The Gumbo from Goode Co. Seafood

Goode Gumbo.JPG
I recently found a copy of Cooking up a Storm: Recipes Lost and Found from the Times-Picayune of New Orleans at Half-Price Books, and had planned to try the recipe for gumbo on Fat Tuesday but ran out of time. I still had my heart set on some Mardi Gras gumbo, even if I couldn't make it myself. Enter Goode Co. Seafood.

While there are many excellent offerings here - the seafood empanadas and stellar campechana come to mind - it's the gumbo that I crave most often. I always opt for the seafood gumbo, which combines crab, shrimp and oysters. The crab and shrimp as stand-alones are fine, I suppose, but why would you get your gumbo that way, when all three oceanic delicacies combined cost the exact same amount? Exactly.

That's how I got mine the other day. I had split an order of the aforementioned campechana with my wife and, not wanting to have to ward off the inevitable post-gumbo nap that would have resulted from a full bowl, ordered a cup of the glorious stuff to follow.

What I love about Goode Co. gumbo is what I love about all well-crafted gumbo. The roux. It's all about the roux. Goode Co. crafts a good roux, getting the flour-fat mixture nice and dark, but not so dark that bitterness creeps in. I've tasted many a gumbo ruined by a cook over-reaching, trying for that holy-grail of brick-red, deepest darkest roux, and failing. I'd much rather a gumbo that knows what it's about, with a roux that's dark enough to coax subtleties out of the disarmingly simple combination of flour and fat, but stops shy of pushing things too far. Goode Co. has that down pat.

On top of that, this gumbo is a generous gumbo. Even in my small cup, I found two or three plump oysters, their exterior giving way to the almost scandalously silken texture within. Their brininess both rose above and highlighted the complex earthiness of the ruddy sauce. Sweet crab and vaguely iodine-tinged shrimp threaded through the bowl in equally emphatic concentration, ensuring that every spoonful was a treasure-trove of seafood. Perfectly cooked rice and vibrantly green onion completed the dish. I left full and happy, eager to follow through with my own gumbo aspirations.



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Location Info

Goode Co. Seafood

2621 Westpark Drive, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant


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10 comments
VG
VG

Best dark roux gumbo I've found in Houston is at Danton's.

Maryann12032
Maryann12032

Oh, my, off this week because I work for a school district -- see if I can say same this time next year. I make a gumbo very similar to Goode Company and think theirs is one of the best, outside of mine! A dark, dark roux and care in making same is very important.

Guess, I may have to market my gumbo next year if I don't have a job! Certainly will have to make some this week!

MC
MC

I HAD THE SEAFOOD GUMBO FROM GOODE CO. AND IT "SUCKED"START OFF IT WAS WARM NOT HOT AND IT TASTED LIKE RICE JUMBALAYA OR Estufey (sic). OR SOMETHING ELSE.NEVER AGAIN!!!MC

Nicholas L. Hall
Nicholas L. Hall

I honestly can't figure out how you got the impression that I have a dislike for dark roux (hell, I call it the Holy Grail) gumbo out of this piece, or that I am dismissing any style of gumbo, except maybe bad gumbo with burnt roux. "Pushing things too far" is not making a dark roux, but burning one.

SirRon
SirRon

It appears that you don't really care for dark roux-ed gumbo, but you are dismissing a whole style of the dish (Cajun). You could say that thin crust pizza ruins the dish or is a failure, but that wouldn't be correct either.

Anyway, I really just like the last paragraph.

"this gumbo is a generous gumbo... exterior giving way... scandalously silken texture within... brininess both rose above... complex earthiness of the ruddy sauce... vaguely iodine-tinged... equally emphatic concentration... treasure-trove of seafood... vibrantly green...gumbo aspirations"

Dude, you gots to spread that sh!t out! :)

Also, I totally want gumbo now.

Nicholas L. Hall
Nicholas L. Hall

Sorry you had a bad experience there. Even if you don't like thegumbo, go back for the campechana sometime.

SirRon
SirRon

I inferred from the use of "brick-red, deepest darkest roux."

I maintain no integrity in the comment section, so I have no problem throwing the accusation out there. It's just disqus fodder.

Nicholas L. Hall
Nicholas L. Hall

For the record, Ron, I actually prefer a darker roux. I just find agood one scarcer than a burnt one. Got any recommendations, youbaiting SOB?

Nicholas L. Hall
Nicholas L. Hall

I, for one, appreciate your baiting. . . err, contributions, Ron.

SirRon
SirRon

Baiting? I call it "contributing" or more specifically, making this a more interesting space for freaks.

I don't really have any quality recommendations for Cajun gumbo. Being from Louisiana, I'm generally disappointed with seafood restaurants here that imitate Louisiana's cuisine. You can get great food in every shack and strip mall around the New Orleans area, I don't get why we can't get it here.

Overall, my experience here in Houston is limited. Where is Robb Walsh when you need him? I trust his palate and opinions.

My favorite gumbo is from Seafood Shoppe on Westheimer near Beltway 8. I've never done a gumbo battle royale, but theirs is nearby home and consistently hits the spot... no matter what shade the roux is.

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