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Why does everyone hate Jacques-imo's

Why does everyone hate Jacques-imo's? I have never dined there in all my times in New Orleans, but have many friends (both locals and tourists) that love that place. I need some specifics. I'd like to hear from some folks who like it as well please.

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  1. The place is great, unique, fun, funky and the food is usually very good. Their sides are to die for. I have had a few clunkers on the menu, but lately the food has been better than ever. It is very loud and the waiting area is not comfortable at all unless you find a spot at the bar and have a few drinks. Someone on this board just asked for recommendations of someplace similar to Jacques Imos to recommend to friends. There isn’t any. It truly is a one-of-a-kind New Orleans experience capped off by an owner who is almost always there, even if he usually is a little drunk. One drawback is the service can be spotty. They go with a team effort thing. One person brings your waters, one person takes your drink orders, another person may take your food orders and other people run your food. Sometimes this leads to inattentiveness, but other times it’s just part of the quirkiness. If you’ve never been, it’s definitely worth a visit, just be patient and enjoy New Orleans-time.

    2 Replies
    1. re: shanefink

      judging by the lines and wait times i would say that EVERYONE does not hate Jacques-Imo's!!!!! Maybe a few snobby people don't really like it or do not appreciate the kitsch but most people I know LOVE Jacques-imo' and certainly any guests from out of town that I have brought there adored the place! It's always been a great time in my book.

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      Jacques-Imo's Cafe
      8324 Oak St, New Orleans, LA 70118

      1. re: mcegielski

        The food is mediocre. I find that by the time you order an app, entree, drinks, you could have dined far better elsewhere (eg Emeril's, Coquette...) with a resv.

        Slow service and folks lingering make table turnover slow. Go when they open to avoid the long wait times. We've been told 30 mins which in Jacques speak is an hour and a half. It is funky, loud and a slice of nola's quirkier side. Everyone should probably go once for the "ambience" and the fried chicken (what they do best).

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        Emeril's Restaurant
        800 Tchoupitoulas, New Orleans, LA 70130

    2. Jacques-Imo's is great if you're drunk and rowdy. It's loud, crowded, and the food is hit or miss and you can tell the place is owned by a drunk. I used to love their fried chicken but one night as I was walking through the kitchen to get to my table, there was literally a bucket of it sitting on the floor. You're better off getting lunch at Crabby Jack's, which is also Jacques Leonardi's place. I do have to say, if they screw something up, they'll overcompensate. Another time, we were seated almost an hour after our reservation (they only take reservations for large parties) so they gave us every appetizer on the menu for free.

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      Crabby Jacks
      428 Jefferson Hwy, New Orleans, LA 70121

      Jacques-Imo's Cafe
      8324 Oak St, New Orleans, LA 70118

      1. Eating at Jacques-Imo's is a fun dining experience. Comparing it to Emeril's is absurd. The food compares very favorably to many NOLA neighborhood joints.

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        Emeril's Restaurant
        800 Tchoupitoulas, New Orleans, LA 70130

        Jacques-Imo's Cafe
        8324 Oak St, New Orleans, LA 70118

        1. You need to know what you are in for when you go to Jacues-imo's. I've been several times and I love it! The wait will definitely be majorly long but if you go two doors down to Maple Leaf bar they will come over and get you when your table is ready. I've never had any food that was even marginal there. It's all good. The servers have always doted on my groups. It's loud and the tables are close together. I definitely wouldn't recommend it for a funeral lunch. I would recommend it as a precursor to a great night out on the town.

            1. re: mimadeli

              I don't hate it, I just see no point in waiting for a table in a cramped restaurant, when there are numerous places with better food and a comfort factor that is light years ahead. I see why people go, sure, but not my idea of a pleasurable dining experience.