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Heading over April 5 -13 for the French Quarter Jazz Festival especially.

Anyone want to drop some superfantastic knowledge??

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its actually just called french quarter fest, but good call

all the best local music minus the insane jazz fest crowds

nowhere to shop, so dont even bother w that

plenty of places to eat, drink and see music

gonna assume youre staying in the quarter/on canal?

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yea I booked at india house backpackers hostel on the cheap

just read that 500,000 went to the one last year, that still sounds pretty insane large, but fuck yeah

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damn, looked it up and you're right

thats pretty nuts, nowhere near jazzfest but still serious numbers

ok so forget what i said it will be crowded, but whatever

by canal i meant like canal btwn rampart and the casino...am familiar with that place although i dont know anyone who's stayed there

neighborhood is a little dicey but online rep seems to be decent

otherwise...ime the thing about this town is there aren't too many hidden gems, its a small city that gets lots of visitors and most of whats online is pretty good advice

am happy to offer specifics if you have qs tho

in terms of music, in general the big names are all worth seeing, even tho some of them haven't been added to the lineup yet (even if they're not, they'll be playing somewhere in town at some point during the weekend)

glen david andrews is a must (he's trombone shorty's brother/cuz, forget which - need 2 him too if you can), as are either rebirth or soul rebels (brass bands), anyone named neville or marsalis, kermit ruffins, irvin mayfield, shannon powell...list goes on and on

best place to check whos playing where is http://www.wwoz.org/new+orleans+community/music+calendar

just saw mannie fresh (!) is hosting a 'celebrity beat battle' at tipitina's on the 6th...would prob be a good time (0)

im headed out but more details to follow, as i said feel free to hit me with qs as they come up

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Let me drop some knowledge, but with the caveat that you're going during a festival (which means more ppl, more/different things to do, more chaos...).

Bar/music

Mimi's in the Marigny, about 20 blocks north of Canal in French Quarter is wonderful, away from the chaos of Bourbon st. The walk can be a little sketchy depending what route you take, but well worth it. It oozes the character of New Orleans with a younger crowd and with bands usually playing (excellent music, mind you) upstairs. Not bad tapas plates either. When I stumbled upstairs and discovered this lady named Sarah Quintana singing with a glass of whiskey in my hand, it was a perfect moment in my trip to NOLA.

The Spotted Cat on Frenchman is always playing great jazz. Just far enough away from Bourbon so less mayhem but it's a small space and can get packed.

Although I didn't see any when I was there, I'd imagine you can find crusty punks at Circle bar on a happening night.

Food

Cochon Butcher or Cochon Restaurant south of Canal on Tchoupitoulas for food. Had a great meal here and huge selection of Bourbon if I remember correctly.

Iris for more upscale French influenced food.

Steak at Dickie Brennan's and the char grilled oysters at Acme were all good, but nothing too special -- it's on a busy street so it's definitely a tourist attraction with lines for Acme at any given time. Heard good things at Mother's for more home-cooked style southern food. Food in general, you'll find it more buttery rich and delicious, anywhere in nola.

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all good advice, but i would add: mimi's/frenchmen will likely be almost as packed as bourbon that weekend

you should still do both, but fair warning

also, re bourbon, yes its corny but its also fun as fuck

do at least one night there; drink big fruity drinks in weird cups, hit on bachelorette parties in clubs, pump your fist, rock some beads, etc

also fyi penthouse is the best strip club by a mile; always $11 cover but well worth it

dont let them run your credit card if u can avoid it

cochon is one of the best in town; never been to iris but heard good things

if youre lookin to do a meal like that tho i would spend a little extra and go to a big brand name type of spot: arnauds, antoines, emerils, brennans*, k-pauls, bayona, herbsaint (owned by the cochon people)

mothers is great; prob tied with verti mart for best po boys in that part of town; never had one but grand isle's po boys get a lot of love too

ime dickie brennans is one of the better steaks ive had**, and acme or felix (mostly the same deal, acme has a cooler interior) are worth a visit if youre into oysters (im not)

also consider dragos and royal house (best location of the 4)

and deanies is good for big plates of fried seafood

*different from dickie brennans steakhouse

**but really, u dont come here 2 eat steak do u?

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standard nola dining disclaimers:

you will encounter slow/incompetent/terrible service down here, no matter how much you are paying for your meal

just the way it goes, have another drink and chill out

also unless youre getting gravy on it always get your po boy dressed: lettuce, tomato, pickles and mayo

if you dont like mayo dont get a po boy

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just spent a few days there last week. enjoyed these places:

music:

- the maison (especially great for dancing)

- dnb

- spotted cat

all those are on frenchman, just walk down the street on any given night and if something catches your ear walk in and check it out, there usually isn't a cover

food: didn't have much time or money to dine at the upscale places, these are more soul food and home style cooking

- praline connection

- lil dizzy's cafe

- nosh

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yes x5 (altho i think u mean dba not dnb?)

havent been to nosh, new jawn that replaced what was one of the sketchiest, creepiest spots in the quarter, this cafe run by these old eastern european people

im pretty sure it was a front company for like a drug/prostitution ring or something

but anyway, yeah i will work on a cheap dining guide...

