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Visiting New Orleans - What to do and where to eat in the French Quarter?

EncEnc A Fool with CompassionThe Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
So my organization is sending me to a conference in New Orleans. While i'll be mostly sequestered to the schedule of events during the day, I have my own time for evenings.

Where should I go and what should I see? I'll be staying a block from the French Quarter and will need to use taxis/uber for transport.

Anything I should know? Things I should prepare for? I'm a swamplands Floridian, so the heat and humidity (even in December) won't be a problem.

TOGSolid

Posts

  • KruiteKruite Registered User regular
    Things to do;

    Magazine Street Window shopping; there are many places to shop along this corridor as well as many restaurants and bars. St. Joe's Bar in particular serves a wonderful Blueberry Mojito.

    Audubon Park / Zoo. Take the St. Charles street car (1.25 per ride) down to Audubon park for the afternoon. The park itself is beautiful and the zoo is one of the best zoos I've ever been in (they recently renovated the Elephants' habitat.)

    Frenchman Street. this street is on the north side of the quarter, next to a neighborhood called the Marigny. (Mar-In-Y) Every bar here has live music playing throughout the week. Bar hop until you find a group that suites your tastes. I would strongly suggest you spend your nights here rather than on Bourbon. Stop by Lafitte's on your way over (it's the last bar on Bourbon St before Esplanade. They make a grape Daiquiri of sort simply called "Purple Drink").

    Cafe Du Monde: If you find that the historical location has an hour + line, feel free to go into the River Walk Mall; they have a location there that's almost never busy.

    The Audubon Aquarium is along the waterfront downtown.

    I'll come up with a list of restaurants for you later. There's plenty of options and you have to try to pick out a place that won't be good.

    EncVishNubGnizmofirewaterwordTOGSolidShazkar Shadowstorm
  • CantidoCantido Registered User regular
    Say what you will about the filthy Burboun Street (its all true), but there is always live jazz there.

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  • VishNubVishNub Registered User regular
    edited November 2018
    Cochon and/or cochon butcher was by far the best restaurant we went to

    Uh, favorite bar was Kingfish, but also visit carousel bar which like next door.

    Frenchman street was terrific.

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  • SkeithSkeith Registered User regular
    edited November 2018
    I had a nice dinner here when I went to New Orleans a year ago. Central Grocery and Deli is the place where the muffaletta sandwich comes from, and it's tasty. It's also huge, so get a half or quarter sized sandwich. It's close to the Cafe du Monde so you could hit both places in the same evening easily.

    edit- Pat O'Brien's is a fun bar, they have pianists who will do covers of just about any song you can come up with.

    Skeith on
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    heres how i see it being a total win situation for you
    1. stay with your wife while she dog sits. this wins husband points since she knows its out of your comfort zone
    2. have sex all over her friends house so that the next time you see her friend look at you condescendingly, you can wink back knowing you did the freaky deaky where she eats her cheerios.
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  • StraygatsbyStraygatsby Registered User regular
    I recommend going upstairs at Johnny White's (your hotel will be close) and just sit and people watch. It's one of the better ways to enjoy the street level quarter without being in the mix. Plus, the bar is a real dump in the best way.

    Enc
  • starmanbrandstarmanbrand Registered User regular
    I'll try to point out a couple things that might not other wise get mentioned: I loved seeing the band at Preservation Hall and I also loved the National WW2 museum. But I also had fun barhopping on frenchmans and trying all the stereotypical cocktails on bourbon (hand grenades and hurricanes!).

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  • firewaterwordfirewaterword Satchitananda Pais Vasco to San FranciscoRegistered User regular
    Go to Turkey and the Wolf as if your life depends on it.

    More info when not mobile posting.

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  • SmrtnikSmrtnik job boli zub Registered User regular
    Skeith wrote: »
    I had a nice dinner here when I went to New Orleans a year ago. Central Grocery and Deli is the place where the muffaletta sandwich comes from, and it's tasty. It's also huge, so get a half or quarter sized sandwich. It's close to the Cafe du Monde so you could hit both places in the same evening easily.

    edit- Pat O'Brien's is a fun bar, they have pianists who will do covers of just about any song you can come up with.

