Food & Drink

The Best Thing to Eat Near Every Major New Orleans Landmark

Published On 02/15/2016 Published On 02/15/2016

If you’re headed to the Crescent City for a visit, there’s a good chance you’ll want to check out some of the major sites. There are about three hundred years of them, so that’s totally understandable and admirable. But you’ll probably also get hungry at some point, and the good thing is that the food in New Orleans is everything it’s cracked up to be and more. Here are some of the very finest things for you to try, should you be nearby these famed local landmarks.

Flickr/Borgne

The Mercedes-Benz Superdome: any of the seafood

Borgne (address and info)

Central Business District
You can’t go wrong with the seafood selection here at the hands of Chef Brian Landry, but you absolutely must pair it with their phenomenal duck poppers loaded with jalapeño and bacon.
 

Crescent City Connection: a banh mi

Hong Kong Market (address and info)

Gretna
These twin bridges spanning the mighty Mississippi are quite a sight. And if you happen to find yourself driving on one of them (particularly headed to the West Bank), a stop at the HKM is a must for amazing produce, giant vats of kimchi, and, naturally, their house-made banh mi sandwich which costs less than four bucks. And grab some roasted duck for the road, because who doesn’t love roasted duck?

Flickr/Robert

Lee Circle: citrus-glazed jumbo shrimp with Cajun grain rice, bacon, and almonds

Herbsaint (address and info)

Central Business District
It’s unclear how long this traffic roundabout (formerly Tivoli Circle) will be named after General Lee, but the fact still stands that there are too many amazing restaurants in the CBD to even count. Donald Link’s flagship is a perennial favorite, though, and you should go there for the amazing, elegant Southern fare.
 

Audubon Park: smoked, fried soft-shell crabs (in season)

Clancy’s (address and info)

Uptown
This joint is a heralded favorite of the well-heeled Uptown set, the kind that like to order Jeroboam-sized bottles of wine on the corporate card and make sure everyone notices. But don’t let the crowd fool you; Clancy’s is a favorite for good reasons, not the least of which is a plate of smoky fried soft shells that have no equal in the Big Easy.

l'enfant terrible new orleans

French Market: burger with veggies on an English muffin

L'enfant Terrible, Molly’s at the Market (address and info)

French Quarter
Oh, so you thought we’d go with a muffaletta at the Central Grocery here, didn’t you? Well, that’s a classic, but Chef Matthew Kopfler’s pop-up at Molly’s is still one of the best edible secrets in town. The menu changes seasonally, of course, but the burger with veggies on an English muffin is a clear winner every time.
 

Frenchmen St: grilled yellowtail neck

Yuki Izakaya (address and info)

Marigny
Oddly for a neighborhood as lauded as the Marigny, there aren’t a ton of “destination restaurants” (certainly not compared to the Quarter).  But if you’re having a night out on Frenchmen, Yuki offers some surprisingly refined Izakaya-style fare along with their live music, excellent fuel for what will clearly be a long and fun night.

Flickr/gwen

Jackson Square: beignets and cafe au lait at CDM, and eggs Sardou at Tableau

TIE: Cafe du Monde (address and info) and Tableau (address and info)
French Quarter
This is a seriously difficult call, but it’s similarly difficult to resist the siren song of hot beignets at Cafe du Monde, particularly when paired with milky coffee spiked with chicory. However, there’s also the killer Creole brunch menu at Tableau, where you can dine on the balcony overlooking the square like the regent you are. Both are wonderful enough that choosing isn’t an option.

Armstrong Park: seafood gumbo

Li'l Dizzy’s (address and info)

Treme
There are obviously too many fantastic restaurants in the vicinity of Armstrong Park to even list, but should you find yourself in the Treme, the gumbo at Li'l Dizzy’s is a city-wide favorite.

Mop Mid-City

City Park: fried P&J oysters with pickled blue cheese salad and nuoc cham mayo

MoPho (address and info)

Mid-City
It’s difficult to suggest anything but Bud’s Broiler when you’re near the park, but if anyone’s gonna best those grease bombs with hickory sauce, it’s Michael Gulotta. There are myriad fried oyster dishes in this city, but the Fried P&J oysters with pickled bleu cheese salad and nuoc cham mayo is a masterful combo of Asian and Gulf Coast influence, exemplifying what makes MoPho so great.
 

Bourbon St: the Galatoire's goute

Galatoire’s (address and info)

French Quarter
Forget the horrible pizza and fried chicken losers on Bourbon. You’re better than that. If you’re dining on one of the most famous streets in NOLA, you need to hit Galatoire’s for the celebrated “goute,” a classic Creole combo of shrimp remoulade, Crabmeat Maison, and oysters en brochette (yes, those are fried oysters wrapped in bacon). Everything else on the menu is just fine, fine gravy.

