JED’s dropped ‘poboys’ from its name, but still satisfies with Southern favorites and a revamped style

About 225’s food critic: Benjamin Leger previously served as managing editor for 225 and was the editor of its Taste section from 2012 to 2021, editing, writing and steering the direction of its food coverage in print and online. He is passionate about all things food and food journalism, and has written about the greater Baton Rouge area’s cuisine and culture for nearly two decades.

THE BASICS: Russell and Sally Davis opened this Capital Heights spot in 2018 as JED’s Local Poboys, a companion restaurant to their Eliza Restaurant further down Jefferson Highway. Initially serving a variety of po-boys, fries and daily specials, the restaurant broadened its menu last fall with more classic Louisiana entrees, salads and signature cocktails.

WHAT’S A MUST: The Cochon Chips appetizer is an easy crowd-pleaser with pulled pork and creolaise sauce atop housemade chips; the Shrimp and Fried Green Tomato Poboy is a heaping sandwich of blackened shrimp and crispy battered tomatoes on New Orleans-style French bread; and any of the Southern comfort food entrees are worth a try.black line

At nearly six years old, JED’s Local already has the qualities of a neighborhood hangout in Mid City. But with its recently renovated, cozy interior and a focus on more than just po-boys—even dropping the word from its original name—JED’s is aiming to become a tried-and-true spot for people craving Louisiana favorites in a casual and welcoming atmosphere.

I’ve eaten at JED’s a few times before, back when it was all metal chairs, tin serving trays and black-and-white photos on the walls with a general industrial aesthetic. I’ve also had some wonderful experiences with the elegant Southern classics and more upscale environment at its sister-concept, Eliza Restaurant.

The new JED’s builds a bridge between the two, with a warmer interior, lots of antique farmhouse furnishings and a menu that leans more on Southern dishes and cocktails with a handful of classic po-boys to satisfy the regulars.

I visited one Wednesday evening with two friends to give this new spin a try.

Fortunately, the host’s stand with the penny tile “Mid City” lettering is still there to greet visitors. And the bar to the left has kept several local beers on tap. Once seated at a roomy banquette, we immediately asked for an appetizer I had been eyeing: Cochon Chips.

I initially thought this dish would feature pork skins or cracklins, but instead, it was tender pulled pork piled high on housemade potato chips all doused in a creolaise sauce with cheddar cheese and green onions.

The chips were thick-cut and salty, the pork was seasoned well, and the creolaise had a horseradish-like kick that really made this appetizer sing.

For our entrees, we wanted to try a little of what JED’s is known for, as well as its newer plates.

First up was the Shrimp and Fried Green Tomato Poboy. Grilled and blackened shrimp, thick cuts of green tomato, chopped egg and slices of lettuce nearly hid the flaky French bread beneath it. The shrimp were spicy, the tomatoes were battered and fried to give a crispy exterior, the bread was just right, and a drizzle of remoulade on top was just enough without overpowering the other flavors.

Served with a ton of fries sprinkled with a surprising red pepper-cumin seasoning, this huge dish could have easily satisfied two.

Cochon Chips

Of several enticing entrees, we went with Smothered Chicken. Chunks of boneless chicken breast were cooked down in a light brown onion gravy. This was another heaping plate of food, served with two scoops of white rice and two toasted slices of French bread.

While the chicken was tender and the sauce was hearty, the dish needed more seasoning overall. The menu also mentioned cornbread instead of toasted French bread, and we were a little bummed not to have that option to contrast all the po-boy bread we were consuming.

That included our final entree. Persuaded by a listing on a nearby chalkboard, we opted to try the Pulled Pork Poboy of the Month to round out the meal.

Beer-braised pork shoulder was slow-cooked and pulled, then covered in a fig barbecue sauce with cheddar cheese and a house coleslaw. It was, again, a huge serving with enough crispy onion rings on the side for all three of us to get our fill. The sandwich’s pulled pork was nearly the same as what we got on the appetizer, but the fig barbecue sauce added some complex sweetness, and the coleslaw offered zesty crunch.

With all that food, we had no room for dessert. But I can save that for next time. There are several other comfort food entrees I’m interested in trying, like the Fried Oyster and Crawfish Pasta or the Grilled Pork Chop with cane syrup glaze.

And if it’s a damn good po-boy I’m craving, JED’s would still be high on my list. Some po-boy spots offer more bread than filling (or the other way around), and JED’s doesn’t skimp on either. Paired with a draft beer or nice cocktail, you have the makings of a lovely dinner at a neighborhood hangout that’s found a sweet spot between casual and just a little bit sophisticated.


672 Jefferson Highway

Monday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m.

This article was originally published in the July 2024 issue of 225 Magazine.