Bear's

Anecdotes & Analysis

I've looked for years, and the only really good, consistent poor boy joint I've found is Bear's, on the old main street through Covington. It's a converted convenience store, which is the first good sign--I never trust a poor boy place that was built for the purpose. Bear's offers the entire range of poor boy sandwiches, including a few that engender relatively little interest to my palate but some body must like. The acid test, of course, is the roast beef, which is perfect: the beef is thinly sliced and tender (and cooked on the premises). The gravy is flavorful not too thick, and applied in the right amounts. And the bread is fresh. They also make a good seafood poor boy, and will not shrink back from that hard-to-find wonder, the broiled ham and cheese. Don't come in a hurry; Bear's is always busy, and they make the sandwiches carefully to order. They're worth the wait.

Why It's Essential

The “original” Bear’s in Covington opened in 1990, but according to its owner, Josh Watson, the basis for its roast beef recipe — as well as the basis for the recipes at the other three Bear’s locations owned by Watson’s brother Matt — dates back to the late 1950s, when Watson’s grandparents and parents ran a restaurant called the White House at the corner Hammond Highway and Chickasaw Avenue in Bucktown. The family ran a nearby stand called Big Bear’s Sno-balls at the same time. In 1977, after the White House burned down, Josh Watson said, “We brought that old stand across the lake to Mandeville on the Causeway.” The stand became the new Big Bear’s in Old Mandeville, which served take-out po-boys until the whole business migrated again in 1990, this time to Covington, where it became simply Bear’s. Matt Watson went off on his own to open a Bear’s Grill & Spirits in Mandeville in 2004. He expanded to Slidell a couple years later and then, last fall, to Metairie, which is where I was reminded how much I liked Bear’s ABOVE IS FROM TIMES-PICAYUNE

Backstory

Bear's is a converted convenience store, which is a good sign. (Never trust a poor boy place that was built for the purpose.) It's a little run-down and unkempt--another hallmark of a great sandwich shop. They offer the entire range of poor boy sandwiches, including a few that engender relatively little interest to my palate but somebody must like. The acid test, of course, is the roast beef, which is perfect: the beef is thinly sliced and tender (and cooked on the premises). The gravy is flavorful not too thick, and applied in the right amounts. And the bread is fresh. They also make a good seafood poor boy, and will not shrink back from that hard-to-find wonder, the broiled ham and cheese. Don't come in a hurry; Bear's is always busy, and they make the sandwiches carefully to order. They're worth the wait.

Bear's
128 W 21st Ave, Covington, LA 70433, USA
70433
(985) 892-2373
Website
Accepted
Very Casual
Breakfast
MOTUWETHFRSASU
Lunch
MOTUWETHFRSASU
Dinner
MOTUWETHFRSASU
Attitude 1
Environment 0
Hipness 0
Local Color 1
Service 0
Value 0
Wine 0