I had been to New Orleans previously, but it was the first time for my girlfriend. Here's what we did on our first full day in the Big Easy.
We stayed at the recently renovated Hyatt Regency in the Central Business District; we would see the Superdome every day at the elevators on the 24th floor.
The lines were long everywhere that day for some reason (they weren't so bad on subsequent days except for New Years); this is the line for the muffuletta at the Central Grocery.
It was about an hour wait. The interior of the shop is a simple Italian grocery store, although few come for the supplies.
Their muffuletta isn't as massive as some of the other knock-offs, but it tastes way better. If you're an average sized person, one half of a muffuletta will probably be your limit.
Time to walk off those calories at the Mississippi River levee.
Semi-professional street performers in front of Jackson Square.
Quintessential French Quarter
The fleur de lys, for New Years.
Crescent City Brewery - I had the tasting flight, and she stuck to the red ale.
As full as we were, we decided to get all of our "must eats" out of the way, so we went to Johnny's Po Boys to share one. Another long wait...
Shrimp po boy (I wanted oysters, but the chica was not having it). Verdict = the shrimp was delicious but the rest of the sandwich wasn't very appealing. Overly dry bread, not very much taste, and way overpriced. Live and learn.
Time to go back to Jackson Square to enter the St Louis Cathedral.
Andrew Jackson, one of the more controversial presidents.
The weather was gorgeous that day, by the way.
The interior of the church doesn't fail to impress.
Right next door is the Louisiana State Museum, which was hosting a Hurricane Katrina exhibit.
This is Fats Domino's piano; he was feared dead in the flooding, but lived to tell the tale. His piano wasn't so lucky.
An example of notations made on doors / walls to show that a house had been inspected by an official agency for survivors, bodies, etc. Very sad about the dog.
Time for a drink - off to the Napoleon House!
They're famous for precisely one drink = the Pimm's Cup. Recommended.
The alleyways of the French Quarter are charming.
The Carousel Bar, maybe the best gimmick I've seen. The bar actually rotates (it takes 14 minutes exactly to make a revolution - I timed it).
While we waited for a seat to open up at the actual bar, we ordered our drinks. I had a Ramos Gin Fizz (yummy).
Our perseverance paid off - as silly as it sounds, the bar is a lot of fun.
I know it seems like we did nothing but eat and drink - and that's true. However, there was actually a fair amount of time between meals. Our last meal of the day would take place at the Acme Oyster House.
My girlfriend doesn't do oysters (especially raw ones), but I talked her into the cooked ones. She absolutely loved them.
The French Quarter at night is an exciting place.
But it can also be a bit spooky.
We finished the night watching jazz at the Snug Harbor in the Fauborg Marigny district (adjacent to the French Quarter). However, my camera died - this is the only photo I have of the district the club was in. Sigh...
To be continued...