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New Orleans: This or That? This Weekend.

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Chicago foodie looking to make all the right choices with only a handful of meals. What would you do, or what am I missing? Suggestions on lunch vs. dinner and any passionate rankings welcome! Thank you!

Thursday Dinner: August

Friday Lunch: Commanders Palace or Galatoire's?

Friday Dinner: Peche or Herbsaint or Bayona?

Saturday Lunch: Coquette or ATCHAFLAYA?

Saturday Dinner: Cochon or R'Evolution or Bacchanal?

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  1. Flip a coin. They’re all good choices. You won’t go wrong with any of them.

    6 Replies
    1. re: shanefink

      Not a single reco? 3 must do's?

      1. re: jsgrunstad

        Since you asked, here are my picks.

        FRI: Lunch at Galatoire's, Dinner at Peche

        SAT: Lunch at Atchafalaya. Your dinner choice is tough, as those restaurants are apples & oranges. I've eaten at Cochon a bunch of times and always enjoyed myself. My one visit to R'Evolution was filled with good food and uneven service. It is much more formal than Cochon.

        Hope this helps!

        PS- Here is my report from April:
        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/900452

        1. re: Smarttyparty

          I'm still leery of sending someone to the Galatoire Friday lunch unless he is SO curious or has a local guide. And I certainly would not want dinner anywhere after a long lunch there.

          1. re: Smarttyparty

            Leave it to my fellow Chicagoans ... Love the recos and thank you for sharing your link!

          2. re: jsgrunstad

            I am guessing a lots of folks are sitting back inasmuch as all of these have been covered somewhere and, without more background, it is hard to have a sense of what you would like. There are different "experiences" there and several efforts at what is tiresomely known now as "traditional Louisiana seafood with a "fill-in-the-blank" twist. (it is almost always a "twist.") I think it is fine for someone here who doesn't have scallops or mussels in situ to grab them occasionally here but I see little reason to come all the way to town to "experience" what "chef" can do with them, allied with Gulf shrimp or what-have-you. OK, it is "fusion" cooking....what isn't? So August is going to give you mussels and Coquette and Atchafalaya will offer sweetbreads as though no one ever heard of them. It depends on what you want and what wows you. There is just about something to fit every taste around here nowadays.

            Also, your eating pattern come into play. Most places here are generally slower that other cities..some VERY slow. And are you willing to dress? Lunch at Commander's is a helluva lot different that lunch at Coquette. Some general ideas would be of help, I think.

            1. re: hazelhurst

              Mind blowing food is the name of the game, just looking for people's passion points for favorite places. It can be a hole in the wall or the best place in town, just looking for outstanding food experiences.

        2. Friday - Commanders for lunch, Herbsaint for dinner (admittedly, I haven't been to Peche yet)
          Atchaflaya
          Cochon (heard very bad report on the service at R'Evolution)
          Also consider Mariza in the Bywater and Boucherie way uptown

          3 Replies
          1. re: kimrat

            What about Peche for Friday night and Herbsaint for Saturday night dinners? Or +1 on Boucherie (see kimrat above) for either of those meals.

            As a frequent visitor, I was/am glad I did the Galatoire's Friday lunch, during my last visit, however my two companions were not wowed by the food. I got Shannon for my server and asked her to pick my entree --- and that was likely why my experience was better. It is a scene!

            Have a blast -- all of your choices are fine fine places.

            1. re: kimrat

              Thanks for your recos! Mariza looks amazing and in looking at Boucherie I do remember that yummy menu from my research ... so many choices, so few meals!

              Atchaflaya doesn't seem to come up much on the boards but I thought the menu looked so good!

              1. re: jsgrunstad

                I think that if Mariza and Peche and so forth are of interest from menu descriptions, then you'd probably not be a Commander's or Galatoire's customer. The latter does not have grit cake or pappardelles, gnocci etc. The former has some grab 'em items such as the absinthe dome but it is a formal place (albeit waningly so).

            2. good point by hazelhurst - after Friday lunch, you may not want dinner anywhere. make it a very late reservation!

              1. Commanders (garden room), , Herbsaint, Coquette, R'evolution. Actually, you won't want dinner anytime soon after lunch at either Commander's or Galatoires. IMO, Peche and Cochon are best for sharing 5 or so small plates. The food is good (not great) at both. Still too hot for Bacchanal. Atchafalaya is ok, but for the $$ you can dine far better elsewhere.

                1. My personal experience is that August is overdone and pretentious. Commander's Palace has been amazing at times, but disappointing at others. I like Herbsaint, particularly their deconstructed carbonara, and Cochon. Bayona was nothing special. For the price, I preferred K-Pauls or NOLA. Can't comment on the rest.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Hoc

                    I have dined at August many times for both lunch and dinner. Never has the service been anything short of warm, welcoming, knowlegable, accomodating, unobtusive and efficient. August is sedate, but certainly not pretentious.

                    My experience lunching at Commander's has always been wonderful. Dinner...not so much.