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The Big Easy

April 19, 2010

Well, I’m sorry I haven’t posted, but we’ve been so busy there just hasn’t been time until now!
But I’m at the airport now, where I have hours to wait until I fly to Los Angeles, so I thought I’d take advantage of the free wifi and tell you what we’ve been up to!

Here’s the rundown:

Day 1
B and I faced the early morning hours to catch our 6:30am flight out of Toronto. The customs line was brutal and it was tight, but we made our flight.
After a brief stopover in Charlotte, we arrived in New Orleans and cabbed it to our hotel, the W.
Our hunger overtook the sheer fatigue we were feeling, so we freshened up and ventured our!
Turns out everything is much closer than it appears on the map and very quickly we found ourselves in the heart of the French quarter, at Jackson Square. My first impressions? Everything was so green! The weather was perfect our first day here (and continued to be perfect until last night); I couldn’t get over it! The flowers were blooming, trees full of leaves….stunning!
We are lunch in a cute little place on the corner of the square, Muriels, where I had a spinach salad and crawfish and goat cheese crepes. I wanted to try the crawfish, and they suggest you suck the meat our of the shell, but I don’t eat anything that comes in it’s original form, so the crepes were the perfects way to taste them! Very good! They’re just like small shrimps.
After lunch we were feeling great (all meals had an alcohol component, haha) and took a walk down the river and saw the mighty Mississippi!
By the time we got back to the hotel, it was time for a rest before dinner; we were heading to one of Emeril’s restaurants, NOLA. Our hotel has a service where they provided complimentary car service, so we took advantage and saved our feet.
The food was great, though not spectacular. I had like half a pig (huge pork chop), which was grilled nicely, but nothing special. However, I had the most amazing coconut creme brûlée for dessert. Mmmm. I can still taste it.
We walked back to the hotel (have I mentioned how amazing the weather was?) and crashed! We did amazingly well considering how long we’d been up.

Day 2
We awoke early, mostly because B forgot to set her watch alarm an hour back and didn’t realize it until I pointed out at breakfast (we had oatmeal and fruit at the hotel restaurant) that it was actually 8:30 not 9:30! Very funny moment.
Since we had some time before our 10:30 tour of the frenh quarter, and the meeting point was Cafe Beignet, we settled in to enjoy a Beignet, the New Orleans version of a donut. All I can say is thank goodness we don’t have them in Toronto! So. Good.
Our tour guide was the quintisential southern woman; larger than life, big floppy hat, fab accent. She was a native and knew everything! We had a great two hour tour.
After that we hit up a cute little place for panini, then did what B and I do best together: we shopped. I bought a couple pairs of shoes from this awesome store called the Trashy Diva. I love them!
Pooped after enjoying ANOTHER day of great weather (sun shining and 28 c), we went back to the hotel before going to dinner.
That night we went to Cafe Amelie. The atmosphere was amazing. We sat in a lovely courtyard, our table situated next to a fountain. So pretty! I had a beet and goat cheese salad as my starter, and had grilled salmon with the biggest stalks of asparagus i’ve ever seen!
Again, we walked back to the hotel and crashed. No partying for us! We had no energy!

Day 3
We woke up, got ready and made our way up to the St Charles steetcar to grab a ride to the garden district. The streetcar was old and creaky but fun! Again, the weather was stellar and it was nice to enjoy the wind blowing through the open windows.
We arrived in the garden distict and were blown away by the trees and homes. Fabulous!
We ate breakfast on the patio of a little coffee shop under a canopy of trees. I had a bagel with the best whipped chives and garlic cream cheese I’ve ever had! We then wandered around a bit before meeting up with our tour guide, who would show us around the area. We toured the cemetery and the homes. Sandra Bullock and Nicolas Cage both have residences there! Didn’t see them though. Or Brad Pitt. boo.
After the tour we meandered down to Magazine street where we hit up Joey K’s for lunch (sausage on a bun and cheese fries) then started off for more, you guessed it, shopping! I didn’t find anything, but B bought the cutesy pair of shoes!
We finally got back to the hotel, rested up and had booked a reservation at a place close by, Tommy’s Cuisine, for dinner.
This was more of a comfort food type of place and it was just what we needed. We shared a couple of appy’s, then I had Pollo e Parma (chicken parmesan) as my main. We shared a super tasty bread pudding and tiramisu for dessert.
Too full after dinner to go back to our room, we popped into Harrah’s Casino to see what the hype was about (all I can say is it’s nicer than the one in Vegas), then down to the waterfront for a night view of the Mississippi. It was lovely.

Day 4
I was craving a white chocolate mocha that morning, so it was a simple breakfast at starbucks for us! Then we headed into the French quarter to walk around and so some souvenir shopping….and shopping for us. I bought another pair of shoes! Don’t worry, all of these shores were planned purchases. They were on my list of things to shop for. Space may be an issue though….I still have shopping to do in LA. Oh well! I’ll figure it out.
It was super hot yesterday, and we retreated to the hotel for a few hours rest from the sun.
Then we got ready for our fancy send off dinner, at Commanders Palace in the garden district. We had been hearing from a bunch of people that this was the place to go, but were a little worries it wouldn’t live up to the hype. It did. Big time.
The service was amazing and the food? Unreal. Funny enough, we had the same meals. Gumbo to start, which was rich, full of flavour and had a little kick to it.
For the main, filet mignon. Oh. My. God. It was the vest piece of meat I’ve ever had. Melt on your mouth. It was served with garlic mashed potatoes and a red wine mushroom au jus. Could anything possibly top that?? Oh yes, yes it could, in the form of bananas foster for dessert, which was prepared in front of us. Fire! Love it.
What a way to finish our trip.
Our fab weather ended last night with a stunning thunder storm! I love storms.

Day 5
And now, here I am on day five of my vacation and I’m not even done yet! B’s flight was earlier than mine (shes heading home), so I’m at the airport for a few hours. I have a brief stopover in Houston, then it’s onto LA!!
I’m going to wander now, and find myself a bite to eat. Not too many options, but I’ll survive!

California here I come!

One Comment leave one →
  1. April 19, 2010 9:05 pm

    So JEALOUS as I have heard so much good things about Commander’s!

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