in Lake Charles.