I'm a displaced Southerner in Brooklyn who has slowly been seducing my New Jersey boyfriend into a New Orleans relocation. He has blindly agreed, but we are visiting next month for a professional conference and its pretty much Make or Break time. We are staying in the Quarter and will have a few days of free roaming time, but will then be to and fro the Hilton in the Central Business District. Absolutely any and all food, drink, etc recommendations are appreciated. We like dives and local flavor and deep history and bourbon and Abita drafts. While the more pork the better for me, my albatross to bear is that my beau only eats seafood (particularly raw oysters). We won't have a car, but are fine with walking and the opportunity to explore some more neighborhoods (Marigny? Bywater?) outside the tourist enclave. I won't need it, but he might prefer the occasional break from New Orleans cuisine so tips would be most helpful. I promise he has more sterling qualities than his eating habits!
Its just preferable to feel like we're doing what the locals do rather than the tourists, though I understand some things are tourist hotspots for very good reasons and that, inevitably, we are in the Quarter. I am eternally grateful.