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Never had oysters-recommendations

We are visiting New Orleans from Chicago and will be in town Sunday morning to Tues afternoon. Here is the itinerary:
Sunday lunch- Parasol Dinner- Luke
Monday breakfast- Cafe Du Monde Lunch- Mr B's Dinner- The Green Goddess (if open) or Emeril's
Tuesday lunch- Mena's Palace

I have never had oysters and would like to try them this trip. What is the best way and place to sample your first oyster. I am happy to fit in or change out a scheduled place in order to have the best first oyster experience.

Thanks for all suggestions.

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  1. which preparation do you want to sample, raw, fried, baked, brochette, rockefeller?

    also, why mena's?

    5 Replies
    1. re: bodie

      I know nothing of oysters so I am looking for your suggestion. I am hoping to get suggestions of how you would have wanted to first taste an oyster.

      Mena's was picked just because we were looking for something quick, cheap and local for lunch. We have to catch a flight and don't have a lot of time to eat.

        1. re: runCP3

          If there's too long of a line at Acme, Felix's across the street is just as good IMHO.

          1. re: runCP3

            "Casamento's Restaurant is closed for the Summer!
            We will reopen on Tuesday, September 16th, 2008."

            from their website
            call first before going to make sure they're still open when you're here and haven't closed yet for Summer 2009.

            1. re: edible complex

              That message was from last year which hasn't been updated.

              They are only closed June, July and August.

      1. Most of the oyster bars will give you a sample, if you want to go that way. Lightly battered and fried is delicious too - must not be over-cooked. The last two times we had raw oysters in NOLA they were the best ever, salt and tender and sweet. Bon appetit!
        (and try them on a poboy)

        1. Luke has a raw bar, so you can try oysters on the half shell there either by the dozen of half dozen to get started with either champagne or a local brew on tap.

          I LOVE oysters: raw (Luke), fried for po boys (Parasol's) or topped on salads or as an appetizer (like oysters en brochette at Galatorie's), in soups (like oyster artichoke or stew or seafood gumbo), baked in Italian seasonings (Mosca's) or just a big fried platter.

          1 Reply
          1. We are getting so excited for our New Orleans trip and after reading these posts are also very excited to try some oysters. Thanks for all the tips.

            4 Replies
            1. re: savoureux

              This is a beautiful time to see New Orleans - before the horrible heat comes in.
              P.S. - some great street shows can be seen at the pavillion near cafe du monde

              1. re: savoureux

                I have no idea where to steer you for this one but perhaps some others can help. You should try to find Oyster Stew otherwise known as Oyster Milk Soup. College in used to make it to order (as everyone should). It is very easy to make and just as easy to screw up. I have not seen it on a menu is ages but maybe it is out there somewhere. I'[d be surprised if someone isn't offering a version with Smoked Gouda & Mortadella or something like that but I;d be suspicious--try to find the Real thing.

                1. re: hazelhurst

                  Casamento's has oyster stew on their menu. Check it out online.

                  1. re: runCP3

                    I forgot about that...they used to have it--just have not been there in forever and it slipped my mind.

              2. You are already poised for greatness. Luke has simply spectacular p&j oysters, served raw. They are dreamy and creamy. I have had them three times this week and tonight is looking pretty strong for a fourth outing.

                7 Replies
                1. re: powderhound

                  I recommend the barbecued oysters at the redfish grill they are fabulous.

                  1. re: joedontexan

                    how are these prepared? are they chargrilled (like Drago's) or do they use BBQ sauce?

                    there was some misunderstanding a while back from a visitor who thought BBQ shrimp meant BBQ sauce, was disappointed and ripped the restaurant until a clarification was made as to what NOLA version of BBQ shrimp meant. didn't want a first time oyster eater (OP) to have expectations of one thing for it to be another...thanks!

                    1. re: edible complex

                      Hey edible, have you ever had Middendorf's bbq oysters or shrimp? It's almost like a marinara. Very different. Just curious.

                      1. re: mrsfury

                        haven't been to Middendorf's in likely 20 yrs, and then always never strayed from the catfish.
                        w/so many variations on a theme of bbq and/or chargrilled, was hoping to get clarification for the OP.

                      2. re: edible complex

                        The "BBQ" Oysters at RFG should actually be called "Buffalo" Oysters. They are fried oysters that are coated with a sauce that is similar to Buffalo Wing sauce, then sprinkled with crumbled blue cheese. I love them, but they should not be confused with the (always excellent as well) char-brilled Oysters at Drago's.

                        1. re: NOLA_BnB

                          so there you have it, neither traditional BBQ nor the typical char-grilled versions.

                          One Restaurant serves yet another version Char-Grilled Oysters with Roquefort Cheese & Red Wine Vinaigrette.

                          I've had the buffalo oysters at Rivershack and was not disappointed.

                  2. Dragos for grilled, Bourbon House for the best and coldest raw

                    1. Just got back from 3 nights/4days in NOLA. It was my only my first time there but good research led to a very rewarding (and busy) food tour. We hit 11 restaurants in that short time. A lengthy review will follow in a couple of days but here are my oyster pics:

                      Skip Acme. I was there for lunch on a slow weekday. Oysters were okay but I was very turned off by that dirty, stale, beer on the floor smell that plagues many a french quarter bar. Don't get me wrong, I'm no snob and I don't mind such an aroma in, well, an awesome divey New Orleans bar. I don't however appreciate this flavor in a place where I'm eating raw seafood. This was a stark contrast to my favorite oyster spot: Casamentos. Strikingly clean, impeccably fresh, Casamento's is the bomb. One of my favorite meals of the trip, my girlfriend and I enjoyed two dozen raw and an amazing bowl of oyster stew filled with fat, luscious, whole oysters. Cold dixie beer washed it all down clean. I loved this place. Its in a lovely neighborhood and easy walking down Napoleon St. from the St. Charles trolley line. We would have eaten more but we were fresh off a stroll through the garden district and an amazing lunch of Roast Beef Po Boys at Parasol's. Definitely go there. The next day we had 1/2 and 1/2 oyster/shrimp po boys at Domilies's in Uptown.

                      So there it is. For raw, stewed, or loafed (i didn't try it but it looked amazing) go to Casamento's. For Oyster Po Boys hit Domilise's.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Debrouillard

                        Thanks for encouraging comments about the tile abbatoir of oysters....glad the stew was good. Need to run down there in the next few weeks before the closing...the "Brigadoon" days a re coming...only a few moments to enjoy simultaneous delights. (Hungry Celeste may get this gag.)

                      2. Oh yeah, I forgot, Cochon had what looked to be amazing wood-fire oven roasted oysters on the half shell with some kind of spicy compound butter. We were oystered out at that point and had other apps instead which I regret. Cochon would be a good one to add to your list, as would Brigtstens.

                        1. The food has been so good at Emeril's, we dine there several times a month. . Try the Abita bacon salad. Andouille crusted redfish and the pork chop are 2 can't miss entrees. They also offer a changing small/not so small plate menu. Commander's for lunch (m-f ) in the garden room is always a treat.