From alligator to zucchini, Gambit's summer restaurant guide offers a handy way to find your favorite natural resources at local restaurants. From fresh crabs to french fries, salads to steaks, onions to oysters, there are ingredients and dishes from menus across the New Orleans area. When you find a dish or restaurant that interests you, flip to the directory for information on hours of service, reservation policy, prices and more.

Scientists say the American alligator is 200 million years old, but he's still providing inspiration for new dishes. At Felix's Restaurant & Oyster Bar, he comes blackened or fried as an appetizer. Antoine's serves a sophisticated alligator bisque splashed with sherry. Shrimp and alligator sausage cheesecake is a house specialty and customer favorite at Jacques-Imo's Cafe. At The Gumbo Shop, alligator sauce piquante features gator tenderloins in light, spicy tomato sauce. Cafe Pontalba puts a unique spin on the traditional Caesar salad by topping it with blackened alligator. Buster's Soul Food offers its alligator sausage either as an appetizer or as the main attraction in an alligator po-boy. Fried alligator is an appetizer at The Gazebo Cafe. Cooter Brown's Tavern's Bayou Philly is like a cheese steak, but assembled with alligator sausage, shrimp, peppers, onions, American and Jack cheeses and remoulade sauce.


"Remind me to tell you about the time I looked into the heart of an artichoke!" is one of the most famous lines from All About Eve. Peep at your own 'chokes here. At O'Brien's Grille, it's served as a savory cheesecake with oysters. Rajun Cajun Cafe & Catering stuffs it as an appetizer. Grilled with garlic butter is the artichoke preparation at Zachary's by the Lake. Aunt Leni's bakes artichoke hearts in a rich frittata. At Cafe Roma Uptown, artichokes team up with mushrooms, feta and garlic sauce in a sandwich. Capedeville makes an artichoke bruschetta on sliced ciabatta topped with shaved Parmesan and herbs. That's Amore Pizza inverts artichoke and spinach dip onto a crispy 12-inch pie crust as an appetizer.


Did you know asparagus is part of the lily family? Here's where to stalk the delicious vegetable. At Beijing Restaurant, asparagus is wrapped in chicken and sauteed with sesame seeds. Cafe EnVie presses it in a panini with prosciutto. Cafe Giovanni serves a fried version with sun-dried pumpkin seed and basil pesto. Kyoto's beef and asparagus roll features grilled beef wrapped around asparagus spears and green onions and is served with teriyaki sauce. At Rambla, marinated white asparagus tips are served with Serrano ham, Louisiana crabmeat and white asparagus puree.


Stuffed, mashed, or sliced, the rich flesh of the avocado makes it one of the most sensuous of fruits. Mayas Restaurant & Bar serves it in a salad with mango over a bed of organic baby spinach (shrimp or chicken optional). Caffe! Caffe! also does an avocado salad — this one with romaine, Gorgonzola, walnuts and orange slices. El Gato Negro goes nouvelle with a plate of perfectly ripened avocado slices, hit with lime and the restaurant's secret Mexican spice blend. Carlos Mencia's Maggie Rita's Mexican Grill's chicken and avocado soup bouys diced avocado in chicken and cilantro broth with tortilla strips nesting on top. Chevy's Fresh Mex spices up guacamole with cilantro, jalapenos, onions, tomato and lime juice. At Ciro's Cote Sud, avocado, tomato and mozzarella rest on a bed of greens dressed in vinaigrette. Avocado and lump crab salad is dressed with pico de gallo and creamy herb dressing at Landry's Seafood House. The avocado hoagie at the Mellow Mushroom features avocado drizzled with lemon juice and served with provolone, onion and sprouts on French or wheat bread. Lakeview Brew Coffee Cafe's avocado salad uses a bed of organic mixed greens topped with avocado, Mandarin orange slices, walnuts, blue cheese and red onions in mango vinaigrette. Sun Ray Grill's signature guacamole combines avocado, onions, tomato, cilantro and lime juice and is served with blue corn chips.


Everyone's favorite fruit comes in its own color-coordinated carrying case. Peel out to Ben & Jerry's for some Chunky Monkey ice cream (banana with fudge and walnuts). At Cafe Prytania's Milk Bar, cool off with a hand-dipped banana milkshake. Bittersweet Confections does a bananas Foster truffle with dark Swiss chocolate ganache. Waffles, pancakes and French toast get a bananas Foster sauce at the Broken Egg Cafe. Copeland's Cheesecake Bistro is home to the "$10 Banana Split," which comes with every topping imaginable, including fresh strawberries. Emeril's towering banana cream pie with graham cracker crust, caramel sauce and chocolate shavings is a signature dessert.


It's summertime, and grills just wanna have fun. Dickie Brennan's Steak House barbecues a 14-oz. USDA prime rib-eye and tops it with Abita barbecue shrimp. Mark Twain's Pizza Landing serves a spicy mesquite barbecue chicken. If you can't decide at Voodoo BBQ & Grill, go for the Voodoo combo platter (a half-rack of ribs and a half of a barbecue chicken). Pig out at the Whole Hog Cafe with the Whole Hawg Platter, which includes pulled pork, brisket, baby back ribs and fixins. Zea Rotisserie Grill slow-barbecues St. Louis ribs and serves them wet, dry or with a popular Thai sauce. A barbecue chicken wrap in your choice of tortilla makes a great lunch at Cafe d'Cappuccino. And at Bywater Restaurant and Bar-B-Que, the barbecue pulled pork sandwich is topped with the chef's signature sauce. At Corky's Ribs & BBQ, the Killer includes a slab of wet or dry ribs plus a choice of either a barbecue chicken quarter, pulled pork, brisket, turkey, sausage or fried chicken. Hickory wood flavors the pork shoulder, ribs and beef brisket at Hillbilly Bar-B-Q. The Joint's "W" special includes barbecue pork, brisket, two pork spareribs and sides. Tabletop grills allow diners to cook their own Korean-style barbecue of thinly sliced beef at Korea House.


Beans are a healthy, lo-cal source of protein and vitamins — and they're delicious. At the English Tea Room, Heinz baked beans are served in traditional British style on toast. J Gumbo's dishes out a huge bowl of vegetarian Cajun white bean chili. On Thursdays, Magazine Po-Boy Shop takes traditional white beans and rice and adds fried catfish. A popular side at A Mano is fagioli alla Toscana — cannellini beans with garlic and herbs. Eat New Orleans marries black-eyed peas with green tomatoes to make a cold, spicy salsa. Wayne Jacob's Smokehouse & Restaurant serves its white beans and rice with grilled smoked sausage and vegetables. Home-style barbecue baked beans are a popular side item at WOW Cafe & Wingery locations. Butter beans and rice is a twist on a local favorite at Fiorella's. Horinoya serves traditional Japanese natto, fermented beans used as a spread. White beans and rice with sausage is a Wednesday special at Koz's. White beans and shrimp with sides of jambalaya and a fried catfish fillet is a lunch special at Jaeger's Seafood and Beer Garden. Welty's Deli serves white beans with a smoked ham shank. Butter beans and rice is one of the Creole soul food favorites at Willie Mae's Scotch House.


... it's what's for dinner (and lunch) at these eateries. Fiesta Latina serves its carne asada with refried beans and sweet fried plantains. Traditional beef Burgundy over buttered noodles is a specialty at the Crystal Room at Le Pavillon. The Dejà Vu Bar also has a char-broiled New York strip steak special on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The surf and turf at Besh Steak House at Harrah's features tournedos of beef and crawfish bearnaise. The Country Club serves its meatloaf studded with tasso and sherried mushrooms. The J&N Special at the Kosher Cajun New York Deli & Grocery is a sandwich with both hot corned beef and pastrami on rye. Delicate beef carpaccio packs a big punch with peppery greens and white truffle oil at Bacco. The Palm Court Jazz Cafe's Creole beef Indienne is sauteed in seven Indian spices and served with mango chutney. Vic's Kangaroo Cafe goes from Australia to England with a traditional shepherd's pie, guv'nuh. Pho NOLA's "shakin' beef" is wok-seared cube steak served with a house-made honey mustard sauce. Abita Bar-B-Que's brisket is slow-smoked and served with two traditional Southern sides. Boudin-stuffed meatloaf comes with corn maque choux at Ignatius Eatery and Grocery. The Ugly Dog Saloon's barbecue beef brisket platters come in half- and quarter-pound sizes with sides. The Shaggy Joe at Stein's Deli & Market combines sliced beef tongue, Swiss cheese, coleslaw and Russian dressing on rye. Horseradish-spiked cocktail sauce accompanies the signature beef brisket at Tujague's. The Uptown po-boy institution Domilise's serves its roast beef version dripping in homemade gravy and dressed with Creole mustard. Venezia makes braciolone by filling beef round with breadcrumbs, raisins, pine nuts and eggs. IHOP's pot roast melt sandwich on sourdough bread is dressed with sauteed onions, American and Swiss cheeses and extra gravy. Fat City Diner serves meatballs on a po-boy everyday and with spaghetti on Wednesdays. Gordon Biersch pairs its German-style beers with hearty dishes like teriyaki flat iron steak served with garlic mashed potatoes and asparagus. In the classic Cuban dish ropa viejo, Country Flame serves shredded stewed beef in a spicy tomato sauce with rice. Spicy gound beef fills the empanadas served with roasted red pepper aioli at Mimi's in the Marigny. Tarka serves Pakistani dishes such as haleem, a thick beef stew with lentils.


Forget the canned stuff; these beets are fresh, sweet and mild. Dante's Kitchen uses locally sourced beets and pairs them with a green bean pickle relish. Restaurant August's heirloom beet salad features crabmeat, bacon and quail eggs tossed in a sugarcane vinaigrette. Cafe Amelie does a beet salad with chevre, walnuts and balsamic vinaigrette over mixed greens. The Green Goddess works its culinary inventiveness with golden beet "ravioli" which presents beet slices filled with truffled chevre, finished with pomegranate molasses and avocado oil. Le Meritage serves beet salad with pistachios, goat cheese and orange blossom vinaigrette. Beet and ricotta ravioli are served with ginger-sage buerre noisette at Meauxbar Bistro.

Bell Pepper

Native to Mexico and Central America, bell pepper is one of the ingredients in the Cajun "holy trinity" (celery and onion being the others). Franky & Johnny's serves its fried bell pepper rings with cool ranch dressing. Two Sisters Restaurant stuffs its bell peppers with ground beef, crabmeat and shrimp. Get a bell pepper stuffed with green onion sausage and topped with tomato sauce at Emeril's Delmonico. At Mano's Po-boys, a stuffed bell pepper with lima beans and rice is a Wednesday blue plate special at lunch. The dressing inside the peppers at City Diner is a savory mix of crabmeat, shrimp, andouille and ground meat. Praline Connection's bell peppers are stuffed with ground beef and shrimp and topped with brown gravy. Crabmeat-, shrimp- and eggplant-stuffed peppers are served with angel hair pasta, salad and a vegetable at Fury's.


This fish stew from the port city of Marseilles is uniquely suited to New Orleans interpretations. Broussard's version is elegant and tasty: fish, shrimp, scallops, mussels and oysters in a saffron-tomato broth. Galvez Restaurant puts a Spanish twist on bouillabaisse with clams, mussels, scallops, fish, shrimp and calamari in saffron-scented broth with herbs. Grand Isle's Creole bouillabaisse is stocked with shrimp, oysters, Gulf fish and vegetables in seafood stock and served with a rouille crouton.

Bread and Baked Goods

At these restaurants, it's always leaven o'clock (get it?). The Bean Gallery serves the "Healthy Bagel," with Swiss cheese, tomato, cucumbers, avocado and a drizzle of olive oil. A variety of scones (cranberry walnut, cinnamon, blueberry, strawberry) are freshly baked at Vianne's Tea House and served with jams and lemon curd. Cafe Luna's Victorian home-turned-coffeehouse serves up bagels, scones and muffins. At the Clover Grill, a huge biscuit comes split and smothered in traditional Southern gravy. Fair Grinds Coffeehouse offers vegan breads and baked goods. Buttery house-baked croissants with fruit or almond paste fillings are the calling card of Croissant d'Or. Cafe du Monde has served beignets covered in powdered sugar for more than a century at the French Market. Get blueberry, cranberry-walnut and oat bran muffins or other baked goods at Laurel Street Bakery. Tandoori Chicken's Indian flatbread choices include naan, whole wheat roti and unleavened pratha. Savory pain perdu is topped with smoked bacon and heirloom tomatoes and served with arugula and roasted garlic vinaigrette at Gautreau's. An array of petit fours and doberge cakes are among the offerings at Gambino's Bakery. Naked Pizza uses its special probiotic dough for breadsticks topped with mozzarella and cheddar cheeses. Morning Call Coffee Stand serves beignets topped with powdered sugar. Good Earth Market and Cafe bakes scones daily and offers versions with white chocolate and berries, cranberry, pecans and even savory versions with bacon or cheese. Dark chocolate caramel cookies and flavored macaroons are among the confections served at Sucre. La Boulangerie offers a classic Napoleon, a chocolate-topped pastry with layers of vanilla custard cream and wafers. Z'otz Cafe's selection of baked goods include a variety of muffins plus vegan fruit tarts. Hey! Cafe serves some vegan baked goods and pumpkin raisin muffins and chocolate banana bread.

Bread Pudding

There are as many flavors of bread pudding as there are cheesecake, making it a versatile and delicious dessert. On the Steamboat Natchez's dinner jazz cruise, meals are finished with cinnamon bread pudding over custard and topped with pecan-bourbon sauce. Tommy's Wine Bar ups the richness and decadence with a praline-pecan bread pudding. Tello's Bistro's bread pudding is made with white chocolate and topped with caramel-whiskey sauce. And Brennan's Restaurant's bread pudding St. Joan d'Arc is the beau ideal of traditional New Orleans bread puddings, made with French bread and topped with whipped cream sauce potent with whiskey. Bread pudding is served with praline rum sauce at Le Citron Bistro.


Where's the beef? Apparently it's everywhere around the city, where bars, burger joints and diners serve up their own variations of the classic. Beachcorner Bar & Grill's 10-oz. "spicy burger" attributes its extra kick to hot sauce and jalapeno peppers. Checkpoint Charlie's Cajun burger adds spice with hot sauce and Cajun seasoning on its half-pound Angus beef patty. The S.O.B burger at Hard Rock Cafe mixes hot and cool with a spicy chipotle pepper puree and guacamole. The Clubhouse Bar & Grill's Squealing Bull features 10 ounces of meat, stuffed and topped with cheddar cheese and bacon. Everything is bigger in Texas, which might explain Down the Hatch's Texan burger, which tops a half-pound black Angus ground beef patty with caramelized onions, smoked bacon, cheddar cheese and a fried egg. Oscar's serves a half-pound beef burger with an over-stuffed baked potato. The Philly burger at Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar comes on a toasted hoagie bun piled high with grilled onions, sauteed peppers and mushrooms and is smothered in creamy cheese sauce and aged white cheddar. It may be a seafood restaurant, but Bonefish Grill serves as American-style Kobe beef burger on a soft brioche bun with lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle, special sauce and cheddar cheese. Igor's Bar & Grill's eponymous Igor burger is a standard half-pound burger. Its cousin Igor's Buddha Belly spices up a Cajun burger with Tony Chachere seasoning and hot sauce. It may be meatless, but the veggie burger at Brooks Seahorse Saloon is still hearty with the choice of jalapeno poppers, egg rolls, fries or nuggets on the side. The famous burger at Clover Grill is grilled under a hubcap and is customizable with a variety of fixings. Squeal Bar-B-Q's Big Squeal, a 10-oz. burger blend of hot sausage and ground beef, is dressed with lettuce, tomato, onion and pickles and mayonnaise. Take a break from waffles and try the Hot Dot burger at Dot's Diner, a blend of hot sausage and ground beef garnished with lettuce, tomato and American cheese. The Cheeseburger in Paradise at Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville Cafe comes with American cheese, lettuce, tomato and that song stuck in your head for the rest of the meal. Elizabeth's tops its Dream burger with signature house-made praline bacon and blue cheese. At Chateau du Lac, the filet burger is topped with lettuce, tomato, housemade mayonnaise, cornichons and blue or Swiss cheese, and there's an optional seared foie gras upgrade. At Hooter's, the house burger is served with a choice of bacon, chili, grilled onions or mushrooms and either cheddar, Jack, American or provolone cheese. Bacon mushroom cheeseburgers are served on white or wheat buns or pistolettes at Lakeview Harbor. At Krystal, single and double-stack cheeseburgers are dressed with pickles and onions. St. Charles Tavern's Primanti burger features a half-pound patty on ciabatta with coleslaw. The deli burger at O'Henry's is topped with sliced pastrami and melted Monterey Jack cheese and served dressed. The Western burger at Friar Tuck's saddles a half-pound patty with pepper Jack cheese, red onion and barbecue sauce. Phil's Grill offers a seemingly endless number of combinations for building your own burger starting with a beef, bison, alligator, turkey or veggie patty and adding cheese, sauces, bacon, fried eggs, vegetable toppings and more. Port of Call keeps it simple with thick burgers topped with either cheese or sauteed mushrooms. Mini Sombreros are Tomatillo's tapas-menu sliders, which come topped with bacon and cheddar or blue cheese and caramelized onions. The Times Grill offers a taste of Southern pride with its chicken-fried steak burger.


