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Jun 7, 2009 01:55 PM

Where would you refuse to eat in NOLA even if your brother in law was paying?

Okay folks. I am going to take Hunt's suggestion from a previous zombie thread about the bottom five restaurants in NOLA that has almost every restaurant in NOLA listed. It is time to start anew He suggested this and I think it is a great thought.

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  1. That would be a Nor-joe's muffaletta. Worst restaurant meal was Gauteaus, wouldn't spend my money again but b-in laws, maybe.

    14 Replies
    1. re: JazzyB

      My husband loves the Nor Joe's muff. I hear people that either love it or hate it (due to cleanliness of restaurant etc) I can't remember the last time I had one-but just curious what you don't like. He always claims they are better because they are made individually and not pre-made and stacked like Central. Just wanted to get your opinion. : )

      1. re: ScarlettNola

        I had a Central Grocery muffaletta last week for lunch (not the whole thing) and it was made fresh right in front of me. Maybe the pre-made stacked thing is just on weekends, or when they're expecting a big crowd? However, I wished it had been sitting out for awhile because I think they're better when the olive oil penetrates the bread.

        Regarding the thread topic, what do you do when your visitor insists on going to a place you know will be horrible? I met an acquaintance for dinner in the Quarter. She used to live here. She insisted on going to the Alpine on Chartres, because "always used to go there and she can't make a trip without stopping in, the food is great, prices reasonable, it's mostly locals" etc...I suggested many alternatives, to no avail. I couldn't say flat-out it's an overpriced tourist trap, because I didn't want to hurt her feelings. We went, it sucked, I drank a lot of expensive Abita and had a good time apart from the abysmal food and embarrassing service. How do you politely influence people away from fourth-rate restaurants? Any tips?

        1. re: uptownlibrarian

          That is so funny that you mention the Alpine, as it is right across the street from a gallery that we frequent and my husband always likes to stop in. I have tried to like it for his sake, but not so much. The last time he and a friend wanted to go last July, I said sure! (I had just been to the gallery the day prior and they were closed for vacation) I have had this happen quite a bit and I simply plan an itinerary for the day that will completely bypass their chosen venue. (I.e. they say Alpine and I stay WAY outside of the Quarter. Either that or I rave about a fabulous meal and say that is was recommended by a staff member at Alpine for instance as a great "local hang out/restaurant", or perhaps that it is an off the beaten track restaurant that you really have to be "in" to know. A little slick, but if it works....A good hint for me to stay out of a restaurant is if there are people standing outside with menus that try to flag you in and more than likely receive a tip for influencing you inside.(I.e. Alpine, Chartres House, etc) I generally stay out of the Quarter anyway, because as there are several places I enjoy, there tend to be more tourist traps there anyway. I think a lot of people unfamiliar with NOLA venture no further than Mother's or Port of Call. As you know, there are so many great dining options that people would love if they just tried to explore our fair city. Obviously most visitors visiting this board want just that and that is awesome! Hope this helps!

          1. re: ScarlettNola

            Man, you guys are so right about the Alpine. I went there once on a recomendation from a friend, and never took his advice again! As for Mother's or Port of Call....I really don't get it.

            1. re: hungry_raven

              I really like PoC--but then, I almost always order a monsoon, so my judgement is a little crowded by the time dinner comes . . .

          2. re: uptownlibrarian

            After all else has failed, I say that I hope they enjoy their dinner at "such and such" and we will be happy to join them for after dinner drinks.

          3. re: ScarlettNola

            My one and only was premade. The bread was poor quality, tasted stale, and too thick. The sandwich flavor was so off putting (perhaps due to their funky olive salad), I spit it out. Before tossing the entire muff, 2 others tried it . Both agreed..

          4. re: JazzyB

            Didn't the chef at Gautreaus (Sue Z?? or some such) win Chef of the Year(2008) in New Orleans magazine? I know it was not a James Beard award, but cannot remember exact award ?) I have not been there but considered it after reading that fact. I may reconsider after hearing that it was the worst meal as I tend to respect your taste in restaurants.

            1. re: ScarlettNola

              She was one of Food & Wine's Top Ten New Chefs in 2008, in addition to the New Orleans Magazine award.

              1. re: uptownlibrarian

                Thank you! I could not remember what awards she won. Have you been to Gautreaus since she took over and if so, what did you think?

                1. re: ScarlettNola

                  Gautreau's in my opinion has been spectacular with Chef Zemanick at the helm. Anything with crispy skin, confit, chicken, even the fish is not to be missed. Just a charming restaurant.

                  Would gladly spend not only b-i-l's money, but mine.

                  1. re: Lyonola

                    Thank you! When you mention crispy skin and confit you can almost certainly count me in!

                    1. re: ScarlettNola

                      Have had many meals at Gautreau's--through several chefs--and they have been, almost without fail, fabulous. Only once was I mildly disappointed, and even that was nothing that would keep me from returning, but that visit pre-dated Chef Zemanick, who, imho, very much deserved the F&W award.

                      1. re: nomadchowwoman

                        Y'all have convinced me to check it out. I remember reading about her and was impressed, but had heard mixed reviews prior to her coming on board.

