Well what a tough month it has been.
We’ve been traveling here and there just to tempt the tummy…
No sooner had we returned from our stormy Mexican fiesta than I jumped right back in the saddle and headed to the French Quarter for food, jazzy blues, history and community support.
The Brad Pitt 9th Ward project is so special - a floating house and all.
I believe that one of these celebrity chef's should take their talents to the hard hit areas so that tourists will venture out of your comfort zone to really support the need. (Are you listening Mr. Pitt, Ms. Spicer, and Mr. Besh?)
New Orlean's isn't big on wayfaring but they sure are friendly and kind with directions. Southern hospitality is always lovely.
So here are some of my top spots from this trip:
Cafe Dumonde - Our first morning treat came from the ever bustling shop ( a little bit of a tourist trap but for good reason…) 800 Decatur St. on the river in the Quater. Great coffee and beingets and that's it - who needs anything else to start your day
Lola's - Best paella and the most mouth watering, buttery smooth chocolate cake i ever have wrapped my tongue around… 3312 Esplenade (A little bit of a drive but well worth it - Have the Sangria!)
Atchafalaya Restaurant - The best meal of our trip - Fried green Tomatoes. Awesome Bloody Mary with pickled beans and ockra 901 Louisiana Ave - over by the Garden District off Magazine Street
The Gumbo Shop- for a quick lunch of traditional gumbo. 630 St Peter's St. (By the church and there is one of the oldest bars on this street Pat Obrien's and the Old Absinthe House)
Try a Sazerac - my new favorite cocktail !!!! Rye and bitters, splash of pernod to season the glass, a little sugar, twist of lemon and 3 ice cubes.
Bayona- The best I had in my quest… Beautiful courtyard and great staff 430 Dauphine St
The last few “musts” for any trip to the Bayou:
Go to Frenchman St for music any night there are bars and music venues bumpin!
Get your hair done at Urban Angel on Magazine St for a great color and cut .....
Shop on Magazine St for anything fun and funky or sweet.....
Fried alligator at Cochon
Spicy grilled pork ribs with watermelon pickle with Cochon
Root beer float with Catdaddy Moonshine at Cochon
Barbecue shrimp over grits with a uniquely wonderful etouffe type sauce - Dick and Jenny's
Buffet lunch at Matt and Naddie's
Charcuterie plate at Dantes
Pickled Peanuts at Dante's
Meat Loaf at Ignatius
Fried Chicken and potato salad at Willie Mays Scotch House
Praline Bacon at Elizabeth's
Coffee at Croissant d'or
Muffuletta and off beat food items at Central Grocery
THE CRESENT CITY FARMER"S MARKET - support the community wherever you are or go....
Best Sazerac at Atmosphere
Best Sazerac the Swizzle Stick Bar
Best restaurant tee shirts - Lucy's Retired Surfer's Bar or the Cochon "corn star"
Best Local Art - Jackson Square
My favorite stop for bloody's in the afternoon - Pirates Alley
Favorite late night - D.B.A. or anything on Frenchman Street and don’t forget Vaughn's on Thursdays
Favorite dive bar - Buffa's on Esplenade
Favorite wine shop/bar - W.I.N.O.
The Best Shoe store ever: Trashy Diva on Chartres St.
Best thrift shopping: Bargain Center on Dauphine and the other Bywater shops
Hotel i wish I stayed at: Loft 523
Best Salon (and you know that's what really get's me to the Bayou) - Urban Angels on Magazine
Insider Tip: If you want the real deal last call spot go to Buffa's on Esplenade but do it before the bartenders tip the bottle al little too hard but this was our last night cap spot every night and they remember your libation of choice when you walk in the door. Nothing fancy!!!!
Port of Call Best burgers even though I don't eat them - I could tell by the crouds, the referals and the cases of empty meat on the street every night. Located on Esplenade across from our hotel
Melrose Mansion - ask for the honeymoon suite and you will experience the most beautiful nights sleep without breaking the bank.
Places We Wish We Tried On This Trip
Saturn Bar - we tried and tried and will try again
Upperline and Restaurant Patois - heard the chef's hit up the Tuesday markets!!!!!
My favorite spot which I missed this trip -Atchafalaya - they don't get the press they deserve!!!!
Lola's Chocolate cake - still hoping for the recipe!
Elizabeth's for prailine bacon breakfast - 601 Gallier st. in Marigny
Mat & Naddie's is like something we would open if we ventured south - 937 Leonidas St on the river way down by Tuelane
Brigtsen's and Dante's on dante street - referred by many
Cochon… Unfortunately, the chef and his side kick's were the most impersonal and uninviting people I met on the trip so we opted out and went to August for a truly opulent and romantic meal.
We did support the Cresent City Farmer's Market at a benefit food tasting with Alice Water's - as my staff refer's to me as ghetto waters for my like minded view on food and life and community service, It was a fullfilled dream before I die to meet her . She was everything and more and I am still bubbly over the experience....