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“Hidden gem in Leesburg” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Cajun Experience, Leesburg Va

The Cajun Experience, Leesburg Va
14 Loudoun St., Leesburg, VA
703-777-6580
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Ranked #21 of 175 Restaurants in Leesburg
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Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Reservations
Description: www.cajunexperience.biz
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Hidden gem in Leesburg”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2013

We found this place by purchasing a Groupon, and I'm so glad we did! Having been to New Orleans, we've had the real thing and the food here was JUST as delicious. The staff was very nice, and the owner chatted with us as well (he's from LA). The grilled oysters are a MUST try. I have only ever liked oysters from one other restaurant (in NOLA), but these were just as good. For me to go back for more than 1 is saying something. The entrees were also delicious (crawfish etoufee` and a cajun sampler). And a cajun meal is not complete without a beignet! We did not sample the alcohol but they had a nice selection. I hear reservations are a must on weekends, and they have an impressive menu for a Sunday Brunch. A must try if you like cajun food!

To give you an idea of the prices, the oysters were $1.50 ea ($18 for a dozen), entrees were $12-$25, and dessert was about $5. A little on the pricey side (but I had a groupon!). They did say they probably won't offer the groupons again.

We will be back regardless of the prices...with friends next time. I also hear they are expanding their patio.

  • Visited March 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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76 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    9
    5
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Ashburn, Virginia
Top Contributor
287 reviews 287 reviews
202 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 100 cities Reviews in 100 cities
140 helpful votes 140 helpful votes
“Finally!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2013

So happy to find a restaurant in the area that has authentic Cajun food! I've lived in the area for 25+ years, after moving here from New Orleans, and have been looking for authentic Cajun food ever since! I found this restaurant through Groupon, and we had no problem using my voucher. We dined on a Monday holiday, so there was no issue with parking, but in general you do need to be careful as to where you park. There is a public garage just down the street.

Our party consisted of four adults and a baby and at first there was a bit of confusion as to where to seat us. We went upstairs and ended up having our own private dining room! The restaurant is in what was a house, so there are a lot of rooms. You must be careful going up the stairs as the ceiling is quite low and you could hit your head. We were seated at a large dining room table and it was the only table in the room, which was quite nice. Bryan, the manager, waited on us, and he couldn't have been friendlier. We had a couple of nice conversations, as we had our home state in common since he too is from Louisiana.

He apologized that they were out of a couple food items, including the seafood gumbo and fried okra. He said they had been crazy busy the past few days and were running out of food! There were so many good things on the menu it was hard to decide what to get. We shared a cup of the crawfish mac & cheese. It was quite tasty and had some nice size chunks of crawfish in it, and plenty of cheese. My husband had a cup of the chicken and sausage gumbo since they were out of the seafood gumbo. He said it tasted fine, but he just prefers a thicker roux. He had the red beans and rice for his entree, which he said was very good. I, and the other two adults in our party, had the "crawfish half & half". This is a large plate/platter of crawfish etouffee, served over white rice, and fried crawfish tails. Both were wonderful! There were also two fritters and a piece of bread on the plate. The crawfish dinners also came with two beignets for dessert. The beignets are "Cafe du Monde" beignets, and I am loyal to Morning Call. (If you are from New Orleans, you understand this.) I was stuffed by the time I got to the beignets and since they were a bit "heavier" than what I like, I ended up giving them to my husband.

Since it was Monday, the special of the day was red beans and rice. This is a New Orleans tradition. The special also included two pork chops and beignets. The restaurant carries a variety of Abita beer.

Bryan was patient with us, as it took a while for us to decide what we wanted and he had to bring everything up the stairs! The recipes are kept "simple" and true to Cajun standards! You know you've found the real deal when "The Trinity" is mentioned on the menu! If you want white linen tablecloths, this is not the place for you, however if you want great food, this is the place!

We will certainly be back.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Warrenton, Virginia
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“How Ya'll Are?”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2013

What fun! A REAL Cajun restaurant in historic old town Leesburg, known for gracious Virginia-style dining.
The atmosphere is a quite casual, personable (with staff), and a bit rickety in the building - alot like being in Georgetown. Parking is really good, and there's nice walking to nearby Antique shops.
The food is absolutely great, and authentic, low cost! Best not to expect a perfect, sterile bathroom, it is clean, and usable, but old. Not your new chain-food restaurant style at all.
I've only visited in Winter, the spices seeming to draw me then, but I hear that there is music and a backyard area for a true summer experience!
Servers and kitchen staff are truly genuine and friendly - you are not a stranger, and they truly want to be there with you. The few tables are close so your neighbors had better have an appropriate conversation as you will surely hear it - but this is part of the fun here!
Really, you can't go wrong here, unless you can't climb the front steps, or if you can't deal with the traditional Cajun spices. Oh, did I drool on about their Beignets? FANTASTIC - DO NOT ORDER THEM, or you will forever stuff them in your mouth.

  • Visited November 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Leesburg, Virginia
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
36 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“This is a great place!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2013

I wish the restaurant was nicer inside but that being said I love the muffeletta and the fried okra. my husband loves the beans and rice and the jambalya is flavorful! The service can sometimes be spotty but once the food gets there you forget about everything else. The beniets are tasty too!

Visited December 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Burke, Virginia
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Authentic Louisiana”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2013 via mobile

We usually avoid so-called Cajun restaurants outside Louisiana because they never get the spicing or textures right - but I am glad we decided to take a chance for Sunday lunch today. The chef is from Lafayette and it shows. The menu was encouraging with its mention of the "trinity" and the little town of Melville - and the food was wonderfully authentic. The chicken sausage gumbo, made with a nice dark roux, was seasoned perfectly - with subtle heat that is only apparent after several bites. I had a very nice oyster poboy - with soft French bread and perfectly seasoned and fried oysters. My husband had the crawfish étouffée with fried fish - both excellent. Since both our choices were part of a special, we had fresh, hot beignets for dessert. Since bread pudding is my favorite dessert, we will be back to try that, along with the marque choux, which I have never seen on a menu outside Louisiana. Finally, a place to get good Louisiana food in Virginia besides my kitchen!

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