Best food in New Orleans

Best Dishes To Try On Your Next Vacation To LouisianaBest Dishes To Try On Your Next Vacation To Louisiana

New Orleans, well Louisiana in general, is well known for its delicious and distinct foods. There are many dishes that are extremely popular and common to the locals, but not so much to the visitors. Many dishes that are with French or Asian names may seem a bit too foreign and intimidating to order and the last thing you want to do is order something where you won’t know what to expect as far as the taste goes.

Many people are too wary to order some dishes simply because the name may look too difficult to pronounce and this is a shame because many of those dishes include some of the best tastes in the world. Not knowing what these dishes taste like means that those that travel to this part of the country are missing out on an amazing chance to enjoy and partake in some of the most elegant and delicious cuisine in the world. Here is a brief rundown of some of the best foods that you must try on your next trip to Louisiana. Readers beware, if you’re not big on seafood or fatty foods, you may want to vacation elsewhere. Once you’ve tried these French Creole dishes, you’re sure to put on a few pounds before you get back home.

Now, first thing’s first. Many of the most popular dishes in New Orleans were created by the Creoles and include Creole and/or Cajun seasonings. A person that is Creole oftentimes has traces of West African, European, and Native American ancestry. They all have their own variations of cooking, which consist of a fusion of French, Spanish, Asian and African flare and tastes.

No matter what, you’ll find nothing but the best home-cooked soul food in Louisiana, but you have to know where to look and what to expect.

New Orleans Dishes for Beginners:

Appetizers:

Louisiana gumbo

Gumbo – This is sort of like Jambalaya, but includes more stock and oftentimes includes shellfish and common vegetables like celery and bell peppers.

Andouille – This is a fancy way to smoked sausage. It’s usually made with a mix of pork roast, garlic and spices, and thrown into dishes like Jambalaya and Gumbo. You should also know about Boudin which is a sausage made with pork, rice, and Cajun spices.

Jambalaya – This is a mix of rice, meat (usually Andouille or chicken) and stewed vegetable. The creole spices included in this dish is what makes this meal unique.

Dirty Rice – This is an amazing platter made with white rice that incorporates tiny pieces of chicken liver, onion, bell peppers, and spices like cayenne and black pepper.

Main Dishes:

Eggs Sardou

Eggs Sardou – This is a great snack if you like eggs. It consists of poached eggs on top of artichokes with creamed spinach and hollandaise sauce. Some versions may include toppings of anchovies or chopped ham.

Etouffee – This is a seafood lovers Must-Have. It’s a dish that includes a shellfish (usually shrimp or crab) that is covered with roux (mix of flour & fat) and spices and served on a bed of rice.

Muffuletta – This is basically a fancy sub or sandwich. It’s made of Muffuletta bread, which is a round Italian break, and includes an olive spread, cheese, and Italian meats like capicola, salami, etc.. If you’re in the mood for a sandwich, but not Italian style, maybe consider a Po’ Boy. A Po’ Boy is a sub that commonly includes roast beef or fried seafood (catfish, shrimp, oyster,etc.) and brown gravy, lettuce, and tomatoes.

Oysters en Brochette – This is a classic Creole dish. It’s made of skewered raw oysters and bacon that is breaded and then deep fried or sautéed. Or Oysters Rockefeller which are oysters topped with green herbs (like parsley), butter, and bread crumbs and then broiled or baked to perfection.

Yaka Mein – A bit of Asian influence on this one. This is a soup or beef broth, noodles, green onions, hard-boiled egg, and Creole spices.

Pompano en Papillote – This is a fish filet that is cooked in a sealed envelope made of parchment paper and is then served with a white sauce made from wine, shrimp, and crab meat.

Desserts:

Doberge bakery in New Orleans

Bananas Foster – This is an ice cream dream! Vanilla ice cream with bananas and topped with a sauce of butter, brown sugar, rum, cinnamon, and banana liqueur. If you’re feeling adventurous, as for it served as a flambé.

Beignet – Literally thousands of people travel to New Orleans for their Beignets. This is a pasty made from deep fried choux dough and topped with powdered sugar. It melts in your mouth and will have you coming back begging for more.

Doberge Cake – A cake that originated in New Orleans in the 1930s, and features many thin, alternating layers of custard pudding and cake and then glazed on the outside. It usually alternates between lemon custard and chocolate, although there are many variations and flavors.

This is literally just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to food in Louisiana. This should be enough to get you through a visit if you’re here for a few days, but we’d highly recommend branching out and trying even more things then what’s on this list. Most restaurants include a description of each dish they offer, if you’re unsure don’t be afraid to ask your server. The last thing you want to do when you’re on vacation is miss out on a delectable dish just because you were too shy to ask questions about it. Of course, you could also just use the internet and do a quick search on your phone. Most dishes can be found on the World Wide Web with pictures and descriptions.

