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Jun 25, 2009 09:03 PM

One "nice" dinner

I just decided that my husband and I are going to spend our anniversary in NO this year. The last weekend in August to be exact. My plan is to fly in early Friday morning and head to Galatoire's for lunch with another couple. Then that night, we'll probably eat light, maybe oysters somewhere, but nothing too heavy or fancy.

My question for you CHers is what should we do on Saturday night? Our last trip down was in April for a wedding and we went to Couchon for the third time. We usually love it, but this time it was just OK, so I'm think I can skip it this time. It's also not really special enough for an anniversary dinner IMO. We've eaten at all the big places more than once, but it's been awhile since we've had a really "nice" meal in NO. So, where should we go? A great wine list is a must, though it doesn't have to be huge. Quality over quantity I suppose. I'm also not really in search of true New Orleans food, just great food whatever it may be.

Thanks in advance.

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  1. Please don't go to Galatoire's at noon or one o'clock...go get some soup and wait until 4:00 and then go--the recent comments on the board have rattled this devotee. I just cannot stand the thought of someone having to put up with a noise that the patrons believe they must effect becuase they think it is what is expected--or allowed. I have been to one Friday lunch in the last ten years...I avoid it. If you follow this plan as sugested, you can solve your dinner problem. galatoire will accomodate you into the evening.

    1 Reply
    1. re: hazelhurst

      I won't talk about Galatoire's again but if you do decide to not do lunch there then go to Commander's for lunch instead.

      For a nice dinner, I've seen a mix of thoughts on The Pelican Club here but I loved it. Sit in the first dining room (the wood one) since it's quieter.

    2. spent my anniversary at brightsens....took the streetcar uptown....really nice

      2 Replies
      1. re: lk_nyc

        We like Galatoire's for Friday Lunches. I've been there enough to know what we're getting into, but thank you.

        Any dinner recs?

        1. re: lk_nyc

          We love Brigtsen's and think of Chef Frank and his family almost as "family" for us. The food is not to be missed and the service is just about a perfect mix of efficient, yet familiar. I cannot sing their praises too highly.

          However, their wine list, while nice, is the one weak point in my book. It gets one by, but pales in comparisson to the food. If I had one change to make, it would be the wine list. This would be the only reason that I would not recommend them, given the criteria that the OP offered.


        2. When I think of a "nice" dinner, service is the first thing that comes to mind. When I think "anniversary" I picture an intimate setting.

          There are always the classics - Antoine's, Broussard's, and Arnaud's. But if you are doing Galatoire's already, I would opt for something else.

          Stella! and Restaurant August are probably considered the finest/best restaurants in the city right now. I have always enjoyed both.

          If you want to try somewhere new, I would suggest MiLa, Iris, or Wolfe's Peristyle.

          If you want to venture Uptown, how about Patois, Bistro Daisy, or Coquette. Delmoinco also would work well, though I have not been there in quite a while.

          I apologize for the laundry list of suggestions, but (as you already know) there are a lot of great places to eat in NOLA. Good luck and thanks for choosing our city as the setting for your celebration.

          3 Replies
          1. re: Bocuse NOLA

            Ditto on MiLa, Iris, or Wolfe's (no longer using the Peristyle name) on Rampart & Dumaine. I've been to all recently and had excellent meals. And they all qualify as special occasion places.
            (BTW, we love dining in one of the tables in the bar at Wolfe's. It's more intimate, romantic than the big dining room.)
            And Bocuse's uptown suggestions are also very good ones.
            Happy anniversary!

            1. re: Bocuse NOLA

              Hmmm...we went to August on our first trip to NO, so maybe we should go again. Sentimental I am not, but it would be sweet. I want to try something new. We're kinda in a {albeit very yummy} rut with out NOLA dining lately. We have our faves and we go each trip, no matter what. Hmmm. I'm going to look into MiLA and Wolfe's. Thanks.

              1. re: Bocuse NOLA

                I also think that Stella!, Restaurant August and MiLa should figure into the mix. Each has provided us with really good food, and excellent service. With the exception of Restaurant August (more on this later), each has a good wine list, and good wine service.

                Now, with regards to Restaurant August, I have to say that they have a new sommelier, since we last dined there. The list was good, but the "sommelier's pairings" were very sophomoric and were off-key. We do a lot of these, and always keep tastes of all wines, for later courses. In this case, the sommelier was off by at least one course on the pairings. The selections were from the very bottom of their list and did not reflect any consideration towards what the kitchen was doing. Considering the price for this wine accompaniment, the markup was in the 600-800% range for half-glasses. Since I am not in the distribution end of that business, I can only do rough math. I’d say that we paid about 3x retail per bottle for half-glasses. Now, had the pairings been perfect, I could overlook it. As the wines missed badly, I cannot. Still, things have changed and I have been informed that the new sommelier has completely revamped the program and is doing wonderfully. We’ve just not had the opportunity to give her program a try. With that one admonition, I’d say do try Restaurant August.


              2. The last time my wife and I were New Orleans (Feb) we decided to go to Irene's for our romantic dinner. We were not disappointed. Everything was great, food, service and atmosphere (spelling??). Try it, I don't think you will be disappointed either

                1. We dined two trips back, at the Grill Room at the Windsor Court Hotel. It was then named the "New Orleans Grill." This was our first experience there in quite a few years. The first one, back about the time that they opened, was anything but great. The recent one was almost perfect. We did do a grand breakfast/brunch there last trip and it too was excellent.

                  IMO, their wine list is one of the best thought out in the whole city. There cuisine was top-notch, as was the service (a big, big complaint on our first visit). We were also impressed that their selections of half-bottles was quite good and deep. As it was just the two of us dining, we did one bottle and then three halves, if memory serves.

                  I do recommend that you get the info sheets on the murals, and spend some time perusing these. They are worth the effort.

                  Here's the review of the previous dinner trip:

                  Have not been able to do the review of our most recent trip, as we've had a death in the family, and it's taken a lot of time.

                  Most of all, enjoy and Happy Anniversary!


                  Windsor Court Hotel
                  300 Gravier Street, New Orleans, LA 70130

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Bill Hunt

                    Thank you, Bill, for your suggestions. I'm sorry to hear about the death in your family.

                    1. re: KateMW

                      My deepest condolences to you and your family for your loss.

                    2. re: Bill Hunt

                      I'm so sorry Bill. It must be difficult for you and my prayers are sent your way.