Adiuri.com – New Orleans, Louisiana is a city with a rich culinary tradition, boasting an array of diverse, delicious flavors influenced by its French, Spanish, African, and Native American heritage. With a thriving food scene that caters to a wide range of tastes and budgets, TripAdvisor users have given their stamp of approval to several standout eateries that offer a tantalizing blend of traditional and innovative cuisine. In this article, we’ll dive into the best New Orleans restaurants rated by TripAdvisor users, exploring the dishes, atmosphere, and history that have won over both locals and visitors alike.
1. Commander’s Palace: An Iconic Institution
Established in 1893, the iconic Commander’s Palace has been a staple of New Orleans dining for over a century. Located in the picturesque Garden District, this elegant restaurant serves up classic Creole cuisine with a modern twist, with dishes such as Turtle Soup, Pecan-Crusted Gulf Fish, and the legendary Bread Pudding Soufflé. Helmed by Executive Chef Tory McPhail, the culinary team at Commander’s Palace strives to source the freshest local ingredients, offering guests a memorable and unparalleled dining experience. Be sure to try their famed 25-cent martinis during weekday lunch service.
2. Cochon: Rustic, Farm-to-Table Cajun Fare
For those in search of authentic Cajun cuisine, Cochon is a must-visit destination. Chef Donald Link and Chef Stephen Stryjewski have created a rustic, farm-to-table menu featuring dishes like Fried Alligator, Rabbit & Dumplings, and Louisiana Cochon with Turnips & Cracklins. Situated in the lively Warehouse District, Cochon’s open, airy space reflects the welcoming and unpretentious spirit of the region. Don’t forget to stop by the adjoining Cochon Butcher for house-made charcuterie and artisanal sandwiches to-go.
3. Shaya: Innovative Israeli Cuisine Meets Southern Hospitality
Shaya, helmed by Chef Alon Shaya, has taken the New Orleans culinary scene by storm, earning numerous accolades for its modern Israeli cuisine. Blending Middle Eastern flavors with Southern ingredients, Shaya’s menu features unique dishes like Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Whipped Feta, Shakshouka with Chorizo, and an array of wood-fired pita breads. Guests can enjoy a cozy, contemporary setting while indulging in shareable small plates that are perfect for group dining.
4. Dooky Chase’s Restaurant: Soul Food with a Side of History
Steeped in history, Dooky Chase’s Restaurant has been a cornerstone of the Treme neighborhood since 1941. Legendary Chef Leah Chase, dubbed the “Queen of Creole Cuisine,” served countless civil rights activists and world leaders throughout her storied career. Today, the restaurant remains a cherished institution, offering mouthwatering soul food dishes like Fried Chicken, Red Beans & Rice, and Gumbo Z’herbes. The vibrant, art-filled dining room pays homage to New Orleans’ African American heritage and the restaurant’s role in the civil rights movement.
5. La Petite Grocery: Timeless Elegance Meets Innovative Cuisine
Nestled on bustling Magazine Street, La Petite Grocery offers an intimate dining experience with a menu that celebrates New Orleans’ culinary history. Under the guidance of Chef Justin Devillier, the restaurant crafts innovative dishes like Blue Crab Beignets, Turtle Bolognese, and Paneed Rabbit. The charming atmosphere, with exposed brick walls and floor-to-ceiling windows, provides a romantic setting perfect for date nights or special occasions. For a sweet finish, try the signature Butterscotch Pudding with Salted Caramel and whipped cream.
6. Café du Monde: An Iconic Café with a Legendary Beignet
No trip to New Orleans is complete without a visit to the historic Café du Monde. Established in 1862, this open-air coffee stand in the heart of the French Quarter has been serving its famous beignets and café au lait for generations. The iconic square doughnuts, dusted with powdered sugar, are the perfect accompaniment to a steaming cup of chicory-laced coffee. Open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, Café du Monde is an essential stop for both first-time visitors and seasoned New Orleans enthusiasts.
