I have been watching this board for the past two months trying to prepare for my first trip ever to N.O. Wonderful advice. This is how my trip went
Had only one "expensive" meal budgeted into my trip and had decided to eat at Antoines on our first night, but after reading several post (see what to order at Antoines thread) I decided on Galatoires. Expecting to wait in line my co-workers and I went early (6:30 pm) only to find no line and we walked straight in. We were dressed in business casual (business pant suits) and we thought that would be fine, but we were a bit underdressed, the people there looked like they were attending a gala or an Oscar party. They were beautiful in their long evening dresses, velvet cocktail dresses and big chunky jewels, it was festive and fun to watch all the people as they came into the restaurant for what obviously was more than just a meal, it is a social gathering and an event to dine at Galatoires. Even though obviously under-dressed the waiter made us feel very comfortable, and even though we stood out as the obvious tourist he was helpful as we ordered and helped to make the evening enjoyable. They started with warm French bread and butter that was delicious and then we were served our salads, all of us ordering different salads and all were very good. We stayed with what the menu said were their specialties: I ordered filet béarnaise, the other ordered Chicken Clemenceau and the third Pompano Meunière Amandine. It was all-wonderful. My filet was perfectly cooked and the flavor was exceptional and after trying everyone elses we decided the chicken was our least favorite. We ordered several vegetables including asparagus, potatoes both lyonnaise and augratin, and fried eggplant. They were all exceptional. We topped it off with banana bread pudding and coffee, the dessert was very good but this was my first experience with New Orleans style coffee and it would definitely take some getting used to. It was an eventful night and an overall pleasant experience. The bill for the three of us was $132.00, excluding tip.
On Sunday night we tried Acme Oyster House, it had the longest line of any restaurant I saw in the quarter and that usually means good food. After about twenty minutes we got a table and I must admit, this place didnt look like much, it really was very dirty, but I read so many good post on this board and I thought if all these people keep waiting in line it must be OK. The food was great, everything we had was delicious and cheap, under $12.00 per person, including drinks and appetizers.
My favorite place was the Court of Two Sisters, we ate there on a warm, starry night and the courtyard was so beautiful with the canopy of vines and tiny white lights over our heads. The service was very good and it was more casual than Galatoires, but the food (especially desserts) was outstanding. The combination of atmosphere, good food, good service and decent prices made this my favorite. My bill for dinner and dessert was about $25.00 excluding tip.
Had to attend several events scheduled at the Hotel for the rest of the trip, while there just had the regular hotel fare and it was only OK, but it was free.
During my 5 day stay I must say that I never acquired a taste for the coffee but I did have the Café Aulait at Café DuMond and I loved it, as well as the beignets. Great trip and lots of great places to eat in NOLA.