IRVING, Texas — You don't have to go all the way to New Orleans to get a big serving of Louisiana food and hospitality. Just stop by Po' Melvin's, 4070 N Belt Line Road, No. 100, in Irving, Texas. This restaurant offers good Louisiana home-cooking served by super-friendly wait staff and owners with personalities bigger than the restaurant. Melvin LeMane and his son, Mel, have been serving up meals with Louisiana flair since 1991 and they're so good at it that they're always busy, no matter what time of the day you stroll in. With customers ranging from the average Joe to the likes of Eric Clapton, and Barry Switzer, they're doing something right. Mel is constantly moving from table to table talking to the customers, many of them he knows so well that they're on a first-name basis. Some of the wait staff is from Louisiana, and it shows in the hospitality and eagerness to make you feel right at home. Everyone wears the Po' Melvin's T-shirt that says: "Food So Good It'll Make you Wanna Slap Yo' Momma!" When Eric Clapton ate here, he wanted a shirt so badly he asked one of the waiters to switch shirts with him. Now, you can buy a shirt to take home. What makes Po' Melvin's stand out is the food. "Home Cooking" means just that. Everything is delicious. From the fresh chicken fried chicken that gets marinated for 24 hours to the New Orleans-style seafood gumbo made with crab and shrimp, there is nothing on the menu that isn't made with the choicest cuts of meat and the freshest produce. For appetizers, the restaurant has hand-breaded fried pickles, and the delicious Louisiana spicy fried pies could be a meal of its own. As soon as you sit down, the staff brings you an icy glass full of green onions to munch on. Every plate is generously portioned, so you're guaranteed to be satisfied when you leave. But don't forget the drinks served from the Black Pearl Oyster bar. The signature drink, the "Yo Mama," is a delightfully layered frozen drink that brings memories of Bourbon Street. Layers of frozen margarita, frozen hurricane, Midori melon liquor, and Chambord raspberry liquor make this top-shelf drink a must-have. Covering the walls are hunting and fishing trophies, family photos and sports memorabilia. There's even a signed pair of Muhammad Ali boxing gloves that were given to Melvin by the famous boxer. Each booth has a jukebox with music choices that appeal to everyone. Po' Melvin's has a great homey atmosphere, very family friendly, and Louisiana comfort food that keeps people coming back again and again. It's a fantastic restaurant to visit when you're in the Dallas area, and certainly worth the drive. Prices range from $7 to $15. Find, rate and review Oklahoma City restaurants on Wimgo.com
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11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday
11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday
8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday
8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday