For the truly smitten, caviar is a blissful indulgence. Mounds of the gorgeously shiny sturgeon roe usually arrive surrounded by a royal court of chopped egg, onion, capers, and blini or toast points. Best enjoyed with all of the flavors in one bite, the pop of the eggs delivers a briny umami that is sadly habit-forming. That’s because the swank treat is not something to be enjoyed every day, the cost prohibits. This is why nothing says special occasion quite as much as caviar. There are chefs that adorn dishes with the precious eggs — the crispy potatoes at Bar Marilou, deviled eggs at Saint John, or Sukeban’s perfectly composed handrolls come to mind. But for this lineup, the choice is traditional service with all the trimmings, a decadent feast indeed.Read More
Where to Splurge on Caviar in New Orleans
Get fancy for the holidays with the luxe add-on
Bubbles reign at Effervescence, the festive lounge on Rampart Street on the Quarter’s edge. So of course, there’s caviar, served with house potato chips, crème fraîche, and chives. Options include bowfin Cajun Caviar, $52, a kaluga fusion for $75, and golden osetra for $125. Get pomme frites too. There’s even a Caviar bagel brunch served Sundays until 2 p.m.
Jewel of the South
Chef Philip Whitmarsh surprises at every turn at Jewel of the South, the fab cocktail bar and restaurant co-owned by Chris Hannah at the edge of the Quarter. Caviar service comes in four flavors; potato scallops, crème fraîche, and chives on the side. Choose smoky bowfin, $75, mild, butter hackleback, $95, creamy farm-raised Kaluga, $125, and osetra, also farm-raised and wonderfully rich, $160.
Fives is a compact European-style oyster bar on the edge of Jackson Square, a lovely duck-in for craft cocktails under the shimmer of a sparkling chandelier. Be mindful that the bar is open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., the early close a nod to the state’s tenants upstairs. Both potato chips and cornmeal blinis arrive with the usual bits, $40 for smoked trout, $140 for kaluga, and $250 for golden osetra.
Restaurant R’evolution, a hell of a place to celebrate just about anything, offers an exceptional caviar service with varieties including golden osetra, sevruga, kaluga, and rainbow trout. Prices range from $95 to $165, or get all the black caviar for $420. The eggs are served on hand-painted oyster shells with accompaniments, along with a non-reactive Mother of Pearl spoon which allows the brilliant flavors to shine.
M bistro Restaurant
This tucked-away fine dining spot in the Ritz Carlton makes a fine stop before or after catching a show from crooner Jeremy Davenport. M Bistro features a grand, $90 seafood plateau that can be sweetened with an ounce of caviar served with crème fraîche and blinis at market price.
The Hotel Monteleone’s Criollo restaurant offers two different types of caviar with lunch, brunch, and dinner, kaluga and osetra. Both varieties are served with the fixings. Prices are $150 and $200, best paired with bottomless Veuve Clicquot for $95 at brunch.
The Windsor Court
The monthly Bubbles & Caviar pop-up experience at Le Salon in the Windsor Court features a rotating menu of musical acts and seafood-centric light bites (check their website for the dates). Prices are $190, $210, and $245 for imported osetra, California white sturgeon, and hybrid, a cross between kaluga and amur sturgeon. There’s even caviar with dessert!
Savor caviar at Miss River and the Chandelier Bar at the lovely Four Seasons, service that includes heirloom milled cornbread hotcakes and accoutrements to accompany imperial golden osetra for $250. Another choice at Miss River is Creole cream cheese ice cream topped with Imperial golden osetra caviar, an $85 salty-sweet end to the celebration.
Seaworthy spotlights the best seafood the continental U.S. with an emphasis on Louisiana. Caviar service ranges from $35 to $140 and features Cajun bowfin and paddlefish, both local to the state, as well as white sturgeon from Idaho. Served with sieved egg, red onion, house pickles, chives, crème fraîche, and cornbread blini in a romantic setting that is embracingly nautical.
Ever heard of a caviar bump? They’ve had their dubious moments at hotspots in cities like New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, representing the ultimate luxury flex in fine-dining. But you can also try them at the decidedly chill Sukeban, Oak Street’s charming izakaya experience from Jacqueline Blanchard. Order some Cajun Caviar or kaluga as a supplement to your temaki and infuse a little fun with dinner.
The Wine Bar at Emeril's
When celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse reopened Emeril’s in October 2023 with son E.J. Lagasse at the helm, the pair did more than reintroduce a business-as-usual flagship restaurant. They also added a lively wine bar meant to offer an alternative to the prix fixe, reservations-only dining room. Pop in for a glass and a splurge-worthy snack, like the hybrid sturgeon caviar service for $150.
Pigeon and Whale
Both the menu and atmosphere at Freret Street’s new Pigeon and Whale bring a decidedly New England vibe to New Orleans. It celebrates all things seafood, bringing in such rarely-seen specialties as Maine lobster, PEI mussels, and Atlantic clams. It also offers an opportunity to splurge on caviar service, best enjoyed at the bar, with four options: paddlefish, kaluga, French ostera, and golden ostera. It’s served in a gold clam shell with chives, egg whites, creme fraiche, red onion, and both blinis and Lay’s potato chips.