The Big Easy is one of our favorite U.S. destinations because it has a cultural and food scene like nowhere else in the country—really like nowhere else in the world. You can easily get overwhelmed with all the food options, so we thought we’d share a few of our favorites. Here’s how we suggest spending a day eating your way through NOLA.
Start your day with breakfast at Brennan’s in the French Quarter. We love traditional egg breakfasts and one thing we learned the hard way after a few trips to New Orleans is that many of the brunch menus are filled with really heavy foods we would associate with dinner. While Brennan’s does have items like turtle soup and duck andouille on the menu, it also has the classic eggs benedict and other breakfast favorites—some with a Creole twist. So this place is great because it has something for everyone.
Make sure you save room for lunch. If you want amazing NOLA seafood in a pleasant sit-down atmosphere that’s in the heart of the action—this is your place. Bourbon House is located right on Bourbon Street, so it’s great for people watching, but it’s also more sophisticated than some of the neighboring establishments. Also, the food is outstanding. We got the delicious seafood tower with oysters, local caviar, boiled Gulf shrimp, marinated crab fingers and seafood boucherie.
For dinner, check out Annunciation. This lovely restaurant serves creole-style dishes in a swanky but rustic atmosphere. The staff were so friendly and really made our visit memorable. And, of course, the food was outstanding. We had sweetbreads with cheddar grits, gumbo, and fried green tomatoes with shrimp. This was—without question—one of the best meals we’ve had in New Orleans.
Café du Monde
Do not skip dessert! You can’t leave NOLA without tasting the amazing beignets—warm and fried doughy goodness sprinkled with powdered sugar. There are many places where you can try these tasty treats, but Café du Monde is the most famous of them all. Sure, its loaded with tourists, but it’s open 24/7, so it’s all about timing. We like to grab our beignets to go and sit in Jackson Square across the street to people watch while we eat.
Afterwards, it’s nice to stroll around the French Market or Jackson Square and check out all the offerings from the art vendors.
Bonus: Tsunami Sushi
If you get tired of all the rich, creamy and fried cuisine, splurge on some sushi at Tsunami. The chef makes delicate and delicious rolls and sashimi with a special flare. Also, the wasabi relish is so amazing—we’ve never had anything like it.
There are tons of amazing restaurants to chose from in New Orleans. These are just some of our absolute favorites in the heart of town. Leave your diet at home, pack your stretchy pants and get ready for a culinary experience like no other.
What’s your favorite spot in New Orleans? Tell us in the comments.