    Cafe du Monde was a huge disappointment for me. Crowded, dirty, the coffee was not good, and the begniet was worse.

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  • GizzyGizzy <- girl PhoenixRegistered User regular
    Depends on your type of music....Spotted Cat on Frenchman for jazz/blues....Three muses also on Frenchmen. Buffas on esplanade for folksy. Pat OBriens for the piano bar.

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  • CantidoCantido Registered User regular
    edited November 2018
    Smrtnik wrote: »
    Skeith wrote: »
    I had a nice dinner here when I went to New Orleans a year ago. Central Grocery and Deli is the place where the muffaletta sandwich comes from, and it's tasty. It's also huge, so get a half or quarter sized sandwich. It's close to the Cafe du Monde so you could hit both places in the same evening easily.

    edit- Pat O'Brien's is a fun bar, they have pianists who will do covers of just about any song you can come up with.

    Cafe du Monde was a huge disappointment for me. Crowded, dirty, the coffee was not good, and the begniet was worse.

    Agreed. Find any hole-in-the-wall New Orleans breakfast place. Its not necessary to go to Cafe Du Monde.

    Cantido on
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  • KruiteKruite Registered User regular
    Cantido wrote: »
    Smrtnik wrote: »
    Skeith wrote: »
    I had a nice dinner here when I went to New Orleans a year ago. Central Grocery and Deli is the place where the muffaletta sandwich comes from, and it's tasty. It's also huge, so get a half or quarter sized sandwich. It's close to the Cafe du Monde so you could hit both places in the same evening easily.

    edit- Pat O'Brien's is a fun bar, they have pianists who will do covers of just about any song you can come up with.

    Cafe du Monde was a huge disappointment for me. Crowded, dirty, the coffee was not good, and the begniet was worse.

    Agreed. Find any hole-in-the-wall New Orleans breakfast place. Its not necessary to go to Cafe Du Monde.

    Speaking of which, camillia grill off south carolton for breakfast

    Gnizmo
  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    Smrtnik wrote: »
    Skeith wrote: »
    I had a nice dinner here when I went to New Orleans a year ago. Central Grocery and Deli is the place where the muffaletta sandwich comes from, and it's tasty. It's also huge, so get a half or quarter sized sandwich. It's close to the Cafe du Monde so you could hit both places in the same evening easily.

    edit- Pat O'Brien's is a fun bar, they have pianists who will do covers of just about any song you can come up with.

    Cafe du Monde was a huge disappointment for me. Crowded, dirty, the coffee was not good, and the begniet was worse.

    Cafe du Monde is real hit or miss. I wouldn't go for breakfast though. It's best middle of the night in my experience. We will go in the morning with kiddo, but never just for us.

    Camilla Grill is really awesome though. Great diner, and great food. Verde Mart is also awesome for a good po-boy. Really it is hard not to get a good sandwich here.

    If you are looking for something specific I can help out more. General advice is stay out of the touristy places cause they over charge, and cook way more bland than I would like.

    What's going on here that pulls you in town if I can ask?

    KruiteEnc
  • SnowbearSnowbear Registered User regular
    Verte Mart
    At the very end of the French quarter
    Small shop that does sandwiches in the back. Cash only. But oh so great at 2am

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    zepherinGnizmo
  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    Gnizmo wrote: »
    Smrtnik wrote: »
    Skeith wrote: »
    I had a nice dinner here when I went to New Orleans a year ago. Central Grocery and Deli is the place where the muffaletta sandwich comes from, and it's tasty. It's also huge, so get a half or quarter sized sandwich. It's close to the Cafe du Monde so you could hit both places in the same evening easily.

    edit- Pat O'Brien's is a fun bar, they have pianists who will do covers of just about any song you can come up with.

    Cafe du Monde was a huge disappointment for me. Crowded, dirty, the coffee was not good, and the begniet was worse.

    Cafe du Monde is real hit or miss. I wouldn't go for breakfast though. It's best middle of the night in my experience. We will go in the morning with kiddo, but never just for us.