          5. I always resort to alcohol and apps when dealing with relatives. Get a couple of things they can not mess up and focus on the drinks, it will be survivable.


            1. Domilese's

              Of course the chains and so forth go without saying right? What about tourist monstrosities like Margaritaville? Bubba Gump Shrimp Company? Even your worst pet peeves cannot compare to the criminality of such places.

              2 Replies
              1. re: bywatertim

                We've done Andrea's on several occasions. First, it was just my wife and me. Poor food, wine service and nothing to recommend it. Next two times, it was because a relative wanted to do it for a special occasion. Same drill, but it was not my call. Now, I just make excuses for why we cannot attend. Maybe it's time to give them another go, but with the number of great restaurants, that is not likely to happen, until I have a full month to indulge myself.


                1. re: bywatertim

                  Or that of Copeland's Social City lol? How are you coming along on the orange spray tan or have you decided on a different venue for your birthday since they no longer have the oxygen bar?

                2. Court of Two Sisters-Wonderful courtyard but my last experience there was revolting.
                  Ruth's Chris-Post K-Overpriced and not so great. The best thing I ate there was a salad. My steak was overcooked and the vegetables (including potato) were obviously frozen. nOTHING was fresh. Went to the new location adjacent to Harrahs and was extremely underwhelmed.

                  13 Replies
                  1. re: ScarlettNola

                    I expected to see Court of the Two Sisters..I ain't been there since a wedding party back when Napoleon still held the keys.
                    Suprised to see tha Andrea's knock..have not been ther is ages so I cannot comment bu it was damn decent at one time...oh well, we all know about that.

                    1. re: hazelhurst

                      You are too funny! They have one of the prettiest courtyards in the quarter, it is just a shame the food is not up to par. I guess it is supported by tourist industry. On a separate note-I made daube glacee today and it was prettty damn good!(Not as good as my mama's but good nonetheless)

                      1. re: ScarlettNola

                        I love their courtyard. My father has only ever been here as a tourist, and he likes to take me to Court of Two Sisters. He goes every time he comes here. He likes it so much, I don't want to hurt his feelings by telling him I'd rather try somewhere else. And the food I've had there has always been decent, and the waiters quite knowledgeable [one saved me from kicking off my meal by starting with a Sazerac].

                        1. re: midcity

                          Sounds like good reasons for me to give them another try. I do like the history, and the venue. Things do change, and I need to keep an open mind. With so many years, since the last trip, it could be wonderful. Hey, Brennan's wow'ed me, and I never thought that I'd type that. Still, there were probably 30 years between poor visits, and the more recent ones. More "crow" for me to eat.


                        2. re: ScarlettNola

                          There is no denying that is is one of the prettiest places. I wonder sometimes if the knock on it prevents us all from recognizing if they ever changed the quality? If we took a World Famous everyoner-loves-him chef and put him in there, could he overcome the generations of bad press? Archie Casberian was able to revive Arnaud's but there is still (for me) that lingering thought about How Bad It Was in the days of Germaine.

                          Glad to hear you made daube glace. Did you make your own gelatin? I find that I need some help from time to time to get it to set hard enough. I made a tomato aspic last summer and had to "re-cast" it twice before I got it to set own fault, of course, but I was rusty.

                          1. re: hazelhurst

                            I did not attempt that this time. I was lucky just to get it right without any additional trauma on my part. It turned out well. I did consult 3 people while making, so I hope I did it right. Next time I will make my own gelatin.

                        3. re: hazelhurst

                          Our only visit to Andreas was a few months ago. We don't intend to return....unless b- in law pays.

                          1. re: hazelhurst

                            Maybe we always hit Andrea's on their "bad nights." To date, no reason to give them another go.

                            As for Court of Two Sisters, we looked at them on a previous trip. Fond memories, from decades ago. Still, they did not fit the bill for that meal, so we opted for elsewhere. As it has been many decades, I'd definitely go back, just to see. Maybe next trip?


                            1. re: Bill Hunt

                              I have to agree about Andrea's. They keep their red wine chilled "because of Katrina". However, they did have the BEST cheesecake I've ever had in my life.

                              1. re: Annasta

                                Do not ever recall a cheesecake. Maybe I would have to rethink my comments, based on that one dish.

                                Going back decades, there was a cute little bakery on S. Carrolton, just down from Oak St. I think that the owners/bakers were Alsatian, but they might have been Swiss. Anyway, their's was the cheesecake, by which all others shall be forever judged.


                                1. re: Bill Hunt

                                  I have a friend fro New York who is a helluva good baker (descended from German bakers) and he said that the closest thing to "true" New York cheesecake he has seen (no graham cracker crust) is---gasp--Outback. I am just reporting.

                                  1. re: Bill Hunt

                                    La Bonbonniere, perhaps? If so, the proprietors retired & occasionally sell baked goods at the Covington farmers' market.

                                    1. re: Hungry Celeste


                                      As always, you come though. Yes. We drove up S. Carrolton, and wife and I both (she grew up in that neighborhood!) struggled with the name.

                                      Now, were they Alsacian, or Swiss (or other)?

                                      Thank you,


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