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New Orleans Food Itinerary: Need Advice

I’m heading down to New Orleans soon for work and then staying a few extra days for fun. I’d appreciate any advice you might have on my picks and helping me finalize some breakfast & lunch options. I know the city well and will have a car so there are no constraints on locations. I’m adventurous and would generally prefer to have meals I wouldn't be able to find outside New Orleans.

Thursday: Lunch at Cochon Butcher, Dinner on the North Shore with friends (their choice)
Friday: Breakfast at the Old Coffee Pot or The Peppermill in Metairie, Lunch at either Joey K’s or St. James Cheese Co., mid-afternoon gelato at La Divina Gelateria, Dinner at Herbsaint, After-dinner drinks at the Napoleon House
Saturday: Breakfast at Café Beignet, Lunch at the Parkway Bakery, La Boulangerie or Dong Phuong, Dinner at Brigsten’s (is the Shell Beach Diet as amazing as it sounds?)
Sunday: Brunch at Galatoire’s? Then pick up muffulettas at Johnny’s to take home with me.

Galatoire’s is the only place on the list that I’ve been to before and I know Sunday brunch might not be the most popular time to go but I fell in love with their Eggs Benedict 16 years ago on my first trip. I’m willing to go a different day if you think Sunday is a mistake or to try a new place if you think I’d be missing something special. The soft-shell benedict at Katie’s on Iberville sounds intriguing. I’m trying not to spend too much money while I’m there, but figured Herbsaint & Galatoire’s were worth the splurge.

One more thing, I wanted to thank everyone that recommended restaurants for our company’s big dinner next week. I gave them a list of five recommendations and they choose Palace Café, which wouldn’t have been my first choice. A little nervous that it won’t be up to par. It doesn’t need to be fantastic, just decent food and service. Any reassurances would be appreciated.

Thanks for your help!

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  1. Galtorie's Galtorie's Gairlores.

    1. I think Palace Café is a great choice.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Plano Rose

        i had a horrible experience there about 2 weeks ago. just awful on all counts.

      2. I found breakfast at the Old Coffee Pot to be underwhelming and overrated.

        4 Replies
        1. re: TeacherFoodie

          Thanks TeacherFoodie, what would you recommend instead?

          1. re: ktc1575

            We really enjoyed Stanley for breakfast however some chowhounders are not fans. Surrey's, Elizabeth's and Brennan's are all places we considered but did not get to.

            1. re: TeacherFoodie

              i personally love Stanley.

              other excellent choices foor bfast/brunch are Appoline (weekend only), Katie's, Le Petit Grocery, Crepe Nanou, Atchafalaya, Sugar Park (weekends),

              but if i had to recommend a spot it'd be Tartine. Eggs in brioche is amazing.

          2. I think you have a nice wide list. While everything there may not be A-list I think evey place listed will give you a good meal.

            But I have to say that I'd rather have breakfast at The Peppermill than dinner at Palace Cafe. (an opinion offered with a smile!)

            1. Well, Galatoire's does not do a brunch per se and in fact on Sunday it opens 1/2 hour later, at noon. But the menu rolls on and on. Eggs Sardou---or better yet, crabmeat sarsou---would be my light lunch suggestion. "Light" is relative, y'know.

              2 Replies
              1. re: hazelhurst

                How about some crabmeat mason, shrimp remoulade, pommes soufflés with some light bernaise sauce on the side to round out the meal followed with a few mugs of cafe brulot ????

                And of course a few Sazeracs to wash everything down ???????

              2. I haven't enjoyed the food at Galatoire's the last couple of times I've been there & I've had a few other people tell me the same thing. If you want eggs benedict, lots of places have a good version. I like the eggs sardou at Mister B's. Their eggs benedict are also good.

                My favorite restaurant for brunch, lunch & dinner is Coquette on Magazine.

                1 Reply
                1. re: topeater

                  WE get that from time to time with al the established houses. I've had no problems nor have any of my clan

                2. Does anyone like Antoine's or Arnaud's ??????

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: kevin

                    We ate at Antoine's and were pretty disappointed. Service was okay, food was okay - nothing stood out and it's not cheap. It is really cool that the restaurant has been there for so long though. I recommend just going to the bar for a drink.

                    1. re: TeacherFoodie

                      Got it.

                      Yeah, I heard it was with the same family for generations but had no clue how the food was.

                      Thanks for the update.

                      1. re: TeacherFoodie

                        only for weekday lunch...they do an amazing prix-fixe food and drink special. but yes, the food is tasty, but mostly uninspired (not everything - some stuff is exceptional). much resting on laurels, but it matters a lot less when it's dirt cheap. also, it's a beautiful restaurant.

                    2. Post Trip Report:

                      Thanks to everyone for their advice and recommendations. Just wanted to report in on my trip. Friends flew in to town to join me for the weekend so the food itinerary changed a bit.

                      The large group dinner at Palace Café was wonderful. Food was delicious and well-prepared. Heard rave reviews from everyone. Joey K’s fried oysters were fantastic and far superior to Johnny’s. Herbsaint was great, although I wasn’t a fan of the Spinach & Crab Gnudi. Found several shell bits but wouldn’t have been a fan anyway. Pesce was fantastic – the atmosphere, service, drinks and food. Highlight of the trip. Went there with friends and we ordered almost everything on the menu to share. The smothered catfish and fish sticks were personal favorites. Cochon Butcher was great. My only regret is that I didn’t get to try more items on their menu. La Divina Gelateria was also wonderful.

                      Hit both Café du Monde and Café Beignet – not sure I can settle yet on who has the best beignets. I was unimpressed with the service at Café Beignet - took way too long to order. I was not a fan of my breakfast sandwich. Be forewarned that egg, cheese and bacon on a croissant actually means an egg cheese and bacon omelet on a croissant. Might seem like a minor difference but I hate omelets so it was a disappointment. The atmosphere is certainly much more relaxing than Café du Monde. For brunch, we went to GG’s Dine-O-Rama on Magazine – a spur of the moment decision. I enjoyed their shrimp & grits with smoked gouda and andouille sausage in a lobster cognac sauce. Their bloody marys were super spicy and salty.