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Jan 4, 2009 09:55 AM

What neighborhood(s) in NOLA do you consider to be the best food area?

We may be looking for a home in NOLA in the next year, and I'd like to be near an area within walking distance of good food, good pubs, and great options. These are the most important things to us. :-) Where would NOLA hounders recommend?

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  1. I LOVE my neighborhood. The last time I counted, we have 40 restaurants within about a 10 block radius of our house. Lots of coffee shops and bars. I live in the Riverbend/Carrollton area. The only thing we're really missing is a neighborhood grocery store. I walk to the park, the drugstore, the bank, the library.

    I also think Midcity would be nice, especially Esplanade Ridge by Cafe Degas and City Park. Then there's the Magazine corridor, all very cool, but too expensive for me. Marigny/Bywater would be great, too.

    1. If you do not have to concern yourself with a school district, I would suggest the French Quarter.

      27 Replies
      1. re: TaTee

        No, no school district concerns at all, but would rather experience New Orleans in areas outside of the tourist zone.

        1. re: FoodChic

          Gotta disagree with Ta Tee. I think the French Quarter is the worst food section of New Orleans.

          We used to live behind the whole foods on Magazine before Katrina. It was a great neighborhood - both in terms of not getting killed and in terms of convenience. Now, we live right near Upperline restaurant. Still within walking distance of a grocery and restaurants and still safe. Not quite as nice as the old hood but excellent nonetheless.

          However, when considering where to live in Nola, I think you should consider safety before culinary convenience. You can't eat when you're dead. I'm sure you've got that in mind though.

          1. re: N.O.Food

            then what areas are not that safe, and by magazine, near the whole foods, is that the same area of touchpitlous where dick and jenny's was located???


            how's the faburg maringy area as far as safety or the bywater area or uptown/riverbend where Brigsten's is located?

            1. re: kevin

              Dick and Jenny's is closer to Napoleon (Downtown) than where Whole Foods is. We have good friends that live in the riverbend and in the marigny, and they have no complaints. Those neighborhoods are the same as everywhere else in nola - good blocks and spotty blocks all mixed together. I think hungry celeste lives in the riverbend. Hopefully, she'll chime in for you.

              1. re: kevin

                ...im happy in the marigny, but you do have to keep your wits about you. just as in any major metro city, be aware of your surroundings when walking at nite, etc. i also have a dog.

              2. re: N.O.Food

                We really like the Magazine area, but it seems there are a lot of good areas and a lot of not so good areas around there. Is ths correct, or just a misconception?

                I will say the eating and drinking around there would be quite lovely.

                1. re: FoodChic

                  Your perception is correct. Defining "safe" in new orleans is tough. You really have to go block-to-block to determine good areas. That's the real problem. You can't ever really get away from the crime in nola. There are mansions on one block and section 8 crack houses on the next. That said, most of the good blocks are within walking distance of good restaurants. And most restaurants aren't in bad locations. It's really about just being aware of your surroundings. I would drive around and inspect neighborhoods before moving in, and I would check the new orleans crime maps also. You might do well to rent for a while before buying so you can really scope places out and decide where to live. The warehouse district is within walking distance to tons of great eats, and it's probably the safest area of town. It's pricey though, and it's all condo/townhouse living. So if a yard is what you're into, the warehouse dist probably won't be for you. Anyway, good luck.

                  1. re: FoodChic

                    Magazine is 6 miles long with large residential stretches. Which Magazine area do you like? Ie, by Lilette, by La Boulangerie, by Whole Foods, by Clancy's? You are generally ok if you stay between Magazine and St. Charles, but between Magazine and Tchoup, it really depends where you are.

                    1. re: JGrey

                      The area's I'm most familiar with are from Jackson to Napolean- about where the delicious Casamento's resides.

                      1. re: FoodChic

                        is the area surrounding Crabby's Jacks an ok area???

                        1. re: kevin

                          Old Jefferson has some great areas, beautiful old homes, and some not so desirable pockets, as any neighborhood in the greater NOLA area.

                          besides Crabby Jack's, there's Rivershack Tavern, Sam's Grocery, Southern Po-Boys, Joe Sepie's, Blue Tomato, Venezia II, Parenton's, La Profecia, Cajun Catfish House, Kim Anh's, A&S Seafood, Oriental Triangle.

                    2. re: FoodChic

                      i live in the uptown area near whole foods. it is a great area b/c i can walk to prytania and go to the theater, CVS, Creole Creamery, La Crepe Nanou, La Thai, etc...I am also within walking distance to wholefoods and CC's coffee. This neighborhood is great. the housing is a bit pricey, but rent is decent. if you decide to live b/w tchop. and mag. the closer you are to audubon park the safer it is. we are actually looking into buying and really like where we live. Our guidline, as far as safety, we won't go east of Napolean near magazine. It just starts to get too choppy. good luck!

                      1. re: foodie chick

                        Thanks, foodie chick. This is very helpful.

