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Bananas Foster made tableside at Brennan’s.
Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

27 Iconic French Quarter Dining Experiences

A bucket list of tried and true dining and drinking situations in the Vieux Carre

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Bananas Foster made tableside at Brennan’s.
| Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

If you've never been to the French Quarter, do not just immediately head to Bourbon Street. Instead, Eater suggests approaching the Vieux Carre with an eye for the must-visit spots, from the oldest bars in America to hidden tiki oases to some very famous Bourbon Street spots.

This map — the restaurants, dishes, and culinary experiences that help define the French Quarter's identity — should offer a comprehensive starting point for any visitor. It includes the obvious and the over-publicized, but also hidden gems. It’s mostly about dishes and experiences, rather than the restaurant experience as a whole. Head here if you're looking for the French Quarter's essential restaurants.

Did we miss an iconic French Quarter dining experience? Leave a comment or send a tip.

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Eater maps are curated by editors and aim to reflect a diversity of neighborhoods, cuisines, and prices. Learn more about our editorial process. If you buy something or book a reservation from an Eater link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics policy.

Late Night Po’boy at Verti Marte

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With its chalkboard menu and glass display cases by the counter, just a peek inside foreshadows a hearty meal. Try the po’boys, but bring a friend— these monstrosities are more than enough for two.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Drink at the Piano in Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop

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Supposedly the country’s oldest structure to be used as a bar, Lafitte’s is a space where music, drinks, and colorful history collide. Sidle up to the bar for a Voodoo Daiquiri but head to the piano for a serenade by one of the bar's various well-versed crooners (don't forget to tip).

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Late Night Burger at Clover Grill

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Taking a seat at one of the ‘50s-style diner stools will propel you back a few decades — add a deliciously steamy, retro burger and you might feel the need to don a poodle skirt (guaranteed: you still won't be the oddest person in the house).

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Loretta’s Pralines in The French Market

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As the first African American woman to successfully own and operate her own praline company in this city, Loretta Harrison won the hearts of New Orleanians with her charm and her sweets. That legacy lives on since her death in 2022; try the melt-in-your-mouth goodies at her French Market counter or the larger N. Rampart store, just on the outskirts of the Quarter.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Fried Chicken and Jambalaya at Coop's Place

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Get the flavors of the Old South and the bayou in a single dish at this down-home staple. An order of the “Cajun Fried Chicken” is seasoned with a secret house blend of spices and served with rabbit and sausage jambalaya. If rabbit isn’t your favorite, Coop’s lengthy menu is bound to have something for everyone — just make sure to get there early, as they don’t take reservations.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Frozen Irish Coffee at Molly's at the Market

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Find some of the best Irish Coffee in town at this eclectic dive bar on Decatur Street, which serves up a deliciously frozen version of the classic libation. It’s guaranteed to cool you off and wake you up before more galavanting in the Quarter.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Gumbo at Stanley

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Grab a bowl of gumbo filled with Gulf shrimp, oysters, chicken, and andouille sausage from this daytime dining locale conveniently overlooking Jackson Square, open Thursday through Monday. only (there’s even a vegan version). It warms the heart.

Eater NOLA

Absinthe at Pirate's Alley

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The “green fairy of New Orleans” calls this bar home in the Quarter. Following the drink’s long and treacherous history, absinthe was reimagined using Herbsaint and other (legal) flavorings, resulting in a 55% alcohol mixture that is unique to the city.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Hurricane at Pat O'Brien's

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Revelers have flocked to the doors of this French Quarter bar for eight decades to enjoy the notorious and widely-publicized “Hurricane." A vibrantly enticing shade of crimson, this rum-heavy drink has earned the bar its place among the iconic French Quarter haunts.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Jazz Brunch at the Court of Two Sisters

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The Court of Two Sisters is best known to tourists for its ample jazz buffet and stunning outdoor dining area, and to locals as a common wedding venue. Its Creole Louisiana fare is classic, and the bananas Foster is one of the city's favorites. Jazz brunch runs daily.

Beignets at Café du Monde

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Though it’s one of the most well-known locales on this list, the powdered sugar-dusted wares found at this Decatur Street classic sets Café du Monde apart from most tourist traps. Take a seat at one of the many formica tables or step up to the to-go window for a bag of pillowy beignets and a cup of chicory coffee — both of which are served in the establishment’s outdoor facade.

Oysters Rockefeller & Cafe Brulot at Antoine's Restaurant

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Though it’s hard to go wrong with four distinctly delicious oyster preparations on the menu, in our humble opinion it’s the classic Rockefeller-style mollusks that you won’t want to miss. Along with their Cafe Brulot, this Saint Louis Street staple is a must while hitting up the Quarter. Yet another iconic offering at Antoine’s? Baked Alaska.

