New Orleans, is one of the most famous places in the entire United States. Known for its rich history, peculiar architecture, and its divine cuisine. This city in Louisiana is the perfect travel destination any time of year and is visited by millions of tourists every year.
With tourists and locals alike searching for the best places to try that famous Creole and gumbo. There are endless restaurants with some of the most delicious food to be explored. Although, you won’t be able to get to them all.
We have compiled a list of 14 of the best restaurants in New Orleans. Whether you are there for a romantic getaway, a girls trip, or live in the vibrant city, we have the best spots to grab a bite and indulge. Let’s get into it!
1. Barrow’s Catfish
Originally, Barrow’s Catfish opened in 1943 as Barrow’s Shady Inn. However, as the restaurant became known for its mouth watering catfish, it had a rebrand. Barrow’s Catfish is located along Earhart Boulevard and is a family run restaurant.
Although all customers should try their famous cornmeal-dusted fried catfish meals, Barrow’s Catfish has expanded their menu to include seafood platters, gumbos, crawfish bisque, and a variety of desserts.
Remaining true to its southern roots with a strong cajun flavor, Barrow’s Catfish has become a favorite for both tourists and locals. You can order online and enjoy your tasty meal at home or venture out to the city of New Orleans and experience your meal from kitchen to table.
Be sure to enjoy one of Barrow’s Catfish’s incredible cocktails. The perfect place for a satisfying meal and a few cocktails to get the night started.
Even though the name may give off a more sophisticated vibe, Sylvain is a comforting restaurant. Located in the French Quarter close to Jackson Square, this bistro is a classic New Orleans bar that offers some delicious grub.
Sylvain is a bar-restaurant combination that was erected in a house coach from the 1700s and is named after the first opera performed in New Orleans, which also happened to be a boisterous and humorous one. Sylvain is a distinctive fusion of new and old-world experiences.
Sylvain is known among locals as a place to go for a true feast. This homey restaurant offers a blend of old and new dining with its menu of Sesame Soy Glazed Short Rib, Champagne and Fries Redux, and Crispy Octopus.
Enjoy having a quiet drink with a friend, or a romantic meal at Sylvain as you know that whatever you order is going to be truly amazing.
Zasu, which means “again” and represents Zemanick’s desire to preserve her Slovakian ancestry and early memories, was founded by the Beard Award-winning Chef Sue Zemanick.
Located in the mid-city, you can easily find Zasu and bask in the welcoming and comforting atmosphere.
The Zasu menu is small but full of flavor and unique cuisine experiences. One of the restaurant’s most popular dishes is the Sauteed Red Snapper. Served with butter beans, haricots verts, cherry tomatoes, and an addictive spicy butter.
For those that prefer plant-based meals there are various appetizers and a Wild Mushroom and Potato Pierogies entree. Don’t forget to indulge in one or all of the sweet desserts.
Chocolate Malt Semifreddo, Carrot Cake, and a Brown Sugar Tart, even the strongest of sweet tooth would be satisfied. Zasu also offers private dining for large parties and special occasions for an incredible experience.
4. Saffron Nola
Saffron Nola offers a high class dining experience. With humble beginnings, Saffron Nola has worked endlessly to become what it is today. You can visit Saffron Nola on Magazine Street.
Saffron Nola has thrived since its debut and takes great satisfaction in being a contemporary blend of Indian and Southern cuisine. This mix of Indian and Southern cuisine is something that you cannot experience anywhere else.
With items such as Bombay Shrimp, Curried Seafood Gumbo, and Khyber Lamb Chops, you are sure to discover a new blend of flavors that just tantalize your taste buds and take you on an adventure.
Saffron Nola is also known for its innovative cocktails. The Saffron Nola Old Fashioned gives an Indian twist to the classic cocktail. Using mango chutney as an ingredient, it is an absolute must try.
Co-founders Charly Pierre and Minerva Chereches opened the Fritai stand in St. Roch Market at first but quickly discovered that their Haitian-Southern fusion was a tremendous hit, leading to the opening of a permanent restaurant down Basin Street.
Menu favorites include grilled shrimp pikliz, crab mac n’ cheese, creole chicken, passion fruit crème Brulee, and an extensive beverage menu. The restaurant stays true to its heritage as a center for Haitian street food with a modern touch.
Chef Charly Pierre is the mastermind behind this unique and explosive blend of flavors and innovative dishes. Using his Haitian upbringing, Chef Pierre was not afraid to combine unusual ingredients for something incredible to happen.
Fritai is an excellent place to try something new and while walk-ins are accepted, you are going to want to make a reservation to secure yourself a table.
6. Parkway Bakery And Tavern
As you walk through the city of New Orleans, you will see endless bars and restaurants but you are going to want to seek out Parkway Bakery and Tavern. This local bar is the best way to get to know the locals and bask in the authentic, rich culture that the city has to offer.
Fortunately, Parkway Bakery & Pub offers a distinctive dining experience that combines a bakery and an outdoor tavern that takes pleasure in extending a warm welcome to guests and providing top-notch service.
Grab a seat, order a beer, and check out the menu loaded with goodies. Wild Caught Gulf Shrimp, Bar-B-Q Beef, and their signature House-Made Roast Beef with Gravy sandwich.
The food is everything you could wish for when it comes to comfort food. With every bite, you fall more in love with this wholesome tavern. They also have a range of freshly baked goods.
From Butter Rum Cake to a Poor Boy Ice Cream Sandwich, you can indulge until you are full to the brim. And then maybe some more.
If there is one thing New Orleans restaurants know how to do, it is fusing the flavors of different cuisines to create something sensational. And Maypop is one of the best. A blend of Asian, Italian, and New Orlean cuisine is brought together by Chef Michael Gullotta.
