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NOLA recs? [moved from Los Angeles board]

Love smoked whitefish and whitefish salad in NYC.

Any recs for NOLA? Going next month. Already made lunch for Cochon. More low end stuff or something like Cochon, not that Commander's Palace stuff.

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  1. for high end, go to antoines, ask for jerry as your waiter when you reserve and also reserve a chocolate ice cream baked alaska, get the oysters fauche (with faux i think) and the rockafeller (so much better than other spots), fresh fish topped with crab/crawfish tails, or steaks with old school sauces...and a few sazeracs....

    for low end, domelise's po-boys up town (there's one with fried shrimp or oysters and ham or beef and gravy all together...very nice...the ferdie's special is at mothers near canal street with "debris" which is the ends and edges and crust and drippings off of roast beef and ham...very nice....panneed rabbit (like cutlet) poboy at crabby jacks or the duck one there....i know it's touristy but this time of year ok....line up the oysters at acme...i love the jazz at snug harbor on frenchman street and they have a dynamite burger there too

    enjoy -- i find the best time to hoss down in nola is at the jazzfest with all the stands including couchon de lait po boys, crawfish streudel, white chocolate bread pudding...

    iko iko

    34 Replies
    1. re: jessejames

      Any other po boy recs closer to the quarter besides Domelise's. If need be, will cab it over and cab back which will probably cost twice as much as the po boy itself but c'est la vie.

      May just end up at Mother's. Long lines though.

      1. re: Porthos

        acme is solid for fried oyster or shrimp or catfish po boy...i dont think you'll get killed with the lines this time of year...at least you can have a drink while you wait!

        1. re: jessejames

          see, i think felix's does all that and more. and i like the vibe in there.

          willie mae's comes highly recommended for the fried chicken. herbsaint has very, very good food.

          1. re: linus

            I am also a bigger fan of Felix's, but that is because it was the choice of my side of the family. Their Fried Shrimp Po-Boy was rated at the top. Now, there HAVE been some changes, and we have not dined there since, so maybe those changes have had a negative impact, or maybe not?

            Hunt

            1. re: Bill Hunt

              Bill, CiaoB, or anyone else into wine? Any one of these places with a good or great Burgundy selection?

              1. re: Porthos

                I don't think I have EVER seen a glass of wine in Felix's..and Acme used to have just box stuff. The New Regime might be boosting its wine offerings(everyone is since the markup is so huge) but I'd be knocked for a loop if you found even a half-way decent Burgundy in there. Hell, find one anywhere....

                1. re: hazelhurst

                  Not Felix and Acme, I meant any of the restaurant recommendations or a new recommendation in the French Quarter and surrounding area for great food and a great list.

                  1. re: Porthos

                    Ah! Well, I defer to someone who can afford Burgundies on a regular basis. I haven't sold a script to Hollywood yet.

                  2. re: hazelhurst

                    HH,

                    Considering those two establishments, I would anticipate that any wines would be of the Kendall-Jackson ilk.

                    When dining at Felix's, I normally eschew wine, for a Barq's, but that might be the ONLY time that I do not have wine with a meal, served after about 8:00AM, in the TMZ, where I am.

                    Neither Felix's, or ACME, would be my place to order any wine.

                    OTOH, we had a great (paired with the food, albeit short) wine list at Cochon. Now, I DID find the "domestic" (US) Pinot Noirs, which pair so well with the food, to predominate, that should be expected. I do not recall one red Burg on the menu, but might have missed a Village wine, in lieu of something from the Central Coast/Monterrey, CA, USA, that paired well with the spices of the food.

                    To me, the ultimate, regarding food/wine pairings, is how well they marry. I could care less about "collecting trophies," but more about the "enjoyment quotient."

                    Maybe I am just a hedonist?

                    Hunt

                    1. re: Bill Hunt

                      The burg selection was a bit meager at Cochon today. They ran out of their Meursault 1er and only had a few Macon-Verze and Chablis.

                      For red, we got a Chambolle Musigy village. Drinking well but very overpriced. Herbsaint definitely had a better selection.

                      1. re: Porthos

                        Dang, that is sad.

                        From our last visit, Burgs (red & white) are great with the menu.

