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IRBINO (I'd Rather Be In New Orleans)

November 12, 2006



The city is coming back slowly but let me say that the dining and imbibing, music and joie de vivre is alive and well, the Quarter is delightful as is Uptown. And the BigEZ restaurants are keeping the spirit and reality of our wonderful culinary and hospitality industries alive. Check for the most up-to-date information on the recovery…


When visiting the Big Easy, it is usually hot but, always cool, dress likewise.


John J. Audubon River Boat ride-Mississippi River from the French Quarter (¼) to/from Uptown/ Audubon Park


Lazy trip upriver, , Audubon Park is delightful, visit Breaux Grocery in the Cajun Swamp, named after Lynne’s grandfather, Prospère Breaux,


Chartres and Royal Streets have some nice shops with good quality merchandise, or travel a little outside of the ¼ to...

Magazine Street for antiques, galleries, clothes, whatever you are looking for it is probably on Magazine,


A few suggestions, but there are many more great places:


Acme Oyster House

724 Iberville



Boisterous, raunchy, delicious po-boys, oysters, crawfish in season


Central Grocery

923 Decatur St.



Go early grab (a ½ for two is substantial) scrumptious muffaletta and a root beer, find a bench on the levee and enjoy


Drago’s Seafood Restaurant and Oyster Bar

3232 No. Arnoult Road at 17th St..,

Metairie, La 70002,


About a 20 min. ride from the French Quarter (¼) but worth it, depending on your time. Down the street and around the corner from a Breaux Mart, across the street from Lakeside Shopping Center or go to/from airport between airport and the Quarter.

The best char-broiled oysters on earth, Tommy Cvitanovich is the owner and very active with the National and La. Restaurant Associations.


Bon Ton Café

401 Magazine St.,

Central Business District (CBD)


Incredible food - catfish, crawfish etouffee, bread pudding, etc., oldest Cajun restaurant in NO, in the CBD across Canal Street from the ¼, only open weekdays, 11am-2pm and 5pm-9:30pm 


The Coffee Pot

St. Peter St


Great traditional NO food, super breakfasts and Bloody’s, lovely patio and authentic staff


The Gumbo Shop

630 St. Peter Street


Basic good Cajun/Creole, seafood gumbo good but the chicken and andouille gumbo is fantastic


Clover Grill, a.k.a. Clever Girl

Bourbon Street


All day and night dining, great burgers and breakfast, real characters, gay zone, if Earl’s on duty it’s better performance art than NY


Praline Connection

Frenchman Street,

Faubourg Marigny,

Nice walk across Esplanade from the ¼, happening music neighborhood but do be careful after dark. Best soul food in NO, greens, fried chicken, chicken livers.


Pierre Maspero’s

Chartres and St. Louis Sts.


Rather divey but surprisingly good food, catfish salad, po-boys, etc.


Napoleon House

Chartres and St. Louis Sts.


Great patio, opera, Pimm’s Cups and super shrimp/avocado rémoulade


Mosca’s Restaurant

4137 Hwy 90 W
Avondale, LA 70094
(504) 436-8950

Worth the trip across the Mississippi River, the real deal, authentic Italian,

Award winning


Café Giovanni

117 Decatur St.


New Orleans


Homey, Operatic, good Italian, very hospitable


Muriel’s Restaurant, Jackson Square

801 Chartres St.

New Orleans, LA 70116
(504) 568-1885

Beautiful, elegant ambiance, great Creole menu


Of Course, café au lait and beignets at…

Café du Monde

Decatur St.

Jackson Square


The Royal Orleans Hotel

621 St. Louis St.,



Where Lynne worked for many years, Rib Room good food, great drinks, old time staff

Roof top great view of ¼ and Mississippi River



209 Bourbon St.,


504-525-2021, no reservations, even biggies stand in line.

Real New Orleans, Dahling, the to-be-seen social scene, go for lunch people-watch till dinner, very good food


Restaurant August

301 Tchoupitoulas St.


504-299-9777, right outside ¼

New, non-traditional and delicious. Upscale but not pretentious. John Besh owner.

Award winning



430 Dauphine St.


Similar cuisine as above, best sweetbreads in the world. Susan Spicer, owner.

Award winning


The famous ones are still delicious and special: Commander’s Palace- Uptown and  Brennan’s, Arnaud’s, Antoine’s in the Quarter