    Camilla Grill is really awesome though. Great diner, and great food. Verde Mart is also awesome for a good po-boy. Really it is hard not to get a good sandwich here.

    If you are looking for something specific I can help out more. General advice is stay out of the touristy places cause they over charge, and cook way more bland than I would like.

    What's going on here that pulls you in town if I can ask?

    An accreditation conference for the SACSCOC universities and colleges.

  • zepherinzepherin Registered User regular
    edited November 2018
    Port of call is a pretty great steakhouse on Frenchman I go there every time I visit New Orleans.

    Adolfo's Is a cash only Italian place also on Frenchman, very good and there is a dive bar under it.

    Old New Orleans rum distillery tour was pretty great they’ll pick you up on bourbon street.

    I’ll second Verti Marte, I had a muffaletta there after a hard night of drinking and it hit the spot.

    zepherin on
    Enc
  • azith28azith28 Registered User regular
    Enc wrote: »
    So my organization is sending me to a conference in New Orleans. While i'll be mostly sequestered to the schedule of events during the day, I have my own time for evenings.

    Where should I go and what should I see? I'll be staying a block from the French Quarter and will need to use taxis/uber for transport.

    Anything I should know? Things I should prepare for? I'm a swamplands Floridian, so the heat and humidity (even in December) won't be a problem.

    If you are a block from the FQ, you won't really need to taxi to it...the interior of the FQ is really not very large (And typically doesnt have vehicles traveling in it much anyway).

    Don't bother trying to leave the FQ to tour anywhere else really. its still a mess from Katrina.

    Stercus, Stercus, Stercus, Morituri Sum
    Auralynx
  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    When I visited New Orleans a few years ago we visited the Garden District and a cemetery, which were both beautiful and not damaged by Katrina at all. We took the tram. We also visited friends in another suburb which seemed fine.

    Shazkar ShadowstormLoveIsUnity
  • ArbitraryDescriptorArbitraryDescriptor Registered User regular
    Muriel's, NW corner of Jackson Square, famous for their bread pudding. I've had better, but not in New Orleans, and I recall it being pretty good.

    (To be fair: I've not had bread pudding anywhere else in New Orleans)

    I recommend Cafe du Monde beneights to-go, if you need a half lb of confectioners sugar for something and also feel like a beneight.

    I could recommend some other places but, if you're eating in the FQ, it's hit or miss all over. Places spring up, close, or just go off the rails in quality on a whim. Yelp is your friend, that is my only recommendation.

  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    edited November 2018
    azith28 wrote: »
    Enc wrote: »
    So my organization is sending me to a conference in New Orleans. While i'll be mostly sequestered to the schedule of events during the day, I have my own time for evenings.

    Where should I go and what should I see? I'll be staying a block from the French Quarter and will need to use taxis/uber for transport.

    Anything I should know? Things I should prepare for? I'm a swamplands Floridian, so the heat and humidity (even in December) won't be a problem.


    Don't bother trying to leave the FQ to tour anywhere else really. its still a mess from Katrina.

    Not even remotely true. Certain areas haven't recovered, but thats because the city never liked those areas to begin with. Anywhere that you would want to see has been built back up for some time now.

    Gnizmo on
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  • Shazkar ShadowstormShazkar Shadowstorm Registered User regular
    edited November 2018
    VishNub wrote: »
    Cochon and/or cochon butcher was by far the best restaurant we went to

    Uh, favorite bar was Kingfish, but also visit carousel bar which like next door.

    Frenchman street was terrific.

    +1 on Cochon, one of the best meals of my life

    coop's place was a fun hole in the wall

    willie mae's scotch house is the best fried chicken, they won a james beard award for it

    it's kinda fun to go to commander's palace for a martini lunch, need a reservation though and a jacket... 3 martinis for $.25 each
    and then you can drunkenly walk around the pretty cemetary and by all the pretty houses around there

    Shazkar Shadowstorm on
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  • ArbitraryDescriptorArbitraryDescriptor Registered User regular
    Oh, wait: Emeril's on tchoupitoulas is dependably great. A few blocks past canal, so not really FQ, but not a bad walk. There's lot's of other fancy eats around there as well.

