New Orleans, a vibrant city and a melting pot of European, Caribbean and African culture, music and food. This city in the south is a must visit place for a food lover.
Founded in 1870, Morning Call is a New Orleans institution known for a favourite local pairing: beignets and café au lait. Originally located in the French Quarter, the coffee stand moved to the suburb of Metairie in 1974. But for those craving French-pressed chicory coffee and powder-your-own doughnuts closer in, a new outpost, pictured here, opened in City Park in 2012.
Chefs Donald Link, left, and Stephen Stryjewski preside over fried pork rinds in the kitchen of their Warehouse District restaurant, Cochon. Specialising in pork and Cajun flavors, the top-rated establishment stays on trend with locally sourced menu items and a rustic-casual interior.
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Oysters on the Grill
Chargrilled oysters are a specialty of the hundred-year-old Acme Oyster House in the French Quarter. Established in 1910 as the Acme Café, the eatery is famous for its locally harvested oysters and long lines—and for its “Waitress Available Sometimes” neon sign, a relic from slower times in the 1980s.
Named for a comic opera performed on its Chartres Street location in 1796, Sylvain keeps classics close with an elevated American menu and stylish cocktails. Here, a bar manager shakes up a Ramos gin fizz—a New Orleans original.
Up a Notch
Creole classics with a contemporary twist (Louisiana crawfish gnocchi, oyster-crusted filet mignon) dominate the menu at Emeril’s Delmonico on St. Charles Avenue. Originally opened in 1895, the restaurant underwent extensive renovations before reopening its doors as part of celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse’s portfolio of establishments in 1998.
The Three Muses
Trombonist Glen David Andrews performs at the Three Muses on Frenchmen Street in Faubourg Marigny, a bohemian neighbourhood adjacent to the French Quarter that’s a local favourite for its colourful music scene and hip restaurants. Among them, Three Muses features an eclectic food and cocktail menu and live entertainment ranging from gypsy jazz and Americana to country swing and folk.
In the annals of New Orleans culinary specialties, the po’boy is among the most legendary, said to have been invented during the violent streetcar strikes of 1929 by former conductors who offered free sandwiches from their café to the “poor boys” of Division 194. At Domilise’s Po-Boy and Bar on Annunciation Street in the city’s Uptown neighbourhood, the classic sub with southern flare is served up in a down-home setting that draws city crowds—its oyster po’boy is argued to be one of the best in the Big Easy.
Opened in 1939, this sturdy snowball stand still uses the original machine created and patented by Ernest Hansen, who founded Hansen’s Sno-Bliz along with his wife, Mary. Syrup flavors are house-made from family recipes and today include cream of wedding cake, cardamom, and ginger-cayenne, along with more traditional offerings. Now owned and operated by the couple’s granddaughter, in 2014 it was honoured by the James Beard Foundation with an America’s Classics Award.
Cooks prepare banh mi, a Vietnamese sandwich, at Dong Phuong Oriental Restaurant and Bakery in eastern New Orleans’ Little Vietnam enclave (the restaurant’s name translates to “east”). A neighbourhood fixture since 1981, Dong Phuong calls its French-bread sandwiches “a unique twist on the New Orleans po’boy.”
A new generation of restaurant talent gains credentials at Café Reconcile in the Central City neighbourhood. The nonprofit provides on-the-job training in the food service industry for at-risk youth from communities across the city. While instruction and job placement is its primary mission, the restaurant earns high praise for its locally inspired classics, from fried catfish and gumbo to shrimp étouffée.
This feature originally appeared in National Geographic.