When you are here you are home. Why I Love New Orleans: Food Edition
Updated: Apr 26, 2018
My husband grew up just outside of New Orleans. I spent many years living and going to graduate school in this magical city. It is the closest to Europe you can get in the United States. Laissez les bons temps rouler!
My favorite way to travel is what some might call the European way: by eating and drinking my way through the city. Walk a bit, eat a bit, drink a bit, and of course laugh and shop a lot. This usually leads to interesting conversations with locals, delicious foods that really show you what the city's soul is made of, and a list of recipes to add to your repertoire.
“New Orleans is the most European city in the United States. It's focus is on life and everything that makes it worth living. Music, art, food, and people.”
Every local has their favorite spots. Here are a few of mine below.
Before Hurricane Katrina forced the doors to close this was the oldest continuously operational restaurant in the country. I worked my way through graduate school at #tulane as a waitress here. Their service standards are legendary. After working here and eating here for years the food never gets old. It is an amazing combination of classic New Orleans cuisine and style. Chef Tory McPhail not only has a James Beard award under his belt, but the restaurant itself was inducted into the Culinary Institute of America's Hall of Fame. Everything here is going to be an experience. They do accept walk ins but call ahead to make a reservation if you can. My favorite time to dine are the Jazz brunches which take place every Saturday & Sunday. Although going during the week means you can take advantage of the 25 cent Martini lunch special...seriously no joke.
A few images to get your mouth watering...
“The food tells the history of the city. New Orleans is the richness of France with the Spices of the Caribbean." #winningcombination
The buns make it special. The topping list and outdoor patio make it worth going back. Originally a walk-up counter on the revitalized Feret St. Dat Dog takes the phrase "hot dog" to another level entirely. Choose from a list of amazing diverse types of sausages (or veggie options: chipotle black bean is a personal favorite) then chose from an amazing list of toppings to put on a sour dough bun grilled to perfection. Creole mustard, crawfish etouffee, Andouille sausage, and the famous "mother-in-law slaw" will have you coming back for more.
Cafe Du Monde
Touristy yes...but when they only have 3 things on the menu you know they are going to be done correctly. Located directly across from Jackson Square in the heart of the French quarter. My advice: go in the afternoon on a weekday if you can. The lines can get CRAZY. But it does move fast. If you need to walk a bit after you have gotten your beignets (been-yay) the famous French market is only steps away.
The war in New Orleans for the best Poboy in INTENSE. I will say that my favorite is the fire-cracker shrimp Poboy at Parasol's. They soak the battered shrimp in Crystal Hot Sauce and then fry it...enough said. This is a hidden gem located upstairs from the bar in the Irish Channel. But don't worry there is literally a window upstairs you can open and order drinks from the bar #onlyinneworleans
Port of Call
A French quarter classes. The menu consists of only a few items but only two you need to concern yourself with: burgers and baked potatoes. You will have to wait unless you get there at opening, but it is worth it. Try not to finish your entire Monsoon (their take on a Hurricane) because you won't make it to dinner.
This amazing local joint started out how a lot of New Orleans restaurants do: in a tiny little house with about 8 tables. From that little place on Juliet St in Uptown it has now grown into one of my favorite spots to revisit. The blackened shrimp and grit cake makes my mouth water simply typing it. Fantastic prices for food and wine.
St. James Cheese Factory
Where is there a beautiful and yet slightly hidden courtyard where you and some friends (or just you I have done it;) can share beautiful salads, sandwiches, or a cheese plate to die for with an amazing wine selection? Here. Go during the day and enjoy a late afternoon as often as possible.
Steps away from St. James Cheese Factory on Prytania St. in uptown New Orleans this amazing freshly made old school ice cream joint will make you find the room even after a decadent meal. They make the ice cream daily on site (a big window lets you see them at it). Creole Cream Cheese is a personal favorite, but they have seasonal flavors so stop in frequently.
Are you looking for a place to have Champagne, caviar, and crème fraîche at midnight? Look no further. A New addition to downtown New Orleans off Rampart St. it is quickly making a name for itself. For my bachelorette party this was amazing pitstop!