    I suspect this is because NOPD frowns more firmly on public urination excessive jubilation south of Canal.

    Back in FQ: I will recommend resisting the lure of the lucky dog cart or neon pizza signs and treat yourself to a late night gyro if you find yourself near Bourbon and St. Pete's. I don't know what it's called, but it will be the only place not being shy about the fact they sell gyros.

  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    edited November 2018
    Clarifying here, I only have a few hours each night (between ~7-9 or so) as I have to be back at the conference at 7 the next morning. While three martinis for .25c sounds great, this is a professional development conference and I don't have the luxury of drinking heavily (alas, New Orleans would be a great trip if I had a day or two on my own).

    Looking for places that will be solid meals and experiences I can pop in and out of without needing to get wasted, if possible.

    Enc on
    zepherin
  • zepherinzepherin Registered User regular
    Enc wrote: »
    Clarifying here, I only have a few hours each night (between ~7-9 or so) as I have to be back at the conference at 7 the next morning. While three martinis for .25c sounds great, this is a professional development conference and I don't have the luxury of drinking heavily (alas, New Orleans would be a great trip if I had a day or two on my own).

    Looking for places that will be solid meals and experiences I can pop in and out of without needing to get wasted, if possible.
    Also where your shindig is, there is an Emeril's near there the building and it has a solid lunch, a little spendy but it tastes good.

    ArbitraryDescriptorEnc
  • zepherinzepherin Registered User regular
    edited November 2018
    posted in wrong channel. balderdash

    zepherin on
  • ArbitraryDescriptorArbitraryDescriptor Registered User regular
    Enc wrote: »
    Looking for places that will be solid meals and experiences I can pop in and out of without needing to get wasted, if possible.

    Ok, in that context:
    In general, if you're navigating East to west: Bourbon isn't much to look at (though you'll recognize certain corners it in a lot of movies), is often crowded. Royale st is a block or two over, nice to walk down, kitchy shops, solid street musicians.

    One thing I always try to do is eat a giant trough of crawfish on the balcony of the French Market Restaurant in the late afternoon / evening.

    It's in a quiet corner of the quarter, but still good for light people watching. It's down there on Decatur so you can piss about in the daytime-quarter, go sight seeing on a river boat, hit up Jackson square for lunch at Muriel's, artists hucking their wares, nice scenery, and carriage tours with colourful tales from local history, then just stroll over for dinner.

    EncCelestialBadger
  • VishNubVishNub Registered User regular
    cochon is right near the convention center

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  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    Dat Dog and Big Cheesy are also pretty good restaurants if you are looking for a change of pace. Hot dog, and grilled cheese place respectively that put a lot of effort into making it high quality. I won't say they are life changing meals, but they are very good for a cheap price. If I had any navigation sense then I would be able to tell you how close they are. Alas, after 3 decades of living here I still don't know my way around the city.

    Enc
  • mtsmts Registered User regular
    Enc wrote: »
    Clarifying here, I only have a few hours each night (between ~7-9 or so) as I have to be back at the conference at 7 the next morning. While three martinis for .25c sounds great, this is a professional development conference and I don't have the luxury of drinking heavily (alas, New Orleans would be a great trip if I had a day or two on my own).

    Looking for places that will be solid meals and experiences I can pop in and out of without needing to get wasted, if possible.

    sounds like you are academic conferencing wrong

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    KruiteMichaelLC
  • ArbitraryDescriptorArbitraryDescriptor Registered User regular
    mts wrote: »
    Enc wrote: »
    Clarifying here, I only have a few hours each night (between ~7-9 or so) as I have to be back at the conference at 7 the next morning. While three martinis for .25c sounds great, this is a professional development conference and I don't have the luxury of drinking heavily (alas, New Orleans would be a great trip if I had a day or two on my own).

