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Top 3 for Dinner

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I need three great restaurants for dinner. I have not been to New Orleans in a couple of years. The last time I was there I tried Stella and August and both were great. I have no problem returning to either if they crack your top 3. I'm not sure if there are any new places that are worth trying.
So, what is your top 3? I'm going to go with the consensus so please try to rank em, if possible...

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  1. 1. August
    2. Brigsten's
    3. Cochan

    Alberta was also very, very good when I was there in October, but I've heard it's gone downhill since then.

    1. I almost agree with funkjester, but would substitute Stella! for August and rank them
      1. Brigtsen's
      2. Stella!
      3. Cochon

      If you haven't been to NO in a couple of years Cochon will be new to you. It is much more casual than any of the others mentioned, pretty loud and very, very good.

      23 Replies
      1. re: ddavis

        All of these are fine choices, but too often this board rehashes the same restaurants over and over again. There are so many choices beyond what is recommended here by what must be visitors not locals. Upperline, Vizards, Cuvee, Iris, Lilette, Clancy's,Gautreau's, One, Dante's. You get my drift. Happy Dining

        1. re: Tonto

          Tonto, which three make the cut?

          1. re: Sobe

            I would say Cuvee, Vizard's, Upperline.

            1. re: Tonto

              Just so I'm clear on this: If you had only three meals to eat in New Orleans you wouuld choose Cuvee, Vizard's and Upperline?

              1. re: ddavis

                ddavis, what would your top 3 be?

                1. re: ddavis

                  No, but Stella and August had already been tried. I was just trying to add some variety.

                  1. re: ddavis

                    Disagree with Upperline. Not even in top 10.

            2. re: ddavis

              Having had a truly horrid experience at Stella!, I personally would disagree with that -- and return August back into that list. But it's all personal experience . . .

              Further, while I have loved my meals at Cochon, I wouldn't list it as one of my top three of dinner.

              Alphabetically: August, Bayona, Brigtsen's, Lillette, Upperline, Vizard's, with the "nod" going to the first three based SOLELY on the fact that I've dined at each more than once with consistently excellent results. (Yes, Tonto - I'm a visitor to New Orleans, not a local.)

              1. re: zin1953

                this is off topic a bit, but since we are talking about NOLA I thought i would share:

                Did you know that the Ritz Carlton hosts a crawfish boil on Sundays from 2pm to 4pm for $12.50 per person. it's open to the public, not just hotel guests.

                Top 3 - and these aren't so much fine dining as just plan amazing:

                Crabby Jack's (best Alligator "cheese cake" aka quiche
                Port O Call (burgers and bloody mary's to die for)
                Dante's (amazing dinner with a wonderful porch)

                I've of course had great meals at Commander's Palace Jacques-imo's and Emeril's in the past, but you all have heard of those. I am not a local, so I can't wait to try the ones mentioned above.

                1. re: strephking

                  I guess you were just watching Giarda's special on the Food Network too :-)

                  1. re: sivyaleah

                    I was! i really want to try Petunia's next time i'm in NOLA.

                    1. re: strephking

                      Read this board then - if I remember correctly, there has been some "iffy" reviews of Petunia's.

                      1. re: sivyaleah

                        Petunia's is great for breakfast and decent for lunch. I would not include it, though, in a "top 3" list. (I personally also don't think it's worth waiting 45 minutes in line for, but an always happy to go when I am able to get in without waiting.)

                  2. re: strephking

                    Jacques-imo's serves the alligator cheesecake, not Crabby Jacks

                    1. re: paz5559

                      And it is definitely more of a cheesecake than a quiche. Think savory.

                      1. re: paz5559

                        I did not have alligator cheesecake at Jacques-imos, it was at Crabby Jacks. It was a special, and it was awesome! i remember the entire experience like it was yesterday.

                      2. re: strephking

                        Port O Call is great but I always have to stop by Camillia Grill and Mother's for lunch when I'm in town. The crawfish boil sounds good. Do you have more info?

                        1. re: strephking

                          I sure hope the Ritz-Carlton isn't doing a crawfish boil now, because it's not a good time to be eating them.

                          1. re: Frolic

                            If I had to think of a less appropriate place to eat crawfish than the Ritz, I'd be hard-pressed. Okay, maybe inside a church. Boiled crawfish are NOT fancy-hotel-restaurant food. Not even fancy-hotel-casual-restaurant food.

                            1. re: Hungry Celeste

                              i saw it on Giada, i am not sure when the episode was originaly aired.

                              1. re: Hungry Celeste

                                Hungry Celeste, thank God for you. Nothing is worse than having great food on the table, and being afraid to eat it cause the place is TOO STUFFY..... Any recommendations on fresh oysters in Nola now?

                                1. re: barclaypie

                                  Wait two weeks, then go to Casamento's. It's still August...no R, no oysters, no Casamentos.

                                2. re: Hungry Celeste

                                  Now, I had great crawfish at Christian's, which was IN a church, but I suspect that it is long gone. Does that count? [Grin]


                        2. Current standings

                          1. Brigsten's
                          2. August
                          3. Cuvee

                          1. 1. Brigtsens
                            2. KPauls
                            3. Cochon

                            1. Hey, I dig Cochon, but it's not the same sort of high-church fine dining as August or Cuvee....chairs are wooden, atmosphere is bustling, food is delicious, straight-ahead, strongly flavored. I'd rank August, Cuvee, and Gautreau's or Upperline.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Hungry Celeste

                                I included cochon because I'm finding lately that the best food is not coming out of those high-church, fine dining places...not trying to be difficult- just explaining why it made my top 3 list

                              2. (Fine Dining)
                                1. Gautreau's (New chef is rockin it!)
                                2. August (Everything is just beautiful - becoming a classic)
                                3. Stella (Exteremely passionate chef, great service)

                                (Amazing but more laid back)
                                1. Clancy's (Food ma not be edgy or innovative but it's a staple for locals)
                                2. Cochon (Great niche spot and just got james beard nod)
                                3. Jacquimo's (After all these years this place is still hot)

                                *Iris - haven't been yet, but he did make F&W's best new chef very recently

                                1. my favorites would have to be
                                  and Cafe Adelaide....it is the sister restaurant to Commanders Palace and is definitely under estimated as a great restaurant. It is in the Loews hotel.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: klm6242

                                    I've recently had some amazing meals at adelaide. People are def sleepin on that one.

