For the final part of our Jolly Awesome road trip we hit the Big Easy.
New Orleans is quite the combination as it has some real history and beautiful old buildings in the French quarter and the Garden District, but in stark contrast its also one of the biggest party cities in the US, with things getting all cray cray on Bourbon Street. It should be no surprise that we pretty much spent our time here eating and drinking….
Cafe Du Monde
You can’t go to NOLA without a trip here, yes the queue will be ridiculous, but the beignets completely covered in icing sugar are totally worth it. I challenge you to eat one without get covered in sugar.
This magical bar is found in the Hotel Montelone in the French Quarter. Sitting on the rotating vintage carousel whilst sipping on an amazing cocktail is just perfection. That’s if you can get a seat, it is an elbows out situation, but once you’re in there I would definitely recommend the French 007.
We had been recommended a whole list of ‘must go’ eateries in NOLA, its pretty hard to eat at them all, as you’ll end up the size of a house. But I would definitely try and pick up some lunch in the form of a ‘muffuletta’ sandwich from Italian-American deli, Central Grocery. Don’t order a whole sandwich for yourself unless you are Joey Tribbiani, as they are huge, like bigger than your face! It has all the meats, but it’s the special olive salad that makes it.
Rebirth Brass Band at Maple Leaf Bar
You can’t really avoid live music here; there are always bands out on the street playing in the French Quarter, adding to the fun atmosphere. We headed out of the centre of the city to the Maple Leaf Bar, which is an awesome dive bar/ live music venue to watch Rebirth Brass Band, and they were A-MAZING, seriously good, we managed to get a spot at the front and had the best time.
I loved this place, the classic decor with marble counter tops, the pale pink walls and the lovely friendly staff dressed in shirts and bow ties combined with a menu of American classics. Definitely go for breakfast and order the pecan pancakes with a side of bacon, so good!
As soon as you step in this cocktail bar you’re transported back in time. Everything about this place is beautifully classic, and the guys behind the bar seriously know what they are doing, cocktails are strong but so good, and it goes without saying that you should order the French 75.
It’s easy to get stuck in everything that’s going on in the French Quarter, but hop onto the tram and head on over to the warehouse district to see a modern side to the city. Cochon in the heart of this area with it’s modern take on the traditional Cajun food, was well worth a visit. We decided to go for all the local favourites – oysters, gumbo, alligator (eek) and of course Cochon (French for pork) and were all so tasty!
This crazy street has given New Orleans its party reputation. It’s super rowdy and seems to attract all age groups to get very merry. Of course we did get a little involved and picked up a hand grenade or two.
Awesome place to end our Jolly Awesome road trip.
– Katie 🙂