A couple weekends before Christmas, Jason and I were able to escape to New Orleans for a couple kid-free nights.
It only takes about 4 hours to get from Destin to NOLA, so it’s the perfect weekend getaway. We get tons of Louisiana visitors to our area, also.
I was really looking forward to staying at the historic Roosevelt New Orleans.
The hotel dates back to the late 1890s but has changed names several times and undergone hundreds of millions of dollars of renovations since its early days.
I’d heard it was THE spot to visit during Christmas time. The entire lobby was filled with dozens of beautifully decorated Christmas trees and thousands upon thousands of twinkling lights. It was absolutely magical and definitely put us in the holiday spirit!
Our first meal was lunch at Toups South.
Chef Isaac Toups brings a sophisticated flair to Cajun cuisine and was featured on Top Chef. All I know is the man can make one heck of a biscuit!
These sourdough biscuits with crab fat butter were some of the BEST biscuits we’ve ever had. Ever. The grilled shrimp over creamy grits and Toups burger were pretty stellar, as well. I’d highly recommend for something a bit off the beaten path.
After a biscuit-induced nap, we cleaned up and grabbed a drink at the famed Carousel Bar at Hotel Monteleone. Sadly there were no seats at the actual carousel (yes, it really spins!), but it was still fun with excellent people-watching opportunities!
Thankfully we managed to get hungry enough for dinner which allowed us to experience Coquette in all its glory.
We opted for the chef’s blind tasting of five courses and it was such a cool experience!
We tasted raw oysters, crab rice (my fav), grouper with buttermilk sauce, rabbit (my first time and it was delicious), and a savory custard that was unlike anything I’ve every tried. I’d definitely recommend the tasting menu if you like trying a variety of foods. Not for picky eaters, though!
After dinner we laughed the night away at Cats Meow watching karaoke. Such a hoot!
Sunday morning we dragged ourselves out of bed and headed to Willa Jean for brunch. Our plan was to attend a noon Saints game and it seemed that all the other fans had the same idea. The place was packed and everyone was decked out in black and gold.
Thankfully I had a Bloody Mary in hand while waiting to be seated. Willa Jean was such a bright and cheery spot for brunch. All the baked goods looked amazing, too.
Seriously! How fun are these sky-high muffins?!
Jason ordered the Croque Madame and I had the huevos rancheros (but we wanted to order about 10 different things!). Both were excellent.
This was our first time attending a Saints game and only my second ever professional football game. We’re college football fanatics! We definitely cheer for the Saints, though.
We managed to snag 9th row seats and had an awesome time! Bonus- the Saints won!
For our final night in town, we had reservations at Domenica. It was high on our list of places to try and just so happened to be inside our hotel.
I am not exaggerating when I say we wanted everything on the menu. It all sounded incredible! We started out with a cheeseboard that was literally as big as the table.
It came with all sorts of olives, spreads, and pickled fruits. What sold me on it was the fried pastry dough they bring you to accompany the cheese. OMG so good.
I don’t think we were even hungry after all the meats and cheeses, but we powered through for pizza and pasta.
Jason and I each wanted a different pizza and they were able to do half and half for us. Half was prosciutto and arugula and half was salami, capers, and olives. So tasty!
The campanelle with white Bolognese and Brussels sprouts was UNREAL.
It was kind of like a mix between alfredo and carbonarra sauces. I have never been so full in all my life because I just could not stop eating this pasta!
I’ve got to go back next time I’m in New Orleans and try the cauliflower, squid ink pasta, and lasagna.
So obviously we came, we saw, we ate. It’s what we do best. And now our pants don’t fit. 😉
Can’t wait for our next trip to the Big Easy! What are your favorite spots in New Orleans?