                                  2. I think Commander's is better than it ever was Pre-K and it would stay on my list, permanently. Had a great dinner at Upperline recenlty. If you've not been there, it would be well worth your time and money. Cuvee would be on my list as well. The creme brulee foie gras is out of this world as is the mirliton napolean. I would usually include Mr. B's, but I haven't been there Post K, so I don't know if all the kinks are out yet.

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: calliope

                                      Had good lunch last Friday at Mr. B's. Everything seemed pretty smooth to me. Any second opinions?

                                      1. re: kmnola

                                        Had dinner at Mr. B's last month. Was good, but not great.

                                        1. re: Blumie

                                          Mr. B's was one of the latest to reopen. Give it some time. I hear the cocktails are tops roght now!

                                    2. Okay, we booked August and Cuvee thus far. Cuvee will be our 1 year anniversary spot. Need one more dinner for Sat Night. We are passing on Brigtsen's based on location and Stella since we went there during our last trip. Last spot is down to Vizards and Lilette. Tough call.

                                      Does Cuvee have a tasting menu? If so, would you recommend it?
                                      Is the tasting menu at August a must do?

                                      10 Replies
                                      1. re: Sobe

                                        Hey Sobe, I am from your Florida board but I viisit New Orleans several times a year and was in NO last weekend.. Are you trying to stay in or near the French Quarter? If so, I don't see Bayona on anyone's list but I thought it was quite good and more high end like Cuvee and August. As I recall, the food was very good. The place was charming, invitiing and cozy, and the staff was helpul and friendly. Maybe the locals can chime in on this one......

                                        1. re: Debbie

                                          It's easy to miss, Dbbie, but just for the record, back on 5 August, I posted:

                                          >>> Alphabetically: August, Bayona, Brigtsen's, Lillette, Upperline, Vizard's, with the "nod" going to the first three based SOLELY on the fact that I've dined at each more than once with consistently excellent results. (Yes, Tonto - I'm a visitor to New Orleans, not a local.) <<<

                                            1. re: Sobe

                                              for me? Lilette, but it's a very close call . . . .

                                          1. re: Debbie

                                            Hi Debbie, thought your name looked familiar when I read your trip report. I went to Bayona a couple of times when they first opened years ago. If I had more time I would go back and try it again.

                                          2. re: Sobe

                                            Local here...
                                            Sobe, what abt:
                                            Cochon?? - it's in warehouse district - so still downtown
                                            Cafe Adelaide - a sleeper and in ther area

                                            Unfortunately - i think bayona has been going down hill (my last experience there, being served by susan herself, who is rarely there anymore, was disappointing)

                                            1. re: jamielynn

                                              I need to look at the menu again. If I recall correctly, I was concerned that a non-pork lover would be in trouble there. I'm sure I'd love it though. I'll review the menu again. Thanks

                                              1. re: Sobe

                                                If the non-porker ate seafood, he/she would do okay at Cochon...wood-grilled fish, oyster pan roast....

                                                1. re: Hungry Celeste

                                                  If it's between Lilette and Vizard's, go with Lilette. It's better food, more consistent, and more fun.

                                            2. re: Sobe

                                              I believe the chef will feed you at Cuvee. I would not miss the foie gras creme brulee or the shrimp/mirliton apps. They are musts.

                                              My third would be Commander's. The food is great right now. If I were to choose between Lillette and Vizard's, I go with Lilette. My parents had a very good meal there recenly, but its never ranked up at the top for me.

                                            3. My three:

                                              Brigtsen's (Tops)
                                              Commander's Palace (Even better post K)
                                              Delmonico (See big Dave, bartender)

                                              I'll be on NOLA again on Sept. 17th for nine days, and I report back afterwards.

                                              1. My 3 favorites:
                                                Dante's Kitchen
                                                Marigny Brasserie

                                                3 Replies
                                                1. re: cor

                                                  Has anyone here been to Dick and Jenny's on any recent trips to NO. It used to be one of my fave places when I lived there.
                                                  The shrimp and alligator cheesecake could have been a special at Crabby Jack's, it's owned by the same guy who owns Jacques-imo
                                                  My dad went to Commanders last week and said it is back to being one of the best places in NO

                                                  1. re: roro1831

                                                    Dick and Jenny's same as it ever was. Went to CP for lunch recently (had an awful dinner after it reopened). Found it to be much improved and will return.

                                                    1. re: roro1831

                                                      Went to Dick and Jenny's a couple months back and enjoyed it very much. Didn't have to wait, so it was all that much better.

                                                  2. Top three is so hard- maybe Stella, Bayona, and Lilette (Commander's, Cochon, and Brigtsen's would complete my list). If you don't choose Cochon for dinner, you might want to try lunch- their small plates are great.

                                                    1. You have gotten alot of great suggestions. I saw a few for port a call. if i only had 3 dinners...that def. would not be one of them. I do disagree with Upperline. i wasnt really impressed. But other than that..u got some really good suggestions. August...Stella...Cuvee...Dante Kichen...Brigtens....Clanceys. Any of these, you cant go wrong!