Pizza Delicious

Crescent Park: a slice and whatever special pasta's on the menu

Pizza Delicious (address and info)

Bywater
It took two frustrated Yankee Tulane grads to finally bring true NYC-style slices to the Big Easy, and thank goodness for those wonderful gents. Their authentic, foldable slices are the real deal, but don’t miss out on the house-made pastas, one of the best dining steals around, which would easily cost twice as much at a joint with white tablecloths instead of a Bywater slice shop.
 

The New Orleans Museum of Art: escargot

Cafe Degas (address and info)

Mid-City
It’s weird to think that in a city with such a storied French history, there are so few continental-style French eateries around. But at least we have Cafe Degas and its excellently buttery snails, perfect for sopping up with a crusty baguette.

August

The National WWII Museum: house-made potato gnocchi with blue crab and black truffles

Restaurant August (address and info)

Central Business District
Chef John Besh has become one of the most notable cooks in NOLA, a lot which has to do with his restaurant business savvy (not to mention that TV-perfect smile), but also with his actual skill in the kitchen. You can and should find this plainly evident in the famed crab and truffle gnocchi at his flagship, Restaurant August.
 

Lafayette Cemetery No. 1: shrimp and tasso Henican

Commander’s Palace (address and info)

Garden District
Should you find yourself in the Garden District admiring the old live oaks and the famous cemeteries, you’d be a fool not to stop into Commander’s for a bite, especially when it comes to one of their most brilliant, complex, and refined dishes, Shrimp Henican. Just make sure to wear a jacket (or cocktail attire), or they WILL turn you away at the door. It’s that kind of classy.

Courtesy of Tripp Payne - Zydeco Media

Fair Grounds: the Frenchuletta

Liuzza’s by the Track (address and info)

Mid-City
This Italian-Creole spot is famed for serving up pre-Jazz Fest cocktails and post-race beers, but don’t ignore the menu, which includes a heart-stopping muffaletta served on toasted garlic bread, the kind of sandwich that would make your cardiologist wet himself. Totally worth it.
 

Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY): boiled crawfish, crabs, and shrimp

Fisherman’s Cove (address and info)

Kenner
If you need just one last taste of NOLA before heading to your next destination, consider hitting this joint in Kenner before you fly for boiled crawfish, crabs, and shrimp.

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Scott Gold is a writer in New Orleans who could spend and entire day and an entire paycheck at the Hong Kong Market. Follow him on Twitter: @scottgold

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
1. Borgne 601 Loyola Ave, New Orleans, LA 70113 (Central Business District)

Named after a lake on the coast of Louisiana, Borgne serves up inspired seafood that does not disappoint. Stop by during happy hour (3-6pm) for half-price beer, wines by the glass, and bar food specials.

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2. Hong Kong Supermarket 925 Behrman Hwy, Gretna, LA 70056

Stock up on baked goods, to-go po-boys, and a huge selection of Asian groceries at this unassuming supermarket by the Crescent City Connection. It's an ideal spot to grab all the makings for your next home-cooked meal, but the hot food selections are well-worth your time, too, including authentic banh mi sandwiches with either crispy roasted duck or pork that are prepared in-house -- and that fans swear are some of the best in the city.

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3. Herbsaint Bar and Restaurant 701 Saint Charles Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130 (Central Business District)

James Beard award-winning Herbsaint is the flagship restaurant of Chef Donald Link, who gained notoriety for some of his other restaurants such as Cochon Butcher and Pêche. This fine-dining establishment located in the Warehouse district mixes French and Italian flavors into its Southern dishes. Its selection of small plates create the perfect opportunity for sharing, and the elegant atmosphere paired with the impeccable service will have you coming back to try the whole menu.

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4. Clancy's 6100 Annunciation St, New Orleans, LA 70118

This former po-boy joint plays host to a classed up crowd eager to dine on cajun favorites like gumbo, crab salad, and turtle soup, in a white tablecloth setting. The crowd can veer toward the ritzy, but rest assured that sticky favorites like lemon icebox pie and peppermint ice cream -- served year round -- will make a child out of everyone.

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5. Molly's at the Market 1107 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70116 (French Quarter)

This French Quarter bar has all the makings of a divey Irish pub, plus so much more. Molly's is known for its frozen Irish coffee, an alcohol-laden coffee milkshake that's decidedly better than regular Irish coffee. It's the perfect place to day drink in NOLA as you watch the Decatur Street wildness ride past you.

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6. Yuki Izakaya 525 Frenchmen St, New Orleans, LA 70116

Yuki may be small and loud, but they dole out some of the best Japanese small plates in the city, including yakitori, salmon sashimi w/natto, and more.

