Well, here I am in NOLA and in less than 2 days have had surprising culinary and other experiences!! We are staying at the JW Marriott on Canal which is lovely with excellent service and the most comfortable beds. Most importantly, and I am sure someone will understand, a great shower. We started our trip at Acme Oyster House...horrible oyster shooters (we never had them with liquor before!!) but awesome service and great oyster/shrimp po boy and good gumbo. We went on to walk the quarter/french market and stopped at Tujagues for a drink. What a dirty run down joint....and we are having xmas dinner there!! Stopped in Red Fish Grill for oysters on the half shell..very good. Went to dinner at GW Fins. While the atmosphere is wonderful and service quite good the food that we chose (dover sole/turbot and crab crusted mahi) was nothing too special while well prepared and tasty. We wish we would've chosen something else. After all I heard about the lobster dumplings, we were left unimpressed. Today, we went to Cafe Du Monde battling the pigeons for beignets then on to Coffee Pot for lunch which was excellent!! DH had gumbo (better than Acme!!) and red beans w/rice while I had very tasty fried catfish with excellent hush puppies. We went to the Aquarium and Mardi Gras World (we got the baby in the king's cake!!). Tonite it is onto Commander's Palace. Looking forward to it!! Thanks for all your recs and suggestions...I will continue later.