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A seafood tower from Luke
Luke

Where to Splurge on Seafood in New Orleans

16 New Orleans restaurants specializing in over-the-top, decadent feasts from the sea

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A seafood tower from Luke
| Luke

Seafood is a birthright here in New Orleans, where the Gulf waters inform every aspect of the culinary landscape. The city’s chefs wrangle an embarrassment of crustaceans, mollusks, and finned fish every which way: broiled, fried, sautéed, and richly sauced. While po’ boys and platters overflowing with fried oysters, catfish, and shrimp are impossible to resist, this line-up delivers decadent seafood treats served in places special enough for date night, venues best reserved for a celebratory evening.

For a guide specific to New Orleans’s best spots for oysters, see here, and for the lowdown on the city’s best po’ boys, see Eater’s guide here.

Don’t see your favorite place to splurge on seafood in New Orleans? Let us know.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data about the delta variant indicates that it may pose a low-to-moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Station 6

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105 Metairie-Hammond Hwy
Metairie, LA 70005
(504) 345-2936
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Station 6 is a seafood-centric restaurant from Drew and chef Alison Vega Knoll in funky Bucktown close to the lake. Born and raised in New Orleans, Vega-Knoll hails from a family of fishermen, and the photos around her restaurant tell the tale. From garlicky crawfish boils in season to crab on crab, a special that features lump crabmeat on a fried soft shell that always sells out — this seafood spot delivers the goods.

Crab on crab special from Station 6
Station 6/Facebook

2. LUVI Restaurant

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5236 Tchoupitoulas St
New Orleans, LA 70115
(504) 605-3340
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Dine at LUVI’s chef counter and watch chef Hao Gong’s mastery of seafood in a range of preparations, from the many raw bar options to double fried yellowtail collar. While the menu covers Japanese and Chinese noodle and soup specialties, Gong especially nails dishes of raw and nearly raw fish — try the Monkey Snack, a salmon and sesame encrusted banana, and the Feed me a la Carte off the raw bar menu for the full experience (as well as any specials).

3. Zasu

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127 N Carrollton Ave
New Orleans, LA 70119
(504) 267-3233
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James Beard Award-winning chef Sue Zemanick’s Zasu is approachable but upscale, with the feel of a neighborhood bistro. While every item on the tight, thoughtful menu expertly showcases Zemanick and company’s talent, it particularly shines through dishes like sea scallops with roasted grapes, pickled sultanas, and cauliflower-almond puree; sunflower seed-crusted grouper with vegetables, chickpeas, and green harissa; and Ora king salmon with shiitakes, bok choy, crispy rice, and charred scallion-ginger broth.

4. Commander's Palace

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1403 Washington Ave
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 899-8221
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Chef Meg Bickford puts a spin on Creole dishes along with honoring the standards that make Commander’s Palace such an experience. Besides the Creole seafood gumbo and turtle soup, there’s a pecan crusted fish topped with Prosecco poached jumbo lump crab, and a garlic and pepper seared shrimp made with wild Louisiana white shrimp, served with autumn vegetables and smokey tomato butter.

Pecan crusted black drum
Commander’s Palace/Facebook

5. Seaworthy

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630 Carondelet St
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 930-3071
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The Ace Hotel’s marquee oyster destination is just that — a true destination for all things seafood: chilled, raw, ceviche-d, boiled, fried, and roasted. It’s one of few places in town to find a few specific things: a seafood tower with oysters, shrimp, and crab claws; oysters that come from places other than the Gulf (here they come from the East Coast, West Coast, and beyond); and a shrimp or lobster roll. The Gulf fish preparation is well done, as is the cioppino entree. Try to snag a spot in the courtyard as opposed to the narrow dining room, and don’t forget the hushpuppies.

