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Long Trip Report: June 15-June 20

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asuzc Jun 24, 2013 05:39 AM

We have been to New Orleans several times. We have added some old and new places to our trip. Now I can't wait to get back!
We drove down on Saturday June 15.
1. Middendorf's--- First stop was Middendorf's at Lunch on Saturday. I had read on chowhound that it had great Thin and Crispy Catfish. It was awesome. The hushpuppies were good too. My DH had the stuffed fried shrimp and he said they were heavenly. Great first stop.
2. Mr. B's Bistro--The in-laws were flying in that night to meet us for the trip. We had reservations at Mr. B's but cancelled because there flight was several hours later. Luckily, we were still able to get in for dinner later in the evening. It was busy, but they fit us in. I had been longing for a bowl of gumbo Ya-Ya.
As always the severs were great and very friendly. The bread was served and we still think it is some of the best in town. The crunch from breaking it off the loaf to the soft middle was just divine. I had the Bistro Salad. It was very tart but very good. The gumbo ya-ya was just as good as usual. :) My husband devoured down his BBQ Shrimp. The berry cobbler finished off a great meal. My husband had a gin fizz and said it was very good. The inlaws enjoyed their food as well.
3. Sunday June 16--Sunday Brunch at Atchafalaya
The in-laws and my DH enjoyed the Bloody Mary Bar. DH ordered the Huevos Rancheros and even the beans were good. The chorizo sausage was very good and had a little hint of andouille sausage to it. My Bananas Foster French Toast was incredible with a side of Bacon. I am not particularly a french toast person, but this is the second time I have ordered it. French Bread has been sliced in to 4 six-inch slices and grilled. Then, bananas are sliced over the toast. A buttered rum syrup was on the side to add as needed. The sauce is so rich,but perfect with the french toast.
4. Kermit Ruffin's Speakeasy--Sunday
About 4:45 p.m. we took a taxi to Kermit Ruffin's Speakeasy. Tables were already filling up and it was a good thing that we arrived early. We did eat here. I had red beans and rice. It was classic and good. My DH ordered tamales. We thought well it couldn't be bad. They were excellent. I normally do not like tamales, but these had the correct amount of spice in the meat. Kermit had been taping with the food network since 7 a.m. So, he started a little later about 7:15 p.m. It was good music and we enjoyed hearing his daughter's , him, and others sing and play that night.
5. Commander's Palace--Monday Lunch
For some odd reason, we have never made it to Commander's Palace, but it will definitely be on our list from now on. The garden room was closed for roof repairs. We sat in the lovely Patio Room by the windows. Great server: Woody. Several different drinks were ordered from all 4 of us: Cosmopolitan (25 cent), Box Car ($5.00), Sangria, Blue Martini drink (25 cent), Irish Coffee (WOW a lot and very good). My DH had not had a salad yet and really wanted one, but also wanted the turtle soup. So, Woody said he would give him a demi portion of the turtle soup and the romaine salad. He said the soup was delicious and he wanted more later in the week. :) He also ordered the cochon de lait and it was delicious. The pork was so delicate! I had the Shrimp and oster gumbo and it was done perfectly. I am not one for seafood gumbo because the rue is sometimes too light, but it was dark enough to really bring out some great flavors. The Wild Gulf Spicy Shrimp was my entree. It was delicious. I am forgetting the details of it, but I definitely will be returning to Commander's. My DH and I split the Bread Pudding Souffle and it was delicate and rich at the same time. My in-laws got the praline parfait and at first I thought it just an ice cream sundae until I tasted it. It had all the flavors and pieces of pecans, pralines, ice cream and whip cream. The dessert was very big.
6. Mandina's--Monday Supper
I wanted some classic shrimp creole and that is exactly what was served. This was on the Monday special and is not served every day of the week. Not fancy but good food. DH had a delicious Meatball Po-boy dressed and with red gravy and cheese.
7. Sobou--Monday
We had a few drinks: Joan Collins--refreshing strawberry basil with vodka and lemonade, Fauborgny Tall Boy-- once again refreshing Gin, wine, and fruit, Old Fashioned with New Orleans Spiced Rum (very good).
8. Stanley's
A trip has to have Stanley's in some fashion. So, we stopped for delicious ice cream sundaes.
9. Tuesday---
I was set to try NOLA Good Eats next to Cochon Butcher, but unfortunately they were closed for kitchen renovation until Saturday. :(
Luckily, Cochon Butcher is next door with some good food. We started with Sliders (BB Sweet and Sour Brisket). Good. Then, we moved on to the pancetta mac n cheese. Some of the best mac n cheese DH has ever had. I had the Gambino (YUM)--Cotto Salami, Sopressata, Capicolla, and arugula with a vinaigrette. Just what I needed.
10. Maximo's Italian Grill-Tuesday supper
Not many people were here. Maybe 2 other small tables. My DH and I ordered the Romana Salad with arugula, prosciutto wrapped around it and a couple slices of parmesan cheese. Not the best salad. I don't think it had dressing at all on it. My husband couldn't even eat the arugula. We told the waiter and he said it was a bitter green. We knew it was slightly bittter, but there was no vinaigrette on it at all. My in-laws did have a good Caesar salad. I ordered the fire roasted shrimp with the veggie of the day. It was more argula (I had had enough already :)). Very good spice from the shrimp. DH had a veal chop with potato gratin and asparagus. This was very good and done with a wonderful reduction sauce. We tried the Bolgnese from my MIL and it was very good. The desserts came and were in the same ballpark as Fazoli's. Not impressed, my DH mouse cake was still frozen. :(