                        BTW, love your name. ;-)

                        1. re: FoodChic

                          Hi, FoodChic. My brother lived in the Quarter the first year he was in New Orleans. Then he high-tailed it across the lake, because he had to drive everywhere for everything, and his car was vandalized a few times. Our other family lives in Uptown for all the reasons that Foodie Chick listed.

                          You will get your bearings, but I'd pick a neighborhood that has a great restaurant that you'll frequent regularly, and a good market. Then venture out discover everything else. I agree with Foodie Chick on Magazine Street and also be very careful north of Esplanade.

                        2. re: foodie chick

                          is audobon park across from tulane? thanks.

                          in your area of uptown are you pretty close or walking distance to Brigsten's

                          1. re: kevin

                            Yes, the park is across from Tulane. Brigtsen's is not within walking distance to us. Foodie chic and I apparently live fairly close together. I live by the CVS and don't walk to Whole Foods anymore. I've got a Zara's right down the street though. Where are you foodie chic? We're on Lyons between Magazine and St. Charles.

                            1. re: N.O.Food

                              Magazine sounds like the place to be. does magazine cross napoleon ave (where pascals' manale is at)

                              what do you guys think of the immediate area that Brigsten's is in? if i moved there that's probably the section i'd move to Uptown. or possibly where jacques imo is located although i'm not necessarily a fan of the food there.

                              1. re: kevin

                                You need to visit and check out the neighborhoods for yourself. Safety would be my first priority and that can change block to block on any given street. FWIW, there is a shopping area with ample parking on the side/behind Brigtsen's. They have it manned with a security guard. That should tell you something. NOLA has pockets of bad neighborhoods adjacent to good ones. EG, my son's gf was robbed at gunpoint at 9 AM entering her office on Magazine. Go to: latterandblum.com (multi-list). If it sounds too good to be true, it 's usually in a bad or marginal area.

                                1. re: kevin

                                  Yes, Magazine crosses Napoleon but closer to the river than Pascal's. Magazine runs from downtown all the way to the river bend, so you'll need to narrow that area down. We live between Jefferson, Napoleon, Magazine, and St. Charles. Good neighborhood by new orleans standards. But again, even this area has shady blocks.

                                  Here's the crime map for the Brigtsen's area:


                                  Play around on the crime maps. It'll help you decide where to move. They might also persuade you not to move here! lol. Adjust the dates to see crimes for the last 6 months. That'll give you a pretty good idea of the area.

                                  1. re: kevin

                                    Pascal's manale is on Napolean b/w St. Charles and Claiborne. Magazine is b/w St. Charles and Tchop.

                                  2. re: N.O.Food

                                    we go to zara's too, but i can usually find everything i need at whole foods so we go there more often. i live on coliseum near valmont. i love our neighborhood b/c we have the option to walk to several places, though i usually don't walk around at night.

                                    1. re: foodie chick

                                      Same here. We drive at night most of the time.

                                      1. re: N.O.Food

                                        I walk/bike from my apartment in the maringy to the CBD where I work (in the restaurant industry) all the time, and always feel perfectly safe. The advantage of living downtown versus uptown is that there are usually a lot of people out and about at all times (e.g. decatur, frenchmen street, etc.), so it feels safer. Uptown is a deadzone at night, except for people driving around. Just my two cents.

                                      2. re: foodie chick

                                        see that's the thing an area to walk around during the day of course would be great, or would that apply to all areas? and if i can walk around at night too even better. i do like to walk, and i love having a gret po boy shoppe, a gumbo parlor, a coffee/pastry or even good donut shoppe, a neighborhood restaurant, a fine dining all in the same area. but i guess that probably would not exist completely when all other factors are taken into account.

                                        1. re: kevin

                                          I used to live at the corner of Constance and Joseph before the Whole Foods was built. I loved that area. Around that area (Magazine and Jefferson) there are three coffee shops (2 on Magazine and 1 on Tchop. in the shopping center there) and is the Starbucks and the other neighborhood coffee place still down from there? not far from Martinique and Taqueria Corona, a bank, Whole Foods, St. Joe's bar, little shops, walking distance to another Supermarket, Sporting Goods store, Kinko's, Wendy's, etc.
                                          If I were moving back, that would be the area I would want to live in again.

                                          1. re: roro1831

                                            The Starbucks is now a place called Pita Pit, and Cafe Luna is still across the street.

                                  3. re: foodie chick

                                    On the other hand, I live and own downtown of Napoleon near Magazine, and I love it. Nothing in the summer like being able to see how long the line at the Sno Wizard is from your front porch! And an easy stroll to La Petite Grocery and Lilette, to name but two of many standout places within a few blocks. OP mentioned good pubs. We don't have any actual "pubs," but there is a nice variety of neighborhood drinking establishments within 10 or 12 blocks. There is some crime, but we have an enthusiastic, active neighborhood association and a great relationship with our Councilmember and our Police lieutenant. Check out Faubourg Marengo!