                        Next, I would look to the CA Central Coast, and primarily Santa Barbara, or Monterey, for reds, but would need to have the wine list in my hands, for whites.

                        Maybe I expect too much?

                        Hunt

                  3. re: Porthos

                    Hey Porthos, have you been to WINO on Tchoupitoulas, few blocks from Cochon? You purchase a debit card and then slide it into automated (temperature controlled) dispensers that pour 1-3oz servings of wine. There are dozens of bottles to choose from. Simply an ingenious idea. Looks like a retail spot from the outside. This was my favorite drinking spot on my trip last year. Look it up. Perfect joint before or after Cochon.

                    1. re: Silverjay

                      Good to know. Will go try it tomorrow.

                      Cochon today. Love this place. Have reservations for dinner tomorrow also.

                      -Fried boudin. Delicious rice and a bit of liver flavor in a good way.
                      -meat and oyster pie. Like the best empanada ever. Filling is wonderful with great flavor
                      -pork and black eye peas, collard greens gumbo. Spicy. Flavorful. Nod to Soup DOM back in LA.

                      Had a bite of the fried alligator and brisket which were also good.

                       
                       
                      1. re: Porthos

                        Yum!
                        Cannot help with the wine lists.
                        I love Cochon too, Porthos
                        I bet you have your eating schedule tight but you may want to try Peche or Maurepas Foods if you get a chance.
                        Grab Oysters and cocktails, BBQ shrimp and neighborhood charm at Pascale's Manale.
                        Go hear a band at the Maple Leaf.
                        Enjoy! I'm jealous.

                        1. re: Ciao Bob

                          Booked Peche. What do you recommend there?

                          Tempted by the Herbsaint menu and may switch out Peche for that if something opens up.

                          1. re: Porthos

                            Can't go wrong with either place.
                            Peche - loved the whole grilled fish (that day it was a gulf...ummmmm, really good but name escapes), oysters, and fried grouper collar with chili sauce (a special that day).

                      2. re: Silverjay

                        Thanks for the WINO rec. I think that's exactly what we'll do before dinner tonight!

                      3. re: Porthos

                        The best Burg list is possibly Restaurant August (Chef John Besh).

                        Unfortunately, several NOLA restaurants lost their wine cellars, during Katrina. While the FQ did not sustain THAT much damage, some restaurants, like Antoine's lost their roof, and the rest lost power. Many great wines lost in that storm, though they were not flooded.

                        In NOLA, at fine-dining establishments, red Burgs are often highlighted. Not really sure why that is, as the white Burgs are so very often overlooked.

                        Pre-K, I found a problem - the wine lists jumped from "entry-level" red Burgs, to DRC's, at US$6000 per bottle. I mean, what about dozens of great producers, whose wine should sell for about US $250, and pair perfectly with the food of NOLA?

                        Now, NOLA has never really been a "wine city," focusing more on brews and cocktails. Still, there is so very much, between Kendall-Jackson, and Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, or 1er Cru Bordeaux, that was never addressed - hyperbole intended [Hyperbole Warning].

                        Things ARE changing. Some restaurants, such as Cochon, are featuring some really nice wines, that pair well with their dishes. Some complain that they are too expensive, but I did not feel that. Others, such as Restaurant August, ARE featuring some great white Burgs, that DO go well with the seafood dishes.

                        It has taken some time, a few hurricanes, but NOLA is starting to recognize wines, and not just at the lowest end of the spectrum, and the highest end of that same spectrum. It appears that the city, that created so many cocktails, is finally embracing wines with meals, and for me, that is a great thing!

                        Still, one must look a bit - good wine is NOT everywhere.

                        Hunt

                  4. re: jessejames

                    Peak season has started. The wait at Acme yesterday was 1.5 hours. Felix's was a little shorter. That was for dinner. For lunch Felix may have no line at all. I prefer Felix as the food is similar, just as good and no wait.

                    There are mixed reviews on Drago's in the Hilton. The service can be weak but it is also a cavernous place. But my business partner took customers there Wednesday and found the grilled oysters as good as the original Drago's.

                    1. re: collardman

                      Collardman,

                      That is good to know. I was one of the major detractors for Drago's at the Hilton, based on one horrible meal there. Nice to hear that I might have experienced a "night from hell" event. Still, have not been back, and have stayed there maybe 4x, since that evening.

