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What Not to Miss for the Frugal Traveler


KatieLoeb
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OK - I'm unemployed since my restaurant closed last weekend and suddenly find myself with enough time off to attend the Tales of the Cocktail week in NOLA in two weeks. I'm beside myself with excitement, both because I've never been to New Orleans and because I haven't had a vacation in six years!! :blink: I've managed to book four nights and a flight from Philly for a pittance, but still have to be careful with my cash since I'm still job hunting. What are the best cheap breakfasts, lunches and dinners in NOLA for this frugal girl to enjoy, while not getting herself into strangling debt doing so?

I'm arriving 7/18 and leaving 7/22 so I have a lot of meals to fill on a budget. I'll probably spring for one big dinner out on Thursday 7/19, but otherwise am seeking the places the natives inhabit that aren't tourist traps or rip-offs.

Where to go?? My thanks in advance for your sound advice...

Any of you that are attending Tales of the Cocktail feel free to PM me so we can arrange to meet and have a drink. I have a big cocktail budget. :biggrin:

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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For breakfast, or after bar munchies, i'd recommend the Clover Grill

The taco trucks sound great.

Duong Phuong in Challmette is worth the trip.

Domilisses for a Poboy.

I can't wait to hear the others recs.

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Cochon is very reasonable, I think the entrees max out at about 18. Not exactly in the Quarter but La Peniche serves a good breakfast, you might see Leah Chase while you are there, if its 2:00 a.m. Mothers isn't expensive. Of course, anyone visiting New Orleans on a budget needs to get a muffaleta at Central Grocery, you could make one of those last a few days. The fried chicken at Fiorella's is good if you don't plan on leaving the quarter. Willie Mae's would be better, allot. Johnny's Poboys makes a good fried shrimp salad or poboy. The quarter isn't exactly the bastion of good cheap eats. As TA said, let us know how you will be getting around, if your mobile, there is plenty to fill your belly. I have noticed some folks putting around on scooters that say rent me. I think that would be a great way to see the City and sample some food from the out of the way spots. There really is allot to see and do away from the Quarter, which, unfortunatley, many people don't get to experience. Charlie

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  • 2 weeks later...

Other places in the Quarter to consider:

Coop's Place on Decatur. Great jambalaya.

One of my favorite cheap eats in the Quarter is Tujagues. This is right across from Cafe du Monde. Normally it's a multi-course, prix fixe affair. What most people don't know is that you can order food in the bar, which only has a few tables. The shrimp remoulade there is great. Also, the boiled beef with horseradish sauce is strong. In the bar, you can order the boiled beef as a po-boy, which is a great, inexpensive meal.

Li'l Dizzy's on Esplanade. Esplanade is the far edge of the Quarter. Li'l Dizzy's is a few block back Rampart, the back edge of the Quarter. This is a buffet type place, but really good neighborhood Creole food. Lunch only. Amazing gumbo. The fried chicken is good if it's fresh. It's also a real scene. Lots of cops, politicians, ladies with hats.

For something a little more formal, the $21 dollar Caribbean lunch at 7 on Fulton is tasty. This is an upscale place, but they're running this special at lunch. The food is not normally Caribbean. It's outside the Quarter, but not too far.

Palace Cafe (on Canal St.) is also running a entree plus soup or salad deal. The price is the previous day's temperature (i.e. 98 degrees would be $9.80). That's a deal.

July and August are pretty slow periods, so the CVB has a promotion with special lunch menus at $20.07 and dinner at $30.07. You probably won't get the full experience, but it's a good deal. Here is the link (note that some places offer menu only on certain days; you may need to tell people when booking a table):

http://www.nomcvb.com/restaurants//listing...subsectionID/0/

On this list, check out 7 on Fulton, Cafe Adelaide, Emeril's, Galatoire's, La Cote Brasserie, NOLA, Palace Cafe, Rib Room, Pelican Club and Tujague's. All these are good and either in the quarter or a close walk.

One last place. The Bistro at the Maison de Ville just reopened. I had a tremendous dinner there this week. During July and August, they're running a $20, 3-course lunch. This is a great place with a nice atmosphere. They don't have a liquor license yet.

Todd A. Price aka "TAPrice"

Homepage and writings; A Frolic of My Own (personal blog)

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Not in the Quarter but excellent, I had the opportunity to take in the cocktail pairings dinner at Cafe Adelaide done by Lou. Excellent dinner. And delicious cocktails.

It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, let's see. I had a half dozen delicious oysters ($7.50) and a draught barleywine (approx. $4) at Bourbon House for lunch one afternoon. That was a bargain and absolutely outstanding. I also had a bowl of chicken and andouille gumbo at The Coffee Pot as an afternoon snack/late lunch one afternoon and it was quite tasty. Cute little place that serves authentic foods. I understand that they're widely known for their calas, or Creole rice cakes, but I was there at sort of an off hour in the middle of the afternoon and wanted something a little less breakfast like. I did try the “Dirty Duck” Calas, roasted fig & foie gras mousse at The Swizzle Stick Bar at Cafe Adelaide. Procrastination had aced me out of the series of special dinners one evening, so I went back to the Swizzle Stick (where I'd thoroughly enjoyed a few cocktails the night before) and treated myself to dinner at the bar, one of my favorite things to do almost anywhere. The calas were shredded duck meat and rice that was formed into a ball a little smaller than a tennis ball and breaded and fried. Came two to a plate, standing up with a piece of sugar cane in it like a lollipop, with a fondue like sauce that was insanely rich and decadent. This outrageous plate of deliciousness was all of like $14. That, a couple of cocktails and a tip ran me a little over $30, which I thought was an insane value for the level of cuisine coming both from the kitchen and from behind the bar. Chef Danny Trace himself even asked me how everything was when he stopped by the bar to pick something up. Cafe Adelaide and the Swizzle Stick are a little outside the Quarter in the Warehouse District, located in the Loews Hotel. It's a short walk or cab ride from the Quarter. Another place in the Warehouse District that was fabulicious and cheap was Mother's, where I shared dinner with fellow Philly barkeeps Phil and Nick. We shared a softshell crab Po Boy, a gigantic bowl of gumbo and a gigantic bowl of jambalaya between the three of us. It was down homey and possibly some of the best examples of authentic New Orleans cuisine I sampled while there. All told, with some non-alcoholic beverages on the side, that feast ran us around $15/person.

I definitely feel like I got a good glimpse of both the high end of NOLA cuisine (I also had an outstanding dinner with several other eGulleteers at Cochon my first night in town) and of the more "peasant" end of the spectrum. But there's so much more I didn't get to see and do I simply have to go back! New Orleans is my new favorite city and I couldn't have enjoyed myself more.

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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So you completely forgot about getting a muffuletta with Wayne and me at Central Grocery? And that delicious meal was only $7 a piece.

I think the Bourbon House is a great place for oysters, but those are actually some of the most expensive oysters in town. At most places, $7.50 will get you a dozen. Come back at the height of oyster season, and I'll take you to Casamento's.

Todd A. Price aka "TAPrice"

Homepage and writings; A Frolic of My Own (personal blog)

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D'oh! Quite right. The entire week is a bit of a blur, as I'm sure you can imagine. The muffaletta was an amazing and frugal lunch (with charming company I might add.) :smile: Really grooved on the Zapp's Tabasco flavored chips too. They remind me of the Lancaster County varieties of lardy chips I'm so fond of up here.

And I will happily return and take you up on your gracious offer of oysters. I'll let you know when as soon as I do! :wink:

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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