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WWIJRD?! Prolly throw this list in the trash and get a hot dog...

Me and the wife are coming down from Friday morning to Monday afternoon for the Road Food Festival in March. I am thinking we will need to find many places to eat before, during and after the festival. Barring the Coffee Pot in the morning and Cafe du Monde at 0300 (never eaten there sober and I don't intend on starting now) I have been trying to find a couple meals a day.

I have been reading a lot and following this board for a couple weeks and basically I am losing it at the thought of trying to make final decisions. Let me say that we like to eat. From the diviest of dives to the fanciest of fancy as long as the food is good and there is passion and well stuff. I think that New Orleans has a real sense of terrior in their cooking, much more so than the rest of the country. It is those places I am interested. Places that say "here I am! ain't gonna get this no where else!"

We are not interested in a scene at all or specifically a "NO" experience. One of the things I am interested in creole vs. cajun cooking. I understand that there are ethnic differences but I am not certain about food differences. I would try both separately or together if you can. Olivier's is creole and is why I chose that place for instance.

So here goes, there is a lot of second guessing myself. I am obviously willing for third guesses as well.

Lunch: Domilises
Dinner: Cochon (Brightsen's?)

Lunch: Parkway (Willie Mae's?)
Dinner: Bourbon House (Casamentos?)

Lunch:Parasol's (CG? I like warm ones better which is why Parasol is first.)
Dinner: Oliviers (Galatoires?)

Breakfast (second breakfast): Camellia Grill
Lunch: Rivershack (red beans and rice day.)

Please make suggestions. I have read and re-read a lot, and I can't come up with anything else right now.

Thanks very much and GO SAINTS WOOT!!!!!

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  1. Oh. I forgot I wanted to try and get Stella in there...

    1. You are fine with Dom's for lunch--shrimp po-boy is The Way To Go over there. I'd certainly switch Cochon for Brightsen's (see below). Parkway over Willie Mae and without any doubt make it to Casamento's. I think you'd do well to throw Liuzza's on Bienville in there.

      Cochon is perfectly fine for locals who never get to the country and it serves a need for visitors. To my mind it is "upscale" country food. I get out of town a great deal and have scores of little gas stations and shops where I buy crackings and sausages and organ meats; as a result, Cochon is, to me, nothing remarkable. If, however, you come from a place that does not remember when its people ate parts of pig ( no discussion of religious laws at the moment), then Cochon is a fine place to start. It may be "fancy-fication of pork" but it is good.

      As to cajun v. creole? You can argue for years about "creole" alone. Cajun is loosely defined as a triangle area with the apex at Turkey Creek, below Alexandria, and its bottom angles at the river mouth on the east and the Sabine at the West. Wirthin that territory there is enormous variation of food items over short distances. In New Orleans, Cajun is fitfully produced..Bon Ton is a superb "museum piece" of Cajun cooking in the urban world(And I use the term "museum piece" in an admiring manner).

      It is a separate topic but it is fun to look back over the years and note how the Cajun Influence has been played in the City. Also to see how foreign expectations of what New Orleans food SHOULD be have been catered to and how foreign belilefs of what Great Food is have been flummoxed by what is, in fact, a earthy style of cooking without too many Victorian gingerbread adornments (but, admittedly, some adornments. Oysters Rock is a 19th century dish and I doubt it would be invented today. )

      5 Replies
      1. re: hazelhurst

        Thanks very much Hazel. I have read quite a lot of your great posts recently. Based on hours and suggestions this is a revised list. I wonder if Parkway/Parasol's and Dom's are all too similar? Perhaps Luizza's in place of one of them, it is another one on my list (which is actually a spread sheet with over 50 entries so far).

        Lunch: Domilises
        Dinner: Bon Ton Cafe

        Lunch: Casamentos
        Dinner: Brightsen's

        Dinner: Parkway

        Breakfast (second breakfast): Camellia Grill
        Lunch: Rivershack (red beans and rice day.)

