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new orleans june 11-18 food recs

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i'll be there in the city of my dreams this year for longer than i was last year. last year my food experiences included: dinner(august, muriels, clancys,cochon), lunch(galatoires, central, mothers).
i've been coming to the city for many many years. ate warren leruth's food & susan spicer's when she was at the bistro at the maison de ville. been out to mosca's & down at buster holmes'.
i'm thinking mila & grand isle but would like some other recs. i'd really like to do more neighborhood restaurants(a la clancys).

c'mon c'hounds, work your magic. thanks.

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  1. Skip Grand Isle.

    1. awright...local rest only. Dick and Jenny's, I really like Orleans Grape Vine. Bacchanal is a wine store that has music and guest chef's...cool local spot that is VERY local. Cage Degas.

      1. Like Clancy's... another excellent place that hasn't gotten much mention here lately: Gautreau's, uptown. They may be top 5. I also like Vizard's, but haven't been to their new digs on Magazine.

        1. as fate would have it, i've arranged for a TWO week stay there in the city. thanks for the recs so far. i've added gautreau's & vizards to my dinner short list. also: dick & jenny's, irene's, mila, cochon(ate there last year & liked it very much), jacques imo(in memory of austin leslie), & bistro at maison de ville. lunch & sandwich places: mandina's, domilise's, liuzza's by the track, schiro's, franky & johnnys, diplomat, PARKWAY, verti mart, johnny's, cafe adelaide, willie mae's. thinking about clancy's again. also august again(ate there last year & was impressed). will try elizabeth's for breakfast. is there some other hidden gem i haven't unearthed in my research? thanks, folks.

          16 Replies
          1. re: bataille2

            The Ambassador Hotel wanted to expand their banquet facility so they closed down The Diplomat. Word on the street is they may open in Harahan.

            1. re: bataille2

              You need to add Stella! to that list.

              1. re: Tonto

                stella! was on my list last year & i've been toying w/putting it on the list this year. however, i wanted to do fewer upscale places & concentrate more on the neighborhood places. part of my hesitation about stella! is that the menu is less new orleans & more...well...more like something i can get out here in the bay area. boswell seems to be a clever chef & i don't doubt his inclusion of asian ingredients & techniques would be interesting if not thrilling. but...we'll see. anyway, thanks for the rec. still working it all out.

              2. re: bataille2

                Cuvee is on par with August. Herbsaint for dinner. Commanders (request the garden room) for lunch... 25 cent martinis as well as specials. Martinique Bistro lunch or dinner (no corkage on Tues.), Cafe Giovanni ("feed me" only)...Wed., Fri., Sat. for singers...a NOLA spin on Italian. Strictly local, Sugar Park Tavern in Bywater for pizza. Bozos in Metairie for THE best oyster po boy...butter and crystal only. Riomar for tapas, LaBoca for skirt steak and frites. Late night, Mimi's in the Marigny ...tapas. POC for burgers, Luke also does a nice one with homemade fries.

                1. re: JazzyB

                  i've got brunch res at commander's. cuvee is on my short list for "upscale" dinner choices. luke's may be a breakfast choice. like i mentioned earlier, this is a specifically "new orleans neighborhood restaurant" trip(lil' dizzy's, tiger's creole cuisine, buffa's, mandina's are all on my list now)w/some exceptions for a few "upscale" places. i'm sure the tapas places are great. ditto the steak & frites & pizza. but i've got some really great places here in the east bay that provide that for me. what i DON'T have is willie mae's or parkway or domilise's or bozo's(which is now on my list). thanks. appreciate your contribution.

                  1. re: bataille2

                    Skip Lil DIzzy's and Grand Isle. Herbsaint will give you a more NOLA food experience than Mila. If you get to Willie Mae's at 11 when they open, you can avoid the horrendous wait for service.

                    1. re: JazzyB

                      hi. thanks for the head's up on williemae's. i've dropped grand isle from my list but lil dizzy's is a go. w/mila, it's more about the chefs(i ate at mr link's cochon last trip & loved everything we ordered, so i have a sense, at least, of where he's coming from)& less about the nola food experience. i may just do a coin toss between cuvee & herbsaint. again, thanks.

                      1. re: bataille2

                        i've made dinner reservations at: commanders, mila, cuvee, herbsaint, one, & gautreau's. brunch reservations at: commanders & mr.b's. i intend to also eat dinner at irene's & delachaise.
                        breakfasts: lukes, cafe adelaide, elizabeths, petunia's, coffee pot, lil dizzy's. having learned in the past that this human can't eat breakfast, lunch AND dinner there & live to tell the tale, my lunches will fall on days we're not having dinner & will include as many of the low-end places i've already mentioned(buffa's, mandina's, williemae's, parkway, franky & johnny's, et. al.)
                        looking forward to this trip & also writing a report. thanks for all the suggestions. i'm open & flexible for more.

                        1. re: bataille2

                          Don't know if it matters but, CP only has 25 cent martinis M-F lunch. Also, Delachaise is a bar that serves food. This means the very small space is smoke filled. The "no smoking" ban doesn't apply to bars.

                          1. re: JazzyB

                            hi again jazzyb, i'll be doing more than enough drinking there so missing the 25cent martini's isn't that big a deal, tho the brilliance of the concept just reaffirms for me the greatness of the brennan's restauranteur skills. having owned a "bar that serves food" for 15 years(over in pensacola), i just want to see what this guy is doing at delachaise(i read his blog & he seems like an interesting guy who makes interesting food). tho i don't smoke, a smoke-filled bar won't be too tough to deal with either. thanks for the heads up.