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7. Café Du Monde 800 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70116 (French Quarter)

Originally established in 1862, Café Du Monde is the place to go for a quintessential pick-me-up in the form of a now world-famous beignet and a cafe au lait. The patio lined with a striped green and white awning is the perfect place for people-watching in the French Quarter. It can get busy during peak lunch and dinner hours, but because it is open 24 hours, you have plenty of opportunities to hit up this New Orleans landmark. There is also a quick-service window for take-out orders, but make sure to take some napkins because powdered sugar from the beignets can get everywhere.

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8. Tableau 616 Saint Peter St, New Orleans, LA 70130 (French Quarter)

Tableau captures all the magic and pizazz of the French Quarter: bistro-style balcony seating overlooking Jackson Square, situated in a historic townhouse spanning 3 stories and decorated with gilded fleur-de-lis and crystal chandeliers for optimum class. Another outpost in Dickie Brennan’s Southern dining empire, the kitchen serves authentic French fare with bold Creole flair, resulting in standout dishes like creamy crawfish au gratin and craft beer-spiked barbecue shrimp and grits -- both of which can be paired with several selections from their curated wine list.

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9. Lil Dizzy's Cafe 1500 Esplanade Ave, New Orleans, LA 70116

This is a perfect spot for a variety of NOLA cuisine. They do a killer fried chicken, but you'd be advised to also try their bread pudding, gumbo, and catfish.

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10. MoPho 514 City Park Ave, New Orleans, LA 70119 (Mid City)

This Mid-City eatery is run by former chef from John Besh's August, and the quality is apparent. It combines the flavors of the Gulf with the flavors of Vietnam making for a fresh exploration into classic Vietnamese dishes. The drink program is just as eclectic as the eats, with house cocktails and spiked boba teas. The space feels modern and trendy for a strip mall spot, with a blue and orange color palette and wooden accents. On Saturdays, they roast a full pig, meaning you should probably cancel your other weekend plans.

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11. Galatoire's 209 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA 70130 (French Quarter)

Established in 1905, Bourbon Steet fixture Galatoire's is all about re-creating old-timey antebellum New Orleans ambiance through classic French Creole cuisine. Jackets are required dress code when dining at this high-end traditional establishment. However, you won't feel overdressed; the waiters are all suited in tuxedos. With more than 2,000 square feet of luxurious space, Galatoire's has three floors: the first being the main dining room, the second (able to accommodate over 250 people) meant for larger special events, and the third is home to a smaller private dining area.

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12. Pizza Delicious 617 Piety St, New Orleans, LA 70117 (Bywater)

Located on Bywater's Piety Street, this New York-style slice shop was started by two Long Island guys who, surprisingly, had never made pizza before. The menu incorporates local produce and features daily pizza specials like an Italian sausage pie with caramelized onions and peppers.

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13. Cafe Degas 3127 Esplanade Ave, New Orleans, LA 70119 (Mid City)

A romantic bistro by the Fairgrounds, Cafe Degas offers lovely interpretations of classic French cuisine. The restaurant takes its name from the Impressionist painter who once lived down the street. Dine in their al fresco space on Escargot Bourguignons , moule frites, and nicoise salads. Degas also offers rotating daily lunch and dinner specials based on what's fresh and in season.

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14. Restaurant August 301 Tchoupitoulas St, New Orleans, LA 70130 (Central Business District)

Grab your nicest suit or cocktail dress and head to this Central Business District establishment for an elegant night out for fine dining. Chef Josh Besh gained national fame from his appearances on Food Network and Bravo, but this flagship restaurant put him on the culinary map in New Orleans. Try the famed gnocchi with blue crab and black truffles, but only after you pick the perfect glass or bottle from the restaurant's extensive wine list. If you want the most complete (and expensive) culinary experience, opt for the prix fixe degustation meal.

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15. Commander's Palace 1403 Washington Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130 (Garden District)

Executive Chef Tory McPhail was named the 2013 Best Southern Chef by the James Beard Foundation, so there's a good chance you'll enjoy his Cajun fine dining.

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16. Liuzza's By The Track 1518 N Lopez St, New Orleans, LA 70119 (Mid City)

Situated inside a shabby corner house in Fairgrounds, this homey neighborhood joint is serving up classic New Orleans dishes like gumbo, fried catfish, oysters, and po-boys, specializing in a BBQ fried shrimp po-boy that's a local favorite. The fresh, crispy shrimp are lightly battered and well-seasoned before being stuffed into a homemade French-bread pistolette.

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17. Fisherman's Cove 3201 Williams Blvd, Kenner, LA 70065

Doing business for more than 30yrs, Fisherman's Cove is top-notch when it comes to ordering the freshest seafood.

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