        1. re: sekelmaan

          You're right about the similarities---but if you were working on comparing them it's fine. I think Parasol/Parkway is something of a double-kick shotgun sort of day. I (of course) would just give Sunday afternoon over to Galatoire's, going at about 2:30 or 3:00. Or, if you wanted to be truly decadent, do brunch at Commander's and then wander over to Galatoire's. Don;t tell your cardiologist (or do like I do and don't even HAVE a cardiologist)

          1. re: sekelmaan

            you do have there poboy shops: Dom's, Parasol's, Parkway. kinda redundant, esp Para & Park, since both are known most for their roastbeef.

            not sure where you're coming from but if youre interested in cajun then yeah Cochon is probably about it near the FQ. hazel will point out that it's not as good as in the true country, but unless you plan on driving way out it'll do. ive heard it referred to as "cajun comfort food".

            sounds like youve got a mean case of "paralysis by analysis"..!

            1. re: kibbles

              Great, thanks a lot Kib. Probably looking to sub Luzmilla's for one of them in that case. Glad to know about Olivier's as well.

            2. re: sekelmaan

              I'd love to see that spreadsheet!! going to NO for the first time in April.
              willing to share?

          2. Well, I hate to throw another choice in but Boucherie is very good.

            I would definitely try Brightsen's - get a reservation though.

            1. lose Bourbon House and Olivier's.
              look to add Boucherie, Coquette, Patois.

              2 Replies
              1. re: edible complex

                yeah meant to add: Olivier's is in my opinion, tourist crap. would have liked to try it in the grandfather chef's era, but today theres nothing there. im pretty sure they bought their high rating on citysearch.com.

                Bourbon House is not a dining destination, but is good for its bar -- nice oyster bar, good baked varieties too. good spot for a between-meal snack :)

                1. Would probably try to do other places instead of so many po-boy restaurants. Of the three you listed, if you want roast beef, go to Parkway.

                  My thoughts on some of your other choices....

                  -1 Willie Mae's
                  -1 Oliver's
                  +1 Casamento's
                  +1 Galatoire's
                  +1 Brightsen's

                  EAT (BYOB)
                  Green Goddess
                  Ruby Slipper

                  LUNCH SUGGESTIONS:
                  August ($20 lunch special)
                  Commander's Palace (25 cent martinis)

                  SNACKS/LITE MEALS:
                  BBQ Shrimp at Mr. B's
                  Muffalettea from Central Grocery
                  Raw Oysters and 1/2 price drinks at Luke every day 3-6

                  Napoleon House
                  Carosel Bar
                  Columns Hotel

                  1. go with brigstens, Stella and Galatoires for dinner.

                    13 Replies
                    1. re: wadelit

                      I was thinking about that line up. But I wasn't really sure if the food at Galatoires is that good or if it was just about the experience of eating there.

                      Then for the 3 lunches I have been considering Domilises, Luzmilla's and Camellia Grill, cutting out Parkway and Parasol.

                      1. re: sekelmaan

                        do you mean Liuzza's? if so, which one?

                        1. re: edible complex

                          I did mean that and I didn't know there were more than one. Or maybe not. I just reread Hazels response and she mentioned Luizza's. I have them confused.

                          1. re: sekelmaan

                            see attached links to both locations.

                            eta: it seems CH is not managing links...hmmm.

                            try these:

                            1. re: edible complex

                              I went to Luizza's by the hospital in October. I have to admit, I was completely underwhelmed. I had the fried oysters...perhaps I should have had something else?

                              1. re: FoodChic

                                we went to liuzza's by the track for lunch on our recent visit. the best entree i had on the whole trip was the bbq shrimp po-boy. it was a light colored sauce, alot of black pepper in it. delicious, filled with shrimp, i couldn't eat the whole thing. everyone at the table agreed. the BEST.