7. Parkway Bakery & Tavern: Po’ Boys Worth the Trip
When it comes to po’ boys, Parkway Bakery & Tavern has been a local favorite since 1911. Located in Mid-City, this beloved eatery is renowned for its overstuffed sandwiches featuring fresh, locally-sourced seafood and meats. Choose from classics like the Fried Shrimp Po’ Boy or try the famous Surf & Turf, a delectable combination of roast beef and fried shrimp smothered in gravy. With a laid-back atmosphere and ample outdoor seating, Parkway is the perfect spot for a casual lunch or dinner.
8. Willa Jean: Southern Baking Elevated
In the South, baking is a cherished tradition, and Willa Jean has taken this art form to new heights. Led by Pastry Chef Kelly Fields, this contemporary bakery and café in the Central Business District showcases classic Southern desserts and breads with a creative twist. From the divine Cornbread with Pimento Cheese to the exquisite Chocolate Chip Cookie with Sea Salt, Willa Jean’s offerings are a testament to the power of quality ingredients and masterful technique. In addition to baked goods, the menu features savory breakfast, lunch, and dinner options that are sure to please.
9. Atchafalaya: Creole-Inspired Brunch and Live Music
Nestled in the charming Irish Channel neighborhood, Atchafalaya offers a Creole-inspired brunch experience that’s hard to beat. Their mouthwatering dishes like Eggs Atchafalaya, Shrimp & Grits, and Bananas Foster French Toast have garnered rave reviews from locals and visitors alike. To make the experience even more unforgettable, the restaurant often features live music during brunch hours, showcasing the vibrant sounds of New Orleans. Be sure to try their famous Bloody Mary Bar for a personalized, DIY cocktail.
10. August: Fine Dining with a Creole Twist
Chef John Besh’s flagship restaurant, August, is a study in sophisticated Creole cuisine. Housed in a historic 19th-century French-Creole building in the Central Business District, the restaurant exudes elegance, with crystal chandeliers, plush banquettes, and soaring ceilings. The seasonal menu highlights the bounty of Louisiana, with dishes like Handmade Potato Gnocchi with Blue Crab and Black Truffle, and Gulf Red Snapper with Sauce Étouffée. For a truly indulgent experience, opt for the Chef’s Tasting Menu, which features a curated selection of the kitchen’s most exquisite creations.
11. Compère Lapin: Caribbean Meets Creole
Chef Nina Compton’s Compère Lapin has quickly become a must-visit destination for its unique fusion of Caribbean and Creole cuisine. Located in the trendy Warehouse District, the restaurant’s menu features dishes like Curried Goat with Sweet Potato Gnocchi, Marinated Shrimp with Roasted Jalapeño Jus, and the celebrated Coconut Bread Pudding for dessert. The inventive cocktail program, led by acclaimed bartender Abigail Gullo, perfectly complements the bold flavors of the cuisine.
12. Herbsaint: Contemporary Louisiana Bistro Fare
Another gem from Chef Donald Link’s culinary empire, Herbsaint is a contemporary bistro that showcases refined Louisiana flavors. Situated on historic St. Charles Avenue, the restaurant’s menu features dishes like Housemade Spaghetti with Guanciale and Fried-Poached Farm Egg, and Muscovy Duck Leg Confit with Dirty Rice. The sleek, modern space and attentive service make Herbsaint a standout choice for a business lunch or romantic dinner.
13. Bywater American Bistro: Neighborhood Gem with a Creative Twist
Helmed by James Beard Award-winning Chef Nina Compton, Bywater American Bistro offers a casual, inviting atmosphere with a menu that reflects the city’s diverse culinary landscape. Located in the thriving Bywater neighborhood, this eatery features dishes like Ricotta Dumplings with Wild Mushrooms, Smoked Fish Collars with Green Tomato Chow Chow, and seasonal cobblers that highlight the freshest local fruit. The restaurant’s warm, convivial atmosphere makes it a favorite among locals and visitors alike.
14. Galatoire’s: A French Quarter Institution
For over a century, Galatoire’s has been synonymous with New Orleans fine dining. Located on Bourbon Street, this classic Creole establishment is steeped in history and tradition, offering a menu that showcases the finest local seafood and classic Louisiana dishes like Oysters Rockefeller, Shrimp Remoulade, and Trout Amandine. The elegant dining room, with its black-and-white tiled floors and mirrored walls, transports diners to a bygone era of glamour and sophistication.
