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French Quarter Finds

ragamuffin May 6, 2010 07:28 AM

I will be traveling to NO for a business conference in June, staying in a hotel at the edge of the French Quarter. I will only have time to visit restaurants that are within quick walking distance. I love small, fantastic, inexpensive (cheap) places, with any type of food. Do you have any suggestions for such places in the French Quarter (or am I hoping for too much, given the tourist focus)? Many thanks in advance for your suggestions.

  1. r
    ragamuffin May 14, 2010 10:40 AM

    Thank you for the excellent suggestions!! A friend of mine said that Maspero's and Felix's are good, but he's not from NO, so I don't know if the recommendations are any good. What do you guys have to say about those two places?

    601 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70130

    1 Reply
    1. re: ragamuffin
      kukubura May 15, 2010 04:29 PM

      There are two places that your friend might be referring to as Maspero's, Pierre Maspero's on Chartres which I think is nothing too special (although I had a fun meal there maaaaaany years ago when it was still boldly called Pierre Maspero's Slave Exchange, this was before I cared about food the way I do now) and Cafe Maspero's on Decatur which is touristy but has a big menu and I think might not be terrible. The last time I was there was probably in 2004 and I remember having a tasty oyster poboy at the bar and chatting with a local musician who was at the barstool next to me and thinking I was surprised he was eating there. Either way, I don't think either is a must-visit. Too many other better choices, I think.

      601 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70130

      Cafe Maspero
      601 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70130

    2. e
      Erincc77 May 10, 2010 06:40 AM

      Yo Mamma's on Saint Peter. BEST. BURGER. EVER. and the wait is much better than at Port of Call. Ask for a side of the stoner mac & cheese.

      Port of Call
      838 Esplanade Ave, New Orleans, LA 70116

      1. p
        piglet3000 May 9, 2010 06:36 PM

        Coop's. Totally Coop's. It is a total dive bar that probably would be shut down in any other city but it is the most amazing food. The waiters can be surly but you'll tune it out after you start eating and not care how rude they are. Is the food at Molly's next door from the same kitchen? It might be. And might be a more hospitable atmosphere but you can't go wrong at either place. I love the crowd/waiters at Clover Grill but it is really lousy diner food. Only eat as a very very last resort.
        Irene's Cuisine is a little more pricey but you can keep the bill down if you don't drink a ton. Amazing italian food.

        Clover Grill
        900 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA 70116

        Irene's Cuisine
        539 Saint Philip St, New Orleans, LA 70116

        7 Replies
        1. re: piglet3000
          kukubura May 9, 2010 07:25 PM

          The omelettes at Clover are actually fantastic and also are a great hangover cure.

          Weird Coops sidenote: Clarence, formerly of Coops now has a restaurant in Maryland: http://www.clarencestasteofneworleans... Haven't made it up there yet but plan to.

          1. re: kukubura
            pitu May 10, 2010 11:13 AM

            THANK YOU for that weird side note. Will be tracking that down on next DC trip if it's anywhere nearby...

            1. re: pitu
              kukubura May 10, 2010 04:54 PM

              It's not, more like northern Maryland near Aberdeen. Clear on the other side of Baltimore.

              1. re: kukubura
                pitu May 14, 2010 03:47 PM

                yes, thank you - I look at their site. next time I'm in a car on I-95...looks close enough to the interstate...
                : )

                1. re: kukubura
                  pitu Jun 2, 2010 09:49 AM

                  VERY close to I-95 as it turns out . . .
                  the menu mirrors Coops pretty closely. We very happily had a quick lunch. The shrimp in the jambalaya (and all the other seafood out of the fryer come to think of it) were perfectly cooked, not overcooked. The jambalaya was VERY tomato-y -- delicious, but I felt like we caught the pot too early in the day or something. I'd head over there anytime.

                  1. re: pitu
                    kukubura Jun 2, 2010 05:35 PM

                    Wow! Alright! We're going!

            2. re: piglet3000
              GDPhalp May 10, 2010 06:23 AM

              I second the Coops rec. Seafood gumbo is the best in the city - assuming you can stomach the smell of wet animals...The food from Molly's next door is not from Coops. Actually, its done out of the back of the bar by some people that aren't actually affiliated with the bar. Excellent bar chow, though. The real attraction at Molly's are the Bloody Mary's. They supplement their mix with Guinness. Adds a very earthy and rich element to the drink...spicy pickled green beans that are served with them are also excellent!

            3. kukubura May 9, 2010 11:30 AM

              Here's a tip: If you want to taste the BBQ shrimp at Mr. B's that everyone is always going on about (well, me anyway) the lunch portion is generous and much cheaper than the dinner portion. Plus you can get it at the bar with a $1.50 lunch cocktail. And it's on your side of the FQ.