Whether you want something to stick your fork in or a cupcake to take on the go, there are many layers of variety to this confection. Who Dat Coffee Cafe's decadent espresso coffee cake is a miniature Bundt cake with a creamy espresso filling and is drizzled with white chocolate. Lüke bakes a gateau Basque, a moist cake piped with a rum pastry cream and topped with strawberries macerated in Creole Shrubb liqueur and whipped creme fraiche. Andrea's Restaurant puts its stamp on the English Trifle by adding layers of cream, fresh strawberries, candied fruit, Triple Sec and Grand Marnier to homemade chocolate and vanilla sponge cake. La Provence's strawberry shortcake features berries picked from the restaurant's garden that are marinated in Grand Marnier and topped with buttermilk ice cream. Cochon's version of the dessert comes with honey-glazed biscuits and an elderberry liquor creme fraiche. Good things come in small packages at Bee Sweet Cupcakes, where the Joe Dirt is a chocolate cupcake dipped in Oreo crumbs topped with a gooey gummy worm. Popular cakes like red velvet, chocolate, white wedding, yellow and coconut are available as cakes or cupcakes at New Orleans Cake Cafe. The Kupcake Factory's gourmet flavors include the Fat Elvis with banana cake and peanut butter frosting, cookies and cream, chocolate deluxe, pina colada, mango passion, caramel apple and others.


Wrap your tentacles around these great calamari items on local menus. Dante's Kitchen's squid is braised in red wine and served with house-made pasta, fennel, wild arugula and orange bordelaise. Marrying two first-course favorites, The Country Club's fried calamari Caesar wrap combines romaine lettuce, grilled onion, Kalamata olives and Caesar dressing in a flour tortilla. Fausto's Bistro's frutti di mare is a seafood medley of calamari, shrimp, crab claws, mussels, oysters and fillet of the fish-of-the-day sauteed with fresh herbs, garlic and a seafood sauce reduction. Sal & Judy's squid is deep-fried. Wasabi's calamari gets a tempura batter and comes with bell peppers and jumbo onions. The flash-fried calamari at Broussard's arrives with Creole tomato and olive relish. At The Bombay Club, flash-fried calamari is shaken up with Asian sweet chili sauce and sambal lime sour cream.


This bayou feline is baked, broiled and fried across south Louisiana. Adam's Catfish House serves whole, deep-fried catfish with french fries, hush puppies and coleslaw. The catfish Foster at Restaurant des Familles is sauteed and served with lemon buerre blanc, artichoke bottoms, mushrooms and green onions. Manchac institution Middendorf's is famous for thin strips of fried catfish, which come with homemade coleslaw, hush puppies and french fries. The Cajun catfish from Rajun Cajun Cafe and Catering features catfish fillets stuffed with crabmeat dressing and served with crawfish cream sauce and a side of roasted Cajun potatoes. Stuffed catfish is smothered in a creamy eggplant sauce and shrimp at Mr. Poor Boy. Des Allemands catfish is rolled in cornmeal and pan fried to order at Bozo's Restaurant and Oyster Bar. Sides like baked macaroni and cheese, fried okra and hush puppies fill a plate of Breaux Mart's crispy fried catfish. Catfish Lafayette is topped with crawfish, mushroom and green onion cream sauce at Columbia Street Tap Room & Grill. Crispy fried catfish is a lunch option at Steve's Diner. At Mulate's, the namesake catfish specialty features a grilled fillet topped with crawfish etouffee and served with jambalaya and vegetables. Sweet Lorraine's Jazz Club serves blackened catfish over spinach and mushrooms. A baked catfish fillet wrapped around crawfish dressing is one of the daily specials served at Canseco's Market. Fury's serves whole fried catfish with potato salad and vegetable or green salad.


Those craving a fromage nosh can find their favorites in a number of dishes. A pub staple like cheese fries is beefed up with steak fries covered in melted Monterey Jack and cheddar cheese, bacon and green onions at Fox and Hound. Or for a more authentic English spin, the English Tea Room serves a cheese and Branston pickle sandwich with potato crisps. Tommy's Wine Bar's cheese and fruit platter features the chef's selection of fine artisanal cheeses and fresh fruit. At Vine and Dine, the selection of gourmet cheeses includes an Italian Gorgonzola Dulce and Red Dragon cheddar with brown ale and mustard seed. Fried goat cheese and toasted walnuts top a mixed green salad at The Hungry Forager. Julie's Little India Kitchen at Schiro's Cafe & Bar serves saag paneer, a dish of Indian cheese and spinach sauteed with onions, garlic and masala sauce. A decadent croque monsieur sandwich at the Columns Hotel's Albertine's Tea Room is filled with melted Gruyere cheese with Black Forest ham and served with french fries dusted with truffle salt. At Cafe Granada, mango ginger sauce tops golden fried goat cheese balls as a tapa dish. Wayne Jacob's Smokehouse and Restaurant offers "Cajun cheese and crackers" with its homemade hogshead cheese. Head to St. James Cheese Company for a Radette cheese sandwich with house-made pastrami and spicy pickles on rye bread. Provoleta is a grilled Argentine cheese topped with olive oil and oregano at La Boca. Nirvana Indian Cuisine makes saag paneer by sauteing Indian cheese with curried spinach and mustard leaf. Dip bread, vegetables and apples into a traditional Swiss fondue of Emmenthaler, Gruyere and Swiss cheeses with white wine, garlic, nutmeg, lemon and Kirschwasser at The Melting Pot. Get a pressed Brie sandwich at Terrazu.


This favored fowl is appealing when dressed up or down. Corner Oyster Bar has a marinated and grilled chicken breast topped with a thick roux with crawfish tails, peppers and mushrooms on a bed of white rice. Bun ga from Doson Noodle House is a bowl of grilled chicken over rice or vermicelli noodles. At Flaming Torch Restaurant, coq au vin features a crispy-skinned, free-range half bird braised in red wine and served with a root vegetable. Cafe Rose Nicaud's Jamaican jerk chicken is marinated in a homemade, spicy jerk sauce and can be served three ways: in a sandwich, in a salad or in a rice bowl. The Mandarin chicken from Fong's Chinese Restaurant is boneless fried chicken with homemade gravy. The Suprema Napolitane at Tango Argentinean Grill is a breaded and lightly fried boneless chicken breast topped with basil tomato sauce and melted cheese and accompanied by fried potatoes. At Mosca's Restaurant, chicken a la grande is a whole chicken baked with white wine, garlic, rosemary, Italian seasonings. Fried chicken anchors the reputation of Willie Mae's Scotch House. Drop by Verti Marte any time for chicken Creole covered in spicy cheese sauce served with two sides. Chicken shawarma is thinly sliced boneless chicken marinated in garlic, olive oil and Middle Eastern spices and served with hummus and rice at Albasha Greek and Lebanese Restaurant. Chicken and kufta meat are skewered on kebabs and arrive with sides of hummus, salad, bread or basmati rice at Babylon Cafe. Chicken goes south of the border at Adobe Cantina and Salsa, where the pollo loco is topped with mushrooms, spinach and cheese and served with vegetables and bean soup. At Acropolis Cuisine, the chicken Acropolis is a pan-sauteed chicken breast topped with spinach, eggplant, feta and mozzarella cheese, presented on a bed of angel hair pasta with marinara sauce. Wolfe's in the Warehouse makes chicken saltimbocca by pan-searing chicken breast, wrapping it in prosciutto and sage and serving it on a sweet corn grit cake with tomato jus. Cafe Minh's ga boti features seared chicken cubes served with steamed vegetables, mixed baby greens, and sticky and jasmine rice. Bywater Restaurant and Bar-B-Que's fried chicken is smothered in country gravy and served with baked macaroni and cheese and a side of greens. Boswell's Jamaican Grill offers a Jamaican chicken and pork combination plate. For lunch, Black Orchid Bistro's sweet chicken Theresa is a marinated, grilled chicken breast with a Vidalia onion sauce, served on wheat bun. Irene's Cuisine's chicken rosamarino is a half chicken cooked in a blend of spices, white wine and virgin olive oil, served with rosemary garlic au jus and pasta marinara. Buttermilk fried chicken breast arrives atop bourbon mashed sweet potatoes with country ham cream gravy and sugar snap peas at NOLA. Buster's Place makes chicken la Louisianne, featuring two marinated and grilled chicken breasts topped with crawfish sauce and served over rice. Buffa's Lounge tops its chicken Delmonico sandwich with onions, peppers and cheese. Saltwater Grill's Riverbend chicken is marinated in French dressing, grilled and served with sauteed portobello and crawfish, mashed potatoes and Creole sauce. Brooks Seahorse Saloon fills a friend chicken sandwich with lettuce and tomato with a pickle on the side and a choice of sides like jalapeno poppers, egg rolls, french fries or chicken nuggets. Curry Corner takes a cue from Thai cooking with its red coconut curry chicken with ginger and basil. Fried chicken is a Thursday special at the deli at Acquistapace's Covington Supermarket. Jamaican jerk chicken is a frequent lunch special at Coco Hut and is served with salad and rice. Chicken lula is marinated with Middle Eastern herbs and spices at Pyramids Cafe. Fiorella's established its reputation with signature fried chicken. At On the Bayou Restaurant, rosemary chicken and shrimp is served with mashed potatoes and a vegetable. Fettuccini and corn maque choux are topped with blackened chicken and cream sauce at Pierre Maspero's. La Madeleine's chicken friand cradles chicken, mushrooms and bechamel sauce in a puff pastry. Spicy Szechuan chicken comes with shrimp or pork fried rice at Yummy Yummy. At Cafe Bamboo, chicken isn't even chicken — soy nuggets are dressed in a bourbon barbecue sauce and served with mashed sweet potatoes, sauteed spinach and corn bread. Though not written on the menu, garlicky chicken bonne femme is always an entree option at Tujague's. Byblos Market cooks chicken shawarma on the rotisseries and complements it with black olives, feta and tzatziki sauce and pita. Taj Mahal serves traditional Indian chicken tikka masala with tomato and onion sauce and masala sauce. Get smoked chicken salad on a bun at Walker's Southern Style BBQ. Rouses' deli offers chicken baked, fried or cooked on the rotisserie.


New Orleanians can't wait to get their claws on these crustaceans. Have crab four ways at Deanie's Seafood — crab au gratin, stuffed crab, fried soft-shell crab and fried crab claws arrive together with french fries and coleslaw. The Columns Hotel's Albertine's Tea Room serves Louisiana lump crabmeat atop a fried green tomato with lemongrass beurre blanc. At Cafe Degas, jumbo lump crabmeat salad includes shaved fennel, baby arugula, grapefruit, crispy shallots and tarragon vinaigrette. Middendorf's serves its seasoned boiled crabs through summer. Not quite a desert, Palace Cafe's crabmeat cheesecake is baked with a pecan crust and topped with wild mushrooms and Creole meuniere. At Austin's Restaurant, crawfish crab cakes are fried crab cakes topped with crawfish dill cream sauce and served with potatoes and seasoned vegetables. Curried Dungeness crab is wok fried with a mild chili and cocnut curry at Bambu at Harrah's. Two 3-oz. crab cakes are served over angel hair pasta and tossed with spicy, creamy marinara at Cafe Ditali's. Crab cakes topped with quail eggs and roasted pepper coulis are served with polenta at Boston Street Bistro. At La Petite Grocery, baked blue crab is topped with Brie and chives for a popular appetizer. Louisiana blue crab goes into the crab cakes topped with mushroom and crawfish cream sauce at Oceana Grill. The Tom and Grace Benson crabmeat salad at Impastato's Restaurant features Louisiana lumb crabmeat, asparagus, black olives, tomatoes, artichokes and hearts of palm. The Buffet at Harrah's features snow crab on Tuesdays and Dungeness crab on Thursdays. Mr. Ed's Seafood & Italian Restaurant serves crabmeat au gratin with potatoes and salad. Crab cakes drizzled with remoulade perch on top of wilted spinach with chipotle-caramelized oranges at Orleans Grapevine Wine Bar & Bistro. The crab dinner at Don's Seafood Hut nets diners a haul of fried crab fingers, crab gumbo, crab cocktail, crab au gratin, stuffed crab and a baked potato. Palmetto's on the Bayou serves crab cakes with horseradish cream. Lump crab and marinated artichokes top a tomato half for a salad dressed with balsamic vinaigrette and a drizzle of remoulade at Ristorante Filippo. Crab rangoons are crabmeat and cream cheese filled crispy fried wontons served with sweet and sour sauce at Boomtown Casino's Asia.


From backyard boils to white linen tablecloths, crawfish are found on ever type of menu. Franky and Johnny's prepares tart-sized, baked crawfish pies. At Allegro Bistro, crab and crawfish etouffee is served with rice pilaf and green onion garnish. The crawfish cake platter at Cafe Beignet combines three lightly breaded and fried crawfish cakes, french fries and fried okra. J Gumbo's crawfish cheese dip has a crawfish etouffee base, cheddar cheese, a sprinkle of chili powder and is served with tortilla chips. Pick up boiled crawfish by the pound at Kenner Seafood. The Palm Court Jazz Cafe's Crawfish Nantua features crawfish tails flambeed in cognac cream sauce. At The Gumbo Shop, crawfish etouffee is a stew of crawfish tails simmered in sauce with onion, bell pepper, celery, garlic and cayenne pepper served over rice. Find crawfish Telemachus at Liuzza's Restaurant and Bar, where crawfish tails come in spicy cream sauce tossed with angel hair pasta. At Bon Ton Cafe, crawfish can be found in etouffee, jambalaya and omelets. Joe Sepie's Cafe serves crawfish etouffee with a lettuce and tomato salad. Crawfish pies and remoulade sauce go in a sandwich called Boudreaux's Special at Cooter Brown's Tavern. Crawfish etouffee is a popular dish on the menu of Creole favorites at Montrel's Bistro and is the base filling for puff pastry crawfish pies at The Market Cafe. Sun Ray Grill tops a ciabatta bruschetta with crawfish and mushroom sauce, marinated artichoke hearts, sun-dried tomato, green onion and Parmesan cheese. Boiled crawfish are among the local seafood items at Asian Super Buffet. The Times Grill serves crawfish tails in garlicky Creole cream sauce over fettuccini with Parmesan and scallions.


These thin French pancakes go international in New Orleans. Find crispy Vietnamese pan-fried crepes at Pho NOLA, where the Saigon crepe, made with rice flour and coconut milk, is stuffed with shrimp, pork and bean sprouts served with lettuce, cucumber, fresh herbs and fish sauce. At Thanh Thanh, banh xeo comprises pork, shrimp and bean sprouts in Vietnamese crepes, with sides of lettuce, herbs, pickled carrots, cucumbers and fish sauce. Tango Argentinean Grill puts a twist on a cannelloni by filling a delicate crepe with ricotta cheese, walnuts and ham, and serves it with pink sauce. At Tomatillo's, crawfish and crabmeat fill roasted corn crepes topped with roasted poblano salsa. Crepes a la Cart's crepe a la Montagne is chicken, mushrooms, white asparagus, garlic, olive oil and cream rolled together. The seafood crepes at Creole Skillet feature shrimp and crabmeat inside and caramelized onion cream sauce on top. La Crepe Nanou uses a ratatouille of eggplant, zucchini, tomato, bell pepper, onion and sauteed mushrooms in its crepe Provencale. The crawfish and goat cheese crepe with creamy Chardonnay sauce is a signature dish at Muriel's Jackson Square. Re-engineered blue corn crepes are filled with a ragout of wild mushrooms, Aztec huitlacoche (technically a corn fungus) and brandy at Green Goddess.


Diners with a sweet tooth can find many inviting morsels to bite into at local restaurants. Bittersweet Confections crafts an Indian chai chocolate with dark Swiss chocolate ganache, organic black tea, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger and hints of black pepper and clove. At Who Dat Coffee Cafe, the chocolate bacon cupcake dollops chocolate frosting over a bacon-enhanced chocolate cupcake. Grab a cup of Nonna's blend coffee and choose from a variety of donuts (including cake on Sundays) from Nonna Randazzo's Italian Bakery and Cafe. After slurping raw oysters, stick a straw in a cool root beer float at Acme Oyster House. Angelo Brocato is famous for its cannolis — crisp, cone-shaped shells filled with ricotta cheese and a sugar mix of half vanilla and half chocolate dipped in pistachio nuts. The "sweet treats" dessert bar at The Buffet at Harrah's features pralines, bananas Foster, strawberry shortcake, blackout cake, Key lime pie and coconut pie. Riverbend newcomer Pure Yogurt Culture is a self-serve yogurt bar with a variety of dry and fresh fruit toppings and six changing nonfat frozen yogurt choices, including the Who Dat mystery flavor. Crepes a la Cart offers sweet crepes like the Funky French Monkey Crepe filled with peanut butter, chocolate chips and banana. Dip an array of fruit and sweets into a pot of chocolate fondue at The Melting Pot.


Duck is a poultry powerhouse on New Orleans menus. At Fong's Chinese Restaurant, the Mandarin duck is a boneless duck served with Fong's special sauce. Feelings Cafe's duck Bilarade is half a Long Island duck that's deboned, roasted and glazed with semi-sweet orange sauce made with Grand Marnier and served on bed of pecan rice and asparagus. Warm, sliced duck breast sauteed with scallions tops a mixed green salad with Roma tomatoes, garlic, balsamic vinegar, olive oil and walnut oil at Louisiana Pizza Kitchen. At Mike's on the Avenue, thin-sliced, crispy duck breast is seasoned with Szechuan black pepper, salt, soy and chile, pan seared and finished in a fryer, before being plated with duck sauce, roasted flour tortillas and brown rice. Palace Cafe serves a pepper-crusted duck breast with seared Hudson Valley foie gras on a bed of parsnip mashed potatoes with citrus confit salad and sauce au poivre. Crabby Jack's offers a slow-roasted duck po-boy. Egg rolls at The Court of Two Sisters are filled with duck and Napa cabbage and served with sweet and spicy Creole mustard sauce. At 7 on Fulton, duck breast is accompanied by bacon lardons, apple puree and a fresh hearts of palm salad. The St. Chuck Duck at J'Anita's at Avenue Pub is a grilled sourdough sandwich with Cabernet-sauteed duck, currant tapenade, cheddar and blue cheeses and Granny Smith apples. Irene's Cuisine's duck St. Philip is a crisp raspberry- and pancetta-glazed half duckling on a bed of spinach with rosemary vinaigrette served with vegetables, Louisiana pecans and mashed sweet potatoes. Grand Isle dresses its duck debris po-boy with coleslaw and pickles. At Stella!, chef Scott Boswell's signature Duck Five Ways includes a Szechuan-style seared breast, lacquered leg and thigh, moo shoo pancake stir fry, duck miso broth, foie gras won tons and cassis reduction. Duck and andouille spring rolls are served with peach-chili sauce, wasabi aioli and cucumber salad at Marigny Brasserie. Grilled duck sausage over white bean and applewood-smoked bacon ragout is a tapas dish at Vega Tapas Cafe. The combination of confit duck leg quarter and roasted Steen's Cane Syrup-cured duck breast are served with ginger-strawberry demi-glace and goat cheese stone-ground grits at Martinique Bistro. MiLa brines duck with sweet tea, roasts it on a rotisserie and complements it with wilted spinach, roasted beets and date jus. Cuvee combines smoked duck breast and a crispy duck leg confit over oregano and white bean salad with salsa verde and a seared slice of Hudson Valley foie gras. Louisiana Bistro serves a duck leg confit with barbecue glaze and tasso mashed potatoes. Molasses-cured duck with chevre and duck confit ravioli are served with onion marmalade at Ristorante da Piero. Upperline's signature roast duck comes with a choice of either ginger-peach of garlic-port sauce. Tommy's Cuisine fans sliced duck breast over spinach salad with sauteed mushrooms, candied pecans and an orange reduction.

Egg Roll

Traditional and creative egg rolls are crispy treats at all sorts of restaurants. The fried egg rolls at Thanh Thanh are packed with Louisiana lump crabmeat, shrimp, chicken and pork, and served with sweet chili sauce. Doson Noodle House's egg rolls are fried and come two to an order. For Cajun flair, try Bonefish Grill's egg roll with blackened chicken, roasted corn, onions and peppers, accompanied by tangy mustard sauce. Calypso Patio Bar & Grill's egg rolls feature chicken, onions, peppers, cream cheese and pico de gallo. Served with a raspberry chipolte sauce, the Tex-Mex egg rolls at the Bulldog combine spicy grilled chicken, roasted corn and peppers, sauteed onions, black beans and mixed cheeses. Southwestern egg rolls are filled with chicken, black beans, corn, roasted red peppers and Jack cheese and come with roasted jalapeno ranch sauce for dipping at Gordon Biersch. Vegetables and marinated pork fill egg rolls spiced up with sweet and sour mustard sauce at P.F. Chang's China Bistro. Bouche Wine Bar fries spring rolls that wrap up smoked duck, shiitake mushrooms and vegetables and serves them with Satsuma sauce.


The hearty and versatile eggplant is perfect for local Creole and Italian dishes and much more. Brick Oven Cafe tops rigatoni pasta with eggplant and light marinara sauce. The Olive Branch Cafe assembles a vegetarian muffuletta with grilled eggplant. The eggplant Parmesan at Mr. Roo's Deli is fried and served over angel hair pasta with red gravy and mozzarella cheese. Tony Mandina's Restaurant covers crispy eggplant with shrimp, crabmeat and seafood sauce and serves it over a bed of angel hair pasta. The moussaka plate at Albasha Greek & Lebanese Restaurant features eggplant with potato, ground beef and rice, and tops it all with bechamel sauce. Magazine Po-Boy Shop offers an eggplant Parmesan plate as one of its vegetarian options. The eggplant, shrimp and crabmeat etouffee with parsley and buttered rice is a headlineer at Bon Ton Cafe. Joey K's eggplant Napoleon is breaded and fried, then stacked with fried shrimp and topped with crawfish basil sauce. At Specialty Italian Bistro, the eggplant and shrimp Cavalino is coated in creamy seafood sauce and served with garlic cheese bread and a house salad. Venezia's eggplant Vatican is a fried eggplant shell filled with crawfish, shrimp and crabmeat cream sauce. Tony Angello's Ristorante makes eggplant Tina with thin slices of breaded eggplant, marinara and Romano cheese. Baked eggplant brushed with garlic butter is topped with mozzarella, mushrooms, sauteed onions and feta cheese on Italian Pie's eggplant sandwich. Copeland's Restaurant's eggplant pirogue stacks medallions of fried eggplant alongside shrimp, crab and angel hair pasta in spicy cream sauce. Giorlando's tops lightly fried eggplant medallions and angel hair pasta with shrimp sauce. Mr. Ed's Seafood & Italian Restaurant fills its eggplant casserole with crabmeat and shrimp and serves it with potatoes and salad. Breaded eggplant sticks come with thick tomato dipping sauce at Mandina's Restaurant. Fresco Cafe & Pizzeria blends roasted eggplant, garlic and parsley for a dip presented with pita triangles. Louie & the Redhead Lady assembles eggplant Algiers by stacking eggplant medallions with a crab cake, along with shrimp and crabmeat sauce. Baked eggplant Parmesan is topped with a slice of ham, mozzarella and red sauce and served over angel hair at Smilie's Restaurant. Fried eggplant is topped with grilled shrimp, mozzarella, Parmesan and red sauce and served with angel hair pasta at Salvatore's Ristorante.


Whether for breakfast, lunch or dinner, eggs hold universal appeal. The huevos rancheros at Fiesta Latina Restaurant comes with two eggs and two tostadas covered in ranchero sauce. The egg-wich at Deja Vu Restaurant & Bar is offered with a choice of meat on a toasted English muffin. At Fat Hen Grill, carb-conscious diners can feast on the Healthy Hen with egg whites (or Egg Beaters), wheat toast, sliced tomato and fresh fruit. Eat New Orleans offers eggs Dumaine, a homemade drop biscuit halved then topped with slow-cooked grillades, poached eggs and Hollandaise sauce. Caffe Angelina's namesake omelet is packed with avocado, tomato, onions, cheese and a choice of grilled shrimp, chicken or chicken salad. The huevos rancheros at Cafe Rose Nicaud features scrambled eggs with spicy black beans and salsa on top of corn tortillas. The chef's special omelet at Camellia Grill is loaded with turkey, bacon, ham, potato, onion, cheese and chili. Cafe Atchafalaya's eggs Boudreaux boasts eggs over alligator sausage and jalapeno cornbread with Creole hollandaise and potatoes. The Mediterranean omelet at Cafe Navarre contains sauteed spinach, artichoke, onion, tomato and cheese. 13 Monaghan appeases late-night munchies with a three-egg frittata. The eggs Sardou at Begue's at the Royal Sonesta are poached eggs with artichoke, creamed spinach, asparagus and roasted tomatoes covered with hollandaise. For breakfast on the run, try Cafe EnVie's breakfast in a go-cup, which stacks scrambled eggs with bacon and hash browns or grits, and tops it off with homemade sausage gravy. Blue Plate Cafe's Breakchetta combines scrambled eggs with creamy goat cheese and tomato basil relish on top of toast. The Big Deal at Brother's Ole New Orleans Cafe is no small matter, with three eggs, two pancakes, a choice of grits or hash browns, biscuits or toast and coffee or juice. Buffa's Lounge feeds patrons with omelets any way they call it. The eggs Benedict po-boy at Stanley features poached eggs perched on toasted open-face French bread. Eggs supply the air foundation for quiches filled with spinach or ham and chives at Jezz's Kitchen at Dorignac's. For breakfast on the go, grab one of Krystal's scramblers, which include grits, scrambled eggs, cheddar cheese and a sausage patty stacked in a bowl. Slim Goodies' Jewish Coonass tops latkes with eggs, spinach and crawfish etouffee. The Blue Jay special at Huevos is a tortilla stuffed with eggs, cheese and sausage. Steve's Diner's breakfast in a cup has grits, scrambled eggs, crumbled sausage and grated cheese. At Oak Street Cafe, eggs Beauregard features a pair of over-easy eggs stacked on sausage and biscuits with white sausage gravy and either grits or potatoes. Fuel Coffee House rests poached eggs on pulled-pork and cornbread for its version of eggs Benedict. The Philly cheese steak omelet at Parrot Pete's has beef, sauteed onions and bell peppers on the inside and melted Swiss and cheddar cheese on top. Southwestern eggs are scrambled, spiced with hot chili, bacon and cheddar cheese at Lakeview Brew Coffee Cafe. Pita Pit's Morning Glory combines scrambled eggs, cheese, bell peppers, onion, avocado and tomato. Surrey's Cafe & Juice Bar's migas and chorizo breakfast includes scrambled eggs with sauteed peppers, red onion, tomato, cheddar cheese, corn chips, pico de gallo, toast or biscuit and grits or hashbrowns. St. Charles Tavern takes a coastal approach to eggs Benedict by serving poached eggs on crab cakes.


Many local chefs are keeping pace with the humble snail. At Antoine's, escargot a la Bordelaise are basted and baked in a red wine and garlic sauce and crowned with a mixture of cheeses and French breadcrumbs. Cafe East sautees escargot with fresh brown beach mushrooms and roasted garlic and serves them simmering in a spicy black bean sauce. At Clementine's Belgian Bistrot, escargot de Bourgogne are broiled in the shell with garlic butter.


There's some assembly required with this local menu favorite. Adobe Cantina and Salsa offers its fajitas with a choice of chicken, steak, shrimp served with lettuce, pickles, sour cream and pico de gallo. El Gato Negro's fajitas come with a choice of grilled New York strip steak, grilled chicken breast, sauteed vegetables, grilled jumbo shrimp, or fresh catch of the day. The gypsy fajitas at Santa Fe are served with pork tenderloin, beef tenderloin and chicken breast, teamed with flash-fried onions, mushrooms, tomatoes and peppers. Chevy's Fresh Mex rolls out fajita platters with choices of carnitas, mesquite-grilled chicken breast, citrus-chili marinated steak, shrimp or fish. The steak fajita wrap at Alligator Pear features grilled skirt steak, roasted peppers, onions, cheddar, Monterey Jack, guacamole and chipotle cream in a flour tortilla. Grilled chicken, pork or beef are the fajita platter options at Country Flame. Juan's Flying Burrito offers chicken, steak, shrimp, spicy habanero shrimp or vegetarian fillings for fajita platters with grilled peppers and onions, guacamole, salsa, sour cream, limes, beans and rice. Fajita fillings at Serranos Salsa Company include mesquite-grilled steak, pork carnitas, jalapeno sausage and chicken.


There are plenty of fish in the sea and almost as many on local menus. The Monterey Mixto a la Chipotle at La Carreta combines mahi mahi and shrimp with California-style steamed vegetables, rice and house-made queso. Sake Cafe Uptown serves yellowtail sashimi with jalapeno salsa. Pere Antoine's beckons diners with its St. Nora's Catch of the Day served on crispy eggplant medallions and topped with crabmeat in lemon butter sauce. Grilled mahi mahi is dished up with pistachio sauce, grilled asparagus, and shrimp at Jacques-Imo's Cafe. Mat & Naddie's Gulf-caught mahi mahi is grilled and served with smoked black pearl rice and sweet and sour vegetables. One of the specials at Mimi's Italian Restaurant is grilled amberjack on a bed of lettuce with vine-ripened tomatoes, watermelon, mint, goat cheese and Meyer lemon pepper jelly sauce. The grilled Gulf amberjack at Two Tony's Restaurant is topped with different daily sauce preparations, such as shrimp sauteed with tasso in toasted pepper cream or tender artichoke hearts with capers, lemon and a touch of butter. Lilette Restaurant's raw fish of the day is an appetizer featuring changing chef's selections including bluefin tuna or Hawaiian fish. Gulf snapper sits on on creamy crawfish polenta and is topped with tomato okra stew at 5Fifty5. Boucherie boasts roasted monkfish served with mashed potatoes, locally grown beets and marinated red onion and cucumber salad. The escovitch at Boswell's Jamaican Grill features sauteed grouper, tilapia or whole red snapper seasoned with vinegar, tomatoes, onions and peppers. Bistro 38 offers red snapper Lakeway: pan-seared and topped with sauteed shrimp and crawfish in rich white wine sauce, served with new potatoes. La Thai Uptown's spicy coconut green curry lends zesty Asian accents to panko-crusted Chilean sea bass with crabmeat and vegetables. Carlos Mencia's Maggie Rita's Mexican Grill crosses the border with pescado ranchero, a grilled fish fillet topped with tomatoes, bell peppers, sauteed onions and mushrooms, and Monterey Jack cheese, served with avocado slices, pico de gallo and rice. Snug Harbor Jazz Bistro's fish Marigny finds harmony between fried drum and Gulf shrimp in Creole cream sauce. Galatoire's doubles down on Creole favorites, serving fried fillets of fish such as trout, both amandine and meuniere style. At Sukothai, a whole fish is fried, topped with shrimp and scallops and served with stir-fried vegetables. La Petite Grocery's version of courtboullion features Gulf fish with blue crab beignets and popcorn rice. Sauteed red snapper is served with Gulf shrimp, squash, Israeli couscous and tomato-basil broth at Gautreau's. Among Horinoya's sushi offerings are fish flown in from Tokyo's renowned Tsukiji market. Sauteed snapper is topped with spicy crawfish cream sauce at Le Parvenu. Vizard's Gulf fish amandine is served with almonds, lemon-buerre noisette and mashed sweet potatoes. RioMar offers several different ceviches including Panamanian (fish, habanero peppers, lime), Ecuadorean (shrimp, tomato, citrus) and mixto (shrimp, squid, fish, charred peppers). GW Fins braises Chilean sea bass in hot and sour shrimp stock and serves it with enoki mushrooms and bok choi. North Atlantic salmon warms up with a barbecue glaze at Catch. Parmesan-crusted tilapia is a lunch special at Piccadilly. Upperline heats up its fish piquant dish by topping a fillet with shrimp in jalapeno sauce and supplying habanero and shrimp reduction sauce on the side. Crab and cornbread-stuffed flounder is served with lemon butter sauce at Sweet Lorraine's Jazz Club.

French Fries

Whether as tasty pub grub or a gourmet side dish, french fries hold universal appeal. F&M Patio Bar's waffle fries are seasoned and smothered with a house blend of three cheeses and topped with green onions. Checkpoint Charlie's fries are heaped with cheese. Squeal Bar-B-Q tops its hand-cut french fries with options like smoked pork, chili, cheese, bacon or vegan black beans. Capdeville gives french fries some Spanish flair by topping them with chorizo and manchego cheese. Igor's Game Room & Lounge adds spicy local flavor to its Cajun cheese fries. Chickie Wah Wah's Dixie Frites are hand-cut and seasoned with garlic, rosemary and Parmesan. Carbo-load with a french fry po-boy at Serio's Po-boy and Deli. Add a side of sweet potato fries topped with cheese, chili or gravy at Parkway Bakery & Tavern. Cheddar and Jack cheeses melt into a gooey blanket for fries topped with bacon, green onions, tomato and sour cream with ranch dressing on the side at O'Henry's. Gravy beefs up the cheese fries at Parasol's. At Lager's International Ale House, waffle-cut fries are tossed in wing sauce and topped with melted cheeses, chili and jalapenos.


Frog legs jump start meals at some restaurants. The frog legs at Eco Cafe are pan fried and served with stuffing and a fried egg. The Delachaise offers spicy fried frog legs glazed in a house-made remoulade. Flash-fried garlic-crusted frog legs are served with Crystal butter sauce, an andouille cornbread muffin and feta cheese at Muriel's Jackson Square.


Sooner or later everything about New Orleans' culture is compared to gumbo. But no matter the ingredients, there's nothing like the real thing. Mr. B's Bistro makes its signature country-style gumbo ya-ya with chicken, sausage and a dark, smoky roux. Acme Oyster House serves seafood or chicken and andouille gumbo in a French bread bowl. The Gumbolaya at Corner Oyster Bar offers a twist of homemade chicken and sausage gumbo with jambalaya. Kjean Seafood serves gumbo with okra. Jan's Cajun Restaurant offers a choice of seafood or chicken gumbo. Maude's seafood okra gumbo is a popular choice at Brennan's Restaurant. Copeland's Cheesecake Bistro prepares a smoky roux with okra, chicken and andouille sausage. Snug Harbor Jazz Bistro's gumbo is a quartet of shrimp, chicken, sausage and okra. Zoe Bistro is an urbane space in which to enjoy a traditional filé gumbo brimming with andouille, chicken and shrimp.


No matter how you slice it, gyro is a staple at local Mediterannean restaurants. The gyro at Attiki Bar & Grill stuffs thinly sliced spring lamb into pita bread with tzatziki, lettuce, tomatoes and cucumber. Balcony Bar & Cafe's chicken gyro is grilled with lettuce, tomatoes, onion, tzatziki sauce and wrapped in pita bread. The veggie gyro at Dixie Gyro combines lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, green peppers, feta cheese and tzatziki sauce wrapped in a grilled pita. The Market Cafe fills its gyro platter with sliced meat, tzatziki sauce and pita wedges. Gyro platters at Mona's Cafe feature sliced meat, salad, hummus and a dash of olive oil. Byblos Market includes hummus, salad and rice on its gyro plate. Tahini sauce comes with gyro platters at Pyramid's Cafe.

