Spent a week in New Orleans in August. It was hot and muggy but mostly overcast with scattered thunderstorms everyday that broke up the humidity and coming from San Francisco I welcome the heat.
We hit: Saint John, Manolito, Commander’s Palace, Luke (happy hour oysters and cocktails) and Domenica (happy hour pizza and wine), Liuzzas By The track, Parkway Bakery, Domilise’s, Killer Poboys, Superior Seafood and Oyster Bar (happy hour oysters, char grilled oyster and cocktails), Hansen’s Sno-Bliz and Plum Street Snowballs, and Cochon Butcher (sandwiches for plane ride and andouille and boudin for the freezer).
Liuzzas By The Track
Casual spot that does all the classics well, gumbo, poboys, red beans and rice and large frosty mugs of beer - BBQ shrimp poboy is a specialty. I had the half soft shell crab poboy and gumbo. Tasted the BBQ shrimp which had a buttery pepper sauce with a little heat and sweetness. Liuzzas By the Track is a great lunch spot because it is a couple blocks from Cemetery No. 3 and City Park, so you can make a day of it. The New Orleans Museum at City Park was closed for some movie filming but the sculpture garden and surrounding landscape are among the finest I’ve been to. Also Cafe Du Monde has an outpost there for your a low key beignet fix.
Manolito - French Quarter
Charming little non-touristy Cuban spot just 2 blocks from Jackson Square serving a small menu of Cuban cocktails and food. Food was great - cubano, maduros, black beans and rice, etc. Quality cocktails - El Presidente and frozen daiquiri.
Domilise’s Poboy and Hansen’s Sno-Bliz
Domilise’s uses smaller shrimp with a lighter batter tha Parkway. Excellent poboys, I had the half and half catfish/shrimp. Walking distance to Hansen’s.
Hansens is a classic place, opened in 1934 and the walls are covered with old menus, hand drawn flavors etc. Their syrups seem homemade, but like Plum Street Snoballs, unless you go for a natural juice or tart flavor they’re shockingly sweet (kids didn’t seem to mind). I learned my lesson at Plum St. and went with the tart satsuma.
Someone in out party insisted on going here and the food was probably better than I expected. Smoked redfish cake over maque choux that had complex cajun spicing. Lacquered boudin stuffed quail was good and very rich but the sauce was a bit sweet. Good sazerac. Peach coffee cake and fleur de lys creme brulee.
Happy hour, half price on all pizzas, beer and wine by the glass. Who would have guessed they make a really excellent clam pie. Prosciutto pie had generous amount of prosciutto, but could have been sliced thinner.
August is a slow month in N.O. and hotels are cheaper, the city is less crowded and they have Coolinary August (basically restaurant month) with set $45/$25 menus for lunch and dinner, so if you can take the humidity and aren’t hurricane wary it is a good time to go.