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Help me choose

Hello, my husband and I will be staying in the French Quarter at the end of October. I need help deciding dinner for 2 of the nights. I would like at least one of the two dinners to be a tasting menu. I have narrowed it down to the following:
K-Paul's Louisiana Kitchen, Cochon, Bon Ton Café, August, and Antoine's.. Any advice or suggestions welcome. Thanks in advance.

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  1. i had two great meals last year at cochon & restaurant august. i didn't eat at them this year(tho i did eat at chef link's other restaurant herbsaint), i was trying out other spots but i can say that something as simple as the BUTTER at restaurant august left us slackjawed(it's churned fresh every day). i had their tasting menu w/matching wines & it was terrific & thoughtful(i wrote about this last year...it's here somewhere i suspect). as for cochon, my vegetarian dinner partner had her favorite meal there which is incredible when you think about what the place is dedicated to(pig). but they cover all the bases & the vegetarian selections were(as in most really good southern cooking)excellent & tasty.

    have fun.

    1. You've got a wide variety listed. August is by far the most creative and forward thinking of the bunch. Skip Antoine's for sure. Bon Ton is comfort food. K-Paul's is cajun, and cochon is a new take on cajun. Long story short, August is the best on your list. In fact, August is probably the only one on the list that actually has a tasting menu.

      1. With the benefit of other posts to your's, I would recommend Restaurant August and Stella! Antoine's is, unfortunately, a shell of its former self. You might hit it right, but my bet would be NO. Bon Ton is great, but I'd hold it over for lunch. Cochon is also great, but more for lunch, given your schedule. Have not dined with Chef Paul, in too many years, but he's been getting a lot of good recs. Cannot comment on K-Paul's now.

        Enjoy,

        Hunt

        2 Replies
        1. re: Bill Hunt

          I wrote out a response and realized Bill had already said the same thing. So, what he said! I would suggest the oysters alvin from Bon Ton if you do go there for lunch. Mmmmmm...

          1. re: TigerAtty

            Oysters Alvin. It's been many years, since we dined at Bon Ton, but I do not remember this dish - maybe newish, or maybe just the grey matter not functioning any more. I'll check it out. Wife has been talking about going back to Bon Ton, and I agree with her.

            Heck, I need a month in NOLA, just to catch up on the cuisine. This bit about doing 3 old favs., and adding 2 new spots, is just not cutting it.

            Thanks for the rec.

            Hunt

        2. I had a great meal at K-Paul's a couple of months ago, when the weather was still nice. We had a table out on the balcony, overlooking the courthouse. It was great. In October, it just might be cool enough to sit outside, it's a great place to dine and people watch! The Jazz Band that plays downstairs outside, is nice to listen to during dinner.

          1. From your nominees, I would definitely go with Restaurant August and K-Paul's (had dinner at both last week and they were blissful). If your requisite is a tasting menu, in the same areas and food genres, keep August and check out Cuvee or Stella!

            October is a sublime time in New Orleans. Have a spectacular time!

            1. Well looks like August for sure, still on the fence about the second dinner. The last time I was in the French quarter I was a vegetarian and missed out on a lot of the great cuisine. I don't want that to happen this time. Also, if I wanted cold raw oysters for lunch would Acme be a good place to go?

              3 Replies
              1. re: misnatalie

                For the half-shell oysters, it seems that this board is split about 55% Acme and 45% Felix's - just like my own family. I'm in the Felix's camp, but I think that Acme gets the nod, by a whisker (oyster whisker?).

                Hunt

                1. re: Bill Hunt

                  mr hunt, i was just there in that gorgeous city of my dreams & had oysters at both places & then had the presence of mind to go in the bourbon house(right there where acme & felix's are). i have to say that THEY had the best oysters. & i did a test(sacrificing my poor self to the chowhound ethic)& ate oysters at each of these 3 places 3 times. bourbon house won out every time. they were plumper w/more delicious oyster liquer than the other two. & the oyster master had the good sense to mix sizes also. i was flabbergasted. i've been eating at acme for 40 years. i wrote it off to the time of the season(i was NOT there during peak oyster months)but i had an old buddy who worked in my restaurant way back when & now works as the breakfast & lunch chef at 7on fulton(& obviously lives there in n.o.) tell me that bourbon house consistently gets better oysters than acme & felix's. now, in my food world mythology, ella brennan parted the mississippi river & walked across & the brennan's can do NO wrong(i'm well aware of their history & do know they CAN do wrong...just going for some hyperbole here)but i think they've got a superior supplier(due to post-katrina circumstances, no doubt...).

                  i acknowledge that there is no better experience than standing at the oyster bar at acme & receiving freshly shucked-as-you-go oysters.

                  anyway, next time you're there try out the bourbon house oysters.

                  1. re: bataille2

                    That is good to know. Do not ever recall dining at the Bourbon House, but might have fogotten.

                    Thanks for "taking one for the team!"

                    Appreciate your perspective and review, as this question comes up often, in one form, or another. Others should benefit from your research.

                    Hunt

              2. I see you only have two nights, so you may want to stay as close to NOLA cuisine as possible, but I truly was in heaven at Lilette... the atmosphere is sweet... romantic, yet modern... the food was absolutely to die for, (i will spend as much time as needed to duplicate their raw salad...) and the prices were decent considering the thought, feel, and taste of every bite... you can see their menu online- although there were specials and a few differences from when looked at it and made reservations about a week ago. Would also be a great place just to go for a cocktail (cucumber martini was excellent and my boyfriend loved their Ward 8) and a small bite... they also serve lunch. Wherever you choose, have a blast!!! I can't wait to go back!!!

                1. I'll be the contrarian in at least one respect. I was at Antoine's for Sunday brunch, and the meal could not have been more special. Perfectly mixed Sazerac, devine souffle potatoes, sublime crabmeat ravigote, and the best trout almadine I have had in years. Add to that the impeccable service and beautiful surroundings, not to mentioned a wonderful jazz trio, and you have a great a dining experience that is both uniquely New Orleans and distinctly Parisian (e.g. Benoit or Bofinger). As much as I like the other choices (apart from Cochon), the experience wouldn't be the same. I also find, as a general matter, those who disparage Antoine's haven't been there in some time. The place is making a concerted effort to modernize without losing its old-world charm, as Galatoire's did some time ago (to some criticism, I might add), and I think locals and tourists are missing out on a wonderful experience by chalking her up to a bygone era. I go there at least twice a month and will sing here praises until proven otherwise.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: pilaf

                    That is great to hear. I have always wished the best for this "old girl," but my last (just pre-K) trip was very disappointing, on all accounts. I have seen a few post-K specials, featuring Antoine's, and they seem to indicate that they are on a rebound. Let's all hope so.

                    Thank you for your review. Maybe the time has come to give them one more try, an keep any preconceptions to myself. Do not have the dining schedule yet, for October, but will definitely consider them.

                    Glad that you have taken up the standard for one of the Grand Dames. I just hope that they do deserve your accolades. Let's hope that they do turn it around, or maybe have already done so. I'd not like them to "modernize," so much as go deeply to their NOLA roots and do everything right.

                    Also, I still miss the gentlemen being required to wear jackets and ties, but I harken to a much earlier time.

                    Hunt