                      Hope to try the Metairie location, and maybe on our next trip?

                      Hunt

                    2. re: jessejames

                      Had lunch at Acme in Baton Rouge Thursday. The oyster po-boy was 20 bucks. I won't be going back any time soon.

                      1. re: Big Easy

                        FYI Oyster and shrimp prices have gone through the roof. Most places have raised their prices accordingly. They should bring it back down if/when prices adjust, but you never know.

                    3. re: Porthos

                      domelise's is worth the trip...another outstanding restaurant in that area is clancy's ...beneath the radar...one of best in town...get a reservation

                      1. re: Porthos

                        Killer Poboy on Conti for, uh, poboys ... nontraditional but so what? Mother's is overrated, it's not awful but it's not worth standing in line. If you're in that neighborhood at lunchtime you're far better served (literally) at Capdeville.

                        EAT (byob, so watch that) is in the FQ and casual; Cane & Table is maybe a step up (and to the side ... it's not even remotely N.O. cooking); even with the change in chef I think St. Lawrence nails the fried chicken and late night menu.

                        As mentioned in the thread: Cochon is fabulous (though there are folks who prefer Butcher ... I'm not one of those); French 75 is top tier in the country; Herbsaint's excellent.

                        At the risk of being run out of town, I'm not a fan of either Acme or Felix's (or that hell hole Drago's; in a town of 1500 restaurants I'm amazed the place stays in business). The oyster roast at Cochon, however, is excellent. (As are, on the three days a year they have them, the 1/2 shells at Dempsey's -- strange but true! -- but those won't be coming making a showing in October.)

                        Toup's Meatery is worth the cab ride I think, as is the Olde College Inn in conjunction with the Rock & Bowl. Bacchanal gets a lot of ink and deservedly so, ditto Maurepas Foods (which has detractors though if taken on the merit of their food and not their publicity the detraction is -- I believe -- unwarranted). At the other end of town Boucherie is super without being at all fussy.

                        I think a lot of it depends on what you're after exactly and how far you're willing to travel.

                        1. re: montuori

                          A big thanks for a tremendously detailed and useful response.

                          Not my first time to the NO. Will actually be a repeat visit to Cochon. Looking for something similar to Cochon or a local place with killer po-boys and or gumbo, jamabalaya, etc. Mid to low end good eats. Nothing Lagasse or Besh. Updated classics by talented new chef also welcome.

                          1. re: Porthos

                            Maurepas Food or Peche.

                            1. re: Porthos

                              Crab Fingers, Turtle Soup. Trout Almondine and Bread Pudding at Mandina's and/or Liuzza's on Bienville fits the "mid-to-low end good eats" in my book.

                            2. re: montuori

                              Killer Po Boy is a lock. Pictures look amazing. Guess I'm going to have to over do it with a dark and stormy and a shrimp po boy.

                              I need one more lunch place.Something along the lines of Cajun or Creole?

                              Thanks for the advice.

                            3. re: Porthos

                              Although you specifically eliminated "Commander's Palace stuff" and I should think that would extend to Antoine's, you might split the difference with a Po-boy (or Poor Boy if you prefer) at Antoine's Hermes Bar, which has been a great boost to their business. The oysters recommended above are spelled "Foch", after Marshall Ferdinand Foch (1851-1929) and are usually an appetizer,. but the Hermes Bar serves them as a Po-boy and lots of people adore it.

                              1. re: Porthos

                                For poboys, you might consider NOLA poboys. I had a very tasty pot roast debris poboy there last week.

                                908 Bourbon St.

                                1. re: mwest9

                                  Ooh, they gots boudin.

                                  1. re: Porthos

                                    A you may have noted, it is supposedly driven in from Cajun Country which would be a huge advantage over most excuses for boudin we've had in town. I should try it out sometime but I have enough of the Real Deal in my freezer as it is. A friend from Lafayette said he though it was too light on the liver flavor. Gotta be better than most of what we've had, though,

                                2. re: Porthos

                                  Go to Tracey's on Magazine.

                                  1. re: Porthos

                                    Killer Po Boys on Conti in the back of the Erin Rose. Johnny's (Po Boys) also in the quarter.