6. The Bower

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1320 Magazine St
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 582-9738
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Chef Marcus Woodham orchestrates a Gulf and farm to table menu at The Bower, an inviting space in the Lower Garden District with a lovely outdoor patio and chill vibe, inside and out. His tuna tartare with cucumber and avocado is accented with Asian flavors, including goji berries and a yuzu and mirin vinaigrette. Then there’s a whole roasted branzino with black rice and fennel and a spectacular seared scallops option with farro, Maggie mushroom conserva, hot coppa, and basil. Really, everything is so good.

The Bower’s tuna tartare
The Bower/Facebook

7. Luke

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333 St Charles Ave
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 378-2840
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Love this bustling French brasserie so perfect for pre-theater dinner and a lively date night. Luke offers an extensive raw bar known for one of the city’s best seafood towers, along with BBQ P&J oysters, a fried oyster salad, and shrimp etouffee. Try the Asian take on moules frites, Prince Edward Island mussels steamed with chili garlic and thyme served with french fries.

8. Trenasse

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Intercontinental Hotel, 444 St Charles Ave
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 680-7000
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Tucked away in the Intercontinental Hotel on St. Charles Avenue (aka Mardi Gras central), Trenasse is a swell Cajun meet Creole spot for everything, but especially seafood. Besides a raw bar and delish chargrilled oysters six, count ‘em six ways, there’s the taste of Trenasse, which includes Louisiana crawfish pie, pan fried redfish Meunière, and shrimp and grits.

9. Red Fish Grill

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115 Bourbon St
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 598-1200
Visit Website

Ralph Brennan’s seafood-centric landmark is proof positive that Bourbon Street really does have a few good restaurants. Red Fish Grill offers a wide array of fresh seafood in a casual atmosphere that belies the elevated nature of what comes out of the kitchen. Try all of the oysters — there’s a Buffalo-style with hot sauce and blue cheese — a terrific crab cake, and (naturally) a blackened Gulf fish of the day.

BBQ oysters from Red Fish Grill
Red Fish Grill

10. Pêche Seafood Grill

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800 Magazine St
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 522-1744
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With the same unflinching focus they apply to piggy goodness at Cochon, chef/owners Donald Link and Stephen Stryjewski troll for seafood at Peche, an industrial chic eatery in the Warehouse District. This place is all about local and line-caught seafood, most of it cooked on a hardwood fire grill. Chef/partner Ryan Prewitt, who was named Best Chef South by the James Beard Foundation, delivers intriguing dishes like grilled tuna with butternut squash and almonds and baked drum with coconut and greens. The whole grilled fish is always a good idea.

Roasted flounder with chili butter
Pêche Seafood Grill/Facebook

11. GW Fins

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808 Bienville St
New Orleans, LA 70112
(504) 581-3467
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Sustainability is the driver at GW Fins, where chef Michael Nelson is a leading proponent for Gulf-to-plate dining and using the entire fish in innovative ways. His delicious tempura fin wings are one example of how this kitchen walks the walk, as is the Scalibut, its famed scallop-encrusted halibut dish. The seafood gumbo swims with sea creatures including crab, shrimp and oysters, all from local waters. Served with a scoop of potato salad, Cajun style, this version of gumbo is one of the very best in town. 

Tempura fin wings from GW Fins
GW Fins

12. Compère Lapin

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535 Tchoupitoulas St
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 599-2119
Visit Website

Expect seafood dishes that blend the Caribbean with French technique and a whole lot of creativity from Nina Compton, like tuna ceviche with yucca, broiled shrimp with Calabrian chile butter, and a gorgeous pompano with jerk carrot. Splurge on a mix of shareable small and large plates to share, look out for any seafood specials, and don’t miss the seasonal cocktails.

Compère Lapin/Facebook

13. Emeril's

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800 Tchoupitoulas St
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 528-9393
Visit Website

Emeril’s flagship New Orleans restaurant has long been a favorite destination for a celebratory blowout, even if it the heft of the name has waned in recent years. A menu revamp to accompany its Fall 2021 only improved upon the splurge-worthy seafood options — beyond raw oysters, fish crudo, and tartare, there’s now a bacalao in chorizo broth, andouille-crusted salmon, butter-poached halibut, and lobster served with a red wine gumbo sauce, all tasty.

