“An unexpected ESSENCE of NOLA,” OR “YALL BETTER not F up the spots i tell ya to check out while yall here or imma~/drink N Nosh edition” by Angel Brynner.


I MUST admit…i am a bit gun-shy with this one.

Cuz yall have DONE it before…(Welp~that’s right, i am IN my  CT[Clevelandish Tonalities] cuzza this). Somma Yall done ruined spots i’ve told yall about with your insecure aggrandizing in the midst of being overwhelmed with the i told yous that bounce off yer fo’heads when ya walk INTO a spot that is rather non-traditional for ya…and in the end, after damn near doing the equivalent of emo-skeet-skeeting for sheer joy at the fun ya Finally LET yerselves have, the entire vibes of the aforementioned (consciously unmentioned[NYC AND MIAMI]) PLACES are ruined…and i can no Longer enter these sanctuaries without smelling the stench of the silliness yall have clumsily kicked up. {end of CT period.}

BUT… Since some of you HAVE come and done the dirty  the traditional and touristic way[ without setting anything stupidly on fire]… from a place somewhere between “against my better judgement” &”come on! they can handle it now with out acting like damn fools~”- I  offer a short & sweet nontraditional LIST-Up of stuff to do in New Orleans. Shout-out to those who Know how i am, all “somethin does not compute about her ass happily holing up down here”

Presenting my FIRST… “Stuff that aint on the lists they’re giving you for this here “Independence Day/Essence [black folk damn near everywhere-even for chocolate damn city this is fn ridiculous]” Weekend….list.

🙂 I SAID Short lol.


& No, you are NOT allowed to go eat at Mother & say you did something spectacular. Ditto for Mandina’s. nO DISRESPECT to either joint, but dammit, you are in NEW ORLEANS.

I’m going to be a tad blunt. Mandinas is going to be flooded with the  Olive Garden, Applebees, Cracker Barrel-eating always  bloated folks that most of yall who are not in Huge cities are coming to N’awlins to get away from in the first place. And with good reason. The word on the street about Mandina’s gumbo is true…for a particular, bland palette. & for what it is you pay out the nose for. It is not BAD. but when the BEST can be had in a setting that does right by the spirit of NOLA for like two bucks more…Go for the best.

Can you GIVE me the benefit of the doubt and check out the following places instead? These are going to be small, local establishments, some many years deep in the scene, some brand-new, backed by some of the oldest and best of the old-school. But they are not on this list due to their pedigrees. They are on these list because the food AND Drink is fn phenomenal.


Three point A spots to go get your drink and nosh on in a grown-assed way,  (before you start roving wildly through the wards looking for brassbands, hookers and…whathaveyou):

The Carousel Bar in Hotel Monteleone. This place IS always packed…but what many don’t realize is a lot of that to the gills is quietly Local. Amazing hand-painted 1800s carousel that IS the Bar is & hot and all else…but it is their drinks and the great live music they have going almost every night that will make you feel transported. If you have never had Pisco[ a Peruvian/Chilean spirit that  bends either way: the day after you will be seeing rainbows around everything you look at, or spinning on a spit, slowly roasting in hallucinatory hell] THIS is the place to dip your foot in. Order a Pisco Sour and see what it feels like for a… Anyway, food-wise, the carousel bar IS connected kinda sorta to Criollo, a spot that will come up on a later entry.

Restaurant R’evolution  This place has not ONLY the BEST THREE GUMBOS I HAVE EVER HAD IN MY GUMBO-LOVING LIFE…it is where you go for what they call a Belle Epoque…which hits like the perfect French Martini. Then again, everything had here-if you can GET a table- is phenomenal, and Not getting a table & having to squish into the bar may be the beginning of the best night you’ve ever had in this here insanely beautiful domain that IS New Orleans. the bar scene at RR is akin to what the scene used to be in Soho before it got packaged and sold to the world twenty years ago. If you cant have a great night here, you may as well leave.

LUKE. Now Luke is…over in the CBD, like a block under Poydras on St. Charles. This is the spot that I’d say head to late Friday afternoon to start Essence off right with some Happy Hour vibes. Their raw bar is- if you are coming from a head-scape where you are not so enamored with visions of every damn thing from the sea being fried- like a breath of fresh Air. They routinely feature P&J oysters[local, juicy, OMG this is why these are considered aphrodisiacs! deliciousness] during their happy hours as well as half-price drinks-  But the drink that i will return to again & again is their Streetcar…due to the hefty St. Germain kick to it.

These three spots and their menus actually showcase the New Orleans that’s going to keep you going after the breasts are back under the tops, the beads are piling up in the corner and you’re really considering a Move TO this bizarrely beautiful spot on the map.


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