Ice Cream/Gelato

When summer temperatures rise, everyone screams for ice cream. Ben & Jerry's has crafted an original Bonnaroo Buzz, maple-flavored with blond brownie chunks and maple caramel swirl. The gelato and Italian ice at Angelo Brocato is made daily in-house with all-natural Sicilian flavorings ranging from chestnut to mocha and amaretto. Stingray's Seafood Grill & Bar serves fried ice cream in a cinnamon pastry shell topped with whipped cream, chocolate swirls and cherries. Cold Stone Creamery mixes ice cream with fruit, caramel sauce, nuts, graham cracker crust, chocolate chips and other items and serves the sweet result in a waffle bowl. Azteca chocolate gets a spicy kick from hot pepper in one of La Divina Gelateria's unique flavors. Creole Creamery's exotic repertoire of flavors includes peanut butter fudge brownie, peach cobbler, marshmallow cream cookie, dulce de leche, drunken kiwi and many others. Gelato Pazzo Cafe serves classic gelato flavors like pistachio, hazelnut and chocolate as well as mango, banana and tiramisu. Guava and red bean are a couple of the exotic ice cream flavors served at Orange Couch Cafe. The Kupcake Factory cools off with gelato flavors such as rosemary Champagne, strawberry cheesecake and blueberry shortbread. Sucré builds its namesake sundae with chocolate gelato, chocolate and caramel sauces, chocolate croutons, whipped cream and a maraschino cherry.


Whether it's originally Creole or Cajun, jambalaya is a South Louisiana favorite. Vic's Kangaroo Cafe makes it spicy with chicken and smoked sausage. The Creole jambalaya at the Clubhouse Bar & Grill features sauteed shrimp, chicken, and sausage in spicy Creole sauce. Abita Brew Pub's jambalaya Ryan has chicken and andouille sausage and is served with crawfish cornbread and sauteed veggies. The jambalaya at Cafe Maspero comes with shrimp and sausage. Bennachin's specialty is thiebujin, an African jambalaya cooked with fish. The jambalaya prepared at La Provence includes slow-cooked, whole baby lamb with spring squash and morel mushrooms. Jezz's Kitchen at Dorignac's prepares its jambalaya with chicken and smoked sausage.


Diners shouldn't feel sheepish about trying these lamb specialties. Maximo's Italian Grill offers a lamb chop lollipop grilled and served with red and green apple mint jelly. The rack of lamb at The Hungry Forager is served with a rosemary-infused sauce, layered cream potatoes, garlic confit and slow roasted tomatoes. Byblos dishes up a medley of lamb for its grilled lamb platter, including center-cut lamb chop, rack of lamb and a skewer of lamb loin kebab. At the Bistro at the Maison de Ville, paneed fillet of lamb is served with arugula mashed potatoes and blueberry glaze. Tommy Cuisine's lamb chops a la Provencale are served with rosemary-port demi-glace. Nirvana Indian Cuisine's lamb achari features lamb in a tart and spicy curry. Emeril's Delmonico pairs Moroccan-spiced lamb sirloin with merguez sausage and serves them with ratatouille. The Moroccan-style lamb tagine at Jamila's Mediterranean Tunisian Cafe features lemon and garlic marinated lamb baked in a clay pot and served with basmati rice. Caldereta is lamb stewed in brown gravy made with red wine, garlic and onions and served with rice and sweet plantains as a lunch special at Liborio Cuban Restaurant. Tandoori Chicken serves hot and spicy lamb vindaloo.


As comfort food or gourmet fare, lasagna is layered with flavor. The lasagna at Fazzio's Restaurant features pasta sheets brimming with generous amounts of meat filling, Italian seasonings, mozzarella, ricotta, Romano cheese and red gravy. Loaded with meat, cheese and red sauce, Ditali's Pizza pleases diners with traditional lasagna. Sal & Judy's offers baked lasagna. Assunta's Italian Restaurant prepares its lasagna with noodles layered with four cheeses, ground chuck, ham, salami and marinara. The lasagna at Cafe Roma Uptown is layered in creamy cheeses and hearty meat sauce. Pepperoni's Cafe builds its vegetarian lasagna with zucchini, eggplant, squash, ricotta, sauce and imported noodles. Semolina's lasagna Bolognese is made with ricotta, fontina and provolone cheese and meat sauce.


You won't have to pressure diners to eat their liver at these restaurants. Domenica's stracci features braised oxtail and fried chicken livers with torn pasta. The fried chicken livers at La Peniche Restaurant are served with brown gravy and onions. Donna's Bar & Grill dishes up liver with onions, mashed potatoes and gravy. Southern fried chicken livers with pepper jelly is a starter at brunch or dinner at Elizabeth's Restaurant. Fried chicken livers topped with Creole coleslaw fill French bread at Mahony's Po-boy Shop. Praline Connection serves fried chicken livers with sweet and hot pepper jelly.


Perhaps with more time in colder, deeper waters, crawfish could aspire to the pedigree of the lobster. Drago's Seafood Restaurant serves char-broiled Maine lobster with spinach risotto. The lobster ravioli at Bacco comes with Champagne butter sauce and caviar. Try a whole Maine lobster at Star Steak & Lobster, served in the traditional New England style with baked potatoes. August Moon's Cantonese lobster comes sauteed with chopped tail meat, egg, water chestnut, mushrooms, bamboo shoots and onions in rich garlic sauce. The lobster and crabmeat linguini at Antonio's Restaurant is served with creamy roasted garlic sauce over a bed of linguini. Bravo! Italian Kitchen serves a rich lobster bisque with a touch of sherry and diced shrimp. A real mouthful, Bubba Gump Shrimp Company's After the Storm Bucket of Boat Trash stars flash-fried shrimp and fish seasoned with Cajun spices plus a steamed Canadian lobster claw. The Broken Egg Cafe's Lobster et Fromage features a cream cheese-laced omelet topped with Brie, garlic sauteed Maine lobster meat, fresh diced tomatoes and light champagne cream sauce. Friends Coastal Restaurant tosses lobster meat and andouille in garlic cream sauce and rests it on a bed of penne pasta.


It may not have the fame of the po-boy, but the muffuletta is a New Orleans original. Central Grocery created the muffuletta, and it's the only sandwich served at the store. Cafe Amelie serves a muffuletta featuring layers of warm Genoa salami, mortadella, Black Forest ham, provolone cheese and cold olive salad on ciabatta bread. The Napoleon House offers a toasty twist to the muffuletta by heating it. Liuzza's Restaurant & Bar makes the Frenchuletta, served with house-made olive salad. Mo's Pizza offers a muffaletta that's baked until the bread is crispy. The Italian muffuletta at LaBella's Catering piles Genoa salami, center-cut ham and provolone cheese and tops it with olive salad. The original seafood muffuletta at Parran's Po-Boys of Metairie includes fried shrimp, oysters and catfish on muffuletta bread, dressed with Cajun mayo, lettuce and tomato. Cochon Butcher dishes up a cochon muffuletta with housemade meats, cheese, pickled peppers and olives. The seafood muffuletta at Brother's Ole New Orleans Cafe features shrimp, oysters, catfish and stuffed crab and is dressed to order. Dimartino's Muffulettas is known for its namesake, but order any sandwich dressed with olive salad for extra Italian flavor. Ham, mortadella salami, provolone and olive salad get pressed on ciabatta bread for La Divina Gelateria's Muffalino panino. Recently opened in The Theatres at Canal Place, Gusto offers a Spanish muffuletta assembled with Serrano ham, manchego cheese, olive salad and piquillo peppers. The seafood muffuletta at Johnny's Po-boys includes catfish, shrimp and oysters on half a 10-inch round of muffuletta bread. Nor-Joe Import Company specializes in Italian items and uses cured meats, cheeses and olives to assemble muffulettas ready to go.


For some savory mushroom dishes, try these restaurants. At Fellini's Cafe, mushrooms cooked in spicy pepper sauce add flavor to the chicken portobello lavash roll, which includes spinach and feta. The Beachcorner Bar & Grill offers fried portobello mushrooms as an appetizer. Rock-n-Sake serves tempura-fried portobello mushrooms with wasabi-infused honey mustard sauce. The pisto at Lola's Restaurant features portobello mushrooms stuffed with a Castilian mixture of eggplant, pepper, onions, garlic and tomatoes. At Baru Bistro & Tapas, the Guacabello mixes grilled portobello mushroom with avocado, olive oil and lime juice, served atop toasted bread. The mushrooms Veronique at Arnaud's Restaurant entices diners with freshly baked mushroom caps stuffed with grapes and savory cheeses. Cafe Fresca prepares a portobello salad with romaine lettuce, tomatoes, red onions, mushrooms, feta, cucumber, sun-dried tomatoes, sprouts and seasoned croutons. At Cafe Granada, the main ingredient in the wild mushroom salad is marinated in fresh herb vinaigrette, grilled and tossed with pine nuts and goat cheese. Cafe Noir's portobello flat is a toasted herbed pita topped with spinach, marinated portobello mushroom, blue cheese and warm bacon dressing. Mimi's in the Marigny's tapas offerings include mushrooms in cream sauce served over manchego toast. The Louisiana Pizza Kitchen fills a calzone with shiitake and portobello mushrooms, red and yellow peppers, feta and mozzarella. There's nothing like Ruby Slipper Cafe's marinated portobello mushroom cap with Brie and tomato between slices of sourdough bread. Bouche Wine Bar marinates a portobello in balsamic vinegar, grills it over pecan wood and serves it with tomato, tasso and Gorgonzola.


Mussels open their shells to flavor in these dishes. The Drunken Mussels at Taqueros are sauteed with tequila-smoked chile pasilla. One of the pots of steamed mussels offered at Clementine's Belgian Bistrot is the Moules a la Bisque, with creamy lobster bisque, leeks and Belgian fries. The moules frites at the Bistro at the Maison de Ville present mussels steamed in white wine with garlic and parsley and served with house-made french fries and aioli. Prince Edward Island mussels get an Asian sauna of white wine, lemon grass and basil and are served with lime-mint aioli at Martinique Bistro. Mussels, shrimp and tarragon are sauteed and served with a seafood reduction over linguine at Jamila's Mediterranean Tunisian Cafe.


When the chips are down, you can always depend on nachos to start a meal. Fat Harry's satiates hungry patrons with nachos loaded with chicken, cheese, sour cream, salsa and tomatoes. The barbecue nachos at Whole Hog Cafe come with a choice of beef, pork or chicken. At Checkered Parrot, the nachos are loaded with sauteed mushrooms, tomatoes, onions, jalapenos, cheese and a choice of chicken or steak. Calypso Patio Bar & Grill adds flair to its nachos with jumbo Gulf shrimp on top of guacamole, pico de gallo and house-made flour tortilla chips. Santa Fe's namesake nachos come with a variety of cheeses and nuts. Juan's Flying Burrito's Kamehameha nachos erupt with pulled pork, applewood-smoked bacon, grilled mango, pineapple salsa, jalapenos, cilantro and chipotle sour cream. Barbecue Macho Nachos are loaded with spicy barbecue pork, black beans, corn, red onions and chopped slaw at Nacho Mama's Mexican Grill. Build your own nachos at Friar Tuck's by adding toppings such as beef, chicken, chili, guacamole or jalapenos.


These restaurants are using their noodles to maximum effect. At Pho Danh 4, the pad kee mau combines fried, flat rice noodles with basil and seafood. The bun at Pho Hoa Restaurant comes with vermicelli noodles and a choice of char-grilled beef or pork over a bed of lettuce, bean sprouts, cucumbers, cilantro and crispy egg rolls. Kim Anh's Noodle House stir fries meat and seafood for its mi xao don. Mikimoto's yakiudon comes with pan-fried thick noodles, cabbage and seafood or chicken. The seafood pan-fried noodles at August Moon include a combination of shrimp, scallops, squid and crabmeat, sauteed with vegetables and wine sauce. Basil Leaf's Drunken Noodles feature fat rice noodles sauteed with chicken, shrimp, broccoli and mushrooms in spicy basil sauce. Cafe Equator's crunchy pad thai mixes chicken and shrimp with green onions and egg and a sweet and sour tamarind sauce. Ninja's seafood nabeyaki udon is a soup brimming with thick udon noodles, scallops, squid, white fish, green mussels, egg and vegetables with tempura shrimp on top. Jung's Golden Dragon specializes in Szechuan and Mandarin dishes, but it offers Singaporean thin rice noodles in curry sauce. P.F. Chang's China Bistro's spicy Dan Dan noodles is a dish of stir-fried chicken, garlic, chili peppers and scallions served over egg noodles with crunchy cucumber and bean sprouts on top. Little Tokyo's yakisoba is a dish of stir-fried buckwheat noodles with a choice of chicken, beef or seafood. Vermicelli bowls are topped with vegetables and crispy egg rolls at Pho Tau Bay.


Onions play bit roles in many dishes, but they also star in a few of their own. At Restaurant des Familles, onions are front and center in the popular French onion soup. Acropolis Cuisine's six onion soup is topped with a puff pastry shell. The onion rings at Cafe Freret get a little bite from cracked black pepper. The crispy fried onion strings at Copeland's Cheesecake Bistro are served with barbecue sauce and honey mustard for dipping. Taqueria Corona's cebollitas are green onions grilled and served with a splash of lime juice.


It's said that it was a brave man who first ate an oyster, but many have followed in his footsteps. The oysters Rockefeller at Felix's Restaurant & Bar are presented on the half-shell. Red Fish Grill dishes up flash-fried oysters tossed in Crystal barbecue sauce, served with a house-made blue cheese dressing. At 5Fifty5, diners can sup on a fried oyster BLT. Clancy's serves fried oysters with sauteed spinach and Brie. Ralph's on the Park combines fried oysters, spinach custard and bacon for its Oysters Rockefeller Reprise. Mosca's Restaurant bakes Louisiana oysters in breadcrumbs and special seasonings. At Pascal's Manale, the combination pan roast features baked oysters with a dressing of onion, parsley, bell pepper, garlic, crabmeat and shrimp. Crispy fried oysters perch atop blackened swordfish and buttered spinach with a drizzle of chili hollandaise at GW Fins. Tello's Bistro builds a fried oyster po-boy with creamed spinach, bacon and Parmesan cheese. The barbecue oyster appetizer at Desire Oyster Bar is fried and served with house-made barbecue sauce and blue cheese dressing. Mahony's Po-boy Shop's signature Peacemaker is a fried oyster po-boy topped with cheese and bacon. MiLa's signature oysters Rockefeller "Deconstructed" features poached oysters, spinach, bacon chips and licorice root. One Restaurant and Lounge stakes its name on char-grilled oysters topped with blue cheese and red wine vinaigrette. Le Parvenu's oyster doubloon is served atop wilted spinach with crabmeat and lemon fondue. The garlicky oyster po-boy is a house specialty at Liuzza's By the Track. De-No Seafood serves char-grilled oysters by the dozen. Vincent's Italian Cuisine prepares oysters amandine as an appetizer. Oysters fried in a smoked batter are topped with barbecue honey butter and blue cheese at Nathan's Restaurant. Herbs, breadcrumbs and Romano cheese top baked oysters Oreganate at Ristorante Filippo.


Put these short stacks on your shortlist for home-style-breakfast comfort food. Betsy's Pancake House offers banana nut pancakes topped with whipped cream. At Daisy Dukes, southern sweet potato pancakes are topped with banana slices. Pumpkin pancakes at Blue Plate Cafe are served with maple cream and bacon or sausage. At Parrot Pete's, pecan-praline pancakes feature toasted pecans and praline syrup. Bananas Foster, chocolate chip and banana walnut are some of the pancake options at Louie & the Redhead Lady. At IHOP, specialty pancakes include New York Cheesecake, strawberry and banana, and harvest grain with almonds and walnuts. Ruby Slipper Cafe's original versions range from s'more and peanut butter and banana to creme brulee pancakes.


Pasta puts the starch in a variety of local dishes. At Milano Pizzeria, macaroni and cheese is made with penne pasta and baked in a creamy four-cheese sauce. Antonio's Restaurant serves crawfish bowtie pasta tossed in Parmesan cream sauce. At Angeli on Decatur, roasted red pepper cream sauce over rotini pasta with spinach and portobello mushrooms can be served with or without grilled chicken. Cafe Ditali's offers A Taste of Italy with three pasta dishes: spaghetti and meatballs, lasagna and fettuccini Alfredo. Nonna Mia's three-cheese tortellini is dressed with herb Alfredo sauce and Roma tomatoes. Boucherie prepares homemade ricotta dumplings with red wine, roasted tomatoes and arugula. Dry Dock Cafe's crawfish pasta Maureenica features crawfish tails tossed in creamy Parmesan sauce. Homemade meatballs cooked in red sauce top spaghetti at Ditali's Pizza. A spicy Cajun shrimp Alfredo sauce is tossed with linguine at Desire Oyster Bar. The Crystal Room at Le Pavillon serves jambalaya pasta with shrimp, chicken, sausage and spicy Creole marinara over penne. At Eleven79, pasta Acciuga draws on the bold flavors of garlic, basil, olive oil, vermouth and a hint of anchovies and capers. DiMartino's Muffulettas serves spaghetti and red sauce with either meatballs or Italian sausage. Chicken or eggplant Parmesan feature spaghetti, marinara sauce and mozzarella at French Quarter Pizzeria. Spinach and three-cheese-stuffed manicotti is one of the changing pasta dishes on Chez Nous Charcuterie's gourmet-to-go menu. Oceana Grill tops its Mardi Gras pasta with seafood in Alfredo sauce. Penne pasta is tossed with chicken, shrimp, Italian sausage and tomato-basil sauce at Giorlando's Restaurant. Impastato's Restaurant's homemade cappellini pasta is served with tomato sauce and a choice of meatball or Italian sausage. Homemade spaghetti and meatballs are paired with salad at Gattuso's Neighborhood Bar & Restaurant. Neyow's Creole Cafe tosses shrimp and penne pasta in garlic cream sauce. Semolina's macaroni and cheese cake is a wedge of baked macaroni and cheese topped with creamy cheese sauce. Ristorante da Piero covers gnocchi with Bolognese sauce made with veal, pork and pancetta. The penne della cassa at Carmelo Ristorante combines penne pasta, prosciutto, white onions and sweet peas, topped with Parmesan.


