Saturday, August 28, 2010

New Orleans Love

I had a work trip in New Orleans last October. I just had to bring @MrBaltiville so we could experience the city together. My grandparents had their honeymoon in NOLA. My brother used to go to wild parties there by way of Ole Miss. And mother, well she has more stories about New Orleans than anyone. I called Daddy from Jackson Square and he was a wealth of knowledge and said, look up. Jackson Square has the oldest apartments in the country. The shops were on the first floor and the floors above are all apartments. How beautiful are these iron gates and balconies? I've been told that many of these gates were made in Baltimore.
We ate our way through the city in between my busy work schedule at the convention center, which is ginormous by the way. From a tourism expert standard, New Orleans has a great hospitality community. From the dishwashers to the trolley car drivers, they are all very much invested in their city. We took the trolley everywhere and our car driver was hands down the most patient woman. Tourists ask the same damn questions over and over. Imagine. And this darling woman had a smile on her face like it was the first time she had ever been asked, "How do you get to Cafe du Monde." Bless her heart! 

Hands down our favorite dinner spot was Jacques-Imos Driving through the Garden District was only the beginning of the highlights. Two words, alligator cheesecake! We also went to The Maple Leaf down the street after dinner and saw @PapaGrowsFunk only to find out that they hit the 8x10 here in Baltimore on occasion. What was on tap? Dogfish Head from Delaware.

We hit a million other restaurants and enjoyed Luke, John Besh's latest brasserie. This is one cookbook I don't own, but if the cookbook fairy wanted to send this to me I'd be psyched.

The Muffuletta from Central Grocery was totally worth all of the hype. The mixture of flavors all smashed together on the best bread was to die for good! Who knew pickled caulliflower could be so tasty on a sammy. We sat next to a woman who had been there 20 years before and was worried it wouldn't taste the same. She assured us it did.

Many thanks to all the kind people of New Orleans who have been through so much. You are a graceful, gritty people and we long to return and visit you again soon. 

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