hello chowhounders, I need a bit of guidance please n thanks. so I'll be celebrating the big 4-0 the weekend before Halloween with a group of foodie friends, and I'm trying to figure out where to eat! I have been to nola a few times before, but not in 6 or 7 years. ill be arriving friday the 27th, which is my actual birthday, and flying out on Halloween. so far on my list is parkway, cochon (good lunch choice?), acme, and I'm thinking maybe galatoire's for Friday lunch since someone mentioned that's a quintessential nola experience. I'm not sure where to have my birthday dinner though. I have been to Clancy's (where I had one of the best meals of my life ever, the softshell crab), brigtsen's, and the pelican club in terms of nicer places. we will probably be better suited for a place that's a bit loud and funky and doesn't require jackets, but of course has superior food, especially seafood. a coworker of mine who has family there said shaya is the hottest restaurant right now, and while I love that kind of food, i prefer a more new orleanian menu.
also, barwise I'd like to check out the classy places and some good ole dives. lafitte's blacksmith shop is on my list, as well as the carousel bar, the columns, etc. how is port of call? it looks tikiesque, which I love. anyway, I think that's enough for now; I'm sure I'll have more to come! thanks so much!