11. Tableau--Wednesday Lunch
The restaurant opened about 7 weeks ago. It is on Jackson Square. From the minute we walked in it was fabulous: Service , food and decor! Great Servers: Sonny and Andrew! At first we got a few slices of a hard artisan french bread. Very good. Like I said earlier, my husband wanted more turtle soup. It was a little different than Commander's Palace, but very good. I had an incredible Blue Cheese Salad: a few piece of fruit to the side, a slice of toasted bread with Blue Cheese chunk on top, and a vinaigrette salad with red onions. Best salad of the trip! Then, my DH ordered the special Mangrove snapper with a incredible sauce. I ordered Chicken Tableau. Yes, I know a chicken dish, but it was fabulous. The thigh was slightly fried, and the breast was roasted with a b├ęchamel sauce on the chicken. Roasted potatoes in a reduction sauce with a lot of garlic and onions. Oh, my! Then, we had the dessert list. This looked like the best dessert list in New Orleans. Andrew persuaded my DH to get Tarta a la Bouille : A cajun sweet dough baked with a vanilla custard and a rum sauce. I got the Angel Cream Crepe: Crepe filled with dolche de leche with a cream sauce served over it and several berries. Words can't described how great the desserts were. We would go back that week if we could just to work our way through the dessert menu. :)
Tableau was probably the best meal of the trip!

12. Domenica--Wednesday Dinner
We got to Domenica during happy hour. It was very busy. We got the garlic knots and they were very good. The four of us shared 3 pizza's: Calebrese, Cotochino, and Bolzano. All very good! The funniest thing ever. I was eating the Calebrese with spicy salami, capers, and olives and was enjoying every bite. My MIL saw her pizza Cotochino and said I didn't order pineapple on the pizza. She said oh, well it tastes very good. My DH finally tasted the pizza and said it was good, but it was yellow tomato (very sweet) on the pizza. :)
13. Parkway Bakery--Thursday Lunch
We had missed out on po-boys at Nola Good Eats. So, we scratched the street Freret off the list and headed up to Parkway Bakery. Great shrimp and roast boys as always.
14. Emeril's Restaurant--Thursday Supper
My DH got the corn and crab soup. He said it was very good. I got the andouille and chicken gumbo. It was perfectly seasoned. I got the andouille crusted drum fish with sweet potato crispy shoe strings ?? and squash. All very good. My DH got the special 17 oz Ribeye with potatoes. Let say the Ribeye was divine. We also got the peanut butter pie because DH loves peanut butter and chocolate. I got he special walnut bread pudding with spiced walnuts. Very good!

And Yes at some point, we went to Cafe Du Monde a few times. I love beignets and cafe au lait. :) We also went by Angela Brocato's for Lemon Ice and a cannoli. Then, took several cookies back to the hotel.

We had a great trip and can't wait to go back.

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    Smarttyparty RE: asuzc Jun 24, 2013 10:14 AM

    Thanks for the report, that was quite a trip. I too went to Middendorf's on my last visit in April. I plan on making that a tradition.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Smarttyparty
      a
      asuzc RE: Smarttyparty Jun 24, 2013 12:07 PM

      Yes, Middendorf's will be on the list of regular restaurants.

      1. re: asuzc
        mrsfury RE: asuzc Jun 25, 2013 06:04 PM

        Mid's has a deck over the water with live music on Sunday (usually) in the summer. The homemade ice cream is wonderful as well as most of the other dishes. I like the shrimp cocktail, crab fingers and gumbo. You need to check out the funky chicken coop in the back too. It looks like something out of a Tim Burton movie.

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