The 4 Most Legendary Haunted Restaurants In New Orleans

There's a reason they call New Orleans, Louisiana, the most haunted city in the United States. The Big Easy is not only known for its storied cuisine but also its dining haunts that may be, well, haunted. From deceased sisters who still oversee what happens at their eatery to multiple apparitions caught on camera, the food scene here is not for the faint of heart. 


"New Orleans has had a long history of battles, diseases, natural disasters, and, basically, a great many people living in a compact area," according to Larry Montz, parapsychologist of the International Society for Paranormal Research. "These are some of the factors that can lead to various types of paranormal activity. On a happy note, we'd like to believe that some people enjoyed the Big Easy so much, they just don't care to move on." Here are four places where diners can connect with the other side within the city limits.

The Court of Two Sisters

One of the most well-known restaurants in the city, The Court of Two Sisters is best known for the duo the eatery is named for: Emma Camors and Bertha Angaud. The pair opened a shop at the location and served tea and cakes at its famed courtyard. The siblings, who died two months apart in 1944, are often "seen" around the premises.


Montz claims during a 2003 investigation, his team found the sisters. "One of my clairvoyants had a lengthy interaction with Emma, who offered that she is on-site far more often than Bertha," he said. Today, the restaurant is famed for its wisteria-covered courtyard, the largest in the French Quarter, and its live jazz brunch buffet, which takes place every day of the week, explains Sherry Constance, director of sales.


Arnaud's, which has been providing more than 100 years of service, still whips up many of the dishes that have been on the menu since it opened its doors in 1918, like the famed Shrimp Arnaud, Trout Meuniere served with Brabant potatoes, and caramel custard. It's referred to by some regulars as "the happy meal," explains co-owner Katy Casbarian. As for one of its most frequent visitors? That would be Germaine Cazenave, the daughter of the restaurant's founder, Arnaud Cazenave, who has been encountered by both diners and employees. 


"Most recently, a group of diners in one of the restaurant's private dining rooms upstairs said they saw the floating torso of a man appear in one of their photos," Casbarian shared. "It is believed to have been Coun' Arnaud himself. An employee doing an after-hours audit found a highball glass half full on the bar at the Richelieu Bar [in the restaurant], which struck him as odd considering the restaurant's strict clean-up rules. Moments later, he glanced back to find the glass was empty."

Muriel's Jackson Square

Muriel's lays out the welcome mat for its customers — both living and dead. The restaurant's owners and staff keep a table set for the establishment's resident ghost, Pierre Antoine Lepardi Jourdan, who died where the property's Seance Lounges are now. "I think it is the perfect example of how New Orleans doesn't just tell ghost stories, she embraces the spirits that are still roaming the streets and buildings; never to make them feel unwanted," says Gretchen Upshaw, general manager.


"The location is rich in history, as well as hauntings," Upshaw adds. "Many of our guests have captured apparitions on their cameras at Muriel's during one of our tours." In addition to its otherworldly clientele, Muriel's is known for its classic creole menu, extensive wine list, and spin on classic New Orleans cocktails like the Crescent City Mule and The Saint 75.

Napoleon House

Photos are a common thread for uncovering the paranormal, and Napoleon House is no exception. A few years ago during a professional photo shoot at the restaurant, there was a new sighting, claims Chris Montero, executive chef and general manager. "When the photographer developed the photos, there was a clear image of a man's profile up in the cupola at the top of the building," he explained. "No one saw it at the time the photo was being taken, and the attic was locked up to the cupola so there was no chance anyone was up there! Yet, it revealed itself in the photograph, there was a distinct profile of a man up in that window."


The most common sighting at the restaurant, however, stems from multiple people reporting seeing a woman dressed in 17th-century period clothes sweeping the balcony of its second floor. "She would sweep outside of what would have been one of Mayor Nicolas Girod's apartments," said Montero. Girod, who was mayor of New Orleans from 1812 to 1815, offered the locale as a refuge to Napoleon Bonaparte during his exile. (Even though Napoleon never actually made it, the name remained.) Now, some of the restaurant's most popular offerings are muffuletta, a hearty sandwich of cured meats and cheese, that nods to the Italian population that opened delis in New Orleans, and the Pimm's Cup, a refreshing cocktail for hot Louisiana days.


"Our city's history is steeped in voodoo, war, ritual, and religion," Montero shared. "The setting itself, with swamps and a generally eerie atmosphere is very popular for vampire novels, haunted history novels, and pirate stories. The culture and history lend well to a lot of the supernatural and paranormal storytelling."