With all the options for crusts, toppings, sauces and styles, pizza could be its own food group. Mo's Pizza offers pizza by the slice or pie with a variety of toppings and specialty pizzas like the muffaletta or chicken spinach Alfredo. At Mark Twain's Pizza Landing, a Creole pizza is topped with Gulf shrimp, crabmeat, andouille, zucchini and mozzarella cheese. Domenica's pizza Enzo features anchovies, tomatoes, garlic and mortadella. The supreme pizza at Roma Pizzeria loads a pie with pepperoni, sausage, green peppers, onions and mushrooms. At Rocky's Gourmet Pizza, the Wild Tchoupitoulas features pepperoni, Italian sausage and roasted red peppers. Louisiana Pizza Kitchen Uptown offers a fresh mozzarella pizza with slices of mozzarella, Roma tomatoes, red onions, spinach and basil on marinara and a white or whole wheat crust. That's Amore Pizzeria serves both Chicago style deep-dish pies and New York style with a thin, flaky crust. Desperado's Pizza's El Desperado is topped with pulled pork, roasted jalapenos, salsa, Jack and mozzarella cheeses and a red cabbage slaw. At Theo's Pizza, Big Dave's Buffalo chicken pizza is slathered in Frank's red hot buffalo wing sauce, purple onions, banana peppers, chicken and pepper Jack, cheddar and mozzarella cheeses. Angeli on Decatur's Virtuous Angel pizza has a garlic herb sauce base with mozzarella and feta cheeses, spinach, artichokes, tomatoes and mushrooms. Cafe Nino serves hand-tossed New York style pies with toppings like pepperoni, sausage, meatballs, peppers, onions and mushrooms. The Philly cheesesteak pizza at Specialty Italian Bistro features shredded roast beef, onions, peppers and mozzarella over garlic butter sauce. Jigger's Grill makes 16-inch pizzas to order with your choice of toppings. Italian Pie's chicken pesto pizza tops a mozzarella and pesto base with grilled chicken breast, red peppers and red onion. At Pompeii Pizzeria, the Philly Phanatic erupts with Philly steak, banana peppers, onions and extra mozzarella cheese. The Bianca pizza at Ciro's Cote Sud is a garlic and herb sauce pie topped with mozzarella and feta cheese, tomato, artichoke hearts, onions and pesto. The Danni special at Coscino's Pizza features chicken, jalapenos, Canadian bacon and pineapple. Pepperoni's Cafe loads its Masterpiece pie with pepperoni, ham, Italian sausage, ground beef, mushrooms, black and green olives, onions, bell peppers, artichoke hearts, jalapenos, anchovies and mozzarella cheese. Isabella's Pizzeria tops its sun-dried tomato pie with sun-dried tomatoes, goat cheese, roasted garlic, fresh basil and mozzarella. Stuffed pizzas from Brooklyn Pizzeria come with your choice of toppings. Naked Pizza builds its pies on a special probiotic crust, and enthusiasts can double down with the Superbiotic, loaded with artichoke, spinach, bell pepper, onion, garlic and cilantro. Rotolo's Italian Club pie is a meat and greet for pepperoni, salami, bacon and Canadian bacon. The Super Big Apple pie at New York Pizza holds a borough's worth of pepperoni, Italian sausage, onions, mushrooms, bacon, olives, Canadian bacon, bell peppers, spinach, artichokes and minced garlic, and anchovies and jalapenos are optional. Roman Pizza bakes a spinach pie topped with a garlic sauce base, artichoke, onions, mushrooms, tomato and feta cheese. Door's Pub & Pizza's chipotle pie is a Southwestern-style round up of chicken, green chilis, mozzarella, pepper Jack and sauteed onions and peppers. Slice Pizzeria tops a pie with Gorgonzola, prosciutto, arugula, mozzarella and a drizzle of olive oil. The Dough Bowl's Greek Freak pie is made with garlic sauce, feta, olives and spinach.


Don't consider the steady flow of po-boy drippings a mess to be endured. Rather, the po-boy experience is a religious one that anoints devotees with mayonnaise, gravy and bread crumbs. At Dry Dock Cafe, the gravy is garlicky and ample in the Cajun roast beef po-boy. Po-babies are the lighter spawn of po-boys, a mini-version of a shrimp and oyster po-boy offered by Charlie's Seafood. Showcase your insider status when you order an "off the menu" special at Domilise's Po-Boys: a fried shrimp po-boy topped with Swiss cheese and gravy. Southern Po-boys' roast beef is slow-cooked and savory, perfectly complementing airy, crusty French bread. Quarter denizens will appreciate the shrimp and oyster po-boys at Checkered Parrot. Oscar's serves a classic, house-made roast beef po-boy. Mr. Poor Boy Restaurant slow cooks roast beef and slides it onto loaves of Leidenheimer bread. If you haven't experienced banh mi, the Vietnamese take on po-boys, Pho Hoa Restaurant provides an opportunity to sample the intense flavors of pickled carrots, cucumbers, cilantro, jalapeno peppers, pate and mayonnaise merged with hogshead cheese, thinly sliced pork or ham. Shrimp remoulade cozies up with French bread in The Cellars of River Ridge's shrimp remoulade po-boy. Doused with marinara sauce and cheese, homemade meatballs are made fresh daily at Alibi Bar & Grill for the Italian-style po-boy. Homemade brown gravy ups the drip factor on Parran's Po-Boys of Metairie's slow-cooked roast beef po-boy. Fried catfish, shrimp and oyster po-boys offer a taste of the Gulf at Cafe Maspero. For a taste of the Caribbean, try Maria's Cuban po-boy at Cajun Mike's Pub 'N Grub, a pressed and grilled version featuring roast pork, ham, Swiss cheese, mustard and pickles. Ignatius Eatery and Grocery appeals to traditionalists with a roast beef po-boy served dressed and topped with gravy. Bruno's Tavern's debris po-boy is a hot mess of roast beef debris, pickles and gravy. Johnny's Po-Boys uses ground beef, Italian and hot sausage topped with Swiss on its Judge Bosetta po-boy. Gattuso's Neighborhood Bar & Restaurant's sloppy roast beef po-boy with melted Swiss cheese on muffuletta bread won top honors in the roast beef category at the Po-boy Preservation Festival. Stanley serves a Korean barbecue beef po-boy dressed with kimchee. Parasol's serves its roast beef po-boys dressed with lettuce and dripping with gravy. Parkway Bakery & Tavern's surf and turf po-boy combines fried shrimp, roast beef and gravy. Get hot or cold roast beef po-boys dressed with gravy at Short Stop Po-boys. Bottom round beef is slow-cooked in house-made gravy before going into the roast beef po-boy at Sammy's Po-boys & Catering. The cochon de lait po-boy with cabbage and Creole mustard sauce popular at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival is always available at Walker's Southern Style BBQ. Saltwater Grill's fried green tomato and shrimp remoulade po-boy comes with either french fries or sweet potato fries.


Pigging out. Going whole hog. A plethora of porcine metaphors is testament to the pig's legendary appetite for anything, which is rivaled only by our appetite for bacon, pork chops, ham and other dishes cut from the same tasty cloth. LaBella's Catering wraps beef tenderloin in pork loin and rubs the whole dish with cracked garlic and Creole spices. Pork floats aside vermicelli noodles, carrots, cucumber, green onion, fried shallots and peanuts in Kim Anh's Noodle House's pork soup. Partake in a traditional Mexican hangover remedy when you sip a hot bowl of pozole para la cruda at Taqueros, a pork and hominy soup served with baby greens, diced onions, cilantro, sliced radish and tortillas. Pho Danh 4 unites creatures of sea, sky and earth when dishing up pork with shrimp, chicken and egg noodles in its hu tiue mi tap cam dish. Cannon's Restaurant serves pork chops with sweet potatoes, peach demi-glace and smothered greens. A porterhouse pork chop comes with jalapeno pepper glaze, vegetables and a choice of roasted potatoes or sweet potato casserole at The Red Maple Restaurant. Slow-roasted and marinated in sour orange, garlic and herbs, pork roast takes on a Cuban flair at Churros Cafe. Oliver's Creole Restaurant glazes roasted pork tenderloin medallions with honey and cools them down with pineapple plum mint sauce. Thursdays are pork chop days at Mr. Roo's Deli, where the breaded chops are served with mashed potatoes, salad and vegetables. Kurobuta pork cheeks at Iris provide a taste of the garden, served with grilled yellow squash, beet and turnip greens and roasted tomatoes. Fish sauce, garlic, chili pepper and scallions lend spicy bursts of Asian flavor to the Vietnamese pork chops simmered up at Bambu at Harrah's. At the Milk Bar at Cafe Prytania, smoked ham is mated with mozzarella, asparagus and hollandaise sauce in the rather brutally titled "speared pig" sandwich. Cafe Reconcile asphyxiates rather than impales its pork, serving smothered pork chops with sides like mashed sweet potatoes and smothered okra. Fried pig ears with cane syrup mustard and paneed pork cheeks with baked peanuts and radish-turnip salad ensure that Cochon lives up to its name. Fat Hen Grill takes it slow and easy, roasting garlic-braised pork roast for a leisurely seven hours and dishing it up with onions, mushrooms and sweet potatoes. At Herbsaint, chef Donald Link slow roasts Kurobuta pork belly and serves it with sticky rice and grilled date agrodolce. Pork shoulder is slow roasted and served with its own juices, sweet potatoes and baked beans at On the Bayou Restaurant. A blackened pork chop stuffed with basil, ricotta, mozzarella, Asiago and caviocavello cheese and served with marchands du vin sauce is a signature dish at K-Paul's Louisiana Kitchen. Pork grillades and stone-ground grits are served with collard greens and onion rings at Marigny Brasserie. Juniper's osso buco features a pork shank braised in garlicky Creole sauce, served over andouille oyster dressing with Jack Daniels cane sauce. The Dakota serves a cochon tasting that teams a seared pork fillet with tomato confit, an applewood-smoked bacon BLT and pulled-pork with spicy mango barbecue sauce. Grilled or breaded pork chops are served with macaroni and vegetables at Mr. Ed's Creole Grille. At Huevos, huevos con tamal tops three pork tamales with poached eggs and serves them with salsa verde. China Rose serves sweet and sour pork as a daily lunch special. Royal Palm broils a thick-cut pork chop, wraps it in bacon and serves it with candied sweet potatoes and sweet onion jam. La Macarena Pupuseria and Latin Cafe fills corn flour pupusas with pork and cheese and serves them with fried plantains, refried beans and rice. The Montana plate at Surrey's Cafe & Juice Bar is a round up of two eggs, ham, bacon, sausage, a biscuit with sausage gravy and grits or hashbrowns. Caddyshack serves pork chops with a sweet bourbon glaze.


Whether blended in a soup, shredded and fried into hash browns, or swaddled in aluminum foil, baked and savored solo, the potato is both ubiquitous and beloved. Cafe Fleur de Lis throws a potato party with the Everything Hash Browns and invites bacon, sausage, ham, cheese and country gravy into the mix. Voodoo BBQ & Grill uses potato skins as a platform for beef brisket, barbecue chicken or pulled pork topped with Mojo sauce, cheddar cheese and green onions. Cafe Beignet unites potatoes with two members of the Cajun trinity, onion and bell peppers, when serving them hash brown style with andouille sausage. Simmered with bacon and aged cheddar cheese, potato soup from The Store rivals chicken soup for the sheer comfort factor. Sweet potato hushpuppies from Stingray's Seafood Grill & Bar are a unique twist on an old favorite. City Diner's hashbrown toppings run the gamut from bacon to cream sauce, but all start with a hearty foundation of potatoes, eggs and cheese. The Ugly Dog Saloon keeps it real, topping a smoked Idaho potato with butter and sour cream. Lightly fried potato croquettes are served with manchego cheese and quince sauce in tapas-style portions at Galvez Restaurant. Baked potatoes are smoking at Corky's Ribs & BBQ when you add barbecue pork, beef, chicken or turkey. Baked potatoes under a mound of cheddar and bacon are ready to go at the deli counters at Canseco's Market. Baked potatoes with chives, bacon and optional sour cream, cheese or mushrooms go with many meals at Port of Call.


It's always a little disconcerting to eat animals that are cute, but if they taste good, you can manage. Cafe Lynn serves up a pan-seared pair of semi-boneless quail with lemon, herbs and brown sauce. Brigtsen's Restaurant sweetens the pan-roasted fowl with apple cider pan gravy. Abita Brew Pub's Abita Boudin quail is a veritable who's who of Louisiana mainstay dishes: It consists of fried quail with boudin served on a bed of andouille cornbread stuffing. Annadele's Plantation's quail dish ups the cuteness factor by adding lamb chops to the mix, along with grilled asparagus and pepper jelly-infused beurre blanc. Bayona's crispy smoked quail salad is served with pears and molasses dressing. At Emeril's, farm-raised quail is stuffed with mushrooms and crabmeat and served with Brabant potatoes and haricots vert. Quail salad features a Southern-fried bird, pickled quail eggs, cucumber, tomatoes and organic greens with bacon and fig vinaigrette at Latil's Landing at Houmas House Plantation. A pair of grilled quail is served with mushroom sauce, pasta and mixed vegetables at La Crepe Nanou.


Quesadillas provide a perfect landing pad for dollar margaritas (nothing softens tequila's blows like thick layers of melted cheese and starchy tortillas) or are a good square meal in their own right. Grilled onions and peppers, salsa and chicken or alligator sausage mean that F&M Patio Bar's version offers a taste of every major food group. Felipe's Taqueria serves a super quesadilla that rivals a pizza for sheer size. Caffe Latte Da gets creative with a confluence of Mexican and Cajun flavors in crawfish, cheddar and green onion quesadillas. Fresh spinach, roasted garlic and feta cheese lend a Mediterranean flavor to Si Senor at Cosimo's version. Not to be outdone, Coop's Place nestles smoked duck, sour cream and salsa inside warm tortillas. Bulk up a three-cheese quesadilla by adding chicken, shrimp or portobello mushrooms at Columbia Street Tap Room & Grill. Jerk chicken and black bean quesadillas are served with avocado lime cream and roasted salsa at Rum House. Alligator Pear's shrimp quesadilla folds cheese and mango pico de gallo into a flour tortilla that is served with chipotle ranch dipping sauce. Cafe Rani packs a whole wheat tortilla with portobello, smoked Gouda, artichokes, spinach, tomato, onions, peppers and three cheeses.


With meat that's tender with a subtle gaminess, it's easy to see why rabbit is hopping onto menus around town. The Creole rabbit at Olivier's Creole Restaurant simmers in rich gravy until tender to the fork, and is then served with a sage-oyster dressing. A Mano slow cooks rabbit with oil-cured olives, roasted garlic and thyme for the coniglio della casa. At Brigtsen's Restaurant, rabbit tenderloin is accompanied by an andouille-Parmesan grit cake and spinach and Creole mustard sauce for a hearty appetizer. Rabbit and sausage star in the jambalaya at Coop's Place, and diners can choose to add shrimp and tasso to make it supreme. Patois adds an Italian accent to its rabbit saltimbocca served with mascarpone Anson Hills polenta and Marsala lemon jus. Chef Matt Murphy prepares his signature braised Louisiana rabbit lasagna with wild mushrooms, squash, goat cheese and Parmesan at M Bistro at the Ritz-Carlton.


There are many reasons to rave about ravioli, with preparations that range from the traditionally Italian to deep-fried. Andrea's Restaurant's fresh homemade ravioli comes stuffed with porcini mushrooms and is topped with a porcini sauce. In a marriage of Naples and New Orleans, the lobster ravioli appetizer at Desperados Pizza is fried and is served with a spicy roasted tomato dipping sauce. Cafe Freret's quattro formaggio ravioli combines Parmigiano-Reggiano, fontina, pecorino romano and ricotta cheeses with heavy cream and nutmeg in a spinach and egg-striped pasta, topped with a choice of marinara or Alfredo sauce. Bravo! Italian Kitchen's Chianti-braised beef ravioli comes with roasted sweet potatoes, brown butter and sage. Leonardo Trattoria serves duck confit ravioli with brandy and porcini mushroom ragout. Crispy lobster and boursin ravioli are served with wild mushroom and vermouth reduction at Orleans Grapevine Wine Bar & Bistro. LOLA Restaurant's sweet potato squash ravioli are served with chevre, sage and brown butter. At Bistro Daisy, hand-made crawfish and mascarpone ravioli are complemented by mushroom, leek and oven-dried tomatoes in brandy cream. Braised veal and mozzarella fill saffron infused pasta in ravioli served with white wine demi-glace at Ruth's Chris Steak House.

