NOLA Baby!

I recently traveled to an New Orleans with some friends for the weekend. It was a good time with great music, a fun party atmosphere, and amazing food. For me the highlight of the trip was the food. With great restaurants including awesome brunch spots and amazing places for dinner. I made it a priority to try a bunch of Louisiana specialities, including jambalaya, gumbo, po boy sandwiches, southern fried chicken and biscuits, creole shrimp, and good 0le crawfish (which quickly became my favorite).

Let’s start with brunch…

Atchafalaya Restaurant 

901 Louisiana Ave, New Orleans, LA 70115

We were in Nola from Saturday to Monday. One of the things we made sure to do was have Sunday brunch. It was Father’s Day which we completely forgot. Not the holiday itself, but we did not take into consideration that the restaurants would be packed. My friend found this restaurant via Yelp (my usual role). It was located outside of the French Quarter where were staying so we had to take a cab there. There was a very long wait. It might have been 2 hours or more. They had a small live band performing jazz and alternative music which was entertaining. Seeing everyone’s food come out is what motivated us to continue waiting knowing eventually that would us. We were seated upstairs. The restaurant was fairly small, despite having an upper level. Our server was amazing. He was originally from NY (obviously). At the end of the meal we spoke to the manager/owner and told her what a great job he does.

On to the important part; the food. Myself and 2 of my other friends went with the fried chicken and biscuits while my other friend was torn between the eggs treme (scrambled eggs, boudin cakes, popcorn crawfish, hollandaise, crystal brunch potatoes) and the cochon du l’eggs (sunny-side up eggs, pulled pork, cornbread pudding, creole coleslaw, blackberry-cane syrup). She was deadset on trying crawfish so she went with the first one even though the latter seemed like a very interesting combination of flavors. We also ordered french toast for us to share. Everything was amazing. The fried chicken was light and boneless and the biscuits were soft. The french toast was in a banana foster rum sauce and was amazing. I tried the crawfish in my friend’s dish which is when the love affair began. Everything was delicious and I would definitely recommend going there if one should find themselves in New Orleans.

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Fried chicken and biscuits with scrambled eggs, eggs treme and french toast

Cafe Fleur De Lis

307 Chartres St. New Orleans, LA 70130

On our final day in New Orleans we had breakfast across the street from our hotel at Cafe Fleur De Lis. It’s a small cafe that specializes in BANGIN breakfast. The menu is filed with delicious diner style breakfast, but with a New Orleans twist. Like their Creole Country breakfast (Grilled Boudin sausage, 2eggs cooked any style, homemade biscuit and a bowl of grits) or Big Easy breakfast (2 eggs cooked any style, bacon, sausage, 2 pancakes and a toast served with hash browns or grits – aka heart attack on 3 plates). What really caught majority of our attention was the shrimp and grits. We read reviews of the restaurant on Yelp and one woman wrote a hilarious one focused on the shrimp and grits, “The Shrimp & Grits made me cry… more like weep… more like pass out to the ground, die, then go to heaven just to tell the Lord how good these Shrimp & Grits have been to me.” She was right though. It was amazing. The cheesy grits topped with the juicy shrimp. Literally to die for. The biscuit was good too, but a little hard for my taste. It was crunchy, not hard as in stale, but I would have preferred a softer flakier biscuit and it made the meal so much more filling. That’s just my personal opinion though. The meal was still amazing.

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Shrimp, grits, and a biscuit!

My friend ordered eggs benedict (basic), but it was served over biscuits instead of english muffins. She also ordered bread pudding which did not appeal to me at all, but she convinced us to try it and it was actually amazing. Melt in your mouth deliciousness. We also had strawberry and peach mimosas with our meals that we were able to take to go since we did not finish with all the great food. It was a great brunch experience. Definitely one for the books. Check it out if you’re in New Orleans.

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Strawberry and peach mimosas, shrimp and grits, egg benedicts and bread pudding

Brunch is my favorite meals, but dinner is for winners.

Coop’s Place

1109 Decatur St. New Orleans, LA 70116

Super sketchy appearance. Quirky staff. Random layout. That being said the food was great. There was a line out the door when the 4 of us got there. We stopped and grabbed a to go drink for the bar next door while we waited. Once seated we got appetizers. Their crawfish is delicious. One of my friends almost ate the plate. We also ordered green beans which were full of flavor. For our entrees both my friend and I got Coop’s taste plate which samples their most popular dishes. It comes with a bowl of seafood gumbo and has red beans & rice with sausage, shrimp creole, jumbalaya and their Cajun fried chicken. Everything tasted great, except I wasn’t the biggest fan of the jumbalaya. Too sweet for my taste. Maybe it was the rabbit. Non food adventurous friend got a burger that at least came with cajun fries and my other friend got the Chicken Tchoupitoulas (boneless chicken breast sauteed with cream sauce and flavored with shrimp and tasso served over rice with Creole green beans). He loved it. We all left full and satisfied and as soon as we weren’t hungry anymore we realized how dirty the place was and how weird the staff was, but there were still no regrets trying it out. When in NOLA…

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Crawfish, Creole Green Beans, Seafood Gumbo
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Red rice and beans, rabbit and sausage jumbalaya, creole shrimp, red beans and rice, and fried chicken 

Johnny’s Po Boy

511 Saint Louis Street New Orleans, LA

This was the last eatery I hit up before heading back to NY. I made it a mission to get a po boy before I left Nola. I fell in love with crawfish so of course I went with a crawfish one even though they had a huge selection of different types. The crawfish was fried to perfection. The sandwich was great. It is big. Served on a hero, it’s like 2 sandwiches. We went with fries and sweet potato fries which were sprinkled with cinnamon. Everything was good and not expensive. Go there. The end.

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Crawfish Po Boy with regular and sweet potato fries

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