Nothing feels as exciting as a last minute getaway!
An unexpected project landed on my desk last week and the requirements were simple- a weekend away in a favorite Southern city- New Orleans! I was quick to throw my things in a suitcase and call a few friends. Who wants to go on a spontaneous trip to The Big Easy with me?! It was a girl’s weeked, hooray, until it wasn’t. Madison is NOLA obsessed, and he isa Louisiana boy, so how could I possibly leave him at home? He grabbed a few guys and decided to crash . . . let the eating and drinking begin!
Absurdly delicious and more beautiful than a movie set, with never-ending-anything-goes charm, New Orleans is rich with history and culture! The enchanting French-founded city has a little bit of everything – chic hotels, award winning restaurants, famed bars and music venues, and even some voodoo magic. New Orleans has the most amazing mix of classic spots with quintessential staples, plus daring new places owned by rebellious chefs with fresh perspective that are putting a modern spin on all the old favorites. Where to begin? Beignet cafes, bucket size daiquiris, caviar topped oysters, open-air markets, chicory coffee, palm readers and even haunted graveyards . . . the list goes on forever.
When you just can’t eat or drink one more bite, it’s time to explore the swamps and bayous. Adventure awaits! Here are the details-
We stayed here, in the lower garden district, the first two nights in town. It’s a truly amazing place ,built in the 1860s and renovated in the last 10 years. A luxury boutique hotel, there are only 18 rooms, each one perfectly curated and designed with charming antique furniture and above-the-bed instrument art. We had the most stunning balcony, but my favorite thing about the hotel was the warm and intimate vibe it had. Can’t wait for the next trip back!
We moved to the Ritz for the last two nights and were spoiled with the amazing location- it was right on the edge of the French Quarter. The hotel was absolutely stunning with plenty of old-world charm. Pro tip- order the Seafood Gumbo from room service. It’s amazing!
This beautiful old home has been restored and reinvented. We had a girls-night-out here without much planning or a reservation. After waiting for 20 minutes to get a table we were shown to our seats . . . right next to Madison and his crew. Completely unplanned and absolutely hilarious! In a city with more restaurants per capita than any other in the states we ended up side by side. Too funny! Highlights- Cast Iron Seared Scallops and the Truffle Fries. For a starter-The Salmon Poke Tacos. Not a bad bite!
MY MOST FAVORITE OF ALL. Confession – we actually ate here TWICE. Everything is sourced from local fisherman and farmers, every single bite is SO fresh! We tried it all, seriously- the entire menu. Highlights — Citrus Marinated Beets w/Almonds, Cauliflower, Rice + Fontina Gratin, Smoked Tuna Dip, Fried Fish Sticks, The Whole Fish Entrée that’s grilled over a live fire (this was already sold out the second time we went), and the Fried Bread with Sea Salt – these were insane! We discovered that Chef Ryan Prewitt won a James Beard and so did the restaurant, in the same year! No wonder . . .
200yrs old and over-the-top decadent! This beautiful bar is family owned and in The French Quarter. The historic gallery walls are filled with amazing imagery. They’re known for their Pimm’s Cup and so we ordered a round (or two).
This place was really fun! Latin Caribbean food, we feasted on the patio as a group and ordered one of everything on the menu to pass and share. Then we reordered all the fan favorites. Highlights — Ceviche & the Empanadas de Caraota.
We wandered into this little Gastro-Pub without reservation because we were totally drawn to the candlelight and courtyard. The overall vibe was really quaint and cute. I would absolutely come back! Highlights- The Butternut Squash Burrata, Roasted Beets, The Tomato and Cucumber Salad, and The Daily Fish, fresh yellowtail! So good.
Louisiana French inspired cuisine. Mad and I went here Sunday night after everyone else left town. On the corner of Magazine Street, it’s super cute inside, hosted in a restored market from the 1800s. Highlights – Blue crab Beignets (THE BEST, we ordered them twice!) and Ricotta Dumplings. Mad had the burger said it’s one of the best of his life!
This is a newer cute wine spot with Jazz music. We stopped in here for a bottle of wine before heading to another show.
This is where we went to Chambong. Never have I ever heard of this, but apparently it’s a thing. It was a fun stop with the girls and after a couple of rounds of Chambongs, we headed to the rooftop that overlooked all of New Orleans.
Designed by the same landscape architect behind NYC Central Park, the gorgeous greenspace is filled with wildly romantic oak trees that are truly spectacular. We wandered the park and shot by the most gorgeous “Tree Of Life.”
HIGHLIGHT! We did a private swamp tour for everyone that was still in town – 6 of us on an airboat. It was wild. Of all the swamp tours this one got the best reviews and it didn’t disappoint. We saw 10 or so alligators, a few of them up to 11ft long!!! One nearly came in the boat with us, in search of extra marshmallows.
A cute little Indie bookshop.
Ashley Longshore’s Studio Gallery.
Fresh pressed juice- so yummy!
A great stationary store, I could get lost in there.
40+ po’boy options.
Cool menswear shop where Mad found a great pair of Soludus.