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Feb 24, 2011 06:58 AM

Graduation Dinner

Help! I'm graduating from college in May and my parents are coming down to attend the ceremony and most importantly TREAT ME TO DINNER!! I'm having an incredibly difficult time deciding on where to go.

I've been low of budget since coming to New Orleans so I've had very few fine dining experiences to make my decision based on. I am also fairly sure that I'm getting to this a little late, so most of the most famous restaurants (commander's, antoines, luke, august) will probably be booked.

Some basic info about me as an eater:

While I love New Orleans cuisine, I DON'T love paying mega bucks for it at restaurants, even if it is inventive.
I like to try new things and I can guarantee you that if the food tastes good, I'll like it, regardless of fat content, original animal source or appearance.
I LOVE restaurants that care about local, seasonal and ethical farming.
The atmosphere does not need to be fancy- I'm looking for extreme quality, not extreme snootiness.
Some of my favorite eating experiences in New Orleans have been- the Green Goddess (everything), Crepe Nanou (mussels and escargot), Panchita's on Carrollton (huevos rancheros and fried plantains during lunch), Bacchanal for the whole chill vibe and awesome beer selection and cheese plates.
And my favorite foods are huevos rancheros, mussels, and fried green tomatoes (best I've had were with goat cheese and jalapeno cashew relish in atlanta, not a fan of the shrimp remoulade version).

I'm looking for something fun and experimental (and out of my normal price range since this is a once in a life time opportunity to eat ANYWHERE). Also, I know some restaurants like GG don't take reservations, so does anyone have advice on how to handle this situation? I don't want to get stuck waiting 4 hours or not being able to go out anywhere!

Help! Please and Thank You!

Green Goddess
307 Exchange Place, New Orleans, LA 70130

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  1. I think for an occasion of this magnitude, Commander's would fit the bill perfectly. Call now and make a reservation. Personally, I like to sit in the down stairs' dining room, but there are many lovely rooms upstairs and across the patio. Congratulations.

    1. Here is my list, and in no particular order:

      Mila - very interesting cuisine from the Deep South
      Stella! - not NOLA cuisine, but you let me in the door!!! Inventive, and well-prepared
      Restaurant August - more NOLA-influenced, but very inventive. Local produce is a plus for me.
      Brigtsen's - Chef Frank Brigtsen's take on NOLA fare. Not what one might get at the "Grand Dames" of NOLA Cuisine.

      For graduation, go for it - within reason. [Grin] To us, all of those are fun, fine-dining and with very good food. The preps are inventive, and unique to each chef.



      Restaurant August
      301 Tchoupitoulas Street, New Orleans, LA 70130

      Brigtsen's Restaurant
      723 Dante St, New Orleans, LA 70118