5410-Y N.C. 55

“Its pretty simple….music excites people and makes them happy. Food does the same thing. Put them together and you get real happy!”

There are no shortcuts when it comes to mastering the true art of authentic Cajun Creole cooking. Cajun cooking is not about dumping in more hot sauce. Its about the ambience, the heat, the raw ingredients, the music….and how they all come together.

Papa Mojos Roadhouse founder Mel Melton paid his dues in the hot, sweltering heat of southwest Louisiana in a Cajun womans kitchen, learning the intricacies of each spice and the various traditional cooking methods. Nicknamed The Zydeco Chef by his friend and former bandmate, C.J. Chenier, Mel has enjoyed the success of two careers for over 20 years – one as a singer, songwriter and harmonica player and the other as a professional gourmet chef and food consultant.

A North Carolina native, Mel went to Lafayette, La. in the summer of 1969 to visit a college friend and play a little music before going back to UNC. His plans changed when he became totally immersed in the rich culture and physical beauty of southwest Louisiana. He moved permanently to Lafayette and began playing in a band he co-founded with Sonny Landreth, the Louisiana slide guitar-playing superstar.

To help support his musical career, Mel took a series of jobs in the best Cajun restaurants in the city and discovered a new talent and another part of Cajun lifestyle, Louisiana cooking. At the same time, he was becoming known as a singer and harmonica player specializing in a Zydeco style of harp playing that has become his trademark.

Food and music are parallel art forms for Mel. Both allow for instant feedback. Both are exciting and fast-paced. You have a team in the kitchen and on the floor thats a lot like a band. Mel’s passion for both is the key ingredient that drives his vision for Papa Mojos Roadhouse.