14. Miss River

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2 Canal St
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 434-5100
Visit Website

Miss River, the show stopping Four Seasons restaurant from Alon Shaya, has an upscale menu that pays tribute to the waterways of Louisiana, from river to lake to Gulf. There’s a Grand Plateau of Louisiana seafood that feeds four, a salt crusted Gulf red snapper for the table, and and a pan roasted Gulf flounder with brown butter. There are no prices on the online menu — if that worries you, best to dine elsewhere.

Salt crusted Gulf red snapper
Miss River

15. The Elysian Bar

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2317 Burgundy St
New Orleans, LA 70117
(504) 356-6769
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Chef Jonathan Klaskala recently took over for Alex Harrell as executive chef of the Elysian Bar and he’s already leaving his mark on the stunning dining spaces inside and outside Marigny Hotel Peter and Paul. Klaskala is a rock star when it comes to letting ingredients shine and that’s especially true for seafood. His roasted Gulf shrimp entice, head-on monsters simmered in zippy Calabrian chile butter and topped with bottarga breadcrumbs. Oh, and there’s the snapper tartar with coconut, the roasted baked oysters with country ham bread crumbs — so hard to choose.

The Elysian Bar

16. Tchefuncte's Restaurant

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407 St Tammany St
Madisonville, LA 70447
(985) 323-4800
Visit Website

For those on the other side of the Lake, Tchefuncte’s in Madisonville impresses beyond date night — it’s downright proposal worthy. That’s partly the stylish surroundings but mostly chef Michael Gottlieb’s innate sense of making seafood sing. His new fall menu includes warm Louisiana blue crab and spinach timbale with lemon and brown butter sauce — inspired by his time in the kitchen at the Inn at Little Washington. Try the scallops with artichoke and duck fat fingerlings or the tuna carpaccio with more of that amazing Calabrian chili.

Tchefuncte’s bluefin tuna carpaccio
Tchefuncte’s Restaurant/Facebook

1. Station 6

105 Metairie-Hammond Hwy, Metairie, LA 70005
Crab on crab special from Station 6
Station 6/Facebook

Station 6 is a seafood-centric restaurant from Drew and chef Alison Vega Knoll in funky Bucktown close to the lake. Born and raised in New Orleans, Vega-Knoll hails from a family of fishermen, and the photos around her restaurant tell the tale. From garlicky crawfish boils in season to crab on crab, a special that features lump crabmeat on a fried soft shell that always sells out — this seafood spot delivers the goods.

105 Metairie-Hammond Hwy
Metairie, LA 70005

2. LUVI Restaurant

5236 Tchoupitoulas St, New Orleans, LA 70115

Dine at LUVI’s chef counter and watch chef Hao Gong’s mastery of seafood in a range of preparations, from the many raw bar options to double fried yellowtail collar. While the menu covers Japanese and Chinese noodle and soup specialties, Gong especially nails dishes of raw and nearly raw fish — try the Monkey Snack, a salmon and sesame encrusted banana, and the Feed me a la Carte off the raw bar menu for the full experience (as well as any specials).

5236 Tchoupitoulas St
New Orleans, LA 70115

3. Zasu

127 N Carrollton Ave, New Orleans, LA 70119

James Beard Award-winning chef Sue Zemanick’s Zasu is approachable but upscale, with the feel of a neighborhood bistro. While every item on the tight, thoughtful menu expertly showcases Zemanick and company’s talent, it particularly shines through dishes like sea scallops with roasted grapes, pickled sultanas, and cauliflower-almond puree; sunflower seed-crusted grouper with vegetables, chickpeas, and green harissa; and Ora king salmon with shiitakes, bok choy, crispy rice, and charred scallion-ginger broth.

