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Jan 30, 2014 09:47 AM

Are my suggestions out of date?

I'm making recommendations to a group of people I don't know (through a friend) but she's advised that there wealthy, like to party, not douchy, not hipster, not kids anymore...

I'm also planning a repeat trip in April over easter. Could you please tell me if my recommendations (from a trip in June of 2010) are outdated? For my trip, we are two women bartenders who like really good food and good local bars/live music.

Can someone tell me what that place is that is good to have food on the covered front porch?


Stay: if they like posh and new, stay W in the french quarter. If they want old world elegance the Omni or Mazarin.



Cafe Amelie




Best dinner in life:

Cochon (this is a must)

Also go to Cochon for lunch - the sandwiches are unreal. Essentially you could eat every meal of the entire trip here and be happy.


Happy hour:

The Joint: Out of the way but the best brisket in life: this feels like a backcountry swamp bbq. A must, but a cab or as we did it, a very wobbly walk through town, a warning that we were in a bad neighbourhood from a sweet old lady, and then a cab ride back so we could focus on brisket.


Skip boubon street (maybe do a walk down it just to see it but it will feel like niagara falls or the touristy part of vegas


Concentrate on on Frenchmen Street, and the Marigny area in general..

d.b.a., 618 Frenchmen St
The John, 2040 Burgundy St
R-Bar, 1431 Royal St
Dragon's Den, 435 Esplanade Ave(go down the building's side alley, then up the stairs to your left)
Hiho lounge or the maison

PINK DRINK: Beware of the pink drink, but order it anyway - huge burgers that almost seem alive and the pink drink at Port of Call - not the best food ever, but a great place to go when you're feeling like you might be about to make dumb decisions. i think i ended up cry-screaming at my then boyfriend the last time I was there.

Acme Oyster - for oysters and po' boys

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  1. You are not out of date, at least for the restaurants. I think the bars are pretty much the same. d.b.a is still popular but not the hot spot of years back.

    The Joint moved to a bigger site but same general neighborhood.

    1 Reply
    1. I haven't stayed in the W FQ since rebuilding in 2006. Back then I would not describe it as either new or posh.

      Lacking recent first hand experience, I suggest searching Tripadvisor for recent reviews.

      Food is so subjective. Cochon would not be a restaurant I would recommend other than some quick bites from the appetizer portion of the menu.

      Brunch (s-s) or lunch (m-f) would be Commander's garden room.

      Different strokes. Without knowning their taste, you've got a tough job.

      Gambit is published weekly and available online:

      1. On Frenchman, I highly recommend Three Muses. Great food and great live music. You mention Cochon, which Jazzy B and I agree is overrated, but my out of towner friends love it. The sandwiches are at their sister restaurant Cochon Butcher and they are fantastic. There are a few good restaurants in the FQ that serve great cocktails, from favorite to least favorite- Sylvain, SoBou, Kingfish, Tableau. The Warehouse District is rocking some great eats- Herbsaint, Peche, Root, Restaurant August. Brunch- Commander’s Palace, Surrey’s, Elizabeth’s, Apoline. Hotels- Monteleone, Windsor Court, Roosevelt.

        15 Replies
        1. re: shanefink

          For what is asked for, you have hit te target. I;m no Three Muses is mostly noise that occludes the art. You are dead on for Cochon Butcher, they have good stuff atho I have arguments about the "Cajun" representation.

          The cocktail craze is another story. Craft Cocktails is nonsense.

          1. re: hazelhurst

            You have not seen Glen David Andrews lately, have you?

            1. re: shanefink

              I last saw him on Mardi Gras, outside so it was fine. I've just gotten tired of amplifying things that don't need it. But he never was a major offender that I sw (heard)

              I'll go see Michael White anywhere.

              Frenchman's evolution for the days of Dream Palace and Snug Harbor has been something to see.

            2. re: hazelhurst

              well, here i disagree -- craft cocktails are great. i cant stand overly-sweet mixers like cranberry juice or corn-syrup sodas or sour.

              1. re: kibbles

                I won't argue about overly sweet misxer although if you can get unadulterated cranberry (god luck) that is a hole nuther story. I detest tank tonic and won't order an G&T from one. But we had places that used bottled tonic before the craft movement came along. For the most part, the Craft Cocktail is a fun side show with tincture of this and distillation of that and a great deal of smoke and mirror for a lot of $. My cocktail books that date to the 1930s are exacting but not, as this stuff seems to me, "precieuse." It is true that most places just slopped stuff together but I think they've gone too far in the other direction.