Red Beans and Rice

Step outside on a Monday in New Orleans, and you might detect the scent of this local favorite wafting through the air. For those who don't cook up a batch at home, there's plenty of places to get it. Donna's Bar & Grill serves their red beans and rice with a choice of fried chicken or grilled smoked sausage. On Mondays and Thursdays at Mano's Po-Boys, the daily special is red beans and rice served with pork chops (Mondays only) or hot or smoked sausage. Cafe Pontalba's Creole red beans and rice with smoked sausage is a house specialty. Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville Cafe puts a spin on the dish by adding broiled shrimp; it also comes with andouille sausage and is served with French bread. Big Momma's Chicken & Waffles dutifully serves red beans and rice as its Monday special. Breaux Mart provides a full Southern experience: Red beans and rice is served with a fried or baked pork chop, smothered cabbage, fried okra, green beans, ham, corn bread and cobbler. Dooky Chase often includes staple Creole Soul food dishes like red beans and rice with hot sausage on its lunch buffet. Monday's red beans and rice are served with either smoked sausage, a ham shank or chicken breast at Lakeview Harbor. Smoked sausage or grilled chicken go with red beans and rice at Rivershack Tavern on Mondays. Order red beans and rice with hot or smoked sauge, a grilled pork chop or a chicken breast at Zeke's.


Redfish is a fish of many colors; it's prepared blacked, fried, topped with crabmeat and a myriad of other ways. Lüke's redfish courtbouillon is served with crab, shrimp, oysters and rice. Diners can top broiled redfish with shrimp or crabmeat dressing at Jack Dempsey's Restaurant. Bourbon House, Red Fish Grill and Besh Steak serve their redfish "on the half shell": Bourbon House's comes with new potatoes, glazed red onions and lemon butter; Red Fish Grill's with tasso and wild mushrooms; Besh Steak's is grilled with shrimp, crabmeat and mirlitons. The redfish at Chops Bistro & Martini Bar is served over shoestring zucchini and squash and topped with lump crabmeat beurre blanc. A meuniere sauce tops the blackened redfish at Jigger's Bar & Grill, which is served over rice pilaf. Rajun Cajun Cafe & Catering grills redfish, tops it with lemon butter sauce and serves it with garlic mashed potatoes and asparagus. Panko-crusted redfish and pan-fried crab toast are served with smoked Gouda veloute at Wolfe's in the Warehouse. Blackened or lemon-pepper redfish is served on a bed of Parmesan risotto at Landry's Seafood House. Pierre Maspero's serves blackened redfish with jambalaya and a medley of broccoli, carrots and zucchini, and crabmeat is an optional addition. Pan-seared redfish Pontchartrain is topped with crabmeat, mushrooms and sherry sauce and served with vegetables and roasted potatoes or sweet potato casserole at The Red Maple Restaurant. At One Retaurant & Lounge, grilled redfish is served with herbed risotto and shiitake mushroom sherry beurre-blanc. Catch gives Texas redfish a chive and panko crust. Skin-on redfish is broiled with shrimp stuffing and served with lemon butter and vegetables at Nathan's Restaurant. De-No Seafood's namesake redfish entree features a grilled fillet topped with crabmeat and cream sauce.


Here are some rib dishes that stick to your ribs. After smoking tender pork ribs, Crescent City Brewhouse slow-grills them over an open flame and serves then with creamy potato salad and baked beans. The House of Blues' full rack of barbecue-basted baby back ribs is served with cabbage slaw and french fries. The half-slab rib plate at Abita Bar-B-Q contains six fall-off-the-bone tender ribs served with a choice of two Southern sides: potato salad, turnip greens, sweet potato or cabbage. Camellia Cafe's slow-cooked barbecue ribs come with a choice of side and a dinner salad or soup. Jackson's French-cut certified Angus short ribs are braised with celery, onion, carrots, red wine and herbs and are served with Japanese plum and blackberry demi-glace atop a potato truffle puree and wilted greens. The grilled pork ribs at Buster's Soul Food get a tinge of sweetness with honey. At Byblos, the baby back pork ribs are smoked in-house and finished over an open fire. Boston Street Bistro braises short ribs with Cabernet, chicken stock and rosemary and serves them atop mashed potatoes made with garlic and Maytag blue cheese. Pork ribs are smoked with hickory and served on a platter with sides like barbecue beans, baked potato or corn salad at Hillbilly Bar-B-Q. St. Louis-cut pork spareribs are a specialty at The Joint. As an appetizer, Patois serves grilled lamb ribs with a tart green tomato relish. Sweet Daddy's BBQ serves half or full racks of baby back ribs with sides like corn fritters, barbecue beans, potato salad, macaroni and cheese or corn on the cob.


Often relegated to the subordinate role in gumbo or red beans, rice can sometimes be the star of the plate. Arborio rice gets a yellow hue from garlic-saffron broth at LOLA Restaurant, which cooks up a traditional seafood paella with shrimp, feta, calamari, scallops, mussels, vegetables and herbs. Attiki Bar & Grill also serves paella, but it adds local flavor with crawfish. Customization is key at Cafe Bamboo, where white or brown basmati rice can come with a variety of international sauces such as African peanut sauce and Thai curry. Yuki Izakaya serves onigiri, rice balls filled with ume, salted plum. Chill Out Cafe's spicy fried rice is stir-fired with bamboo shoots, bell pepper, onion and basil with a choice of scallops, crawfish, squid, shrimp, chicken or beef. At Yummy Yummy, fried rice dishes include vegetables and shrimp, beef, crab or roast pork options. Tarka serves Pakistani versions of the aromatic Persian rice dish biryani with meat options including beef, chicken and goat. RioMar's Arroz Negro Costa Brava is rice dish cooked with octopus, shrimp, squid and squid ink. Pineapple sweet rice is one of the many options at Asian Super Buffet.


These restaurants prove that salads aren't necessarily dainty side items. Gott Gourmet's namesake Gott salad mixes panko-fried Brie with organic baby greens, candied pecans, seasonal berries and grape tomatoes and it is dressed with raspberry vinaigrette. The house-made chicken salad has a secret ingredient amid the mix of avocado, mayonnaise, celery and seasoning at Bella Brew. Proving that salads don't have to be light, the catfish salad at Adams Catfish House is an egg salad with fried catfish served atop a bed of lettuce. Cafe d'Cappuccino's Southwest chicken salad mixes marinated grilled chicken with cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato and guacamole for a south-of-the-border flavor. Ernst Cafe provides a spicy option with the Buffalo chicken salad. Deanie's Bayou Seafood Salad comes with lump crabmeat and boiled shrimp atop tender mixed greens, tomato, cucumber and cheese with choice of dressing. The Store's apple and Brie salad combines sweet and savory with baby spinach, toasted almonds, julienned Granny Smith apples, Brie, homemade croutons and a bacon vinaigrette. The Firecracker Salad at Bruno's Tavern has a little bit of everything: crispy shrimp tossed in pepper jelly vinaigrette, blue cheese crumbles, carrots, tomatoes, crispy bacon, jalapeno and banana peppers, sugar-and-spice pecans and remoulade drizzled over spring mix greens. St. James Cheese Company assembles its manchego salad on a bed of arugula with peas, almonds and quince vinaigrette. Baby spinach, romaine and Boston leaf lettuces are tossed with shaved carrots, red onion, red peppers, grapes, olives, walnuts and raspberry vinaigrette at Antoine's Annex. For an alternative to greens, Crescent Pie & Sausage Company's panzanella is made with portobello, artichoke, peppers, herbs and toasted ciabatta bread. Charlie's Steak House serves a classic wedge salad topped with tomato and onions and choice of homemade blue cheese, Italian or Thousand Island dressing. Heavenly Ham builds an Italian salad with ham, pepperoni, black olives, banana peppers, Havarti cheese and Italian dressing. Reginelli's chicken salad features a marinated breast atop mixed greens with Gorgonzola cheese, tomatoes, roasted pecans, green apple slices and balsamic vinaigrette. The Nutrition Company's Wild Ponchatoula salad combines Louisiana strawberries, Cajun-spiced chicken salad, candied pecans and poppy seed dressing on mixed organic greens. At Mr. Ed's Creole Grille, the shrimp and avocado salad is tossed with mixed greens, red onions, tomatoes, roasted corn and a choice of dressings including blue cheese, buttermilk garlic ranch, remoulade or Caesar. Nola Beans' Spanish Fort salad tops romaine lettuce with grilled chicken, avocado, black beans, corn, pico de gallo and avocado ranch dressing. The Roman chicken salad at Quiznos combines chicken breast, Italian cheeses and peppercorn Caesar dressing. The tomato and buffalo mozzerella salad at Mr. John's Steak House is dressed with basil, extra virgin olive oil and aged balsamic vinegar. New York Pizza tosses its Long Island salad with iceberg lettuce, cucumber, bacon bits, Parmesan, croutons and ranch dressing. Cafe Rani's Cobb salad has grilled chicken, carrots, provolone, blue cheese, bacon, boiled egg, avocado, tomatoes, cucumbers, green onion, croutons and a choice of dressing. Satsuma Cafe's kale salad tosses kale and Swiss chard with shaved fennel, basil, tomatoes, sprouts, avocado, pumpkin seeds, bacon and Parmesan dressing. The Asian chicken salad at Welty's Deli features chicken salad and fried lo mein noodles over greens in ginger dressing. The Dough Bowl's chef's salad tops romaine with turkey, ham, bacon, peppers, cheddar cheese and red onion. Terrazu's namesake salad combines boiled shrimp, hearts of palm and avocado.


This easy-to-love fish has spawned countless local renditions. Coulis serves traditional Scottish smoked salmon on a grilled bagel with offbeat toppings, including avocado and beet garnish. At the Zea Rotisserie & Grill restaurants, the balsamic salmon is grilled over hardwood and coated with sweet balsamic glaze. Salmon is lightly blackened and served over romaine with lime dressing for the citrus salmon Caesar salad at the Audubon Golf Clubhouse. At Italian Barrel, smoked salmon is sauteed in pink sauce for the penne alla vodka. Garlic herb sauce and capers top the grilled salmon and veggie skillet from the Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. For its salmon zest roll, Rock-n-Sake wraps fresh salmon and snow crab with soy paper and tops it with more fresh salmon and lemon. The grilled wild Alaskan sockeye salmon with Merlot garlic butter is a favorite at Hard Rock Cafe. Crawfish cream sauce tops the grilled salmon at the Alpine. La Cote Brasserie glazes salmon with Tabasco and Steen's cane syrup and perches it atop shrimp and mirliton ragout. Grilled Scottish salmon is served with olive and French lentil ragout, petit pois puree, salsify and grain mustard Chantilly at Le Foret. Sara's pan-sears Atlantic salmon with a sesame crust and serves it over jasmine rice with wasabi beurre blanc.


From creative combinations to deli classics, local cooks look far beyond the po-boy when making sandwich menus. The schnitzel sandwich from Jager Haus is a German-style pork cutlet, pounded thin, breaded and dressed. Hoagie-style sandwiches are a specialty at Vine and Dine, where the brisket au jus is slow-cooked and served with horseradish cream. A pair of grilled chicken breasts, mashed avocado, olives, tomatoes and Greek sauce on pita loaves make the Greek chicken sandwich at Cafe Fresca. Cafe Navarre prepares a traditional Cuban sandwich with roast pork, ham and Swiss on pressed, buttery bread, served with shoestring fries. The classic Reuben gets a traditional turn at Kosher Cajun N.Y. Deli & Grocery, combining hot corned beef and sauerkraut with Russian dressing on toasted rye. Those looking for a hearty bite at Rue de la Course can order the Sicilian sandwich with ham, salami, prosciutto, provolone and olive salad on a crusty roll. Martin Wine Cellar's executive club stacks up roasted turkey, grilled ham, hickory smoked bacon and American cheese on toast. The pulled pork sandwich at Fat Harry's is doused in barbecue sauce and served on an onion roll. Chicken breast is fried golden brown and topped with a Cajun sauce and cheddar cheese for the spicy chicken sandwich at Ernst Cafe. The namesake roast beef Angelina at Caffe Angelina is prepared with sweet peppers and avocados on ciabatta bread. At the Camellia Grill, turkey, ham, Swiss, coleslaw and Thousand Island dressing combine for the Camellia special sandwich. Fuel Coffee House's pressed Cuban sandwich uses chipotle aioli to energize pulled pork, ham, pickles and Swiss cheese. Barley Oak prepares its smoked brisket sandwich with beer-infused barbecue sauce. Sandwich offerings from Bella Brew include a classic Cuban, done with roasted pork, ham and Swiss pressed in special Cuban-style bread. The Royale special panino at Cafe Royale has ham, roast beef, turkey and both provolone and mozzarella in focaccia bread with roasted pepper mayo. Get a warm ham and cheese sandwich on locally baked croissants at Fair Grinds Coffeehouse. The Cuban sandwich at Chickie Wah Wah features ham, pork and sliced pickles on pressed bread. Barbecued pulled pork fills a French bread panino along with provolone cheese and pepper, onion, mushroom, garlic and basil relish at Antoine's Annex. Pompeii Pizzeria's signature Beau-rantula is a cheesesteak loaded with pepperoni, bacon, mushrooms, bell peppers and banana peppers and comes with a side of buttermilk ranch sauce. Chicken or veal Parmesan sandwiches at Coscino's Pizza feature lightly breaded meat and are topped with red gravy and served dressed. A splash of bechamel sauce is the luxurious dressing on the ham sandwich on croissant at Croissant d'Or. LOLA Restaurant's Depot sandwich features roasted chicken, tangy barbecue sauce, cheese, coleslaw and pickles on focaccia. Stein's Market & Deli's Rachel is a New York deli sandwich of hot pastrami, Swiss cheese, sauerkraut and Russian dressing on rye bread. Prosciutto and mozzarella get cozy in a pesto-brushed panino at Gelato Pazzo Cafe. The Cuban panino at Cafe Noir presses marinated pork shoulder, Swiss cheese and pickles on herbed pita bread dressed with yellow mustard. Heavenly Ham serves its namesake ham with Havarti cheese on a croissant sandwich dressed with lettuce, tomato, mayo and honey mustard. The dainty sandwiches in the tea service at Vianne's Tea Salon have fillings including cucumber and cream cheese, strawberry and cheese, egg salad and chicken salad. The Italian combo sandwich at R&O's Pizza Restaurant features meatballs and Italian sausage with red gravy and cheese. Lager's International Ale House serves a grilled chicken breast topped with applewood-smoked bacon, Monterey Jack cheese and barbecue sauce on a cheddar-jalapeno wheat bun. The Mad Capper at Reginelli's is a focaccia sandwich featuring portobello mushroom, grated fontina cheese, Roma tomatoes, red onions, capers, basil and dill aioli. The Grocery's selection of pressed sandwiches includes chicken breast with sun-dried tomato pesto, sauteed onions, provolone cheese, Creole mustard and mayo. The classic French dip at La Madeleine is a roast beef sandwich with provolone and horseradish cream on sourdough bread served au jus. At Mother's Restaurant, the Famous Ferdi special is a po-boy loaded with baked ham, roast beef debris and gravy, dressed with shredded cabbage, pickles and mustard. The New Orleans Cake Cafe makes its Reuben with thick slices of corned beef, home-made sauerkraut and Creole dressing on rye bread. McAlister's Deli presses grilled chicken, provolone, roasted peppers and basil-Parmesan sauce in a panino. Pita Pit's jerk chicken sandwich tops chicken breast with peppers, onions and pineapple. Roman Pizza's namesake special sandwich piles on pepperoni, ham, salami, black olives, onions, mozzarella, lettuce, tomato and Creole mustard and is served hot. La Boulangerie's Mediterranean panino presses tomato, pesto and mozzarella between house-made three-olive bread.


In a po-boy, on a platter or as a main ingredient, sausage is always a hit on New Orleans menus. One classic appetizer at chef Susan Spicer's Bayona is the gratin of oysters and Italian sausage baked with spinach, fennel and Parmesan breadcrumbs. A trio of alligator sausage, andouille and hot sausage with dipping sauces make up the Cajun sausage platter at Barley Oak. The stromboli calzone from Cafe Nino includes sausage, peppers and onions, marinara and mozzarella. Hot sausage, plus black pepper and paprika, revs up the Cajun omelet with cheese, onions and tomato, served any time at Daisy Dukes. The charcuterie plate of assorted sausages and pates has been the accompaniment to many a Pimm's cup cocktail at Napoleon House Bar & Cafe. Four hot sausage patties load up a meaty po-boy from Kjean Seafood. The salsiccia alla griglia con pepperoni, or Italian sausage sauteed with tri-color peppers and red onion, is a popular appetizer at Brick Oven Cafe. German-style knackwurst and bratwurst anchor the meat-lover's Munich plate at Jager Haus, which also includes a wiener schnitzel, pork chop and meatloaf. Fat City Diner spices up a po-boy with hot Italian sausage. The Creole Skillet offers a Cajun sausage tasting platter complete with boudin, andouille, alligator and crawfish sausages and barbecue and orange mustard dipping sauces. Crescent Pie & Sausage Company offers a daily sampler platter of house-made items such as boudin, li'l smokies, Cajun-style hot sausages and cured meats. Louisiana Bistro serves its Creole boudin with caramelized onions, Creole mustard and cayenne glaze. Short Stop Po-boys serves a sausage po-boy with barbecue sauce. Alligator and hot sausage heat up the spicy pizza special at Doors Pub & Pizza.


