I picked my friend Pel up from the airport today and since she was craving Southern food, we stopped at what used to be Aunt Kizzy’s Back Porch; I say used to be because until we were at the door, we did not realize it had closed (permanently). She suggest we drive back closer to her home in the Valley and go to Stevie’s Creole Cafe & Bar in Encino; a place owned by Stevie Wonder. She said that Stevie knows more than how to make good music, he also knows great Creole.

I am very happy to say that I liked the food even more at Stevie’s than Aunt Kizzy’s. We were hungry, so we started with fried oysters and the chicken drumettes. Both were tasty, and even though they were fried, neither was greasy. A tarter sauce came with the oysters, and a spicy creamy remoulade type sauce came with both.

Main course for me was the seafood gumbo, which was advertised as the best outside of New Orleans; I agreed after just one taste of the spicy complex soup loaded with crabmeat, shrimp, chicken, and hot sausage poured over a rice base. I ate every drop and considered taking some home for later.

My friend Pel had the oxtails with collard greens and a side of fried okra; she ate everything except the bones off her plate. We also had a side of cornbread muffins, but neither one of us had the room for those or for dessert. Our wonderful waitress double bagged our order of food to go (Pel wanted more gumbo and some etouffee to take home). When Pel said to the waitress that she eats alot, our very hospitable waitress, so “Naw, you’re just healthy.”

This is definitely a place for people who like being completely full and happy.