New Orleans Cuisine

Top Places To Visit In Louisiana And Restaurants NearbyTop Places To Visit In Louisiana And Restaurants Nearby

While Louisiana may not be on the top of your list as a travel destination, you may want to reconsider that next time you’re planning a vacation. Louisiana has lot more than you might think at first. You may be missing out on amazing food, fun family attractions and unbeatable culture, among other things. Let’s go through a few of the more popular places to visit while vacationing in New Orleans and Louisiana.

Louisiana is the definition of a melting pot offering many different cultures including African, French and American among others. Some famous natives and residents you may be familiar with include the musician Louis Armstrong, Ellen DeGeneres, Reese Witherspoon, author of Interview with the Vampire and more great novels Anne Rice, and Britney Spears, and many others.

Being that Louisiana does offer such a wide variety of cultures it’s obvious that it would have many different things to offer every visitor that decides to travel to its great state. Whether you decide to come to Louisiana for its a culture-rich experience, new foods, or an event, you’re sure to have a great time.

French Quarter Restaurants

The French Quarter

One of the first stops, whenever visiting Louisiana should be the French Quarter. This is also known as Vieux Carre (Old Square). If you would like to immerse yourself in an area that is literally designed to resemble France, this is the place for you. You may be surprised to learn that it is also considered a national historic landmark. Although this particular spot was hit hard during Hurricane Katrina back in 2005, it’s is once again thriving.

The French Quarter features antique shops, great cafes and restaurants and many other historical sights, like the world-famous St. Louis Cathedral and Jackson Square. The infamous Bourbon Street (host of the annual Mardi Gras celebration) is located in the French Quarter, too.

If you enjoy history and art make sure to make a stop at the Jamie Hayes Gallery in the French Quarter. His art, described commonly as vibrant and whimsical, is extremely popular with the locals and those visiting. You may have even seen some of his works which usually include musical instruments, cays, and Mardi Gras scenes. The most impressive fact about Jamie Hayes and his impressive art skills is that he’s colorblind, which you’d never guess judging by his art. You can purchase the artwork or any of the other items, like kid’s books, CDs, and jewelry, as well.

Eateries and Restaurants worth mentioning in the French Quarter: Cafe du Monde (well-known for its cafe au lait and beignets), Pat O’Brien’s Bar (known for its cocktails and dueling pianos attraction), Antoine’s (known for its made from scratch Creole cuisine), and Brennan’s (known for huge breakfast spreads – if you do decide to go here make sure to try the Bananas Foster!).

Dining in Vermilionville

Vermilionville

Vermilionville is another spot in Louisiana to not be missed. Located in Lafayette, it’s a real historical gem. This is what is called a living museum. You can spend a night or two here and really relax and take in the tranquility of the quiet town, or just spend a few hours wandering around and learning about every one of the buildings and houses, which were built in the 1700-1800s (or reconstructed after the originals).

Each one has its own story to tell and every personality has something to offer, too. You will find that many of the inhabitants of this small town are in character and dressed in period-appropriate clothes. You will not be able find a more informative and realistic living history museum in all of Louisiana. Take time to meet the local blacksmith, weaver, quilt maker, and fur trapper or just chase the chickens around the chicken yard. You’re sure to have a fun and enlightening time during your visit.

Eateries and Restaurants worth mentioning in Vermillionville area: Vermilionville Restaurant – La Cuisine de Maman (featuring servers in 1800s costumes, specializing in gumbo and Cajun-Creole fare), Blue Dog Cafe (Cafe with a canine theme, specializing in Cajun seafood), and Cafe Vermilionville (upper-class, fine dining featuring Louisiana cuisine).

Tabasco Factory in Louisiana

Avery Island

If you love hot sauce, specifically Tabasco, or if you’re the type that enjoys taking hikes down trails and seeing breathtaking views in nature all while surrounding yourself with lush flora and fauna, you absolutely have to set aside a day to visit Avery Island while in Louisiana.

You’ll be able to enjoy Jungle Gardens, which is full of gorgeous and exotic plants and Bird Island (also known as Bird City), which is a bird sanctuary designed and created around 1895 to help bring back the Egret population, while you’re there, too. Don’t forget to take a detour down the path to rub the big Buddha statues belly. Everyone can use a little luck some time!

Although you can take a trip here during any time of the year, the spring time is usually the best time to visit, when the flowers are blooming and the birds have not migrated. You will be able to take a self-guided tour of the Tabasco factory, too, and learn the whole hot sauce making process and check out artifacts from the founding family, the McIlhennys.

