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New Orleans is filled with awesome eats. Its confluence of Cajun, Creole and French cultures have made it a foodie paradise and in recent decades its stature has grown as the city embraces global flavors. You can always do the classics—beignets for breakfast at Cafe DuMonde, lunch at Central Grocery, dinner at Galotoire’s and post-prandial Sazeracs at the Roosevelt—and go home happy, but this list will make your belly smile and get you mostly out of the French Quarter. Here are 10 great places to eat in New Orleans.

Also: Here are New York’s best cocktail bars

Bacchanal Fine Wine & Spirits: This shape-shifting Bywater gem is both a wine and cheese store, a sprawling outdoor venue for live music and a restaurant serving globally inspired small plates—and it’s freakin’ awesome. The crumbling facade is inauspicious, but step inside and you’ll be in a legit wine cellar where you can choose from a variety of varietals and cheesy cheeses. Find a table in the expansive garden out back and order a few exuberantly flavored dishes from the takeout window. In a few minutes a staffer will arrive with your cheese artfully splayed on a plate complete with all the fixins’ plus your wine. You may have to share a table with strangers, but that’s half the magic.

Photo: Capdeville

Photo: Capdeville

Capdeville: The Central Business District or CBD as it’s colloquially known is not the most exciting of NOLA ‘hoods, but if you want to see where its coolest locals go to unwind, hit this upmarket gastropub around happy hour and settle in for a burger, whiskey and killer tunes courtesy of the kick ass jukebox. The wall decor pays tribute to iconic album covers from rock and roll greats, while the Instragram-worthy food is comfort classics with a twist such as duck and cranberry wontons, truffled mac and cheeseand a fried green tomato po’ boy. Tucked away on a low key street of the same name, just look for Lafayette Square and you’re basically there.


Photo: Cochon

Cochon: No longer a secret by any means, this celebrated home for modern Cajun fare has been a hit among locals and tourists alike for quite some time. Located in the city’s Warehouse District, it keeps good company with nearby Emeril’s but is a much more approachable dining experience (even less fussy is its sibling sandwich shop Cochon Butcher). Chomp down on legit tasty apps like fried alligator with chili garlic mayonnaise dipping sauce or onion glazed pork cheeks with grits, but be sure and save room for heartier fare such as catfish courtbouillon or the requisite Southern comfort side dishes like smothered greens and macaroni and cheese casserole.


Photo: The Company Burger

The Company Burger: This burger joint is a boon to locals in that it serves up the kind of low maintenance burger popularized by chains like In ‘n’ Out Burger and more recently Shake Shack and will have your mouth watering just looking at it (we love the turkey option and there is even grilled cheese for vegetarians). The reward for tourists, however, is that it forces them to trek out to Freret Street and spend a few hours hanging out in a legit cool part of town stocked with funky shops and cafes and rarely seen by visitors. Having said, that if you’re nursing a Hurricane-induced hangover and in need of a juicy burger fast, there is a new downtown location at Girod and Rampart streets.

Dick and Jenny's

Dick and Jenny’s

Dick & Jenny’s: This 120-year-old Creole cottage house by the river is way off the beaten path and also an absolute charmer. We dig the convivial atmosphere, Southern hospitality, decorative plates lining the dining roomwalls and, importantly, the food including corn-fried oysters served in a house remoulade and braised lamb shoulder over housemade pappardelle or the heaping bowl of bouillabaisse. If you don’t make a reservation you may have to wait—a long time in fact—but trust us, it’s worth it.

Related: These are the French Quarter’s best music venues

Elizabeth’s: Two words: praline bacon. More on that in a minute. Another Bywater entry on this list, Elizabeth’s is where you go to temper your hangover after an all night Bourbon Street bender. Brunch in this two-story, crusty building means serious eats and long waits so arrive early and hungry and prepare to hunker down at the upstairs bar with a signature cocktail like a Sazerac or a pineapple jalepeno margarita andadmire the local art adorning the walls for awhile. The duck waffles are an Elizabeth favorite (sweet potato and duck hash layered over corn bread waffle with pepper jelly) but we beg you not to pass up that praline bacon—it’s that good.

Feelings Cafe: This isn’t actually our favorite food in NOLA—although the Creole fare is quite good—but what we love about Feelings is that its housed in a building from the 18th century which is also part of the first plantation land granted for private ownership from the original New Orleans settlers. The joint is unabashedly romantic including a piano bar and an intimate courtyard whose brick tiles have been recycled from the building’s original fireplace. This is a great, unpretentious place for a romantic meal and located in the Faubourg Marigny, one of the best neighborhoods in the city.


Photo: Killer PoBoys

Killer Poboys: Whether you’re getting drunk on Hurricanes, jamming to a jazz band—or both, one thing for certain is that everything awesome in New Orleans happens in the back of a bar. Enter Killer Po Boys, a teensy takeout window in the way, way back of the Erin Rose, a classic French Quarter dive. Killer Poboys opened a few years back with the intention of bringing the classic Nola staple into the 21st century. We dig the “Dark and Stormy,” a combination of pork belly slathered in NOLA rum ginger glaze and topped with lime slaw and garlic aioli. If it’s elbow room you seek, check out Big Killer Poboys on Dauphine St.

Mimi’s in the Marigny: Another Marigny entry, Mimi’s enjoys a reputation as a fun and funky place that you would swear upon entry is nothing more than a rollicking dive bar—which it also is—but if you want some serious eats, head to the second floor where tapas rules. Gather a group of your besties and devour a carefully crafted selection of tasty small plates like mushroom and goat cheese empanadas, fried brussels sprouts, coffee kahlua glazed salmon, crab gazpacho and so much more.

Pascal’s Manale: A New Orleans staple—103 years and counting—but off the radar for many visitors due to its  Uptown location, this centenarian joint serves up Louisiana-Italian dishes like an oyster, shrimp and crabmeat pan roast or a traditional veal parmagiana. But there’s one reason why Pascal’s has remained famous throughout the years and that’s its claim as the original home of BBQ shrimp, a heaping plate of head-on shrimp smothered in the restaurant’s secret sauce—which does not actually contain any barbecue at all!

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Jason Heidemann

Jason Heidemann

Jason is a Lead Content Specialist for Expedia Group, and manages content initiatives across numerous Expedia-owned brands. His work has been featured in the Chicago Tribune, Time Out, the Huffington Post, Chicago Magazine, Passport and many others.

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