I recently got back from a 3-day trip to NOLA with my girlfriend for her birthday celebration. Both of us enjoy eating great food, so I made it a priority for us to be as active as we could while we were down there. Here is a comprehensive write-up.
Wednesday (Arrival to NOLA just before noon):
Lunch: Gumbo Shop (FQ). This place had a cozy atmosphere that complimented the cooler weather well. We started with a cup of gumbo, then had the special which was blackened catfish topped with crab, and covered with a cream sauce. On the side we also ordered creamed spinach. For dessert we tried the bread pudding, and our meal was accompanied with a set of beers. Overall the food was excellent, but we both thought that the bread pudding was overly sweet.
After Lunch we went to Royal Blend Coffee (FQ) for a cup of coffee. This is another place with a good atmosphere. There was a friendly orange tabby, and I could see myself enjoying time here reading a book or working on my computer. Sidenote: the cranberry oat bars are great.
Cafe Du Monde in the FQ was visited mid-afternoon for coffee and beignets. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the Au Lait. The beignets have too much sugar for me, so I had to take some off, but the pastry itself was tasty. Atmosphere isn't amazing, especially when it is busy, but you come here for a quick snack.
Dinner was at Cochon Butcher in the Warehouse District. I had the pork belly sandwich, while my girlfriend had the pork tamales (special). We shared a side of cole slaw and a side of cucumber salad. The cucumber salad was good, but nothing amazing. I was not impressed with the cole slaw, which was disappointing. The pork tamales and the pork belly sandwich were both great. The weak point of the sandwich was definitely the bread. It was on what seemed like sliced white bread. This place felt trendy without being too over the top.
Breakfast and coffee at Merchant in CBD. The quality of the foam on our cappuccinos was great, but the shot tasted a tad over-extracted (she didn't notice because she puts sugar in her coffee). I ordered the Panchetta and Gruyere croissant, only they were out of croissants. It was still rather early in the morning, which left me confused. The substitute bread was fine. This dish was flavorful, but the plating could have been executed better. Panchetta cubes kept falling off, and it seemed that they put it on top of the egg, instead of putting it on top of the cheese so that the cheese could hold it in place. My girlfriend had the honey and apple crepes. They were good and came and came with a light side salad. The decor seemed too posh for our tastes, but it did share space with a gallery which we liked.
Later in the afternoon we stopped at Irish House (Garden District) for a beer (her) and tea (me). She had a nice brew called Canbreak ale?, and I my Irish tea was complete with a side of sugar and milk. Both left satisfied.
Dinner was at Adolfo's (Marigny). This place is on the second floor on top of a bar, and smelled heavily of garlic. This was easily the best meal on our trip. We both drank the house Malbec. Our appetizer was steamed mussels with garlic butter (special). She ordered steak with the ocean sauce (a mix of seafood) on top. We both loved this. I ordered the cannelloni combination with crab/corn and spinach/sausage. Her steak was only slightly more gratifying because it was cooked to perfection. The service here was outstanding. I think our server's name was Nicole.
Breakfast was at Elizabeth's Restaurant on Chartres east of Marigny. It was a walk from the FQ, but it was well worth it. The portions are large, and the preparation is spot on. I had an omelet with sausage, bacon, peppers, and onions.. a side of hash browns, and a biscuit. Unfortunately, I forgot to write down what my girlfriend ordered, but I remember her being equally happy with her meal.
Mid-afternoon we stopped at Spitfire Espresso in the FQ, The space was small, but I didn't mind with there not being a line. I had my first cortado ever, and both foam and shot were executed well.
Early dinner was had at Cochon Butcher again (so good, we had to come back). I had the Gambino, which was good but didn't compare to the Italian at La Spiga in Addison, TX. She had the roasted turkey (I liked this more than my Gambino), and we shared the amazing side of macaroni and cheese.
Places that we wanted to try, but didn't get to either because of time or because of our funds: Toups' Meatery, Killer Poboys, Cochon, August, and Mr. B's.
I got most of these recommendations from browsing this forum, so thank you to everyone who contributed!