                                3. cochon is a good call.
                                  felix's is across the street from acme, and better, i think.

                                  you might try coop's, fairly near the quarter. feels real and the food is tasty and pretty inexpensive.

                                  don't even get me started on the cocktails. what a nice town to drink in.

                                  7 Replies
                                  1. re: linus

                                    can't miss the sazeracs at the revolving bar at the monteleone on royal street...that place kicks ass.

                                    1. re: jessejames

                                      actually, not to be a snot, but i only thought that place was o.k.

                                      but, it was crowded, so opinions may differ.
                                      however, i'll see your revolving bar and raise you arnaud's french 75 bar.

                                      1. re: linus

                                        going in october is a great time to visit those spots without the hubbub...i have not been to french 75 but sounds good to me! i like to stay at the windsor court and they have a terrific cocktail bar...then fiesta time at mothers! let's agree on this, avoid the blue frozen "joker" drink on bourbon street at all costs! for cheap drinking nothing wrong with checkpoiint charlies on the way to frenchman street...sometimes good live music...there's also rock and bowl which can have some solid r and b music also stiff drinks but nothin fancy cocktail wise...
                                        im a music guy so i can can drunk on simple stuff and love tips (uptown), maple leaf bar (also uptown) or many of the joints on frenchman street....

                                        1. re: linus

                                          Yes, MUCH prefer Arnaud's French 75 to the Monteleone's Carousel Bar . . . the Rooseveldt's Sazerac Bar is better than the Monteleone, too.

                                          1. re: zin1953

                                            Me, too, on Arnaud's French 75 bar. The rotating bar at Carousel made me feel quesy and disoriented and that was before any alcohol was consumed!

                                            I had an off-menu Aviation there, at least the bartender knew what it was, but he probably hadn't made one in a while, because he used waaaayyy too much creme de violete, making the drink super-flowery and unbalanced.

                                            Chris Hannah, at Arnaud's, is a champion bartender. I had a Rebenack there (not too far from an Old Fashioned) and it was great. I love the dark, refined old school atmosphere in there.

                                            1. re: mwest9

                                              "I love the dark, refined old school atmosphere in there."
                                              ...I love those monkey lamps.

                                      2. re: linus

                                        Already been to Coop's. Good stuff.

                                        I'm okay on oyster bars. We've got some pretty good ones in OC and LA.

                                      3. I'd second Killer Po Boys in the quarter - or Parkway. Prefer Casamentos to Acme and Felix's. Domenica for happy hour half price pizza hrd to beat.

                                        1. Try Boucherie in Uptown. Best meal that I have had in NOLA in the last couple of years.

                                          For lower end, give High Hat Cafe on Freret a try.

                                          1. Liuzza's on Bienville. Fantastic red beans & rice, spaghetti & meatballs, gumbo, eggplant parmesan etc etc. Very low key and reasonable.

                                            1. You been yet, P?

                                              Cochon Butcher's muffaletta is amazing. Get one for the plane while heading for the airport. We stopped at Nor-Joe in Metarie, or a po'boy joint in the past for our plane food but I think butcher is better.

                                              If you've never been to Mandina's it is one of my favorite neighborhood bar-restos, and has great po'boys. Love Liuzza's too.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: Ciao Bob

                                                Cochon muffuletta and boudin at Cochon Butcher.

                                                Both so damn good.

                                                 
                                              2. My favorite foodie city on this planet. I love Frankie and Johnnies for the real deal NOLA. http://www.frankyandjohnnys.com/ *Looks like they closed original location, thought it was getting a bit run-down.

                                                3 Replies
                                                1. re: CharlesKochel

                                                  If you follow your own link, you will see that F & J's has been closed for some time. More info here:

                                                  http://www.nola.com/dining/index.ssf/...

                                                  1. re: Gizmo56

                                                    A real shame
                                                    My first crawfish ever.

                                                    1. re: Ciao Bob

                                                      I saw this after my post. should have looked first. Man I loved the vibe of that place.

                                                2. Cochon, Pesche and Herbsaint, I think, are all part of Chef Donald Link's playground of beauty in foodie Heaven. I had a conversation with a friend owning restaurants in NOLA and he says each and every one is well deserved and Cochon is a jewell.

