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Need "locals" lunch spot in New Orleans

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I am looking for a place to take a group of 30 people for lunch on a Monday afternoon. I don't want a touristy experience. Would like a place with legitimately good food, and with a relaxed, authentic atmosphere - more of a reflection of the people who live here then entertainment. Would love to hear your ideas.

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  1. Mr. B's has a back room they might open for that many at lunch.
    Palace and Adelaide could also accomadate that many. Those are all on about the same page...although I believe Adelaide to be far superior. Authentic - You could look into Ralph's on the park as well.
    Luke i believe has private room space as well.

    1 Reply
    1. re: jamielynn

      Ralph's is only open on Fri.for lunch..

    2. I vote for Ralph's on the Park, too. They have a lovely private room with windows, great food, great service, great atmosphere.

      1 Reply
      1. re: cor

        Thanks u guys. I appreciate your suggestions. I will check them out.

      2. I have to say, I find Mr. B's and especially Palace to be a bit on the touristy side. All of these are Brennan chains and while they are perfectly good, I would not select those as the relaxed, authentic type. Of all the Brennan branches, Commanders Palace still retains it's grandeur and it really is a wonderful place to have lunch. They can always accomodate big groups but it is on the dressy side and you mentioned "relaxed". You did not limit yourself to downtown or the French Quarter did you? My first choice would be Galatoire's since it ireally is a reflection of who we are. It is fun, serves authentic Creole food, and gives you a glimpse of how locals cut up at lunch. Once again, it is even more dressy than Commander's Palace at lunch. If your lunch is on a Friday, Emeril's has actually more locals than tourists. The other person replying suggested Luke which I think is a great choice. The service is SLOOOOWWWWW but if you can handle that, the food is quite good and the atmosphere purely local, with mostly downtown business people having a nice lunch. Herbaint is marvelous and they have a back room that can accomodate a bunch of people. I would suggest calling ahead. The gumbo is wonderful. It is in the Central Business District and is on St. Charles Ave. Good luck.

        1 Reply
        1. re: mikey

          Just FYI,
          Pre K - Mr. B's was voted consistantly the best power brunch by the people of new orleans during Gambit's best of new orleans issue. Dinner is more on the tourist side...but lunch is by far majority locals.
          I used to see the Manning boys in there at least twice a week for brunch Pre K

        2. Ernst Cafe in the Warehouse district is a great place but you may have to call ahead to see if they can handle that crowd. It's a beautiful old bar with poboys, salad, soups and daily specials. http://www.ernstcafe.net/

          1 Reply
          1. re: mrsfury

            I will second Ernst but I also want to give the tourists a shoutout. New Orleans on its own couldn't support all these restaurants, especially now that it is half its pre-Katrina side.

            So even if a restaurant is "touristy" at least it's open.