I think the key is having the perfect roux. The recipe said it took like 15 mins....it was more like 30+ mins till it was as dark as I wanted. Just when I thought I was done, I would cook it a little bit more and it would become an even richer color. You can purchase roux at the grocery store or at least I did the first time I made it. Making your own just takes time and patience.
A pot on the stove would be just as easy to cook on low but the crockpot allows you to set it and leave it. I never worry about putting something in the crockpot and leaving the house but the stove and oven are a whole other story.
When I made our plates for dinner I served it like I see at restaurants. If it wasn't going to taste good, it was going to look good. But alas it was delicious served with a side of French bread to dip into it and will enjoy it probably all week because I doubled the recipe. Bon appétit