Husband and wife duo Billy and Michelle Billeaud run one of the most well-known meat, grocery, and Cajun specialty stores in Acadiana – Billeaud’s Meat and Grocery. Since 1889, this shop has been supplying high-quality goods to Acadiana residents, and today they ship their products as far as Dubai!
Selling boudin, cracklin, and other grocery items is not what Billy had always planned to do with his life. His great-grandfather, Martial Billeaud, Jr., opened this small store on Morgan Street. The shop grew successfully and relocated to Main Street in the 1930s when his son, Roy Billeaud, Sr., took over. Then, in 1959, Roy’s son (Billy’s father), Louis Billeaud, demolished the building and built a new, modern store where they could add more convenience store items and gasoline pumps to sell fuel.
Like his father, once Billy took over he decided to make some innovative changes of his own, like adding large kitchens so the store could sell fresh meals daily including Cajun specialties that people all over the country come to try.
“It’s really nice serving the small, local community and having travelers come in at the same time. We get travelers from all over the United States. It’s very interesting to see these people come in and get introduced to our food and culture,” says Michelle Billeaud.
The visitors make working at Billeaud’s fun and interesting, but at the end of the day, they love the local community. “We have such great local residents. We have generations of families that have shopped in the mercantile back in the day and still shop today,” says Michelle. “It’s really nice still having a connection with those families. Sometimes it’s more of a community center than a store. People come in to see each other and see people they haven’t seen in awhile.”
There’s a friendliness in Acadiana that you just won’t find anywhere else. There’s also a strong desire to be supportive. “In times of need everyone steps up. We’ll have people come in and purchase groceries for those in need. There’s this willingness to want to help everyone that makes the Acadiana community so special,” says Michelle.
Shopping at local stores like Billeaud’s means you get to make special connections and interact with people who have deep roots in the community, like Michelle and Billy. Shopping local also means you get a high level of customer service. “We really strive to make everyone feel welcome when they walk in the door, and we try to supply everyone with whatever they need. It’s that personalized service that makes us stand out as a local business,” says Michelle. “Each day is a different day and each day is filled with something special. You never know what’s going to happen.”
There’s no doubt that Billeaud’s is here to stay. “We have two sons – they are younger now – but we’re hoping they can continue the family tradition. We also just want to continue to serve the community with good food,” says Michelle.
With such a strong family history, beautiful customer relations, and constant innovation, we’re thrilled to see Billeaud’s continue to thrive. Whether you’re a long-time resident or just passing through, you’ve got to give this shop a visit.