                                                  He's a star and recently hosted the beer and boudin fest with Emeril. I'm heading that way soon and starting to nail down my eats ... this thread has been quite helpful.

                                                  1. Herbsaint. Excellent in every way:

                                                    -chicken and andouille gumbo. As much as I like Cochon, this gumbo was better.

                                                    Small Plates
                                                    -chicken dumpling with chicken cracklings
                                                    -crab and spinach gundi
                                                    -shrimp with rice and artichoke
                                                    -spaghetti with guanciale and fried egg.

                                                    Entrees:
                                                    -pork belly
                                                    -fried lamb neck- amazing. Simply a must have
                                                    -Shrimp with collard greens and grits. Also amazing. Currently my favorite shrimp and grits.

                                                    Desserts:
                                                    -Warm Chocolate cake with salted caramel ice cream
                                                    -apple pie with almond caramel ice cream

                                                    What an outstanding dinner. The only okay dish was the pork belly. Everything else was outstanding. Wine list is very good. Picked a 2010 and 04 white burgundy. They also had a 09 DRC Echezeaux for $650 which is a few hundred dollars less than retail.

                                                     
                                                     
                                                     
                                                     
                                                     
                                                     
                                                    1. Cochon Butcher. Makes me wish I had a kitchen here!

                                                       
                                                      1. 2nd lunch. Right across from Cochon. Ugly Dog Saloon and BBQ. Actually pretty damn good BBQ brisket and ribs.

                                                        Shot of the smoke ring on the ribs.

                                                         
                                                         
                                                        1. really a great thread. thanks for sharing the images and experience.

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: CharlesKochel

                                                            My pleasure :-)

                                                            1. re: Porthos

                                                              can't wait to hear what's for diinner

                                                              1. re: Ciao Bob

                                                                Cochon. Going back with reinforcements.

                                                          2. Back at Cochon.

                                                            Starters:
                                                            -Wood fired oysters with garlic and chile. Outstanding with Riesling.

                                                            -Oyster and meat pie. So good I had to get it twice. Again, wow. (Not pictured)

                                                            -pork cheeks. Tasty but not great.

                                                            Entrees

                                                            -Beef neck with rice and peas. Knockout. Love lamb and beef neck preps. This was outstanding. An off menu special of the day. Would get this time and time again.

                                                            -Cochon with turnips and cracklings. Cracklings and turnips are good. I remember thinking this was good but not great 5 years ago. It was just as I remembered it. Should have had the rabbit with dumplings. This is what happens when you let other people pick what they want ;-)

                                                            Again a great meal. This place is a must.

                                                             
                                                             
                                                             
                                                             
                                                            1. Killer Po Boys (in back of Erin Rose bar)

                                                              Grilled lime and coriander shrimp. Like a bahn mi/po boy hybrid with mint, cucumber, radish, carrots. Very good.

                                                               
                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: Porthos

                                                                That's a new one for me.

                                                                P - if you have not previously you should check out some of the Gretna Vietnamese places on this, or a future visit. I went on my last trip or two, I think it was Tan Dinh, for lunch.

                                                                As an OC man I think you will find the miscegenation of Vietnamese and Southern Louisiana cooking both fascinating & delicious. The dishes are quite a bit heavier than what we eat here (which can be a good or a not-so-good thing, depending on one's mood); the quality of the pork and seafood is SO MUCH better. All in all worthwhile - like that po -boy, I bet!

                                                              2. NOLA Po Boys.

                                                                Man this is good. Further down Bourbon St and worth the effort.

                                                                -Surf and turf: De bris pot roast and fried oyster po boy. Excellent.

                                                                -Fried crawfish po boy. A bit dry.

                                                                -shrimp and crawfish bisque. Very good

                                                                -boudin balls. They ran out if links. Tough. But the balls were very good. Every bit as good as the Cochon ones.

                                                                -chicken and sausage gumbo. Show stopper. So good I had to get another. Amazing flavor on this. Maybe best dish of the trip.

                                                                Thanks to everyone for the recommendations in this thread. Especially for the NOLA Po Boy rec.

                                                                 
                                                                 
                                                                 
                                                                 
                                                                 
                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: Porthos

                                                                  Yer welcome! Glad you are enjoying it! :)