Monday, February 27, 2012

new orleans - day 2 (cont'd)

we take the streetcar back from the garden district to the french quarter, where it's time to get our grub on at the famed café du monde.

streetcar approaching
behind the driver
at long last!
historical landmark

a french market fixture since the early 1860s, café du monde is best known for their café au lait and their beignets, which are pillowy powdered doughnuts served three to an order. since the line was cr-A-zee long, we decided to go to the take-out window and enjoy our treats at nearby jackson square.

outside jackson square
manicured gardens
street musicians
st. louis cathedral ceiling

after taking in the beautiful scenery, we make a pitstop at the tiny voodoo museum (literally one hallway and two rooms) to learn a bit more about the mythology and traditions - and to play with one of the proprietor's snakes - before heading back to the b&b to rest our weary feet.

we return to the quarter for our 8:30pm reservation at NOLA restaurant, the funkiest and most casual of chef emeril lagasse's three new orleans eateries (emeril's and delmonico being the others). on the heels of wednesday's amazing dinner at mr. b's, NOLA steps up to the challenge and keeps the train running.

our appetizer, dubbed miss hay's stuffed chicken wings, is one of the tastiest and most unique takes on the chicken wing i've ever had. our server let us in on their secret: during prep, they peel back the skin, remove one of the wing's joints and its accompanying bones and feed the asian-style stuffing before closing the flap. then they pop it in the oven for 20 minutes to seal the wing of its ingredients before flash frying it to turn it crispy. combined with a homemade hoisin dipping sauce, it's one of the best things i will eat all week.

and that's not to mention our entrées!

heidi: shrimp & grits - sautéed gulf shrimp, grilled green onions, smoked cheddar grits, apple smoked bacon, crimini mushrooms & red chili-abita butter sauce
me: garlic crusted drum (fish) - cooked in the wood burning oven w/brabant potatoes, crimini mushrooms, bacon & sauce beurre rouge

to top off our meal, we had the banana pudding layer cake, which almost put us in a coma. i'd also be remiss if i didn't point out our two servers, who made our meal even more special. they couldn't have been more funny, gracious and accommodating, all the while putting smiles on our faces all night.

NOLA restaurant
534 saint louis st.
new orleans, LA 70130

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