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yeah dba

nosh is super legit, $3.50 for a bottle of abita and ~$5 entree. one guy who does the cooking and the waiting.

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cool, will try and check it out

just glad to see someone making decent use of that space

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i'm looking forward to being in new orleans for a couple of days within the next couple of months. a friend told me to take a tour of the garden district to get a real feel of old new orleans homes.

what else is there to check out aside from the music scene?

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I love New Orleans! Just went there for the first time this past Xmas for a week and had a blast. I was staying in a super old (think 1870's) bed & breakfast right off Esplanade, and the proximity to the french quarter was excellent.

Here are some pictures from my stay there. I can say I didn't have a single unpleasant experience during my week there.

bourbon.jpg

First night in, this is like Barracks & Bourbon St, not too busy there but the shitshow became progressively larger as we progressed further down.

acme1.jpg

Stopped in at Acme Oyster House for dinner, which was great, and the local police officers made waiting in line for a table an entertaining experience.

acme2.jpg

Fried oyster po boy, also an entertaining experience. Goes well with Abita Andygator Dopplebock

abita.jpg

Staying in NOLA it's difficult to not become a big proponent of Abita beer, so we travelled across Lake Ponchartrain (a worthwhile journey in itself) into Abita Springs to check out the brewery where I got wasted off free beer by 1pm. The tour is free, and you get a couple hours of unrestricted access to every Abita beer on tap -- highly recommended.

On our way back we stopped in Metairie at Drago's to sample their char-grilled oysters on the half shell:

drago.jpg

Beneath the layer of crispy, gooey cheese, these things are swimming in butter and garlic. I ate this entire plate no problem, but it triggered my second nap of the day.

After waking up back at the B&B, it was unanimously decided more drinking was in order (it was Christmas after all), so we went to Muriel's at Jackson Square:

sazerac.jpg

I got a Sazerac, which is basically just an excuse to drink a cup of cognac.

Next day was Xmas eve and we had made reservations to eat at Commander's Palace in the Garden District. The food was really really good and they have a ridiculous ¢25 Martini special that is difficult not to abuse.

palace1.jpg

palace2.jpg

best pork chop I eva had...

palace3.jpg

tl;dr version - go visit New Orleans you dummy

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^^

doing it right

@ popeye - you mean aside from the food scene?

garden district tour is a good start

if its a nice day you can just ride the streetcar up st charles and back

daytime history/architecture tours in the quarter

nightime ghost/voodoo tours in the quarter/cemeteries

take the ferry to old algiers

if you gota bit more time to kill during the day, swamp and plantation tours are worth a look (both will take you a ways outside the city)

katrina tours are depressing but worth your consideration

most tour guides regardless of subject are true characters and good at what they do

if you're from a large city no reason to go the city park art museum - its good but nothing you wont see elsewhere

ogden museum of southern art is a bit more unique and worth a look, as is natl wwii museum

theres also a big casino and lots of strip clubs if youre into either/or

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that said drinking, music and food should be plenty to fill the average trip

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couple notes: you can still smoke in bars here, which surprises a lot of people

i view it as a plus

24 hr bars (give or take) in the quarter:

deja vu (the diner at conti and dauphine, not the strip club on bourbon)

erin rose

the alibi

copper monkey

three legged dog

aunt tikis/abbey (lower decatur)

johnny whites/boondock saint (st peter)

garden district: the saint

uptown: snake n jakes

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Bona: how long u been living in new orleans? +what do u do? a friend is moving down there for sure with his girlfriend and it's one city i might look into moving as well

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3 yrs

work for a nonprofit crim defense office

not a lawyer but headed 2 school this fall; may have to move up the road for a few years but plan on coming back for good

highly, highly recommend

great weather (if u dont mind the intense summers, which i dont - they are the tradeoff for nice, long spring/fall and mild winter)

very drivable

cheap rents

amazing food/music/bar culture/history/art scene, etc

negatives:

i like the summers but they're not for everyone

hurricane threat is no joke (but another katrina-leval catastrophic flood is highly unlikely)

crime is bad but the off the charts murder rate makes it look worse than it is (killings are all drug related, overall crime rate is on par with greensboro, nc per wikipedia ucr stats)

there are a lot of cool things happening in this city beyond art/music; couple articles from yesterdays paper:

http://www.nola.com/nolavie/index.ssf/2011/03/innovator_chris_schultz_on_why.html

http://www.nola.com/nolavie/index.ssf/2011/03/big_easy_living_citys_mom-and-.html

tldr: i love this place, move here

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just got a tip that Rebirth in Maple Leaf is a must see on Tuesdays, plus the restaurant next door at 5pm on the dot... might update soon with a guide from a coworker

