Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Good Eating in NOLA

As much as I wish I could have tried more local cuisine, I was pleased with my first taste bud go-around in New Orleans.
Those of you who have read my posts know that Hard Rock t-shirts are collectable items for me. Everywhere I go, I have to buy one. Naturally, I visited HRC and found my debit card drifting out of my hands and into the hands of the cashier, purchasing a beautifully designed t-shirt. Complete with a photo of the French Quarter, it donned painted Mardi Gras masks and the words “New Orleans” scrawled along the picture’s edge.
Satisfied with my new item, I went back to the table to savor the deliciously good, and may I remind you, calorie-loaded pulled pork sandwich. As crazy as it sounds to some, I hate coleslaw; so naturally, it was not finding itself piled on top of the dripping pulled pork. Now, I know that some of you will probably say…”What?! You went and ate at the Hard Rock in New Orleans? Don’t you know that there are some amazing local restaurants down there??!”  Yes, I am fully aware of that, but unfortunately, the person I was with was not too keen on trying the true, authentic delicacies.
However, we did visit The Pearl Oyster House for lunch and had a delightful sandwich and later graced the ever-so-popular Pat O’Brien’s.  And before you ask, yes…I did get myself a Hurricane! That savory, red concoction was just what I needed. All 26 ounces were consumed and by the time I was finished, I understood why most people only drink one. Aside from my lovely liquid cocktail, I opted for the Shrimp Creole and let me tell you, I was in Heaven. Full of shrimp, white rice, and a creamy creole tomato sauce…it was like nothing I’d ever had before. Oh, and to top it off, the shrimp was mixed with garlic and herbs!
I’m truly convinced that to experience a place, one must experience its food. Now, as I said earlier, I realize HRC and Pat O’Brien’s are not “authentic” New Orleans dining; however, one place, that although it may be a tourist trap, it is a must for anyone traveling to New Orleans, is CafĂ© Du Monde.
Oh my word…when my mom went, she brought me back some beignets; unfortunately, they were just “okay” by the time I heated them up in the microwave. Sitting down at a table that had seen years and years of powdered sugar wear and tear, I readied myself for New Orleans finest. Before I knew it, a bowl full of white powder sat before me. I thought maybe I might have to search for my beignets due to the enormous amount of sugar; however, a small corner peeked out and I was instantly satisfied.
The fluffy fried dough was more than I could take. Although they tell you to “shake off the excess” I did not. That powdery goodness stay piled atop and after my bite, it looked as if I had just…well white nose, you get the picture. Laughing at my new look, I quickly brushed it off and continued to partake in the now 2 lovely beignets sitting in front of me.
All in all, the few selected restaurants we hit were pleasing to the palate. One thing I know for sure though is that the next time I visit New Orleans; my meals will consist of true, local eateries. As I said before, to experience a place is to experience its food. Most places do not have the joy of having specific foods for which they known, but New Orleans does.


Anonymous said...

New Orleans is on my to go list and mostly for the food! The shrimp creole sounds so. so. GOOD! And of course the beignets. I normally don't eat fried foods, but will surely be making an exception for when I eventually make my way to NOLA.

It looks like you had a wonderful trip and I'm glad you shared it!

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