The tour of the factory should take you about two hours, and if you are daring you can even sample the various hot sauces. Also take a moment to check out and walk around the gift shop afterward and bring home some cool Tabasco products. Once you’ve thoroughly seen all Avery Island has to offer, which is a lot, you’re probably going to have worked up a big appetite. Head on over to the TABASCO Restaurant 1868. It’s very reasonably priced and has amazing options, many of which are infused with Tabasco. Definitely try a slice of the sweet Tabasco Cake!

Other eateries worth mentioning near Avery Island: Landry’s Cajun (great steaks and seafood), Jane’s Seafood and Chinese Restaurant (where else can you find a good ol’ fashioned Po’ Boy and lo mein in the same place?), and El Chile Verde of New Iberia (you might not have come to Louisiana for Mexican fare, but….this place is pretty amazing).

Restaurants near Sci-Port Discovery Center

The Sci-Port Discovery Center

If you’re looking for something a little more interactive, or indoors, the Sci-Port Discovery Center may be just what you’re looking for. Located in Shreveport, LA, this is also a great place to take the kids, especially if you encounter a rainy day during your trip in Louisiana. There are a bunch of cool science and math exhibits, interactive and hands-on attractions in the kid’s museum, a planetarium and an IMAX theater. There’s fun for people of all ages here.

Check out the gift shop, too, which is full of fun, sciency experiments and toys to take home. Once you’ve done all the exploring you and your family were wanting to do, and your belly is growling to be fed, you’ll want to head out and enjoy some food in the area.

Eateries worth mentioning near the Sci-Port Discover Center in Shreveport, LA: Fully Stacked (burgers and drinks with a laid-back atmosphere), SALT Cafe (enjoy a riverfront meal with wide variety of foods to choose from, so everyone will be happy here) and BeauxJax Crafthouse (great for a couples outing, amazing cocktails and Cajun grub).

Riverfront Restaurants NOLA

The Mighty Mississippi River

Lastly, you can’t go to Louisiana and avoid the Mississippi River. Make sure to stop by some of the smaller attractions along the river during your visit. There are many to choose from and a wide variety of activities to enjoy. Maybe an airboat ride or a fishing excursion would be right up your alley. No matter what you choose to do, there’s one thing that’s true for sure…The Mississippi River is huge and awe inspiring, to say the least.

Eateries along the Mississippi River worth mentioning: Roberto’s River Road Restaurant in Sunshine, LA (full bar and seafood fare), B&C Seafood Cajun Restaurant in Vacherie, LA (great river view, amazing Jambalaya and other Louisiana favorites) and Steamboat NATCHEZ in New Orleans (dinner cruise along the Mighty Mississippi River with buffet and live jazz music).

As you can see Louisiana has so many great things to offer for its travelers. Whether you’re visiting the Pelican State for your first time or your fiftieth, you can rest assured you’ll have a great, relaxing time. No matter where you go the atmosphere in Louisiana is laid back and calm (except for during Mardi Gras, of course).

With such a wide variety of options and so many various restaurants with amazing food you cannot find anywhere else and attractions to choose from, not to mention all the history and culture there is to take in, you’re sure to learn or eat something new. One other thing that is guaranteed, and you can rest assured, is that no matter when you plan to come visit or what you decide to do while you’re there, you’re sure to have an amazing and memorable time and don’t worry they’ll always do good ba-you in Louisiana.

Welcome To Your RestaurantWelcome To Your Restaurant

The Louisiana Bistro is an easy going, informal restaurant featuring creatively fresh adaptations of New Orleans Creole cuisine.

Here you will find the best contemporary Creole Cuisine that the New Orleans French Quarter has to offer!

We feature intimate dining off the beaten path just one block from the world famous Bourbon Street at the corner of Dauphine and Conti.

Chef Martinez and his attentive staff give you a taste of local hospitality with bold New Orleans’ flavors and Chef’s creative touches in a cozy candle lit atmosphere. The wine selection is top of the line with your own personal tasting expert regularly visiting tableside.

An innovative yet classic menu evolves nightly, incorporating traditional delights such as duck, crab, shrimp, chicken and pork in creative and unique recipes. The eclectic menu explores new dimensions of the Creole palate, culminating with Chef Martinez’s Feed Me Now – a literal must try!

The a’ la minute freestyle tasting features fresh Louisiana meats, fantastic local seafood, seasonal fruits and vegetables. It gives Chef the opportunity to showcase his latest ideas and innovations! He even stops by your table to present his creations. A real home style touch that’ll make ya say Hot-dang crawdaddy!