Locals seem happy to shell out for this popular delicacy from the deep. Take a seat at the food bar overlooking the open kitchen at Maximo's Italian Grill and watch cooks prepare your fire-roasted scallops with mixed grilled vegetables. The pan-seared scallops at Cafe Lynn are served with fresh herbs, persillade and garlicky pistou. Smoked tomatoes, almonds and hollandaise escort the seared scallops at 7 on Fulton. Austin's Restaurant wraps scallops in bacon, sears them and tops them with beurre blanc. For a Thai-style take on scallops, head to the Basil Leaf for the bird's nest with seared scallops, shrimp and cashews in a spicy ginger wine sauce over crispy noodles. Maine diver scallops are seared and served with potato-corn hash and chimichurri sauce at The Bombay Club. At the Grill Room at the Windsor Court, chef Drew Djezak prepares refined dishes like seared scallops with thyme mascarpone, fried grape tomatoes, truffled jus and pasta. Pan-seared Georges Bank scallops and Gulf shrimp are served with truffled andouille new potato hash and caviar butter at Stella!. Seared scallops rest on a bed of house-made mustard-green ravioli with sauteed crawfish tails and pork jus at Coquette. At Mat & Naddie's, grilled prosciutto-wrapped scallops rest on a baby green salad in tomato caper basil vinaigrette with shaved Parmesan on top.

Seafood Platter

When you just can't pick your favorite, seafood platters have you covered. Zachary's by the Lake adds shrimp remoulade and a cup of seafood gumbo to fried oysters, shrimp and catfish on its special seafood platter. Jack Dempsey's Restaurant builds a platter for two — at least — that includes two cups of gumbo, two crawfish pies and two crab balls in addition to oysters, shrimp, redfish and catfish. Charlie's Seafood puts a new spin on the familiar with its "un-fried" seafood platter, featuring grilled fish with shrimp and oyster bordelaise, baked oysters and shrimp cornbread. The Gazebo Cafe's seafood combo platter piles up fried shrimp, oysters and catfish and includes french fries and salad. The seafood platters at R&O's Pizza Restaurant include fried shrimp, oysters, fish, french fries and either a stuffed crab or a soft-shell crab. The seafood pirogue at Juniper features Gulf shrimp, crabmeat and crawfish tails simmered in garlic cream served on a raft of fried eggplant with Choron sauce. Mulate's Cajun seafood platter includes fried shrimp, oysters, catfish and crawfish tails, a stuffed crab, jambalaya and french fries. The P&G Restaurant seafood platter includes shrimp, oysters, catfish, crab cakes and a choice of french fries, baked macaroni or potato salad. Fried shrimp and catfish are the focus of Ground Pat'i Grille and Bar's platter, which includes coleslaw, salad, Texas toast and a choice of french fries, potato salad or baked potato. Koz's seafood platter choices include fried shrimp, oysters, catfish or stuffed crabs plus two sides such as baked macaroni, potato salad, french fries or vegetables. The Bucktown Platter at Live Bait Bar and Grill includes fried shrimp, oysters, catfish, shoestring fries and Texas toast. Jaeger's Seafood and Beer Garden crowns its King's Platter with Alaska king crab, a Maine lobster, boiled shrimp, potatoes, corn and salad. Superior Grill's seafood platter includes a crawfish enchilada, a grilled fish taco, grilled shrimp brochette, rice and soup. Sammy's Po-boys & Catering stocks its platter with fried shrimp, oysters, catfish, French bread and two side items. The Galley Seafood Restaurant serves seafood platters with combinations of fried shrimp, oysters, crabs, soft-shell crab or stuffed crab and salad and a side. Young's Restaurant offers a seafood combo with grilled fish, shrimp, sauteed crawfish and mushrooms, and a potato and salad. At Boomtown Casino's Pier 4, the seafood platter combines shrimp, oysters, speckled trout, a crab cake, a soft-shell crab and onion rings.


There's no skimping on the shrimp at New Orleans-area restaurants. The shrimp Magazine at Joey K's features butterflied shrimp pan-fried with garlic, artichokes, ham and green onions and is served over pasta. Minced shrimp with dried black mushrooms and water chestnuts go into crisp lettuce wraps at Five Happiness. Pascal's Manale lays claim to making the original New Orleans style barbecue shrimp, served in the shell in a peppery butter sauce. The Alpine makes its rendition of barbecue shrimp with rosemary, bay leaves and white wine. Passengers aboard the Steamboat Natchez dinner jazz cruise can feast on shrimp and grits seasoned with sweet cream butter sauce and green onions. At Pizza Florence the shrimp salad is built with fresh vegetables, romaine and shrimp in a house-made seasoning blend. Guests at the House of Blues often sing the praises of pan-seared Voodoo shrimp served with rosemary cornbread. Large shrimp are simmered in olive oil, peppercorns, garlic cloves and a savory seasoning blend for Chris' barbecue shrimp at Bozo's Restaurant and Oyster Bar. The "cool down platter" at Seymour's Restaurant and Bar includes shrimp remoulade, shrimp cocktail, shrimp salad and potato salad. Boiled gulf shrimp add a layer to the plateaux de fruits de mer at Bourbon House, along with fresh oysters, crab claws and seasonal seafood salads. The Olive Branch Cafe folds pesto sauce, artichokes, mozzarella and shrimp into its baked shrimp pesto calzone. The Flaming Torch Restaurant uses Abita Amber in the spicy, buttery sauce for its New Orleans-style barbecue shrimp. Fazzio's stuffs its Jimbob shrimp with crabmeat and serves them over pasta with crabmeat cream sauce. Pere Antoine combines shrimp scampi, barbecue shrimp, fried shrimp and Cajun shrimp rice for its bayou bowl. Shrimp are glazed with sweet, creamy sauce and served with honey-roasted pecans for the honey pecan shrimp at Trey Yuen Cuisine of China. An order of shrimp remoulade over lettuce with house-made sauce begins many a meal at Crazy Johnnie's Steakhouse. Nuvolari's Restaurant prepares Genoa shrimp with artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes and candied pecans in basil pesto cream tossed with penne. Shrimp and okra are smothered together with tomato gravy and smoked sausage over rice for a soul food classic at Two Sisters Restaurant. Mr. B's Bistro offers diners a bib with its traditional shell-on New Orleans-style barbecue Gulf shrimp in peppery sauce. Fellini's Cafe grills shrimp kebabs and serves them with hummus, salad and pita bread. Sauteed barbecue shrimp are tossed with rotini for a popular pasta dish at the Alibi Bar & Grill. Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar prepares its spicy shrimp diavolo with chili-seasoned shrimp over whole-wheat penne pasta. Garlic mashed potatoes provide the foundation for Allegro Bistro's barbecue shrimp, cooked with plenty of rosemary butter. The Vietnamese-style beggar's purse at Cafe Minh is a mixture of shrimp and pork in delicate dumplings. Pecan-crusted stuffed shrimp at Copeland's Social City are filled with crab and topped with honey meuniere. Drago's Seafood Restaurant prepares its popular Herradura shrimp with sun-dried tomatoes, pine nuts and onions, all deglazed with tequila. Shrimp Clemenceau with peas and Brabant potatoes gets a Southeast Asian twist at The Delachaise thanks to a dose of golden Thai curry. A signature zesty sauce makes Galatoire's shrimp remoulade a classic dish. At The Lake House, Parmesan shrimp recline with brown butter truffle fries and get a drizzle of honey mustard. Grand Marnier shrimp are lightly battered and served with honey pecans and broccoli at Jung's Golden Dragon. Le Meritage elevates shrimp and grits with a wine-friendly version served with tasso and red-eye gravy. Outback Steakhouse's Gold Coast shrimp are beer-battered and coconut-crusted and served with Creole marmalade. Tempura-fried shrimp tossed in sambal vinaigrette flirt with a salad of arugula, nicoise olives and grapefruit at Coquette. Don's Seafood Hut's Zydeco shrimp are fried and served with an Asian-Cajun pepper jelly. Deep fried Gulf shrimp come with smoked tomato butter and corn relish at Royal Palm. Curry Corner's shrimp and okra fuses Indian and Creole cuisines in a stew seasoned with garlic, cumin and turmeric. Wit's Inn's shrimp Florentine pizza or calzone combine red sauce, shrimp, spinach, mushrooms, roasted garlic, feta and mozzarella. Order a shrimp Philly with bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, Swiss and American cheeses and "wow" sauce at Verti Marte. Green Tea serves wok-seared shrimp with lobster sauce over rice.

Soft-Shell Crab

There's no peeling or picking required to get at the all-crab goodness of the soft-shell variety. The smoker at Clancy's Restaurant imparts its aromatic blessings to soft-shell crabs before they take a dip in the fryer. Soft-shell crabs are coronated with a chilled salad of crabmeat, baby arugula, barbecued tomatoes, avocado, crushed ginger and grilled jalapeno vinaigrette at Commander's Palace. Five Happiness lets guests choose sauces including garlic, brown, kung pao or black bean for its crispy soft-shell crabs. A jumbo crab over angel hair pasta with crabmeat and shrimp sauce is a popular entree at Southern Po-Boys. Soft-shell crab is topped with crabmeat and served over pasta in Alfredo sauce at The Galley Restaurant. At Buster's Place, the fried soft-shell crab po-boy is dressed with remoulade sauce. Two Tony's Restaurant stuffs Pontchartrain soft-shell crabs with light crabmeat dressing, fries them and tops them with lemon butter sauce. Soft-shell crabs rest on a bed of corn maque choux at Atchafalaya. Kenner Seafood serves its soft-shell crab over angel hair pasta with rich crabmeat cream sauce. Red curry sauce coats the soft-shell crabs over jasmine rice at Banana Blossom Thai Cafe. Sukhothai serves deep-fried Volcano soft-shell crab over steamed cabbage with broccoli, carrots and sizzling pineapple-chile volcano sauce. Dick & Jenny's also puts an Asian twist on soft-shell crabs by serving them with Thai-style green coconut curry in a seafood hot pot with crawfish bread on the side. DiCristina's Seafood & Italian Restaurant serves a fried soft-shell crab over angel hair pasta with crawfish sauce.


Soups often eat like meals at restaurants around town. Grilled chicken, fire-roasted tomatoes and a blend of peppers, garlic and cilantro give the tortilla soup at the Fox & Hound some bite. Beijing Restaurant mixes shrimp, chicken, roast pork and vegetables in its Beijing noodle soup. Red lentil soup seasoned with onions, parsley and spices is paired with stuffed grape leaves at Babylon Cafe. Cafe East bolsters its shark fin and lump crabmeat soup with wild bamboo and shiitake mushrooms. The tom yum at Chill Out Cafe has a spicy and sour broth seasoned with basil and lemon grass and your choice of chicken or mixed seafood. Leek, shiitake and Champagne cream soup is a signature item at K-Paul's Louisiana Kitchen. Aromatic tom kar gai with coconut, chicken and herbs is a staple at La Thai Uptown. The gourmet-to-go Chez Nous Charcuterie offers a daily soup with changing options including spinach or artichoke vichyssoise, tomato-basil, seafood gumbo or split pea. Creamy corn and crab bisque is popular at Copeland's restaurants. Grill Room chef Drew Djezak invokes the Windsor Court's British elegance with dishes like chilled English cucumber soup topped with creme fraiche and caviar. Bisque of curried pumpkin with crawfish and corn is a signature dish at Latil's Landing at Houmas House Plantation. Changing daily soups at Good Earth Market and Cafe include the signature roasted red pepper and feta. Lentil soup is one of the traditional Lebanese items at Mona's Cafe. Pho Tau Bay offers more than 20 versions of the staple Vietnamese beef broth soup filled with vermicelli and beef, pork or seafood, with lime, peppers and herbs on the side. Sara's fuses Asian and Creole cuisines in dishes like the lemon grass and crab bisque with coconut cream. Roly Poly's changing daily soups include options such as asparagus, roasted garlic and tomato, broccoli and cheddar and shrimp and corn bisque. Turtle soup is a Friday special at Rivershack Tavern.


Popeye isn't the only devotee to spinach, judging by its popularity in these dishes. Fresh green leaves, garlic sauce, mozzarella, tomatoes, mushrooms, caramelized onion and feta top the spinach pizza from Milano Pizzeria. Mike's on the Avenue stuffs spinach and shrimp into tender dumplings garnished with tahini and pickled radishes. The spinach and artichoke pie from Roma Pizzeria is also loaded with artichokes, mushrooms, onion and feta. The sweet spinach salad with purple onions, cranberries, walnuts, goat cheese and pepper jelly vinaigrette is a refreshing first course at Theo's Pizza. Dixie Gyro bakes spinach and feta into filo dough pies with tzatziki sauce on the side. The spinach calzone from Brooklyn Pizzeria is loaded with a blend of ricotta and mozzarella. At Lucy's Retired Surfers Bar & Restaurant, the Spinner is a burrito packed with baby spinach, black beans, tomatoes, onions and rice with salsa and sour cream on top and sauteed vegetables on the side. Spinach and artichoke dip is a popular starter at Houston's Restaurants.


From steakhouses to neighborhood joints, the primal appeal of a slab of beef is hard to resist. Ralph's on the Park prepares its Painted Hills Ranch hanger steak with a Korean-style barbecue sauce and serves it with cucumber salad. The Cajun filet from Star Steak & Lobster House is stuffed with crabmeat, lobster, shrimp and crawfish tails and topped with red wine sauce. Chops Bistro & Martini Bar tops a filet mignon with caramelized onion demi-glace and adds Brabant potatoes and roasted asparagus for a dish dubbed the 17th Street Canal steak. The steak ala Marsala features a classic sauce of mushrooms, garlic and veal demi-glace over a pan-seared filet at Cafe DiBlasi. Bone marrow bordelaise accompanies the hanger steak at Lilette served with fries and veal stock reduction. Mimi's Italian & Seafood Restaurant drapes zesty salsa verde over its 12-oz. New York strip. The steak sandwich at Crazy Johnnie's Steakhouse is French bread stuffed with chunks of filet mignon drizzled with garlic butter. For its bistec relleno, Churros Cafe rolls a cut of sirloin around ham, bacon, onions, olives and parsley. Trey Yuen Cuisine of China prepares black pepper sauce steak with thinly sliced beef and serves it with a side of greens. The house filet at Dickie Brennan's Steakhouse is topped with fried oysters and bearnaise and served with creamed spinach and Pontalba potatoes. Steak can be a breakfast item at Coulis, where steak and eggs combines tenderloin medallions, fried eggs, onion gravy and hash browns. Begue's at the Royal Sonesta turns steak and eggs into a BLT with grilled rib-eye and sunny-side up eggs joining bacon, lettuce and tomato on ciabatta. The petit filet at Cafe Adelaide comes from Painted Hills Ranch and is served with sauce espagnole, Brie potatoes and mushroom-salted shrimp. Ruth's Chris Steak House serves a sizzling porterhouse for two. Brandy foie gras and green peppercorn sauce augment the fire-roasted Duke's filet at Cafe Giovanni. Organic hanger steak from Painted Hills Ranch is one of the beef options at La Boca. Top-cut rib-eye gets a bistro treatment at Herbsaint, where it is finished with a brush of olive oil and sprinkle of sea salt and served with french fries. Charlie's Steak House serves a sizzling 32-oz. T-bone with a choice of sides including potatoes au gratin, steak frites, mushrooms or onion rings. Chateau du Lac's traditional steak tartare is prepared with capers, parsley, shallots and an egg yolk. Garlicky bordelaise is the perfect accompaniment for popular steaks like the rib-eye, filet or porterhouse for two at Crescent City Steak House. Morton's Steakhouse indulges excess by offering double-cut filet mignons, double porterhouses and double-size bone-in prime rib. Dick & Jenny's goes over the top with a filet mignon topped with lobster, Brie and green peppercorn demi-glace, served with garlic mashed potatoes and grilled asparagus. The Victoria filet is crowned with either blue cheese or horseradish crust at Outback Steakhouse. Liborio Cuban Restaurant's bistec Cubano features thinly sliced beef marinated in garlic, lime and herbs and served with parsley, onions, black beans, rice and plantains. Surf and turf at Miyako Japanese Seafood and Steakhouse means filet and either shrimp, scallops or lobster tail cooked teppanyaki style for diners seated at a hibachi grill. La Macarena Pupuseria and Latin Cafe uses filet mignon for its carne asada entree, which is served with rice salad and garlic bread. Beef for Shula's Steak House's trademarked Shula Cut steaks come from a registered breed of Angus cattle. At Feelings Cafe, a 6-oz. filet is stuffed with blue cheese and topped with sauteed mushrooms and more cheese and served with potatoes and asparagus. The "Vizard's cut" is a rib-eye cap served with Creole bordelaise, chive and sour cream mashed potatoes and asparagus at Vizard's. At Young's Restaurant, order a hand-cut half-pound filet with either crawfish and mushrooms, shrimp or crabmeat and mushrooms.


Local Japanese restaurants prove our love for seafood extends far beyond the usual suspects. Wasabi pulls out all the stops for its chirashi sushi, with sashimi slices of tuna, salmon, yellowtail, shrimp, crabstick, egg custard and octopus over a bed of sushi rice. The paradise roll at Mikimoto starts with a pair of fried coconut shrimp and a slather of cream cheese rolled in rice and is topped with mango, avocado, black tobiko roe and barbecue eel sauce. Sake Cafe Uptown heats things up with yellowtail and jalapeno salsa, a mix of sashimi and spicy peppers. Kyoto's Rainbow roll has spicy snow crab on the inside and tuna, white tuna, salmon and avocado on top. The Beginner Dinner at Good Time Sushi is an orientation to American style rolls including California, crunchy, crawfish and Philadelphia versions. The Love Boat for Two at Little Tokyo offers a seductive spread of shrimp and vegetable tempura, beef and chicken teriyaki, a chef's selection of sushi and sashimi pieces, an appetizer and fresh fruit. Ninja's Caterpillar roll combines smoked salmon, cream cheese and cucumber on the inside and avocado on top. Hana Japanese Restaurant's escolar roll includes white tuna, crawfish, scallions and eel sauce. Miyako Japanese Seafood and Steakhouse creates a variety of temaki rolls, or seaweed-wrapped cones filled with rice, fish, shrimp or vegetables. Hoshun's Playboy roll combines spicy tuna and shrimp tempura on the inside and shrimp, mango and barbecue eel sauce on the outside. The sushi counter at Rouses offers boxes of nigiri pieces and California rolls to go.