                            1. re: bataille2

                              If you turn up on the early side, it's not smoky at all. They open at 5:00 M-S and 6:00 on Sunday. It doesn't get full of the bar crowd until several hours after that. If you're interested in meeting Chef Chris, definitely go early when it's not busy, and he'll probably have time to chat when he brings out your food. Isn't it cool that Michael Ruhlman's blog has a link to Chef Chris's?

                              1. re: uptownlibrarian

                                hi uptown, thanks for the heads up about hours & smoke at the delachaise. seems like you're very familiar w/the place. i'm looking forward to trying it out. it IS cool the ruhlman has chris's blog listed. since you mentioned it, i was trying to figure out how i'd found his blog(it wasn't thru ruhlman's cite)& i think i just stumbled onto it doing research for this trip. just lucky, i guess. again, thanks.

                                1. re: bataille2

                                  I live right nearby, and they have the hours posted on big chalkboards out front, so you can't help but see them everyday. I haven't been there as much in the past year or so; it's kind of a "no one goes there anymore, too crowded" thing for me. Although come to think of it I did go several Fridays in a row before Jazz Fest to try each of his crawfish pie variations.

                                  You mentioned the Bistro at Maison de Ville in your OP, and it doesn't seem to have made your final cut. I urge you to give it a try. I think it is one of the two great places that are often overlooked, along with Gautreau's. And Gautreau's is getting more attention since Zemanick's big award from Food & Wine. Anyway, I love Bistro. Top french fries in the city.

                                  1. re: uptownlibrarian

                                    hi again uptown, the bistro is kind of on the cusp. i'm actually there in the city for 14nights & i've only reserved dinner at 6 places so far. i ate many many times(in what seems like several lifetimes ago)at the bistro when susan spicer was there(accidently & unbelievably stumbled in there in her first month...amazing luck!)& loved it. the room is especially nice & her food was great. i know it's quite different now(in terms of food)but it's still on my mind. since you're such a fan, i may add it to the "definite to-do" list, for a lunch at least.

                                    1. re: bataille2

                                      If you get the mussels and frites at the Bistro, it comes with a glob of plain mayo on top of the fries (personally I find this offputting). Good dish otherwise and easily remedied with a "no mayo, please".

                                      1. re: JazzyB

                                        Actually, it comes with a delightful dollop of homemade mayonnaise. You'd be missing out on part of the goodness to skip it.

              3. We went to Mila for the NOWFE Vintner dinner last week and it was fabulous. Every course was delicious and interesting. We also recently had a great meal at Bistro Daisy on Magazine St. I give both of these places enthusiastic recommendations.

                1. Bataille,

                  Go to "Bon Ton" on Magazine in the CBD. Definetely try the Crawfish Etoufee. Also stop in the Quarter at "Mena's Palace" for Gumbo. I think it is on Chartres not far from Canal. Those are my two favorite stops in New Orleans.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: jimmymack99

                    hi, thanks. i've eaten at both places many many times back in the days when i went to n.o. regularly. actually stopped in mena's last time i was there(last year, we were staying in the w hotel which is just down the block)for a plate of monday's red beans & rice. i consider both of these to be very good relatively inexpensive specifically local restaurants. i've got a list of places i have NOT tried in this category that i'm very much looking forward to trying. again, thanks for the recs.

                  2. I like Blue Plate Cafe for breakfast. There's also a new breakfast/lunch place called the Ruby Slipper that I haven't tried yet but want to. It's right behind mandina's. Also, I've been hearing good things about Restaurant One. I haven't been there yet either, but it looks pretty good. There's also Upperline. Ignatius also has some inexpensive fare that has been fairly decent when I've gone, but the service has been atrocious every time.

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: N.O.Food

                      i've got reservations at restaurant one. it looks good to me. we'll see. i'll check on the other recs. haven't heard of ruby slipper. i appreciate the input. thanks.

                      1. re: bataille2

                        Thumbs up on One. They also have some creative drinks.

                        1. re: JazzyB

                          Patois, Martinique, Iris, Arabesque, One Riverbend, Cafe Atchafalaya, Vizard's

                          1. re: JazzyB

                            Patois, Iris, Martinique, One Riverbend, Vizard's, Arabesque, Cafe Atchafalaya

                            1. re: edible complex

                              hi edible, i've got reservations at one & vizards. it's a toss-up for me between patois & cafe atchafalaya for lunch. i've read & heard the buzz on iris but frankly after studying the on-line menu, it's pretty much what i can get out here in the bay area. less new orleans(or nouveau n.o.), more contemporary american. nothing wrong w/that but i've got that by the boatloads out here(where it's done very very well). thanks for reminding me about cafe atchafalaya & patois.

                              1. re: bataille2

                                you won't go wrong w/Brigtsen's.
                                www.brigtsens.com
                                can't believe I forgot, as this place is always top on my list. have never had a bad meal there and always great service.

                                1. re: edible complex

                                  it's funny about brigtsen's. there's a tendency to forget about it when lists are being made. i followed him out there to that restaurant & ate there many times in the early days(actually, frank's was the first restaurant where i saw the "trio soup" concept). i think it's one of the best, certainly the most consistently excellent, restaurants in n.o. i ate there several years ago. i'm feeling the need to test these young guns on this trip(the guys who really owe a lot to paul prudhomme & austin leslie, & frank brigtsen etc). that's why it's not on my list. but thanks again.

                                  1. re: bataille2

                                    I would skip Commander's brunch and dinner, and hit the lunch.
                                    And definitely have a Monday night dinner on the patio at Mat and Naddie's.
                                    I like One too.
                                    As for neighborhood places, I think Magazine St. Poboy or Guy's for a shrimp poboy, Parkway for a roast beef poboy, and Liuzza's.