If you’ve ever passed through New Orleans during Mardi Gras, you’ll never forget it. There’s really nothing else like it on the planet – although in February Melbourne will be getting a taste.

On February 17, New Orleans-style food truck Gumbo Kitchen is hosting the fourth annual Fat Tuesday Southern Food and Music Festival, complete with Louisiana-style food trucks and bands.

The festival kicks off at 5pm at Hardy’s Reserve where there will be Southern food from Bluebonnet Barbeque, Po’ Boy Quarter and Girl with the Gris Gris.

Come on an empty stomach because there will be authentic Louisiana gumbo – a rich stew with shrimp, chicken, sausages and tomato – as well as Texan barbeque and Po’ Boys subs. Abita Brewery will provide New Orleans craft beer and there’ll be gin cocktails from West Winds Gin.

Find a spot on the grass to listen to live music by jazz musician Adam Rudegeair, brass band Horns of Leroy, blues musician Joules Boult and The Johnny Can’t Dance Cajun Trio. Then in the late afternoon you’ll be on your feet following a second-line brass band down the street.

The festival is held on the same date as the Mardi Gras in New Orleans, so here’s a chance to buy some Mardi Gras beads, get into a slice of king cake and embrace the celebrations in Melbourne.

Fat Tuesday Southern Food and Music Festival is taking place at Hardy’s Reserve, Carlton North on Tuesday February 17 from 5pm–10pm.

gumbokitchen.com.au