Dine al fresco at Broussard's

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Broussard’s has won countless accolades for its execution of classic dishes like turtle soup, oysters Rockefeller, and barbecue shrimp — all of which taste even better eaten outside on a balmy evening in this century-old restaurant's inviting courtyard.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Killer Po-boys in Erin Rose

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Served from the back bar of the Erin Rose on Conti Street, these po’ boys are internationally-inspired, creative affairs. Ingredients like roasted sweet potato, seared shrimp, and Dark and Stormy-inspired pork belly separate these from their oft-tired, bready cousins. While you’re there, try the frozen Irish coffee and compare it to Molly’s at the Market (hint: they’re both great).

Pimm's Cup at Napoleon House

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Though Napoleon never actually made it to this Chartres Street bar, that fact doesn’t seem to bother the droves of people who've sought out the shadowy restaurant since 1906, what with its beautiful courtyard and signature refreshments, the Pimm’s Cup cocktail.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Breakfast and Bananas Foster at Brennan's

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If breakfast is the most important meal of the day, Brennan’s is equipping its customers with all the tools they need for success. Traditional dishes like seafood gumbo, eggs Sardou, and turtle soup are served alongside morning cocktails and chicory coffee in the ornate dining room. After breakfast and tableside bananas Foster for dessert, explore the Quarter via Royal Street— or go straight home and take a long nap.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Cocktails at Arnaud's French 75 Bar

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The intimate bar attached to the iconic eatery Arnaud's is a great spot for pre or post-dinner drinks. The French 75 and Brandy Crusta are exceptionally good here and if you play your cards right, the restaurant may let you into the cool little Mardi Gras museum upstairs.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Seafood at GW Fins

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The best way to order at this seafood mecca is to explore the available dry-aged fish, “seacuterie,” or the Scalibut, a few of chef Michael Nelson's incredible specialties that will change your perspective on seafood entirely.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Death By Gumbo at Restaurant R'evolution

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If classic gumbo isn’t really your speed, try this decadently updated quail version at one of New Orleans’s finest restaurants. Topped with a whole, semi-boneless quail stuffed with oysters and andouille sausage and served over filé rice, this dish is guaranteed to give you a new perspective on Creole classics.

Lunch at Johnny's Po-Boys

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Red and white checkered tablecloths and humble, paper-wrapped po’boys make this spot one of the Quarter’s most frequented. Stop in for a quick lunch and choose from over 30 kinds of sandwiches.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Grasshopper at Tujague’s

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Visit the country’s third-oldest restaurant in its new home (sadly, its iconic stand-up bar didn’t make the move) where the Grasshopper, the frothy and minty iconic after-dinner drink, was invented way back in the days when locals and politicians played poker dice at this Decatur Street landmark.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Friday Lunch at Galatoire's

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Shrimp remoulade and pompano with crab meat are must-orders at this jacket-required Bourbon Street grand dame dating back to 1905. Come Friday lunch, prepare for a dining room that's packed with regulars, rowdiness, and booze.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Raw or Charbroiled Oysters at Felix's

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An unpretentious staple of New Orleans’s seafood scene, Felix’s small façade on Iberville Street is the perfect place to snag a quick lunch in the Quarter. Opt for the raw or charbroiled oysters and grab a seat at the bar to enjoy a local beer while your order is shucked right in front of you.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Ride the Carousel Bar

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The famous Carousel Bar and Lounge is a French Quarter hotspot that’s been spinning for more than 65 years in the Hotel Monteleone. Step up to the 25-seat revolving bar and check out the broad cocktail menu (we recommend the Sazerac) and then venture out to Royal Street for a night of reveling.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Barbecue Shrimp at Mr. B's

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Served in their shells and doused in peppery, buttery gold, the head-on gulf shrimp from this classic Creole bistro are served with hefty slices of French bread for dipping.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Martinis at Irene's

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This family-owned Creole Italian restaurant remains the Quarter’s gold standard for homey, cheesy Italian goodness (a close call with Italian Barrel on the other side of the Quarter). Grab a martini at the piano bar before tucking into oysters Irene and crabmeat gratin.

Tiki Drinks at Beachbum Berry’s

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Beachbum Berry’s Hawaiian-influenced spot on the edge of the Quarter runs on imagination and rum. The elaborate and inventive drink menu includes a killer Mai Tai and the Navy Grog (Sinatra’s go-to tiki drink).