127 N Carrollton Ave
New Orleans, LA 70119

4. Commander's Palace

1403 Washington Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130
Pecan crusted black drum
Commander’s Palace/Facebook

Chef Meg Bickford puts a spin on Creole dishes along with honoring the standards that make Commander’s Palace such an experience. Besides the Creole seafood gumbo and turtle soup, there’s a pecan crusted fish topped with Prosecco poached jumbo lump crab, and a garlic and pepper seared shrimp made with wild Louisiana white shrimp, served with autumn vegetables and smokey tomato butter.

1403 Washington Ave
New Orleans, LA 70130

5. Seaworthy

630 Carondelet St, New Orleans, LA 70130

The Ace Hotel’s marquee oyster destination is just that — a true destination for all things seafood: chilled, raw, ceviche-d, boiled, fried, and roasted. It’s one of few places in town to find a few specific things: a seafood tower with oysters, shrimp, and crab claws; oysters that come from places other than the Gulf (here they come from the East Coast, West Coast, and beyond); and a shrimp or lobster roll. The Gulf fish preparation is well done, as is the cioppino entree. Try to snag a spot in the courtyard as opposed to the narrow dining room, and don’t forget the hushpuppies.

630 Carondelet St
New Orleans, LA 70130

6. The Bower

1320 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70130
The Bower’s tuna tartare
The Bower/Facebook

Chef Marcus Woodham orchestrates a Gulf and farm to table menu at The Bower, an inviting space in the Lower Garden District with a lovely outdoor patio and chill vibe, inside and out. His tuna tartare with cucumber and avocado is accented with Asian flavors, including goji berries and a yuzu and mirin vinaigrette. Then there’s a whole roasted branzino with black rice and fennel and a spectacular seared scallops option with farro, Maggie mushroom conserva, hot coppa, and basil. Really, everything is so good.

1320 Magazine St
New Orleans, LA 70130

7. Luke

333 St Charles Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130

Love this bustling French brasserie so perfect for pre-theater dinner and a lively date night. Luke offers an extensive raw bar known for one of the city’s best seafood towers, along with BBQ P&J oysters, a fried oyster salad, and shrimp etouffee. Try the Asian take on moules frites, Prince Edward Island mussels steamed with chili garlic and thyme served with french fries.

333 St Charles Ave
New Orleans, LA 70130

8. Trenasse

Intercontinental Hotel, 444 St Charles Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130

Tucked away in the Intercontinental Hotel on St. Charles Avenue (aka Mardi Gras central), Trenasse is a swell Cajun meet Creole spot for everything, but especially seafood. Besides a raw bar and delish chargrilled oysters six, count ‘em six ways, there’s the taste of Trenasse, which includes Louisiana crawfish pie, pan fried redfish Meunière, and shrimp and grits.

Intercontinental Hotel, 444 St Charles Ave
New Orleans, LA 70130

9. Red Fish Grill

115 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA 70130
BBQ oysters from Red Fish Grill
Red Fish Grill

Ralph Brennan’s seafood-centric landmark is proof positive that Bourbon Street really does have a few good restaurants. Red Fish Grill offers a wide array of fresh seafood in a casual atmosphere that belies the elevated nature of what comes out of the kitchen. Try all of the oysters — there’s a Buffalo-style with hot sauce and blue cheese — a terrific crab cake, and (naturally) a blackened Gulf fish of the day.

115 Bourbon St
New Orleans, LA 70130

10. Pêche Seafood Grill

800 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70130
Roasted flounder with chili butter
Pêche Seafood Grill/Facebook

With the same unflinching focus they apply to piggy goodness at Cochon, chef/owners Donald Link and Stephen Stryjewski troll for seafood at Peche, an industrial chic eatery in the Warehouse District. This place is all about local and line-caught seafood, most of it cooked on a hardwood fire grill. Chef/partner Ryan Prewitt, who was named Best Chef South by the James Beard Foundation, delivers intriguing dishes like grilled tuna with butternut squash and almonds and baked drum with coconut and greens. The whole grilled fish is always a good idea.

