Jay Meduri got his degree from San Jose State University while working for various restaurants in the Bay Area, but blues music always held a special place in his heart.

After many trips to New Orleans to perform, he decided that it’s Southern-style cooking needed a venue closer to home. In 2005 he opened the Poor House Bistro, which serves New Orleans cuisine accompanied by live blues music almost every night of the week.

We talked to Meduri about his favorite live performance at Poor House and what he loves most about San Jose.

What brought you to San Jose?

I was raised in Campbell. I’ve lived in downtown San Jose since 1993.

How did Poor House Bistro get its start?

The house was my grandparent’s  in the 1940s.  I lived in the house from 1993 to 2000. I worked on the Bistro for 5 years until it opened in May 2005. I graduated SJSU in hospitality management while working for various restaurants.  I was also a musician and traveled to New Orleans many times.  The Poor House Bistro was about bringing the taste and sound of New Orleans to San Jose.

Any big plans in the future for the restaurant?

Our No. 1 plan is to provide customers with quality food and music in a comfortable environment. We would like to help promote more live music in San Jose. We have joined in as sponsors with the San Jose Jazz Festival and Fountain Blues Festival.

What’s your favorite live performance ever at Poor House?

Dumpstaphunk from New Orleans was my favorite live performance. It was a unannounced event that became our employee appreciation party.

What do you love most about San Jose?

The variety of food that is available at different restaurants.

Where would you have your last meal on earth?

I love Original Joe’s. My father took me when I was young and it has been one of my favorite experiences.

Where is a cool place to take an out-of-towner?

Any local sports game, hiking in the Saratoga mountains or riding a bike along the Los Gatos trail.

Favorite hole-in-the-wall place to grub?

Falafael Drive In.

Name your favorite upcoming San Jose event.

Fountain Blues Festival and San Jose Jazz Festival.

Name three things every local should do this year in San Jose.

Get outside and enjoy the local parks.

Pick up trash when you see it.

Try new restaurants once a week.