Best Place to Eat Appetizers
Rambla, far and away the best in NOLA. We went for dinnerr Sat. and EVERYTHING was outstanding from the food ( not one loser out of 10 different tapas) to the ambiance, service, even the music. Enjoyed it so much we returned for another go 'round Sun. after leaving the dome. 221 Camp St. in the International House Hotel.
I like to sit at the bar of Chateau du Lac and make way thru all of their apps. They have a nice French wine list.
My pics are:
MUSSELS IN WHITE WINE SAUCE OR IN SAFFRON SAUCE
BABY SPINACH, SAUTEED BACON, WALNUTS, BLUE CHEESE,CROUTONS AND WARM VINEGAR
POMME FRITES WITH DIJON MUSTARD
Special Apps can include:
Crab and Crawfish Pastry-similar to the strudel
Another place I could make a meal of Apps is Ristorante Pellicano:
Jumbo Lump Crab
Sweet crab wrapped in crispy filo with Meyer lemon zest and grilled red onion-champagne-avocado vinaigrette
Black Bay Oysters Carnivale
Fried in a buttermilk-cornmeal batter with a crispy cucumber-apple salad, bacon shards, and saffron aioli
Duck Confit Spring Roll
Wild mushrooms, caramelized leeks, toasted pine nuts, and pomegranate reduction
Brie wrapped in puff pastry with blueberries and balsamic reduction; though I like to savor this app for dessert.
He has a nice wine list there as well.
Consider Cafe Giovanni's "feed me". App. portions: 4 courses/4wines $55 or 6 courses no wine $65. Usual fare : oysters Giovanni, seafood caprese salad, veal ravioli Bologenese, beef tenderloin or duck with sides. Add a fish course and dessert with the 6 course. They will change this up, just ask. Singers on Fri/Sat. You will not leave hungry.
You can do a lot better than Cafe Giovanni. Place has been serving mediocre food for years. Went over the summer, did exactly what you are advocating. 6 courses with wines ( which were essentially the Cavit Collection and other barrel wines). Price did not match the food. And the opera singers put a limit on the ability to talk to your date.
All of the plates had a common theme. In each plate, there was one more element that was needed and each plate had an element that was horribly executed.
Sorry for the rant, but that place is not worth a visit. Especially given the other places mentioned.
There's a new place in the CBD called Ramblas that you might want to check out. It's tapas with a local-ish twist. I also like the small plates at Arabesque.
I can't think of anywhere with really unique salads in town... my favorite is the tropicale at Le Crepe (w/ the basil dressing on the side), but they're not exactly pushing any envelopes. St James does good salads, too, but your other choices are limited to cheese and charcuterie, and you have to pick up your wines next door...
re: Robert Peyton
Cochon. it's one of my favorite places to eat. lots of small plates for sharing
fried boudin with pickled peppers
grilled andouille with sweet potatoes, mushrooms & pear vinaigrette
spicy grilled pork ribs with watermelon pickle
onion braised pork cheeks with grits & horseradish herb vinaigrette
Cuvee's apps. are excellent, especially the shrimp napoleon and pork cheek app. I really don't like their chopped salad. It should be called "brunoise salad". Hazelnut bomb dessert is also good. Skip the moonpie and flan/custard thing. Wolfe's (formerly Peristyle ) just opened and has a small plate menu. We chose about 7-8 plates, ranging from $7-20 (for duck sausage and foie gras) Had excellent short ribs, crab salad w/roasted beets, potatoes etc. . Most from small plates menu, some apps. from dinner menu. All were good with the exception of the fish taco and charcuterie plate (the selection changes). 3 w /cocktails ran $150. Herbsaint also has good apps. Rambla (the Cuvee guys) recently opened (last week) in the International House Hotel. It is a small plates/tapas rest. Brigtsen's also has great apps. I prefer sitting on the front(enclosed) porch.