The Saturn, available all week at Latitude 29
The Saturn.
Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Late Night Po’boy at Verti Marte

With its chalkboard menu and glass display cases by the counter, just a peek inside foreshadows a hearty meal. Try the po’boys, but bring a friend— these monstrosities are more than enough for two.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Drink at the Piano in Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop

Supposedly the country’s oldest structure to be used as a bar, Lafitte’s is a space where music, drinks, and colorful history collide. Sidle up to the bar for a Voodoo Daiquiri but head to the piano for a serenade by one of the bar's various well-versed crooners (don't forget to tip).

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Late Night Burger at Clover Grill

Taking a seat at one of the ‘50s-style diner stools will propel you back a few decades — add a deliciously steamy, retro burger and you might feel the need to don a poodle skirt (guaranteed: you still won't be the oddest person in the house).

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Loretta’s Pralines in The French Market

As the first African American woman to successfully own and operate her own praline company in this city, Loretta Harrison won the hearts of New Orleanians with her charm and her sweets. That legacy lives on since her death in 2022; try the melt-in-your-mouth goodies at her French Market counter or the larger N. Rampart store, just on the outskirts of the Quarter.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Fried Chicken and Jambalaya at Coop's Place

Get the flavors of the Old South and the bayou in a single dish at this down-home staple. An order of the “Cajun Fried Chicken” is seasoned with a secret house blend of spices and served with rabbit and sausage jambalaya. If rabbit isn’t your favorite, Coop’s lengthy menu is bound to have something for everyone — just make sure to get there early, as they don’t take reservations.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Frozen Irish Coffee at Molly's at the Market

Find some of the best Irish Coffee in town at this eclectic dive bar on Decatur Street, which serves up a deliciously frozen version of the classic libation. It’s guaranteed to cool you off and wake you up before more galavanting in the Quarter.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Gumbo at Stanley

Grab a bowl of gumbo filled with Gulf shrimp, oysters, chicken, and andouille sausage from this daytime dining locale conveniently overlooking Jackson Square, open Thursday through Monday. only (there’s even a vegan version). It warms the heart.

Eater NOLA

Absinthe at Pirate's Alley

The “green fairy of New Orleans” calls this bar home in the Quarter. Following the drink’s long and treacherous history, absinthe was reimagined using Herbsaint and other (legal) flavorings, resulting in a 55% alcohol mixture that is unique to the city.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Hurricane at Pat O'Brien's

Revelers have flocked to the doors of this French Quarter bar for eight decades to enjoy the notorious and widely-publicized “Hurricane." A vibrantly enticing shade of crimson, this rum-heavy drink has earned the bar its place among the iconic French Quarter haunts.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Jazz Brunch at the Court of Two Sisters

The Court of Two Sisters is best known to tourists for its ample jazz buffet and stunning outdoor dining area, and to locals as a common wedding venue. Its Creole Louisiana fare is classic, and the bananas Foster is one of the city's favorites. Jazz brunch runs daily.

Beignets at Café du Monde

Though it’s one of the most well-known locales on this list, the powdered sugar-dusted wares found at this Decatur Street classic sets Café du Monde apart from most tourist traps. Take a seat at one of the many formica tables or step up to the to-go window for a bag of pillowy beignets and a cup of chicory coffee — both of which are served in the establishment’s outdoor facade.

Oysters Rockefeller & Cafe Brulot at Antoine's Restaurant

Though it’s hard to go wrong with four distinctly delicious oyster preparations on the menu, in our humble opinion it’s the classic Rockefeller-style mollusks that you won’t want to miss. Along with their Cafe Brulot, this Saint Louis Street staple is a must while hitting up the Quarter. Yet another iconic offering at Antoine’s? Baked Alaska.

Dine al fresco at Broussard's

Broussard’s has won countless accolades for its execution of classic dishes like turtle soup, oysters Rockefeller, and barbecue shrimp — all of which taste even better eaten outside on a balmy evening in this century-old restaurant's inviting courtyard.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Killer Po-boys in Erin Rose

Served from the back bar of the Erin Rose on Conti Street, these po’ boys are internationally-inspired, creative affairs. Ingredients like roasted sweet potato, seared shrimp, and Dark and Stormy-inspired pork belly separate these from their oft-tired, bready cousins. While you’re there, try the frozen Irish coffee and compare it to Molly’s at the Market (hint: they’re both great).

Pimm's Cup at Napoleon House

Though Napoleon never actually made it to this Chartres Street bar, that fact doesn’t seem to bother the droves of people who've sought out the shadowy restaurant since 1906, what with its beautiful courtyard and signature refreshments, the Pimm’s Cup cocktail.