The Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau submitted five short stories to Louisiana Office of Tourism (LOT), showcasing farms, chefs, and restaurants that enhance the Red River Riches Culinary Trail. Each story sets north Louisiana’s authentic cuisine apart from the rest, allowing the trail to highlight the area’s most unique food establishments and experiences.


  1. Chef Hardette Harris Keeps North Louisiana Cuisine Rich

A photo of Chef Hardette Harris of Us Up North Kitchen

North Louisiana’s Red River’s soils and bountiful bodies of water create a feast of farm fresh vegetables and sustainable fish. Farms flourish along the banks of the Red River, offering locals and visitors a taste of the area’s treasures. It’s the very reason Chef Hardette Harris, named “Louisianan of the Year” by Louisiana Life Magazine in 2017, was able to create the Official Meal of North Louisiana. This appetizing meal includes fried catfish, purple hull peas, and hot water cornbread, which are all the ingredients that grow and produce naturally along the Red River. Originally from Minden, Louisiana, Chef Harris coined this meal based on her childhood memories of preparing what was available in the area.


  1. Indulge in Shreveport’s Underground Food Scene at MS KICK

ms kick

Milam Street Kitchen Incubator & Community Kitchen (MS KICK), located at 1201 Milam Street in Shreveport, is a local gem that houses underground culinary artists and start-up caterers in an effort to support, build, and supply local cooks with a full-service catering kitchen. This center is a community project that shares its riches with entrepreneur caterers by giving them an affordable brick and mortar commercial kitchen to prepare, cook, and serve Shreveport-Bossier foodies at a high capacity.


  1. El Cabo Verde Named Best Mexican Restaurant in Louisiana

A photo of El Cabo Verde in Shreveport

With an astounding five-star Yelp rating, recipes with all non-GMO ingredients, and a dedicated farm-to-table menu, it is no shock that El Cabo Verde is dubbed the Best Mexican Restaurant in the entire state of Louisiana by 24/7 Tempo. Owner and Chef Gabriel Balderas was named “Chefs to Watch” by Louisiana Cooking Magazine in 2016. Chef Balderas’ enrichment of locally grown corn is one of the many culinary elements to his style that set an unachievable bar for other Louisiana Mexican restaurants. What began as a pop-up restaurant developed in a flavorful phenomenon that locals respect, appreciate, and support.


  1. Cotton St. Farm Takes Root in Downtown Shreveport

michael billings cotton street farms

Cotton St. Farms is an indoor hydroponic farm and is one of the rarest and richest in the north Louisiana region. Located in downtown Shreveport, this unconventional farming technique allows its growers to produce fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs without harmful pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides. This process leaves the consumer with safe, healthy, aroma-filled, and nutritious foods. Cotton St. Farms fuels various Shreveport-Bossier restaurants with mixed greens, sprouts, herbs, and more. Michael Billings, founder of Cotton St. Farms and modern agricultural enthusiast, continues to sprout through concrete without a grain of soil in sight.


  1. New Wave of Experiential Agritourism Takes Off in North Louisiana

Dairy farmer with cows at Morell Dairy Farm is sold at Farmers' Markets in Shreveport and Bossier City

With an uptick in outdoor recreation interests, visitors and locals took advantage of hands-on agricultural experiences on rural farms in Caddo and Bossier Parishes. At Morrell Dairy Farm in Mooringsport, visitors can pet cows that produce the thick, creamy milk and butter you consume. Ryan Farms Produce in Dixie is the only farm market in the area that takes place on farmland. Haughton’s Blueberry Hill is no stranger to tourists, blueberry pickers travel near and far to gather pounds of blue berries. Also in Haughton, Mahaffey Farms is known for their premier foodie farm tours, and they even offer overnight stays at the Mahaffey Farmhouse.