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Restaurants & Bars 9

Recent spectacular meals and one truly awful experience

mikey | Dec 22, 201004:38 PM

New Orleans food is always good. I am lucky to live in a city where one rarely has a bad meal. It is usually a question of how excellent the food is. Due to holidays, friends in from out of town, and general dining out, I managed to have some of the most excellent meals I have had in a long time. It just does not get any better. First, one of the most superior meals recently took place at Mat and Naddie's. I have always enjoyed this restaurant; funky, laid back, friendly, and usually great food. This time the place was so spot on I could not get over it. I don't know who is doing the cooking over there but it gets a big bravo from me. My second most memorable took place at Meauxbar in the French Quarter. It is basically in tourist central and 90 percent of the patrons are locals. Dim lighting, convivial atmosphere, an owner tending to everyone's needs, and magnificent food. First of all, this is the best macaroni and cheese I have ever put in my mouth. The roasted curried fish is sublime as is the trout grenobloise. My friend had roasted pork which was perfection and also, Meauxbar serves some of the best coconut sorbet I have ever put in my mouth. I don't even like sorbet that much. Usually Italian food takes a back seat in New Orleans compared to creole but the big exception is A Mano. I can now say that we have a restaurant that knows how to serve pasta. Light, fresh, and buttery. Excellent. I was treated one night to a big meal at Tommy's-a restaurant I always enjoy for the atmosphere as much as for the food. Prices are extraordinarily reasonable considering the quantity of fresh crabmeat, oysters, shrimp, and fish. It is really one of our best creole restaurants around. For the bargain of the city, go straight to Boucherie. How do they manage to put out such incredibly good food at such reasonable prices? Small plates and large plates alike. I know people who have closets as big as this restaurant (admittedly wealthy, over the top folks) but the good food just does not stop. It is not easy to get in due to the size but reservations are accepted. Now for the bad news. My friend and I walked toward Canal Street one day. Weather was nice and that good sandwich and salad place Wilty's on Camp was closed. So we passed up Rambla in order to try that new place with the odd name "Red Gravy". Good LORD! The interior was a bit dirty, the ceiling is has stained tiles that look straight out of the year 1985 and the tables are small and uncomfortable. You order at the counter with someone who has no clue what she is selling. Meat ball poboy with red gravy looked cold and grey. My ham sandwich was served on what tasted like mediocre grocery store bakery french bread and deli ham. I will say that the desserts looked rather tasty as did the bakery items, however, muffins were just sitting on plates uncovered. I could not get out of there fast enough. How sad considering the location is incredible. If I want a ham sandwich I just stand in line at Mahoney's where that sugary crusted ham is served on proper Leidenheimer's crispy bread. Happy eating everyone. I still have not tried Sylvain which is high on my list. I heard of another place at the end of Oak Street with great food. Is it called Cowpoke?

217 Camp Street, New Orleans, LA 70130

942 N Rampart St, New Orleans, LA 70116

8115 Jeannette St, New Orleans, LA 70118

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