The Big Easy is one of the culinary capitals of the United States, if not the world. To that end, we break down the best New Orleans eats for you. Here’s where to go, broken down by whether its your first visit or a repeat stay—plus spots everyone should hit up, no matter how many times they’ve been.
The long-operating Brennan’s family restaurant welcomes every diner with Old World elegance, fanciful decor and pampering service, proving that fine dining remains proudly relevant in New Orleans. As you’re devouring your Brennan’s-original bananas Foster or eggs Hussarde, enjoy every bite from what Southern Living lists as one of the South’s Top 10 Best Restaurants in 2017.
Inspired by the heat of a New Orleans summer during the Great Depression, master machinist Ernest Hansen invented the Sno-Bliz machine to cleanly and safely shave ice. His wife created her own line of syrups, and a new family business—and New Orleans tradition—was born. Try the honey lavender or cream of wedding cake flavors mixed with a scoop of ice cream.
In 1840, a young Antoine Alciatore founded what would become one of the country’s oldest family-run restaurants. When his son Jules took over the reins of the fine-dining establishment in 1887, he invented the famous oysters Rockefeller, solidifying Antoine’s as a world-renowned French-Creole restaurant for all eternity.
Drago’s Seafood Restaurant
Decades after immigrating to New Orleans from Croatia, Drago Cvitanovich opened this restaurant in 1969, where one day the legendary charbroiled oyster would be invented. It’s so delicious that, on a busy day, the grills here churn out more than 900 dozen of them.
What makes Dat Dog so unique is its choice of unusual ingredients and flavors that blend surprisingly well together. A cult following has helped the locale grow from a food cart in 2011 to having multiple locations throughout the city today. Try the Crawfish Dog or Alligator Dog and enjoy 30 unconventional toppings.