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Mar 21, 2009 09:17 AM

holes in the wall

coming down the NO with a few other yankees and are looking for breakfast/lunch/dinner holes in the wall that only the locals know about. want to experience the "true" new orleans and not the overpriced / under quality drivel that gets shoved on tourists. any suggestions?

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  1. "not the overpriced / under quality drivel that gets shoved on tourists." WOW!
    have you been to NOLA before? we're a lot friendlier and tastier than that.
    will you have a car or be relying on public transportation?
    what part of town will you be staying?
    what time of year? we have 4 seasons: shrimp, oyster, crawfish and crab.
    so once you can post more about your travels, you'll get more defined suggestions as to our dirty little secrets.

    3 Replies
    1. re: edible complex

      "what time of year? we have 4 seasons: shrimp, oyster, crawfish and crab." We're thinking early to mid-November. What will we be missing that time of year?

      Thanks for any help in getting the trip planning wheels in motion.

      1. re: Beverator

        If you're coming in November, you'll miss crawfish season which is February to July. But you'll be in perfect time for oysters!

        1. re: nikinik

          Thanks, "perfect time" is what I wanted to hear about oysters! This Chicago Chowhound will probably be back with more questions as trip planning progresses. This will definitely be a eatin' vacation.

    2. Breakfast: Elizabeths or Surrey's
      Lunch: Parkway, Parasol's, or Cooter Brown's
      Dinner: Lola, Dick and Jenny's, Jacques-Imo's, Elizabeth's

      As far as the overpriced / under quality bit, I would take the worst of New Orleans' dishes before eating what is considered average in many other cities. That being said, visitors to New Orleans can make better choices with a bit of research.


      1. I don't think there any places that "only the locals know about." The two classes of people today are those that read sites like chow and those that do not. Those that do read know what the locals know. There are no secret joints now. As soon as a new one opens up, it's all over the web. General rule, avoid most restaurants in the quarter. Most of them are bad. Also, there aren't many holes in the wall that are worth eating at, in the city anyways. I guess Franky and Johnny's would qualify as a decent hole in the wall and so does Parasol's.

        That said, there's too many good restaurants to name. Mandina's, Parkway, Blue Plate Cafe, Brigtsen's, Boucherie, etc. etc. My suggestion is just read the board for good recs. If it's out there it's on here, and if it's bad, the posts will let you know.

        6 Replies
        1. re: N.O.Food

          Coops place on decatur street in the quarter is a good dive bar with excellent cheap new orleans food and across the street fiorellas has great fried chicken and other new orleans fare.

          1. re: N.O.Food

            Wait...avoid all restaurants in the Quarter?? That's a lot! Isn't Galatoire's in the Quarter? Acme, Felix's, Coops, Napoleon House?

            1. re: peachacid

              If you'll read my post a little closer, you'll see that I didn't say "all," I said "most." Big difference.

              1. re: N.O.Food

                True. What would you recommend, then, for people who are staying in the Quarter w/out a car? We've made reservations at Commander's Palace, and then a surprise fancy lunch on Friday (I don't know where). We're probably going to eat at Felix's, Central Grocery, and Coop's. Anywhere else you recommend that's close enough to the Quarter to get there easily?

                1. re: peachacid

                  August, Herbsaint, Cochon, Bennachin, Stanley, Stella, Rio Mar, La Boca, Bayona, Salt n Pepper, El Gato Negro, The Store, Luke, Cafe Bon Ton, Galatoire's are all good. Palace Cafe, Bacco, Brennan's, Rib Room are also ok. I'm sure there's others, but they're slipping my mind.

                  1. re: peachacid

                    Take the free ferry over to Algiers Point and try Vine and Dine for great take out sandwiches and entrees + beer and wine to go or walk a couple of blocks to Aunt Linnie's for a relaxed dinner with friendly people

            2. Breakfast: EAT!, Petunias, Huevos, Tout de Suite (a ferry ride to beautiful Algiers Point)
              Lunch: Magazine Street Po-Boys, New Orleans Food & Spirits
              Dinner: Jacques-Imo, Lola, Feelings Cafe

              2 Replies
              1. re: nikinik

                +1 to NO food and spirits. Will require a car rental or a cab ride to get there though.

                1. re: nikinik

                  Other restaurants offer Po Boys that are far superior to those at the Magazine Street Shop, IMHO. Although Ray and Al are nice guys (and my former landlords), I found their Po Boys to be average at best.

                  Go to Guy's up Magazine for Catfish Po Boys; Parasol's for Roast Beef; Frankie & Johnny's and Domilise's for shrimp and oysters. Don't forget to get 'em dressed!

                2. well, im not sure id say "true" new orleans food can be found just at holes in the wall. many of the meals i love most in new orleans are found in nicer restaurants, which carry a higher sticker place. such is life...

                  but for holes in the wall, what i usually look for are good poboys. on a good day Parasol's has the best roast beef in town -- messy, gravy-laced, dozen napkins. wash it down w/ an abita amber.

                  i know several folks are ga-ga for Coops, a true hole in the wall...but im not one of 'em. always seems bland & mushy to me.

                  while its not really new orleans food, i do love the drinks & burgers at Port of Call; as dank a hole in the wall as there ever was. those monsoons go down easy & will knock you flat. lovable staff behind the bar.