Old Metairie celebrates New Orleans' signature sandwich with new festival

By Ann Benoit for Nola.com | The Times-Picayune

Jared Zeller, New Orleans rising festival impresario and leader of theMid-City Bayou Boogaloo, knows how to throw a party. His latest offering, the Muffuletta Festival, drew an excited and hungry crowd to Old Metairie to eat New Orleans' signature sandwich. 

Zeller and Nor-Joe's owner Mark Subervielle combined to put on one of the most delicious festivals offered in the greater New Orleans area. The Muffuletta Festival was Subervielle's idea and creation and it's no secret as to why. Nor-Joe's has some of the best muffulettas in the city.

Since 1996 when Nor-Joe's was started by Norma Schiffmann Webb and Joseph Giglio, the local treasure has imported authentic Italian and Sicilian food products and produced its own local favorites such as olive salad and stuffed artichokes. When Giglio died in 2013, local developers wanted to close the store and develop the property for another purpose, but Subervielle wanted Nor-Joe's to continue. 


Muffuletta Festival: A block party for New Orleans' iconic sandwich

By Ann Maloney for The Times-Picayune

The muffuletta sandwich was born here and it should be celebrated here, so says Mark Subervielle, owner of Nor-Joe Import's, who is putting on a Muffuletta Festival on Sunday (Sept. 10).

The festival, organized by Subervielle and Jared Zeller, will pay tribute to the sandwich as well as Italian-American contributions to New Orleans area food and culture.



Muffuletta Fest in Old Metairie celebrates a sandwich, marks a second act for a classic Italian grocery

By Ian McNulty for The Advocate.

Start stacking the salami and ladle up some olive salad, there's a new party in the works for the mighty muffuletta.

Nor-Joe Imports, the Italian grocery in Old Metairie, is planning the inaugural Muffuletta Festival for Sept. 10. The Sunday afternoon event will bring food booths and bars, a bocce ball court, a muffuletta-themed dance troupe and live music (see details below).

News of another New Orleans food festival may make some eyes roll like well-oiled olives, but this event is taking shape a bit differently from the fests that now fill the local calendar. 

In form and function, the Muffuletta Festival will be more like a block party, held between Nor-Joe’s brick façade and the adjacent rail line on Frisco Avenue. And while organizers say the aim is to celebrate the city’s famous Italian sandwich, the event also marks a new chapter for Nor-Joe itself, which very nearly closed last year.

“It’s not just about this place, it’s about the essence of the old time Italian grocery store, that's what I want to showcase,” said Mark Subervielle, who took over Nor-Joe in 2016. “You hear a lot about new restaurants in town, but sometimes I think the old school food businesses get overshadowed. This is a chance for more of our neighborhood businesses to shine.”