Reporting back on our trip over the NYE week. Sadly, I got really sick on our 2nd day (bad cold, sinus infection. Still recovering, 12 days later and after antibiotics!) so i really didn’t eat as much as I wanted, but we also had a lot of bad luck with food on this trip . The night we arrived, we tried to go to Shank - recommended by friends, and pretty close to our place. But it was closed (Mon. night). Tried to go to Coop’s – line around the block. Back in our neighborhood, tried to go to The Franklin – out of food except the burger!! By that time it was 10:00 p.m. and I wanted to see King James & the Special Men at Saturn Bar – starved, we ended up a half a block down at Junction Tavern for an ok burger and bad wings. Took 45 minutes as the poor bartender was slammed and all by herself. Wah! (show was excellent, by the way.)
Next day, we tried Shank again for lunch. Were told that they were out of basically everything until Thursday. WTF? Walked to St. Roche Market as we were close and starving – but against my better judgment. BF wanted one thing – sausage gravy and biscuits, and they were OUT of it. From Fete au Fete, I got a sampler of crawfish poutine, shrimp & grits, and gumbo yaya–they were OUT of red beans and rice. I ordered this before we knew they were out of his food, so I didn’t really want to eat without him. We had a couple bites and then left it behind, as it wasn’t all that good. I would not go back, to the market in general. Very generic vibe.
Parasol Po Boys for our early NYE dinner – I got the voodoo shrimp (they were OUT of oysters), BF got the roast beef debris. I tasted his – apologies to all, but I just wasn’t all that impressed! Maybe something you have to grow up with, but it was kinda Dinty Moore-ish to me. I liked my shrimp po boy just fine, although I think I like Parkway’s better. But excellent bread! (We spent NYE on Frenchmen, at DBA watching Cha Wah - wonderful show!)
On New Year’s Day, we went to Cochon Butcher to eat and order my meats to take home. Place was packed. I had the buckboard bacon melt (my absolute favorite), the BF had a pastrami with sauerkraut on rye - he liked it. we split black-eyed pea chili with cornbread (WONDERFUL.) and potato salad (very good). I love Cochon too, but I will always go to Cochon Butcher when I visit, just for that bacon melt.
Later that night, we had a rez at Toup’s Meatery – I ordered the full charcuterie board as my meal, the BF got the pork chop with dirty rice, we split a salad. EXCELLENT. We didn’t even make a dent in that pork chop. Took it back to the hotel and nibbled on it the next couple of days. But that dirty rice! And the charcuterie! Spicy pork rillettes, headcheese, chicken liver mousse, duck bacon, fried boudin ball, daily sausage, cracklins, and rillons. All with lovely pickly things. My favorites were the daily sausage, the headcheese, and the chicken liver mousse. Really great dinner. Would definitely go back.
We had breakfast near our place the next day at Who Dat Café – catfish bennie for me - perfectly cooked fish. BF got his sausage gravy and biscuits, finally, and a couple of eggs. Just what he was looking for. Again, would go back.
Dinner at The Franklin – unbelievably, they were STILL out of quite a few items on the menu. But the BF got a really good hangar steak & frites. My crab pasta was good, but a bit too lemony, and just not all that special. Probably would not go back.
By this time, I was sick as a dog. Spent most of the day in bed Friday, didn’t eat until dinner, and I almost cancelled our reservation at Dooky Chase, I was so sick. But we went. Unfortunately, except for the fried chicken, it was a very disappointing meal. Partly my fault. First I got full on the terrible, terrible bread – pieces of bread that looked like they were the crusts torn off a loaf, buttered and toasted, then served cold. But we were starving since we hadn’t eaten all day. Then, the BF asked our hostess what she liked best on the menu, and she said the stuffed shrimp. We’d seen how big the plate of the gorgeous fried chicken was, so I went ahead and ordered the shrimp and let him get the chicken, thinking we could share. But the BF really doesn’t do shrimp (except scampi sometimes) and i know this! And the shrimp was just awful. Stuffed with crab or maybe boudin?? I’m not sure but it was pasty and gluey, and the breading was super thick. I managed to eat PART OF ONE SHRIMP. Our salads were really basic with bad winter tomatoes, and only a sweet French dressing was offered. The BF got a stuffed potato with his chicken and that actually tasted good to me, so I had a couple bites of that. Other than that, I had a leg from the BF’s plate of chicken – and it was DELICIOUS. Really great chicken, not at all greasy, maybe better than Willie Mae’s Scotch House (but not quite as good as Coop’s or Lil Dizzy’s, to me.) I should have ordered something like jambalaya but I just wasn’t that hungry. I wish we’d gone when it was the buffet because then we could have each had a piece of chicken and just tasted a bit of the standards. Oh well.
On our next to last day, again I spent most of the day in bed, but we went to pick up Cochon meats in the afternoon. I was just out of it, so we just stayed and had a late lunch/early dinner there again. Friend had recommended the duck pastrami sliders, which were just ok – the cheese (Gruyere) was dry. BF got the chili again (so good), and arancini stuffed with sausage & salami – delish. Also the mac & cheese, very tasty.
On Sunday, our last day, we checked out and headed to the FQ to pick up muffulettas at Central Grocery, and found that Coop’s had no line for the first time all week! We got the Taste Plate with an extra piece of chicken. I really adore Coop’s fried chicken. The seafood gumbo was very tasty, although some of the seafood in it was still cold. RB&R with sausage was good, shrimp creole was just ok. The jambalaya, which I had loved so much last time, was kind of sweet, and I didn’t finish it. but that chicken! I’d still go back for the chicken and the redfish meuniere.
We had hours to kill before our flight, and happened by a very cute, newish bar in the Quarter – Longways on Toulouse.
It was almost empty, so we sat there for the next 3 hours or so and nursed our cocktails (yes cocktails! i was sick, not dead!), and then split an order of their charred broccoli with horseradish gremolata and bacon, which was really tasty. I’d go back there again - place had a nice, mellow vibe (especially compared to everything else in the Quarter) and a sweet patio in the back.
For drinks we mostly went to dive bars at night in the Marigny. i had quite a few very good Sazeracs at different places, too.
I’m not done with NOLA yet. Need a do-over! Next time with my sister, who eats everything.
SORRY - We started devouring before i got the pic!