New Orleans

Old Nov 19th, 2001, 05:46 AM
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New Orleans

My husband and I (recently married) are traveling to New Orleans at the beginning of December. This is the first time for both of us so we have no idea where to begin. We both love good food and would like to eat at both casual and romantic, higher-end restaurants. We also would like to get more of the local flavor but are willing to do some "touristy" type things if they are must sees. Jazz is definately on our list. We will only be in town from Thursday morning through Sunday afternoon and want to see and experience as much as possible. Any recommendations?
Old Nov 19th, 2001, 07:01 AM
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OK let's go:
Tipitina's on Tchoupitoulas for great music and atmosphere, also Snug Harbour on Frenchmans has outstanding artists playing. Pat O'Brien's piano bar (in the French Quarter) is well worth the trip, and the wait in line. Remember - if you don't have to wait in line then you're not getting into the right part of the bar! There are several different areas but for the piano bar you always have to wait. The waitresses serve people in line, and a good Hurricane or Handgrenade will certainly make the wait seem shorter. The Restoration Jazz bar (I'm not sure if I'm getting this name exactly right) is also on the MUST list for Jazz lovers. Tipitina's has a web site you can check out for who is playing; they have two locations. If you find a time when Rebirth or Moe are playing, GO FOR IT.
Now, restaurants -- for a classy, romantic place, go for Gautreaux's (I am definitely spelling this wrong!) but remember to ask to be seated upstairs. The food, atmosphere and service are wonderful. Also on the list of great places are Cafe Marigny on Royal St(which doesn't act like a cafe at all, but a lovely restaurant), Emeril's Delmonico and Vaquero's on Prytania St which is much less pricey but has a fantastic feel and margaritas to die for. Commander's Palace on Washington St also has a great reputation.
If you want a place that's sweet, quaint, quiet but offers AMAZING food at low prices, go to Midnight Express on Royal Street. We stumbled upon it one night by chance and are sold! It has Turkish food so good we've been telling everyone about it ever since. Small, quiet with very friendly staff and a charming, casual unassuming atmosphere.
For truly local flavours and real "soul food", go to The Praline Connection on Royal Street. It's a must.
Touristy things - you really have to take a wander down Bourbon Street at night even if you don't want to get wasted. It's an experience anyway. People will tell you that locals don't go there, but that's simply not true.
If you want a wonderful, tucked-away bar that the locals ALWAYS love, though, you have to go to St Joe's on Magazine Street. Hidden away out the back is a semi-covered patio bar with banana trees, red chinese lanterns and a great feel.
Other things for local feel: take a full-loop trolley car ride through downtown and the St Charles uptown areas. Get on and off wherever it takes your fancy.
There are fantastic historical cemetaries, the 1830s one on the corner of Washington and Prytania is fascinating, beautiful, sad, and incidentally is where parts of Double Jeopardy was filmed.
If you want a museum, the Cabildo on Jackson Square is a must. Don't buy the ticket that gets you all three local museums though, because you won't have time. The Cabildo is plenty alone.
The Audubon Zoo is supposed to be great. I haven't been yet but even if you don't go there, a stroll through Audubon Park with the squirrels, the ducks and turtles in the ponds, and the gorgeous Spanish-moss covered oaks is a welcome respite from the bustle of the rest of the city.
Well I think I've written enough! Just so you know where I'm coming from, I've lived in New Orleans for six months now and visited several times before, so I think I can give an idea of what people who live here and people who visit love to do. I hope this helps!
Old Nov 19th, 2001, 07:24 AM
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Preservation Hall has arguably the best jazz in the world. If you don't do another thing, go there. My favorite meal in New Orleans is the weekend jazz brunch at Commander's Palace. Other great restaurants are Bayona, Mr B's, and K-Paul's. For LOTS of information about NO, do a back search of this board.
Old Nov 19th, 2001, 06:22 PM
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What is the dress like in NO? Don't want to pack too much but don't want to be unprepared either.
Old Nov 20th, 2001, 05:41 AM
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Re: Dress in NO

When I visited last March, I found that most people dressed "nice casual" at best. Even at Commander's Palace, many men weren't wearing suits/ties. There are so many tourists in t-shirts and jeans in NO, so don't worry about what to wear.

At the jazz clubs, people wore comfortable, casual clothes. Dress like you would if you were going to a "cool" music club or bar at home.

Please note that I visited from New York City, where people tend to dress up more. Have fun!

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