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yezzur

jacques-imo's (the restaurant in question) is awesome, but the wait can get insane, esepc on a tues when everyone is planning to go see rebirth later

you can drink in the front/at the maple leaf/on the street while you wait, which helps

if you do end up deciding the wait isnt worth it, head down the street to either boucherie, mat & naddies, or dante's kitchen for an equally great meal

also ive never been but by reputation, brigsten's (across from dante's) is better than all of them

however it is a white tablecloth/$$$$ type of place

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i cant believe were 20 posts deep and i forgot to mention this; its prob because im so used to it now that i forget how crazy it sounds

but yes, you can drink on the street pretty much anywhere in the city

no glass, and they prefer cans be in paper bags, but even that isnt always a dealbreaker

all bars have plastic go-cups available on request

many bars will let you bring in a plastic go-cup containing a drink from the last bar you were at

many wont, though, so ask at the door

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really glad to have found this thread, i'm moving to new orleans pretty much right after i graduate in may and have never been there.

any tips on good places to look for an apartment? i have heard that the garden district is pretty nice and to stay away from the french quarter since noise, parking might be an issue. coming from seattle a lot of the newer loft style offerings in the warehouse district look pretty nice too.

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yo sorry forgot about this

thats honestly a tough call, but you cant go wrong either way

id prob let price/space be the deciding factor

bascially garden dist looks much more new orleans, but ime you will pay a premium for that so price/sq ft will prob be a little kinder in the warehouse

warehouse is also closer to downtown, obv

but yeah those are prob the 2 best neighborhoods if u can afford em

check the marigny too, but u need to approach that with a little more caution; some rough blocks mixed in with some pretty nice ones, like most of this city

marigny will be much more hipsterish/arty/etc than either whouse or garden dist, if that matters to you

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weekend of the 11th

they are combining the zydeco, seafood and creole tomato fests into one weekend, should be pretty awesome

lots of really good food booths and free music all over the quarter

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btw still working on a cheap dining guide, but before i forget this is probably the best restaurant review site ive found:

http://www.nomenu.com/joomla1/

much more user friendly than the newspaper/alt weekly sites, and dude knows what hes talking about

his current five star restaurants:

august

commander's

emeril's

le foret

mila

pelican club

stella

so yeah, if youre gonna splash out on one big meal, do it one of those places

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New Orleans is a very special place, one of the best in the world

I went through this list that was given to me, as well as other places mentioned in this thread. Bona Drag is that dude.

1. Juan's Flying Burrito (uptown or mid-city) pretty cheap New Orleans Rock-n-Roll Taqueria (New Orleans style burritos and non-traditional Mexican food).

2. Can't go wrong with the bars on Decatur and on Frenchman street. Blue Nile will have great music as will a couple of other clubs on Frenchman. I do love the Saint (it's in my old neighborhood, but it is kinda in a sketchy area, so take a cab for sure!!!). Another awesome bar is Lafitte's Blacksmith bar which is on the corner of Bourbon and St. Philip in the French Quarter. It is the oldest building in the quarter and was actually Jean Lafitte"s (the pirate, or government representative, depending on your view) private hang out for him and his gang. Another awesome bar on Decatur is Molly's at the Market.

3. You obviously have to go to Cafe du Monde and have beignets and cafe au lait. Love the frozen one, if it's super hot. La Petite Grocery is a wonderful restaurant uptown on Magazine street and it is very good. It's a bit on the pricey side, but a great example of Louisiana French food. Check out the carousel bar at one of the hotels (i forget, but it's popular) and check out the bar or try to eat at Antionne's the oldest restaurant in the country. Oysters, baked alaska, and cafe brulot is all amazing. The brulot is an alcoholic coffee drink with spices and the waiter lights it on fire and pours it all over the table. Super fun date! :)

4. Praline connection is great. Willie Mae's friend chicken can't be beat.

5. John Besh has a couple of restaurants all around town and they are all delicious; some are more pricey then others, so check out his restaurant. Donald Link is a very popular chef: Herbsaint is traditional NO food and Cochon is dedicated to soul food and all things pork. A cochon de lait is a pig roast which is pretty common in Louisiana.

6. Mint juleps, manhattans, bourbon milk punch, of course the hurricanes at Pat o's is a must. The fountain in the courtyard alone is worth the trip to bourbon.

In addition, a short list of places to go for music is also in the Times-Picayune. PM me if you want to see Kermit Ruffins up close and personal on Tuesdays.

I took the "Hurricane Katrina" tour by Tours By Isabel. The tour was 3 solid hours of knowledge dropped by Joseph, who stayed in a FEMA truck for 4-5 months and really knew the goings on. The van seats 12 and starts out as a city tour, but then gets farther and farther out. It is totally worth the $60 dollars.

I also happened upon Miriam's Voodoo Spiritual Temple on Rampart St, which is a real legit Voodoo center that has been honored by the city of New Orleans, and solicits consultations from all over the world.

Louisiana Music Factory on Decatur is definitely a place to go buy music, used and new.

The French Quarter area is definitely the place to go. The rest of the city really isn't walkable, so taxis and public transport, or bike, will be your best friend in that regard.

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good lookin out yall

wt - you used to live here? y aint u say?

anyway all good recos; the carousel bar is in hotel monteleone, prob the best sazerac ive had in town

also if youre talking about kermit at bullet's on tuesdays, THAT neighborhood is scary as fuck - the saint aint got nothin on that 7th ward

i mean, im not sayin dont go but...

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