Despite the fact that this infusion may appear overwhelming at first glance, New Orleans native Chef Michael Gullotta pays respect to classic southern cooking by meticulously blending complementary flavors from diverse cooking techniques.
Located on O’Keefe Avenue, this is the perfect spot to grab some lunch and catch up with friends and family. The family features Wok Fried Egg Noodles with Jumbo Gulf Shrimp, Fennel Jeow Crusted Gulf Drum Fish, and incredible desserts.
Be sure to stop in during happy hour to experience a selection of wine, beers, and cocktails at a discounted price.
8. Mukbang Seafood
The name is a reference to the popularity of performative eating videos on TikTok and YouTube, and the restaurant’s owners do genuinely encourage patrons to eat hedonistically and carelessly without using silverware.
Expect delectable appetizers like garlic noodles, crab rangoons, and fries with spicy Mukbang sauce before you go on to the main event.
Once you have a bib, start breaking off the seafood boil, which includes large blue crabs, fried shrimp, juicy mussels, corn on the cob, and potatoes.
Apart from the cracking of another crab leg, the sounds you hear most frequently are usually the groans of contentment as garlic butter, Cajun seasoning, and Vietnamese herbs find their way to very pleased guests.
Without a doubt, this is not your typical seafood restaurant in New Orleans. They also offer catering for your special occasions. Enjoy your favorite Mukbang Seafood dishes as you party the night away.
9. Bywater American Bistro
Bywater American Bistro, owned by Nina Compton of Compère Lapin renown, bills itself as an American neighborhood eatery in an industrial setting. Although Compton’s Caribbean roots are prominent, sous chef Levi Raines is in charge here.
As a result, the cuisine is diverse and includes items like crispy hogs head boudin and jerk chicken rice. Weekend brunch in and of itself is incentive enough to visit, especially for the Proper Breakfast, a regional interpretation of a British fry-up.
A tiny cocktail menu can offer a wide variety of drinks, from the classic gin and tonic to the more daring brandy sours. This cozy bistro is ready to have you falling in love from the moment you step inside.
Whether hiding from the summer heat or seeking a little warmth. Bywater American Bistro is the perfect place to dine.
Herbsaint’s dining room in the Central Business District is housed in a rather unassuming-looking building and feels like a democratic setting to experience some of the best cuisines in the city.
The dirty rice and chicken, tasso, andouille gumbo at Donald Link’s flagship exhibit skill with the classics, as is the case with most well-liked New Orleans eateries.
But you’ll be drawn to the Italian and French meals on the menu, with the homemade spaghetti and gnocchi being standouts. Though it may not have the swagger of other of the city’s more well-known eateries, Herbsaint benefits from this.
it has the vibe of a place for those who are more “in the know,” yet without being overly snobbish. Visit Herbsaint for a relaxed dining experience where you feel like the most important guest of the evening.
11. Dooky Chase Restaurant
Dooky Chase, founded by the legendary Leah Chase, may not seem like much, yet it has hosted a number of presidents in addition to the rich and famous and inspired songs.
The menu is a skillful showcase of Creole staples, moving up the food pyramid from simpler meals like their meaty red beans and rice to more complex ones like the dish that couldn’t be more regional: the luscious Shrimp Clemenceau.
However, Dooky Chase Restaurant is most known for its world-famous fried chicken. Some claim it is the best in the city but you can make that decision for yourself.
The restaurant is mostly a family-friendly local hangout, and many customers have been coming here for years. Of course, the restaurant’s renown brings in a continuous stream of curious patrons, and occasionally an A-list star may be spotted there.
12. Willa Jean
Every city has its own secrets, and Willa Jean is one of the best. This joint is known for doing some of the best breakfast dishes in the city. The primary cuisine menu features a wide variety of extravagance.
The ubiquitous avocado toast with poached eggs and grain bowls is at the healthy end of the range. The pimento cheese dip, the grilled banana bread with whipped butter, and the city-appropriate hangover bowl with braised short ribs and grits are all on the more indulgent side.
For when you are looking to really indulge then you have to order the Bechamel and Gruyere Drenched Croque Madame. However, with their seasonal menu, you can find something different to try with the passing months.
Enjoy your delicious meal with a coffee and one of their luxuriously tasty baked treats. The King Cake is to die for!
13. Paladar 511
The cooks at Paladar 511 infuse New Orleans with a contemporary Californian charm.
Italian classics like homemade ravioli, beef carpaccio, and arancini with short rib scraps all on the starter menu, but you’ll also discover a spicy Yellowfin tuna crudo with orange and avocado that takes you west.
When you venture down to the pizza section of the menu, you can expect the same amount of amazement. With a basic cheese and tomato pizza that is divine, or try their homemade lamb sausage or buttered leeks. Sensational!
The drinks served here are tried-and-true local staples; in this town, a well-made Brandy Milk Punch or Pimm’s Cup will never fail to sell oil.
14. Molly’s Rise And Shine
As a tourist you may find yourself up and ready to go before the sun has even begun to shine, that’s when you can go to Molly’s Rise and Shine. Open from 8am to 2pm, this spot is homey and full of all your favorite comfort foods.
The Fried Chicken Biscuit is a city treasure with spicy hot chicken on a house-made biscuit with may and honey butter. Paired with a refreshing glass of Iced Tea and you have an incredible meal. Perfect for breakfast, brunch, and lunch!
Whether you are a tourist or a local, finding the best spots to eat can be tricky. You can walk into any restaurant and be met with that classic southern hospitality but what you really want is the most indulgent food you could ever eat.
Above are the best 14 restaurants in New Orleans. Romantic date night, meeting a friend for coffee, or fueling up for more sightseeing, there is a restaurant for every occasion. You can explore New Orleans the right way. Through food! Devour every meal and enjoy every second!
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