                People paying attention to ice, though, has been a pleasant thing. My father watched ice handling vanish in his lifetime and taught me the differences in types and uses. 1

                1. re: hazelhurst

                  My vintage "Old Mr. Boston" bar guide doesn't even have tequila in it. But quite a few sloe gin choices!

                  The challenge drink for this years Tales of the Cocktail will be the Hurricane. I have to agree that most anyone can produce a better red fruit rum drink than what is now being sold so I look forward to the experts work.

                  1. re: collardman

                    Have you ever seen the account of how the Hurricane came about? Pat had to buy all kinds of junk to get what he wanted and had to figure out What To Do With It. Those sugary, cover-it-up drinks were getting popular so whatthehell. For my taste, I think it would be impossible to get a Hurricane of high quality but I am no fan of fruit juices and sugar anyway. But good luck to who ever tries it.

                    1. re: collardman

                      If you happen to get your hands on a bottle of Plymouth sloe gin try out some of the drinks; unlike most of the crap sold as "sloe gin" the Plymouth has a lovely nuanced flavor.

                      The whole "craft cocktail" has an upside: ingredients that were becoming hard to come by -- orange bitters, clear block ice, quality vermouths -- are now readily available. As with any trend there's some amount of silliness (anything by Bitterman's, any cocktail involving basil, the phrase "bar chef") but I'm willing to overlook all that so long as I can get my Martini made properly.[*]

                      The other tragedy of the "movement" is well summed up by a rebuttal a bartending friend of mine made: "I serve guests, not drinks." Alas.

                      [*] 1 oz Dolan dry vermouth, 2 oz Plymouth Gin, a dash of Regan's orange bitters, stirred, served up with a twist (preferably a twist not dropped into the drink).

                      1. re: montuori

                        In light of the very true statement "I serve guests, not drinks"...another one that bugs me is when a server inquires "how is your food tasting?" I want to reply: "I really don't know, because I'm the one who's tasting, not the food! LOL

                        1. re: Christine

                          "how is your food tasting?" - this gets me every time! the food tastes good, thank you, and my tasting ability remains in tact...

                          1. re: kibbles

                            i will try to remember your line, kibbles, next time a server inquires about my "food tasting"...I like your reply! I knew I couldn't be the only one whom that irks... ;-)

                            1. re: Christine

                              hah, i dont really say it out loud, tho i do think it every time :)

                        2. re: montuori

                          HH I did read the source of the Hurricane and it is the path you mentioned above. Once being forced to work with the only ingredients available I learned that dark rum, juice freshly squeezed from a pineapple and...Dr. Pepper makes a decent summer beverage.

                          Montuori the only new things I've added to my bar stock in the last few years has been Dolan, orange bitters and a few variations of "anise" spirits such as Absinthe, aguardiente, and ouzo, and sipping tequila.

                          That old greasy spoon order "And drag it through the garden" can now apply to cocktails. Bartender, give me a shot of kale infused red-eye!

                          1. re: collardman

                            careful with the kale/red-eye. Someone will do it! ( am still scared they are going to cook local thistle--every kid knows it---and make delicate salads with pecan oil and claim that T-Nonc Hebert used to make it for the Feast of the Assumption every year: yours for only $14.99).

                            Someday I might learn to like pineapple juice. It took me years before I cold tolerate cranberry or Pomegranate. Both were favorites once I had the non-sugary versions, in New England and Russia respectively.

                          2. re: montuori

                            ive enjoyed some great cocktails w/ basil -- it's an ingredient like any other. but agreed on "bar chef", get real.

                2. My friend who just went suggests the following:

                  - Bacchanal Wines (Bywater)
                  - The Bulldog Bar, Basin and Reservoir Cafe (all on Magazine)
                  - Spitfire Cafe (in the FQ)

                  Excited to try.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: sufficientlybuttered

                    I really enjoyed both Basin and The Bulldog. I was at both about a week ago. The Bulldog is a really friendly bar with a great patio. I had a delicious drink at Basin, called The Good Life. The Bloody Mary was nice too. The fish tacos came recommended by my server. Quite nice. I had raw oysters as well. Loved the oysters themselves, but I was surprised to receive ketchup as a condiment when I expected cocktail sauce. It was okay with a lot of horseradish and lemon, though. Essentially deconstructed cocktail sauce. I'd rather have freshly grated horseradish and lots of lemon, with a few drops of a hot sauce, but the cocktail sauce seems pretty ubiquitous.

                    I'd also recommend Erin Rose in the FQ for a drink or two, plus a po boy from Killer Po Boys (in the back of the bar). They are are an interesting marriage of Vietnamese Banh Mi and po boys. No live music, but the classic rock is a nice change from top 40 or hip-hop.