Taco lovers have a lot of choices at their fingertips. Izzo's Illegal Burrito uses a build-your-own format, so you could create such combinations as shrimp tacos on spinach tortillas with lime juice and Illegal sauce. At Felipe's Taqueria, you can get a pair of crispy or soft tortillas with your choice of meat dressed with red onion and cilantro. J'anita's at the Avenue Pub offers its ultimate mini tacos, a collection of 12 bite-sized tacos with two cheeses and three toppings. The shrimp tacos at Si Senor at Cosimo's bar are grilled with onions, lime juice and cilantro and served with Spanish rice and beans. Caribbean-accented taco fillings at Rum House include beer-battered mahi mahi, calypso marinated steak, jerk chicken, jerk vegetables, Cuban style shredded pork or rib meat simmered in Creole tomato barbecue sauce. Lucy's Retired Surfer's Bar & Restaurant fills Todo Santos tacos with fried or grilled grouper topped with cheese, shredded cabbage and shrimp sauce, or grouper ceviche topped with black bean salad. Mesquite-grilled beef fills tacos along with guacamole and pico de gallo at Superior Grill. Different varieties of fish tacos at Nacho Mama's Mexican Grill include fried catfish with pico de gallo and cheese, and grilled tilapia with coleslaw, cheese and chipotle ranch dressing. At Serranos Salsa Company, Texas tacos feature slow-cooked brisket finished on a mesquite grill and served with barbecue chipotle sauce, grilled onions, your choice of beans and Spanish rice. A la carte taco fillings at Taqueria Corona include fried fish, shrimp, chorizo, carne asada, beef tongue and other meats.


The return of hot weather means its time to celebrate the tomato. The Caprese salad from Nonna Mia is a classic composition of Roma tomato slices, fresh mozzarella, fresh basil and olive oil. The Caprese combination becomes a sandwich with balsamic vinaigrette on a French bread roll at Rue de la Course. O'Brien's Grille loads its Creole tomato salad with lump crabmeat over mixed greens with avocado and basil vinaigrette. Caffe! Caffe! tops tomato and onion salad with avocado and grilled chicken, plus red onions, feta and olives. Fried green tomatoes join forces with shrimp remoulade for a po-boy at Crabby Jack's. Audubon Golf Clubhouse prepares fried green tomatoes as an appetizer topped with grated Parmesan and sweet chili sauce. Le Citron Bistro serves fried green tomatoes topped with Cajun spiced seafood sauce. Of course, Shula's Steak House uses beefsteak tomatoes for a salad topped with Gorgonzola. Zeke's serves fried green tomatoes topped with shrimp in basil cream sauce.


A favorite of local fishermen and diners alike, trout gets the royal treatment in local kitchens. Pan-fried trout with jumbo lump crabmeat, artichoke hearts and mushrooms goes by the name trout Giovanna at Bosco's Italian Cafe. Trout gets a taste of Thai at Banana Blossom Thai Cafe, where it is prepared with tamarind garlic sauce and served with jasmine rice. Arnaud's Restaurant sticks to the classics with its speckled trout amandine, which is fried and topped with sliced almonds and lemon butter sauce. The speckled trout Pontchartrain at Restaurant August is breaded with tarragon butter brioche and crowned with sauteed jumbo lump crabmeat, mushrooms and hollandaise. Bistro 38 prepares sauteed trout with Creole brown butter or serves it amandine style. Fried trout served amandine or meuniere are staple dishes at Mandina's. Lil Dizzy's serves the owner's namesake trout Baquet, a fried fillet topped with crabmeat and lemon butter sauce. Trout grenobloise features lemon-caper buerre noisette and is served with parsley potatoes and sauteed haricots vert at Meauxbar Bistro. For brunch, Palmetto's on the Bayou serves trout with truffled scrambled eggs, crabmeat, mushrooms and Brie cream. Pan-fried trout Raymond is finished with crabmeat, mushrooms, shallots, white wine sauce and a drizzle of hollandaise at Smilie's Restaurant. Salvatore Ristorante's trout Salvatore features a pan-sauteed fillet with shrimp and creabmeat sauce on top, served with potatoes and a vegetable.


The fish that eats like a steak — tuna — proves a versatile main ingredient in the hands of area chefs. Mayas Restaurant & Bar makes its tuna tartare with a mix of lime juice, soy sauces, olive oil and pico de gallo, and serves it under fresh avocado and roasted sesame seeds. The grilled ahi tuna is topped with sauteed jumbo shrimp and red onion confit and served with mushrooms and seared tomatoes in lemon beurre blanc at Crescent City Brewhouse. The Steak Knife Restaurant & Bar pepper-crusts yellowfin tuna and serves it with wasabi and soy ginger reduction sauce. Blackened yellowfin tuna is topped with roasted red pepper sauce and paired with wasabi mashed potatoes at Cannon's Restaurant. Yuki Izakaya prepares a classic tuna tataki by lightly searing slabs of fish with a spicy pepper crust. Tuna tartare is a popular appetizer at Baru Bistro & Tapas, where it's prepared with coconut oil and soy sauce. Cafe Royale builds its Asian tuna salad with grilled tuna steak in ginger, sesame and spicy peanut sauce over romaine, tomatoes and almonds. Seared rare tuna with tomato avocado relish and chili-cilantro vinagrette is a tapas dish at Vega Tapas Cafe. Ahi tuna is prepped with a five-spice rub and served with blue crab sticky rice, garlic chips, wilted greens and muscadine-ginger jam at Cafe Adelaide. Jackson prepares a strawberry jalapeno butter for its seared, blackened tuna. Grilled yellowfin is served with dill sauce at Crescent City Steak House. At The Lake House, blackened tuna rests atop Asian greens with a splash of sweet soy reduction. One tapas dish Rambla features is seared tuna served with avocado, watermelon, basil and lime vinaigrette. Get a tuna melt with avocado, tomato, Swiss and cheddar on pressed rye bread at The Grocery. Pan-seared tuna tops a salad of mixed greens, avocado and mango in cilantro-ginger vinaigrette at Houston's Restaurant. Cuvee finishes its yellowfin tuna tartare with a bruleed tataki top and serves it with casaba chips and harissa pepper aioli. Sushi grade tuna sits atop a salad dressed with feta vinaigrette at Dino's Bar & Grill.


Diners are thankful to see turkey on menus all year long. The turkey and bacon po-boy with your choice of cheese is a house favorite at Magnolia Grill. A buttery croissant holds smoked turkey breast, bacon and pepper Jack cheese for the spicy bird sandwich at the Cellars of River Ridge. The turkey panino at Rocky's Gourmet Pizza has habanero and tomato dressing, roasted red peppers and Swiss cheese. For lunch or a late-night snack, the open-face turkey melt with red pepper sauce on sourdough bread is a popular choice at 13 Monaghan. Similarly, the turkey melt with mozzarella, pickles and a side of fries keeps the Balcony Bar & Cafe crowd coming back for more. Pizza Florence rolls turkey with bacon bits in thin pita bread, served with a side of pasta salad or chips. Cafe Luna makes its turkey sandwich with onion sauce and Swiss on a multi-grain roll. Oak Street Cafe's Zimpel Street is a turkey po-boy topped with guacamole, feta cheese, onion, lettuce and tomato. Quiznos' Sierra smoked-turkey sub features hickory-smoked turkey breast with lettuce, tomato, onion and raspberry chipotle sauce. The home-style Southern cooking at Piccadilly includes turkey pot pie. The Nutrition Company offers grilled free-range turkey burger patties with barbecue sauce or serves them California (avocado, tomato and sprouts) or Western (cheddar, grilled onions and peppers) style.


Chefs know how to love you tender when it comes to veal. Commander's Palace serves a 14-oz. cut over goat cheese grits with green peppercorn demi-glace for the veal chop Tchoupitoulas. Iris presents its veal chop with porcini mushroom sauce and grilled yellow squash, roasted tomatoes and beet and turnip greens. The paneed veal Alfredo from Nuvolari's Restaurant is served over linguine with jumbo lump crabmeat. The Steak Knife Restaurant & Bar simmers a veal shank in red wine reduction sauce for its osso buco. The vitello Vittorio at Fausto's Bistro is pan seared with garlic and olive oil and topped with jumbo lump crabmeat and a side of penne bordelaise. The Court of Two Sisters serves veal Oscar with jumbo lump crabmeat and tasso hollandaise over mashed potatoes. Parmesan-crusted veal medallions are finished with caper and beurre blanc at Cafe Degas. Bosco's Italian Cafe tops veal Carmella with mushrooms and shrimp and lemon butter cream sauce with a touch of wine. Order the veal Parmesan at DiCristina's Seafood & Italian Restaurant in Covington and you'll feast on a pair of breaded cutlets under a blend of cheeses and red gravy. Jan's Cajun Restaurant serves a veal cutlet with fries, salad and toast. At Bistro Daisy, grilled veal sweetbreads are served with lemon supremes, fried capers and toasted pine nuts in browned butter. Osso buco is prepared Milanese style at Eleven79 and served with pappardelle pasta. The veal classico at Tony Mandina's Restaurant features breaded cutlets topped with shrimp, crabmeat and Alfredo sauce over angel hair pasta marinara. Annadele's Plantation prepares its paneed veal Serena over pasta with grilled asparagus and bearnaise. The namesake veal Assunta at Assunta's Italian Restaurant is lightly breaded, fried and topped with shrimp in creamy baciamella sauce. Veal Parmesan is pounded thin and served with house marinara sauce and garlic bread at Joe Sepie's Cafe. A specialty at Italian Barrel is the 16-oz. veal shank osso bucco served over fresh polenta. Le Foret serves free range veal with chevre gnudi, Californial morel mushrooms, prosciutto, sage and Marsala. At M Bistro, chef Matt Murphy slow cooks veal cheeks in red wine and garlic and serves them with truffled parsnip puree and vegetables. Leonardo Trattoria serves veal either piccata (garlic, lemon, capers, white wine), Marsala (shiitake mushrooms, Marsala wine) parmigiana (breaded, topped with sauce and mozzarella) or finocchio (fennel, peppers, white wine) style. Mr. John's Steak House marinates its Tuscan veal chop in olive oil, garlic and Italian herbs and serves it with herb roasted potatoes and sauteed vegetables. Carmelo Ristorante's veal piccata is topped with artichoke hearts, capers and lemon butter and served with vegetables. Veal Florentine rests on a bed of creamed spinach and is topped with lemon cream at Vincent's Italian Cuisine. Riccobono's Panola Street Cafe serves paneed veal atop fettuccine Alfredo. At Seymour's Restaurant & Bar, veal St. Pierre features paneed veal topped with mozzarella, mushrooms and wine gravy and served with fettuccine Alfredo.


Do you need some reasons to eat your greens? How about the jalapeno poppers from Igor's Buddha Belly Burger Bar, stuffed with cheese and coated with panko breadcrumbs. Black Orchid Bistro tempts even carnivores with Eve's garden, a sandwich of sprouts, cucumbers, avocado and garlic-herb cream cheese on whole-wheat toast. The veggie delight with fresh or fried tofu delivers a mix of broccoli, squash, carrots and cabbage at Cafe Equator. The veggie burger at Down the Hatch is formed with black beans, bell peppers, onions and olive oil. Gott Gourmet prepares its grilled vegetable salad with baby greens, grilled portobello mushrooms, squash, zucchini, carrots, roasted peppers and tomatoes, artichokes and feta in a honey-balsamic dressing. A ciabatta roll holds grilled squash, zucchini and mushrooms with cheese, spinach and olive pesto at Martin Wine Cellar. The vegetarian panino at the Bean Gallery is filled with grilled asparagus and mushrooms, mozzarella and pesto. Even the pork-focused Butcher offers marinated Brussels sprouts on its bar food menu. French Quarter Pizza wraps up its vegetarian inspiration in the primavera Stromboli packed with tomatoes, olives, mushrooms, onions and peppers. The Mediterranean vegetable sandwich at Covenant Cafe features sprouts, Roma tomatoes, cucumber, kalamata olives, feta cheese and Greek dressing on toasted wheat bread. A Mediterranean platter of marinated olives, hummus, tzatziki, herbed goat cheese and bulgar salad is offered at Gusto at The Theatres at Canal Place. Mellow Mushroom's Mega Veggie pie features a bountiful harvest of mushrooms, tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, banana peppers, artichoke hearts, broccoli, spinach, onions, green peppers, feta and tofu. The Veggie Spud at McAlister's Deli loads a potato with red onions, bell peppers, tomatoes, black olives and mozzarella and comes with a side of salsa. Louisiana Pizza Kitchen Uptown's Four Seasons pie is topped with artichoke hearts, mushrooms, asparagus, sun-dried tomatos, mozzarella and Parmesan. The roasted vegetable sandwich at Satsuma Cafe fills ciabatta bread with eggplant, squash, red peppers, tomatoes, arugula, Swiss cheese and pesto. Potato and vegetable samosas come with tamarind chutney at Julie's Little India Kitchen at Schiro's Cafe & Bar. Slim Goodies' Garden Slammer is a soy tofu scramble topped with vegetarian chili. At Slice Pizzeria, the Roasted Garden calzone is filled with roasted tomato, garlic and peppers, spinach and caramelized onions.


Perfect for cradling toppings, crispy waffles are the centerpiece for many a breakfast plate. Take your pick of banana, strawberry, blueberry or pecan waffles at Fleur de Lis Cafe. Naturally, waffles are a specialty at Big Momma's Chicken & Waffles, where the "Momma-licious" special combines them with eggs, grits and a choice of meat. Try the thick Belgian waffles at Dot's Diner and add whipped cream while you're at it. Betsy's Pancake House's choices include apple, pecan, strawberry and banana nut waffles. Get a taste of dessert first thing in the morning, or any time, with chocolate waffles at Magnolia Grill. Mother's Restaurant serves waffles with a choice of fruit toppings including apples, peaches or blueberries.


Since wings were spiced up in Buffalo, they've really taken off as an attraction on their own. WOW Cafe & Wingery complements its wings with sauces including Kansas City honey barbecue, creamy Thai peanut, Polynesian sweet and sour, Texas-style mesquite barbecue and several heat levels of Buffalo sauce. Hooters offers wings in fried, non-breaded and boneless versions, but they still come with its range of mild to hot sauces. Korea House serves fried wings with sweet and sour sauce. At NOLA, "Miss Hay's" stuffed chicken wings are served with housemade hoisin dipping sauce. Fried chicken wings are spiced up with a hot wasabi sauce at Good Time Sushi. Rotolo's Pizzeria boneless wings come with mild to hot Buffalo-style sauce, celery and ranch or blue cheese dipping sauce. Wit's Inn roasts wings in jalapeno barbecue sauce and serves them with Creole potato salad. Green Tea's Chinese-style fried chicken wings come with either french fries, rice or fried rice with chicken, pork, shrimp or beef.


When it comes to lunch or light dinner, the wrap sandwich still seems like the best thing since sliced bread. The Bulldog has pub grub wrapped up with a Philly cheese steak with onions, peppers, mushrooms and Swiss in a tortilla with spicy jus. Caffe Latte Da does the club sandwich wrap-style on a wheat or tomato tortilla with turkey, ham, Swiss cheese and honey mustard. The shrimp Caesar wrap from Camellia Cafe has romaine lettuce, creamy dressing and Parmesan cheese. The chicken Caesar wrap at Dino's Bar & Grill combines grilled chicken breast, Caesar dressing, Parmesan and romaine lettuce in a spinach tortilla. La Carreta stuffs a wheat tortilla with grilled chicken, beans, pico de gallo and guacamole and covers it with queso for its burrito wrap. The Santa Fe wrap at Isabella's Pizza bundles grilled chicken breast, tomatoes, feta cheese, caramelized onions, lettuce and chipotle mayo in a spinach tortilla. At Nola Beans, breakfast wraps include combinations of scrambled eggs, cheese, bacon and sausage. Fresco Cafe & Pizzeria's lamb roll features roasted lamb, hummus, tomato, red onion, roasted red peppers, tzatziki sauce and mixed greens and is served with paprika potatoes. Fried shrimp wraps with Caesar dressing and a side of french fries are a Friday special at Live Bait Bar & Grill. Roly Poly's Porky's Nightmare pigs out with roast pork, baked ham, bacon, cheddar, Swiss, onion, lettuce, tomato and honey mustard dressing.


It's at the end of our list, but this venerable summer veggie is tops for some. Zucchini takes a starring role in a vegetarian sandwich at Nonna Randazzo's Italian Bakery & Caffe made on roasted red pepper foccacia bread baked in house. An order of deep-fried zucchini starts things off right at La Peniche Restaurant. The new Eco Cafe in Mid-City greets earlier risers with zucchini muffins on its breakfast menu. The vegetable panini at Aunt Leni's are filled with zucchini, roasted eggplant, squash, spinach and cream cheese. Zucchini quickbread is a mainstay at Laurel Street Bakery. Phil's Grill serves zucchini fries with a dipping sauce. The jambo is a dish of sauteed zucchini and squash in ginger sauce on the menu of African specialties at Bennachin.