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Restaurants & Bars 14

Seating politics in New Orleans

Gabweb | Jun 19, 201207:31 PM

Hi, fellow Chowhounds:
First of all, thank you all so much for your recommendations of restaurants for my upcoming 20th anniversary trip. Hubby has never visited, I was there before Katrina and don't know what to expect but want to support this treasure of a city.

I hope this is not insulting, but I'd like to know how to get great seating in restaurants. Is it like Vegas, where you have to grease the m'aitre d'? Ditto New York and Chicago?

Or do you get better seating when with a man as opposed to two women dining? I only ask because when I visited many years ago -- 1986 to be precise, with a female friend who was in remission from cancer and wanted an incredible memory -- we two women were ushered to the WORST possible tables in nearly all restaurants, except for K-Paul's Kitchen. It was really upsetting and sexist. We were not militant at all, but started to "get it" by about the third night. Plenty of great tables open, but we were seated nearest the stinky, noisy bus stations, the drafty entry doors or, most charmingly, the men's restrooms where we had a parade of men walking out of the loos zipping up their trousers. That was in Commander's Palace. We finally, nicely, asked for a better table and got a great one in the Garden Room. But, how can we avoid this now? I will be with my husband, so if restaurants are sexist, maybe we'll have a better chance at better seating. Sorry to say, but my friend died a few months after our trip and although she loved her visit to New Orleans -- her final "bucket list" destination, she was very disappointed in our restaurant seating problems. Was the only sour note in a wonderful trip. Any advice is valued, thank you.

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