800 Magazine St
New Orleans, LA 70130

11. GW Fins

808 Bienville St, New Orleans, LA 70112
Tempura fin wings from GW Fins
GW Fins

Sustainability is the driver at GW Fins, where chef Michael Nelson is a leading proponent for Gulf-to-plate dining and using the entire fish in innovative ways. His delicious tempura fin wings are one example of how this kitchen walks the walk, as is the Scalibut, its famed scallop-encrusted halibut dish. The seafood gumbo swims with sea creatures including crab, shrimp and oysters, all from local waters. Served with a scoop of potato salad, Cajun style, this version of gumbo is one of the very best in town. 

808 Bienville St
New Orleans, LA 70112

12. Compère Lapin

535 Tchoupitoulas St, New Orleans, LA 70130
Compère Lapin/Facebook

Expect seafood dishes that blend the Caribbean with French technique and a whole lot of creativity from Nina Compton, like tuna ceviche with yucca, broiled shrimp with Calabrian chile butter, and a gorgeous pompano with jerk carrot. Splurge on a mix of shareable small and large plates to share, look out for any seafood specials, and don’t miss the seasonal cocktails.

535 Tchoupitoulas St
New Orleans, LA 70130

13. Emeril's

800 Tchoupitoulas St, New Orleans, LA 70130

Emeril’s flagship New Orleans restaurant has long been a favorite destination for a celebratory blowout, even if it the heft of the name has waned in recent years. A menu revamp to accompany its Fall 2021 only improved upon the splurge-worthy seafood options — beyond raw oysters, fish crudo, and tartare, there’s now a bacalao in chorizo broth, andouille-crusted salmon, butter-poached halibut, and lobster served with a red wine gumbo sauce, all tasty.

800 Tchoupitoulas St
New Orleans, LA 70130

14. Miss River

2 Canal St, New Orleans, LA 70130
Salt crusted Gulf red snapper
Miss River

Miss River, the show stopping Four Seasons restaurant from Alon Shaya, has an upscale menu that pays tribute to the waterways of Louisiana, from river to lake to Gulf. There’s a Grand Plateau of Louisiana seafood that feeds four, a salt crusted Gulf red snapper for the table, and and a pan roasted Gulf flounder with brown butter. There are no prices on the online menu — if that worries you, best to dine elsewhere.

2 Canal St
New Orleans, LA 70130

15. The Elysian Bar

2317 Burgundy St, New Orleans, LA 70117
The Elysian Bar

Chef Jonathan Klaskala recently took over for Alex Harrell as executive chef of the Elysian Bar and he’s already leaving his mark on the stunning dining spaces inside and outside Marigny Hotel Peter and Paul. Klaskala is a rock star when it comes to letting ingredients shine and that’s especially true for seafood. His roasted Gulf shrimp entice, head-on monsters simmered in zippy Calabrian chile butter and topped with bottarga breadcrumbs. Oh, and there’s the snapper tartar with coconut, the roasted baked oysters with country ham bread crumbs — so hard to choose.

2317 Burgundy St
New Orleans, LA 70117

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16. Tchefuncte's Restaurant

407 St Tammany St, Madisonville, LA 70447
Tchefuncte’s bluefin tuna carpaccio
Tchefuncte’s Restaurant/Facebook

For those on the other side of the Lake, Tchefuncte’s in Madisonville impresses beyond date night — it’s downright proposal worthy. That’s partly the stylish surroundings but mostly chef Michael Gottlieb’s innate sense of making seafood sing. His new fall menu includes warm Louisiana blue crab and spinach timbale with lemon and brown butter sauce — inspired by his time in the kitchen at the Inn at Little Washington. Try the scallops with artichoke and duck fat fingerlings or the tuna carpaccio with more of that amazing Calabrian chili.

407 St Tammany St
Madisonville, LA 70447

Related Maps