    Looking for places that will be solid meals and experiences I can pop in and out of without needing to get wasted, if possible.

    sounds like you are academic conferencing wrong

    Yelping takeout to your darkened hotel room where you are feverishly toiling away at your real job until the wee hours?

    zepherinEncShazkar ShadowstormKruiteSmrtnikMichaelLC
  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    mts wrote: »
    Enc wrote: »
    Clarifying here, I only have a few hours each night (between ~7-9 or so) as I have to be back at the conference at 7 the next morning. While three martinis for .25c sounds great, this is a professional development conference and I don't have the luxury of drinking heavily (alas, New Orleans would be a great trip if I had a day or two on my own).

    Looking for places that will be solid meals and experiences I can pop in and out of without needing to get wasted, if possible.

    sounds like you are academic conferencing wrong

    This isn't a publication/field conference, its the sort of conference you go to with your university presidents and provosts to ensure you are meeting accreditation compliance. I'll be watched most keenly by everyone in our 40+ entourage for most of the time I am there.

  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    I went to New Orleans while pregnant and there’s plenty of great stuff not involving drinking.

    Gnizmozepherin
  • KruiteKruite Registered User regular
    I would try to go to Jaques Imos. It's off Oak Street on the other side of Uptown (so not exactly close to you in the french quarter) but they have such a diverse menu. They have duck, rabbit, and a shrimp-diablo sauce that are all good. My friend had the audacity to order the fried chicken and "it's some of the best fried chicken I've ever had".

    EncGnizmo
  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    Kruite wrote: »
    I would try to go to Jaques Imos. It's off Oak Street on the other side of Uptown (so not exactly close to you in the french quarter) but they have such a diverse menu. They have duck, rabbit, and a shrimp-diablo sauce that are all good. My friend had the audacity to order the fried chicken and "it's some of the best fried chicken I've ever had".

    Very cool restaurant in general as well. Unless my memory is failing me its one of the ones where you walk through the kitchen to get to the tables. Very cool atmosphere.

  • JasconiusJasconius sword criminal mad onlineRegistered User regular
    edited November 2018
    the zoo is really nice. it's not vast and doesn't have a huge amount of animals, but it's set up sort of like a big beautiful park in the middle of NO, good place to spend time outdoors and enjoy the weather

    if memory serves though, it has very tight hours.. I think it closes at like.. 4 or 5.. very early in any case. So might be tough to squeeze in during a conference

    it wont be hot at all in December, Louisiana typically is colder than Florida in winter months

    Jasconius on
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  • KaplarKaplar Registered User regular
    I'd strongly recommend taking the two hour cruise on the Steamboat Natchez(not the Creole Queen). Took my wife on it as part of her 30th birthday celebration last month and we loved it. We'd been several times before that and it was always a pleasant way to get off your feet for a couple of hours and just relax as you go up and down the mississippi river. They also do lunch/dinner cruises.

  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    I love all yall, but the 7-9pm window piece seems to be getting lost somewhere.

    LaOs
  • KruiteKruite Registered User regular
    Enc wrote: »
    I love all yall, but the 7-9pm window piece seems to be getting lost somewhere.

    We are assumed you can stop time and perform miracles considering the encmire

    EnczepherinSkeith
  • Masamune42Masamune42 Registered User regular
    I'm down here too for a week. Ate at Sylvain a couple of times and it was awesome!

  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    So I had a lot of fun! Thanks for the recommendations, everyone!

    Ended up at Cafe Bengiet instead of Cafe Du Monde (Du Monde is apparently cash only, which is not how I travel). Got some of that sweet sweet breakfast funnelcake.

    I didn't get to take a ride on the Natchez, but I did get to walk around it for a few minutes! It was a lot of fun. :)

    Got a Po Boy at some restaurant along one of the alleys in the French Quarter, didn't catch the name, but it was delicious.

    My hotel was right above the casino, and as an added bonus I got to watch about 12 or 13 people get arrested and carried out by police over a 48 hour period of time. Which was very entertaining!

    CelestialBadgerElvenshaeArbitraryDescriptorGnizmoKruiteAuralynxzepherinMichaelLCSkeith
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