These casual, loud and usually fun eateries are paeans to South Louisiana, and they do a great job replicating those Cajun flavors, especially at the long-standing original location on Richmond. Lunch staple po-boys are excellent — particularly the shrimp po-boy, made with properly battered and deep-fried, medium-sized shrimp inside a good-quality, crusty French roll with lettuce, tomato and tartar-like sauce. Both versions of the étouffée, one with decent-sized shrimp and the other with crawfish, are very flavorful. In season, they have the reputation for serving some of the best boiled crawfish in town. The marinated and messy barbecue crabs are another seasonal treat. Many patrons chow down on baskets overflowing with the deep-fried products of the Gulf such as fried shrimp stuffed with crabmeat, fried crawfish tails, fried oysters and fried catfish.
"I hadn't been to Ragin Cajun in decades (the original Richmond Avenue location dates from 1974), and my enjoyment of the food and the super-casual picnic-table, self-serve setup caught me as much by surprise as my crawfish epiphany. I remembered the fare as mediocre. But the fried shrimp and oysters (both in light, crunchy cracker-meal style breading instead of the usual gritty cornmeal) were very good."
— Alison Cook, Houston Chronicle