                                1. re: califkatie

                                  I have to agree on Liuzza's by the Track - both their gumbo and BBQ shrimp po' boy are awesome.

                                  I too would pass on Olivier's.

                                  I am mystified by the fascination with Boucherie - they are nice people, but there food is nothing special.

                                  I would personally go to Pascal's Manale or Cassamento's if I were looking for oysters.

                                  Parkway makes great po'boys, and is not, as stated above, exclusivley known for their roast beef. Parasol's are great, but the place is a dive, so don't expect anything close to spotless.

                                  Ruby Slipper is one of a number of passable breakfast places, but I would rather see you try Elizabeth's, Coulis, Stanley, or Cake Cafe & Bakery than any of your current recommendations.

                                  Galatoires is worth the effort. Stella, while wonderful, is not particularly New Orlinean (that being said, it is one of my favorites). Brigstens (expensive), Herbsaint (sorta expensive), Dick & Jenny's (not expensive), are my favorites to take folks to for dinner, although there are tons of other good choices as well.

                                  1. re: paz5559

                                    yes, i tasted my friends' gumbo at liuzza's,it too, was the best of the trip. we also hit elizabeth's(great lunch specials), pascale manales(great oysters bienville) and galatoires(everything was wonderful).

                                    1. re: paz5559

                                      @paz - not sure if youre referring to my post, but i never said Park is known "exclusively" for their RB. i said known for it -- when folks talk best RB, Parkway and Parasols are always at the top of the list. this is why i wouldnt do both when theres so much ground to cover.

                                      1. re: kibbles

                                        Parkway is known for great po'boys. As no mention was made by the OP re RB specifically, I was just making sure they didnt skip the shrimp, oyster, or Thanksgiving alternative options.

                                        I personally would also put Joe Sepie's in any list of great RB, and Crabby Jacks on any list of great general po'boy shops

                                        1. re: paz5559

                                          yeah but like i said, i never said exclusively RB, as you stated. thats my point.

                                          also, while i would love to rec Parkway for their Thanksgiving Poboy (its great and a personal fav), everytime ive tried to get it recently theyre out; sometimes times before noon.

                                            1. re: sekelmaan

                                              A poboy with turkey, cranberry, stuffing etc, just like a leftover sandwich you would make at home after Thanksgiving

                      2. LBTT has decent gumbo with a weird tamale flavor. Better gumbo can be had at Commander's (lunch in the Garden Room M-F), K-Paul's (grab a bowl at self serve lunch Thur., Fri., Sat.), Cochon, Mr. B's (Ya-ya). I'd drop one of the po-boy spots and go to Emeril's for lunch. 3 courses $19.50 Worth the ala carte charge for the chicken and waffles and banana cream pie.(lunch M-F). If you can't make lunch, I'd sub Emeril's for one of your dinners. Pick up a muff at Central Grocery to take home.

                        1. Thanks everyone for the great advice. I have been slacking in my research, but have a little time today. Here is my revised list:

                          Lunch: Domilises
                          Dinner: Bon Ton Cafe

                          Lunch: Casamentos
                          Dinner: Brightsen's

                          Lunch: Parkway
                          Dinner: Galatoires

                          Breakfast (second breakfast): Camellia Grill
                          Lunch: Rivershack (red beans and rice day) or maybe CG to go or maybe just skip this meal.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: sekelmaan

                            With Casamento's I recommmend arriving shortly before opening--11 a.m.--or pretty soon you're going to find yourself standing outside in line. If you arrive later, the line is still worth it, though.

                            1. re: sekelmaan

                              Skip a meal?!?! You are no IJR, sir.

                              Try to slip some Mr. B's BBQ shrimp in there somewhere. Even as a snack: Share a portion at the bar whenever you get the munchies.

                              1. re: kukubura

                                I have seen a lot about that shrimp. Instead of skipping, I will just have to have two lunches to get it done. ;p

                            2. Pick up a muffaletta to go from Central Grocery on your way out of town.