15. Saba: Modern Middle Eastern Flavors
From the team behind Shaya, Saba brings a fresh take on Middle Eastern cuisine to the Uptown neighborhood. Chef Alon Shaya’s menu features inventive dishes like Harissa Roasted Cauliflower, Za’atar Fried Chicken, and sumptuous hummus variations. The stylish, contemporary space provides an inviting atmosphere for sharing a meal with friends or family, while the expansive patio is ideal for al fresco dining on warm New Orleans evenings.
These 15 establishments represent just a fraction of the incredible culinary offerings in New Orleans. Each restaurant on this list, chosen by TripAdvisor users, exemplifies the city’s unique flavors, rich history, and innovative spirit. For visitors and locals alike, exploring the diverse dining scene of the Big Easy is a journey filled with unforgettable experiences and gastronomic delights.
16. Muriel’s Jackson Square: Haunted History Meets Classic Creole
Situated in the heart of the French Quarter, Muriel’s Jackson Square combines historic charm with delicious Creole cuisine. The menu features dishes like Seafood Gumbo, Pecan Crusted Drum, and Crawfish & Goat Cheese Crepes, all crafted with fresh, locally-sourced ingredients. Muriel’s also has a storied past, with reports of ghostly encounters and unexplained occurrences that add a thrilling element to the dining experience. Be sure to visit the Seance Lounge on the second floor, where you can learn more about the building’s fascinating history while sipping on a handcrafted cocktail.
17. The Elysian Bar: Mediterranean-Inspired Fare in a Stunning Setting
Located within the beautifully restored Hotel Peter & Paul in the Marigny neighborhood, The Elysian Bar is an oasis of culinary delights. The menu, crafted by Chef Alex Harrell, highlights Mediterranean-inspired dishes with a New Orleans twist, such as Crab Falafel, Charred Octopus, and Whipped Ricotta with Louisiana Citrus. The Elysian Bar’s stunning interiors, featuring vaulted ceilings, stained glass windows, and antique furnishings, create an enchanting atmosphere that perfectly complements the exquisite cuisine.
18. Cane & Table: A Taste of the Tropics in the French Quarter
Cane & Table is a one-of-a-kind destination for those craving Caribbean-inspired cuisine and craft cocktails. Nestled in the historic French Quarter, this rustic yet refined eatery offers a menu that features dishes like Cuban Roast Pork, Ropa Vieja, and Pineapple Rum Cake. The lush, tropical courtyard provides a serene retreat from the hustle and bustle of the surrounding neighborhood. For a truly memorable experience, try one of their signature cocktails, like the Creole Swizzle or the Cane & Table Old Fashioned, crafted with house-made syrups and premium spirits.
19. GW Fins: Seafood Mastery in the French Quarter
For the ultimate seafood experience, GW Fins is a must-visit destination. Executive Chef Michael Nelson expertly sources the highest quality seafood from around the globe, creating a menu that highlights the freshest catch of the day. Dishes like Crispy-Scaled Red Snapper, Lobster Dumplings, and Blackened Swordfish showcase the kitchen’s dedication to culinary excellence. The sophisticated dining room, adorned with nautical artwork and a soaring ceiling, provides an elegant backdrop for a memorable meal.
20. Marjie’s Grill: A Melting Pot of Flavors and Techniques
Marjie’s Grill brings a unique fusion of Southern, Southeast Asian, and Gulf Coast flavors to the Broad Street corridor. The menu, developed by Chef Marcus Jacobs and Caitlin Carney, features dishes like Grilled Gulf Shrimp with Charred Tomato Curry, Fried Chicken Banh Mi, and a delectable Smoked Brisket. The laid-back, welcoming atmosphere of Marjie’s Grill makes it a favorite among locals, who flock to the outdoor patio to enjoy the vibrant food and refreshing beverages.
The culinary scene in New Orleans is as diverse and vibrant as the city itself. With a seemingly endless array of exceptional restaurants to explore, food lovers will find themselves captivated by the mouthwatering flavors, stunning atmospheres, and unforgettable stories behind each of these TripAdvisor-approved eateries. Embark on a culinary journey through the Big Easy and discover the delicious delights that await at every turn.