If you had to describe the vibe and culture of New Orleans in one word, it would probably be “festive.” From the boisterous good times that happen on every corner and in every establishment, to the live jazz music you can hear throughout the city on a daily basis, New Orleans gives the word “soulful” a new meaning. The food scene is among the must-dos in this southern city. There are many options, but these are some of the best:
This indulgent treat is one of New Orleans’ most popular and well-known treats – for a reason. Cafe du Monde makes some of the best beignets in the city. They are decadent and mouthwatering, especially when paired with a steaming cup of cafe-au-lait. The secret to the almost chocolate flavor of the coffee at Cafe du Monde is chicory. It’s a lovely, soft and rich flavor that blends well with fresh beignets.
Maiz de la Rueda
New Orleans has boasted an increasingly widening variety of food from different countries in recent years, a development that is demonstrated at Maïs Arepas. The restaurant’s distinctly Mexican dish, Maiz de la Rueda, consists of corn-on-the-cob topped with cotija cheese, spicy butter and salsa rosado.
What would a trip to the south be without trying fried chicken prepared the southern way? Willie Mae’s Scotch house is perhaps most well-known for its “America’s best” fried chicken, revered for its juicy meat and delicately golden, crispy breading.
Very few places in the United States serve turtle soup anymore, which is surprising considering the tantalizing taste. Some say that turtle meat embodies the flavors of no less than seven different types of meat. Fortunately, you can still taste this rare delicacy at Commander’s Palace, considered among the most prestigious fine dining experiences in New Orleans.
Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding
Krispy Kreme is an institution in the south. When the sign indicating freshly baked, hot doughnuts is lit up, the crowds flock to it. Krispy Kreme bread pudding, served at Boucherie, elicits the same fervent response. In fact, public protest stopped Chef Nathaniel Zimet from retiring the decadent dessert from the menu.
Meet the seafood version of the loaded baked potato! The charbroiled oysters at Drago’s are grilled over an open fire while still in their shells and generously smothered in cheese, butter, garlic and seasoning.
Le Pig Mac
If you are a fan of pork and mighty burgers, le pig mac at Cochon Butcher will send you straight to food heaven. Cheese, pickles, lettuce and “special sauce” top a double pork patty sandwiched between two golden sesame seed buns.
Few foods are as quintessentially New Orleans as jambalaya. The savory Creole dish is made with multiple meats, seasonings, tomatoes, celery, onions, bell peppers and rice. Mother’s is widely regarded as having perfected jambalaya – so if you want the best version of it, Mother’s is a safe bet.
This list merely scratches the surface of the many different types of food served at establishments throughout New Orleans. It will give you a great start to tasting all that The Big Easy has to offer in the way of cuisine.
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