One of the things that I love most about the local restaurant scene in Shreveport-Bossier is the fact that you really cannot predict what will happen next. Just when you think you’ve got things figured out, along comes a Colombian food truck, an urban taqueria or a really good phở place inside of a casino. File Evi’s Schnitzel Haus, a schnitzel joint run by a sweet German native named Evi Sartorius Bradford, under “unlikely restaurant openings of 2017.” Located at 820 Shreveport-Barksdale Highway in Shreveport, Evi’s is clearly a work-in-progress. But the schnitzel is really good.
“It’s a very tender, lean, boneless cut of pork that is pounded and breaded in a German way, seasoned very simply and fried so that it has a nice, crispy crust and a juicy tenderness,” Bradford told me. “What ‘soul food’ is to Louisiana, schnitzel is that to Germany.”
Bradford sees the pork cutlet itself as “a simple pallet” for the wide array of sauces and gravies that can be served on top of it. At the time of my visit (February 2017), there were only a few gravy options, but Bradford says that she can imagine someday serving 20 or more sauces and gravies with the schnitzel. The jaeger schnitzel ($8.50), covered in a thick brown mushroom and onion gravy, is delicious. In addition to schnitzel, the restaurant serves gyros and is gradually adding other menu options.
Back in Germany, Bradford’s mother operated a restaurant. She grew up “being forced to work in a restaurant,” which she hated at the time. She married an American serviceman from Shreveport at age 19 and left the family business behind, but has cooked schnitzel for friends and family over the years. Gradually, all of those requests for German food led her to the idea of opening a restaurant.
“Every time someone would find out that I am from Germany, that would be the first question that I would get: ‘Can you fix me a schnitzel?’,” Bradford said.
Evi’s Schnitzel Haus is now open, 11 a.m.-7 p.m., Monday through Friday, and will open “as a trial run for Saturdays” on Saturday, Feb. 11.
If you love local food, be sure to download the latest edition of Eat Here: A Food Lover’s Guide to Shreveport-Bossier.