              Also on your end of Bourbon street is Remoulade, the casual offshoot of Arnaud's which I've had a couple of meals at, one great, one so-so. You could take a peek and see if it's to your liking.

              The Gumbo Shop is also closer to your end of town and is a casual place to enjoy some solid creole cooking.

              Someone already mentioned Johnny's. That's a good pick, as is Clover Grill, although a little further into the Quarter. Although, honestly the whole FQ is so small, walking from one end to the other is no biggee.

              Clover Grill
              900 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA 70116

              1. l
                Littleman May 6, 2010 03:13 PM

                This should be perfect for you. Good bar food, good music, good drinks, late hours.

                Molly's at the Market @ 1107 Decatur St., New Orleans, LA 504 - 525 - 5169. *


                2 Replies
                1. re: Littleman
                  Fydeaux May 7, 2010 06:38 AM

                  EXCELLENT suggestion! I love Molly's. The food is superb, and it's also a great place to stike up a coversation with a perfect stranger that might turn out to be an NPR correspondent, a local chef, a touring musician, a well-known author, a tattoo artist...I've met them all there. And I love the gumbo!

                  1. re: Fydeaux
                    Clarkafella May 14, 2010 11:34 PM

                    You know, I've been to Molly's about a million times, and didn't even know they had food! Guess I was too enamored with the beer and the lovely lady at the bar who has the most beautiful tattoos I have ever seen!

                2. l
                  Littleman May 6, 2010 09:59 AM

                  What about Buffa's Lounge on Esplanade in the FQ open 24 and 7 for breakfast/lunch/dinner with live music.

                  Buffa's Lounge @ 1001 Esplanade Ave., New Orleans, LA. 504 - 949 - 0038. Tamales. *


                  Or Clover Grill on Bourbon open 24/7 for breakfast/lunch/dinner.

                  Clover Grill @ 900 Bourbon St., New Orleans, LA. 504 - 598 - 1010.

                  Or Donna's Grill and Bar on St. Ann and N. Rampart. It's only open for dinner Thursday/Sunday but their food is respectable with creole, burgers and BBQ but their live music is well known.

                  Donna's Bar and Grill @ 800 North Rampart St., New Orleans, LA. 504 - 596 - 6914. **


                  Clover Grill
                  900 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA 70116

                  1. nomadchowwoman May 6, 2010 09:06 AM

                    Felipe's on Decatur is an inexpensive taqueria with very good tacos. Many on this board love Coop's (I'm not one), which is inexpensive and right in the Quarter. Lunch at Stanley may fit your criteria. If you can get by on a burger or a bowl of mussels or soup and salad for dinner, you can eat very reasonably (though it is by no means a "cheap" place) at Meauxbar Bistro, which serves excellent food, is small, friendly, frequented by locals. Bennachin is a pretty good African rest. in the Quarter. Cafe Amelie is a beautiful place, w/a lovely courtyard; I prefer it for brunch/lunch food. There are some less expensive places across Esplanade, in the Frenchmen St./Marigny area: Sukko Thai, Mimi's for tapas, others. Cross Canal St, and grab a fabulous $13 pizza or a small plate or two at Domenica. Cochon Butcher has unbelievably wonderful sandwiches and bar food; it's a bit of a walk from the Quarter (but perfectly do-able, esp. if your hotel is at the Canal edge of the Quarter; I make it often), and worth it, and it's open from late morning until 10 p.m. weeknights, 11 F & Sat.

                    Cafe Amelie
                    912 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70116

                    Cochon Butcher
                    930 Tchoupitoulas, New Orleans, LA 70130

                    Bennachin Restaurant
                    1212 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70116

                    123 Baronne Street, New Orleans, LA 70112

                    1. g
                      GDPhalp May 6, 2010 08:11 AM

                      If you are on the Canal side of the quarter, finding good & inexpensive eats is relatively easy. Johnny's Po' Boys is on St. Louis, on that side of the quarter. While maybe not the BEST po' boys in the city, they have a great selection & are very servicable. Also, a nice place with lunch specials over there is Mena's Palace. They have tasty lunch specials and it's very affordable.

                      Mena's Palace
                      200 Chartres St, New Orleans, LA 70130

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: GDPhalp
                        grampart May 9, 2010 11:53 AM

                        I totally agree with the Mena's Palace suggestion. Our family stayed near by for a week in 2003 and ate many good meals at great prices. One night we ran into Chris Noth in there.

                        Mena's Palace
                        200 Chartres St, New Orleans, LA 70130

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