As is the tradition at Eater, our closeout of the year is a survey of staff, contributors, friends, industry types, and bloggers. This year, we asked eight questions running the gamut from meal of the year to top restaurant newcomers.
All will be answered by the time we turn off the lights at the end of the 2016. Responses are related in no particular order; all are cut, pasted, and (mostly) unedited herein. Readers, please do add your survey answers in the comments.
Q: What were your top restaurant standbys of 2015?
Kim Ranjbar, writer, Suck The Heads: My standbys always have four mandatory qualities. They have to make fantastic food mostly from fresh, local ingredients; they have to offer a casual environment; they must be convenient (ie. Parking lots or ample street parking, close to my home, etc.) and are inexpensive. Therefore, the spots I've visited most over 2016 are places like Toast, Turkey and the Wolf, Mais Arepas and Ba Chi Canteen.
B.E. Mintz, editor of Neat Pour (launching Winter 2016): Jack Dempsey’s - As old school a standby as you can get. Meauxbar - This local favorite just keeps getting better. Hats off to Robert Leblanc and staff for constantly upping the ante at an already amazing place. Cane & Table - Quarter combo of food and drink at its best.
Sammy’s - The best roast beef po’ boy in town. Cochon Butcher - Whether you’re shopping at the butcher counter or grabbing a High Mac to go, the LRG standard never disappoints. Wing Snack - After a shoutout from 5th Ward Weebie, many people found out about this Treme institution. Stick with the dry wings and don’t drink the Ghetto Juice if you have plans later.
Casamento’s - The classic seafood destination. Coquette - The uptown eatery was already a staple on best-of lists, but the addition of Kristen Essig to Michael Stoltzfus’ dining destination is a culinary coup. Cleo’s - An oft overlooked CBD corner store and go-food destination serving up the best Middle Eastern food in town 24/7.
Popeye’s - Because Louisiana... Brothers - Because sometimes Popeye’s is closed. And of course, the French 75 Bar for the closest one can find to perfection in a gin joint.
Rene Louapre, cofounder, Hogs For The Cause: Pizza: Delicious and Tower of. My kids love it, I love it, it is super healthy, and the Manhattan variant they serve on tap at Pizza Delicious put everyone on blast to stay woke and turnt, as the kids say.
Nora McGunnigle, contributor, Eater Nola: Primitivo, Stein's Deli, Turkey and the Wolf, Cochon Butcher, Willa Jean, Company Burger, and Ancora.
Josh Brasted, photographer : Toups South, Turkey and the Wolf.
Gwendolyn Knapp, editor, Eater Nola: Old habits die hard. I eat at MoPho and Parkway far more than any other spots in town. But... I do love me some Willa Jean for breakfast, lunch or happy hour or just an artichoke dip excursion, and Peche is my go to for lunch or dinner with out of town guests.