10 BEST Cajun and Creole Restaurants In New Orleans

Contents

  • What is Creole Food in New Orleans?

  • 1 . Cochon

  • 2 . Jacques-Imo’s Café

  • 3 . Galliano Restaurant

  • 4 . K-Paul's Louisiana Kitchen

  • 5 . Brigtsen’s Restaurant

  • 6 . Atchafalaya Restaurant

  • 7 . Sassafras Restaurant

  • 8 . Café Amelie

  • 9 . Restaurant R’evolution

  • 10 . Bon Ton Café

  • Show More

New Orleans in Louisiana is a major city located on the Mississippi River. The beautiful city located near the Gulf of Mexico is colloquially nicknamed the “Big Easy”. The city which became a part of the United States in 1803, is known as the melting pot of French, Spanish, Africana and American cultures. The city is famous for its history, vibrant music scene, happening nightlife and its famous Cajun/Creole cuisines.

The City displays its festive spirit in the Mardi Gras, a late-winter carnival. The festival is famous for its raucous costumed parades and street parties. Another famous event in New Orleans is the Jazz Fest. The Jazzfest celebrates Jazz music as it was born in New Orleans. The Frenchmen Street in Faubourg Marigny is famous for Jazz bars and clubs. There are several lively bars and cafes along the Bourbon Street running through the centre of the historical and ornate French Quarter. The French Quarter is also known for numerous iconic restaurants serving Cajun and Creole dishes like gumbo and jambalaya.

What is Creole Food in New Orleans?

The New Orleans food scene is basically dominated by Cajun or creole cuisines. Creole cuisine style is the style of cooking that originated in Louisiana. This type of cooking is a blend of French, West African, Spanish, Haitian, American, German and Italian influences. The influence of the Southern United States style of cooking is also there. The influence of so many cuisines or styles of cooking in Creole cuisine is due to the presence of population from all these places in Louisiana before Louisiana was sold to the United States in 1803 in the Louisiana Purchase.

The French influence is the strongest in the Creole cooking style. The essence of Creole food is its rich sauces made with ripe red tomatoes and the use of local herbs. There is a prominence of local seafood in the Creole food New Orleans. The cooking style is associated with old-line kitchens of New Orleans. The traditions dating back to many decades or centuries are still followed in the modern kitchen. Shrimp creole, roux-based gumbo, grits and grillades, and redfish court bouillion are some of the dishes which come to mind when one thinks of Creole food new Orleans.

The 10 best cajun and creole restaurants in New Orleans are :

1 . Cochon

Cochon located on Tchoupitoulas Street is one of the most famous New Orleans food places. Started by New Orleans celebrity chef Donald Link and his partner Stefen Strvjewski, it is renowned for its delicious and authentic Cajun food. Chef Donald Link was raised in German- Acadian environment, and he pays homage to his German-Acadian roots in this famous New Orleans restaurant.

Cochon, located in the busy Warehouse district of New Orleans has a warm and woody dining room. The food and dishes are made from quality ingredients and are mostly all things swine in the Cajun tradition. Dishes such as pickled peppers, delectable fried chicken livers with pepper jelly toast and pork-and-black-eyed-peas gumbo are the perfect examples of best of Cajun food. The first time diners are recommended to try their muffuletta and grilled oysters. According to locals, these dishes taste the best in Cochon. One finds some of the best pork in New Orleans in Cochon’s Cajun dishes. It is best to get a prior reservation as the restaurant is always crowded.

In case you don’t get reservation or seating at Cochon, go to Cochon Butcher and relish the same charcuterie dishes. Cochon Butcher is a more casual and expanded version of Cochon, at the same location. The sandwich counter and wine bar of Cochon Butcher reminds the diners of an old-world meat market. Both the Cochon restaurants are must visit to enjoy authentic Cajun New Orleans food.

10 BEST Cajun and Creole Restaurants In New Orleans

2 . Jacques-Imo’s Café

This colourful and crowded New Orleans food place in the historical Oak Street is known for its truck- turned table for two. The two-story shotgun restaurant is always flowing with the crowd and getting a table is always a daunting task. But once one gets a table, then it’s a feast for the senses. Apart from delicious food, the interiors with colourful artwork on the walls and ceilings on its many dining rooms enthral the diners. The dishes are bursting with Cajun flavours.

Jacques- Imo’s Café is notable for its lively ambience and Cajun food at reasonable prices beckons the pedestrian crowd of the Oak Street. This locally cherished New Orleans food place has several not to be missed dishes. The panned rabbit served over Shrimp, and tasso pasta and the fried boudin balls are a must. Other favourites are smothered Chicken, shrimp etouffee, fried chicken, and alligator cheesecake. The locals claim the alligator cheesecake is not to be missed, as the hefty slab of delicious cheesecake is stuffed with shrimp and alligator nuggets, making it the perfect ending of a delicious meal. The dishes are reasonably priced with a huge portion size. All entrees on the menu include salad and two sides. The Chef Jacques Leonardi is mostly there to chat up with diners and talk about the food.

3 . Galliano Restaurant

Galliano restaurant located near the Convention centre at Julia Street is famous for its Cajun seafood New Orleans. This New Orleans food place started by Chef Ricky Cheramie serves traditional home-style Cajun dishes improvised with his unique twist. Diners find delicious food from the sea and land both at this breezy restaurant. The menu features several local favorites like an alligator, raw oysters, and crawfish from the swamps and wild boar sausages, Cajun marinated prime rib, boudin- stuffed Statler chicken breast and duck from the flatlands.

Galliano restaurant serves some of the best authentic Cajun dishes in the heart of New Orleans. Due to the convenient location, near the Convention Centre, it is a local favorite. Some of the must-try dishes are Bayou La Fourche, fried pork chop, seafood platter, fried Lousiana Oysters, barbeque shrimp, and crispy duck wings. The Bayou La Fourche is an appetizer with a local fried gator served on Texas toast. The crispy duck wings are twice cooked and glazed in a hot and sweet sugar cane sauce. Their seafood platter has crab-stuffed Gulf Fish, shrimp, oysters, and Crawfish Monica. The restaurant also has an excellent local beer menu along with many wines, complementing the delicious cuisine. The locals love this New Orleans food place’s Happy hours (5:30 to 6:30 pm) from Monday to Friday, where they enjoy raw oysters at $1, six chargrilled oysters at $ 10 and a dozen chargrilled for $20.

4 . K-Paul's Louisiana Kitchen

K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen is the pioneer New Orleans food place for Cajun cuisine. This New Orleans food place at Charters Street was started by late Louisiana Chef Paul Prudhomme. The famous chef invented the “blackening” seasoning process and started this upscale restaurant which served high-quality dishes, including Cajun and local cuisine.

No one can think of Cajun cuisine in New Orleans without first thinking of Chef Paul Prudhomme and K-Paul Louisiana Kitchen. The Chef brought the attention of the country to the rustic fare of Acadiana in the 1970s and then made it famous across the world. Paul Prudhomme started this 200-seat restaurant with three kitchens and a bakery and named it after his wife K. With the passing years the popularity of the restaurant, and the Louisianan’s Cajun flavors has grown with times. This New Orleans food place is still been taken as the golden benchmark for Creole-style cooking. The Chef Prudhomme invented the blackened redfish, and it is one of the most famous dishes of New Orleans. So anyone who wants to have blackened redfish should have it at K-Paul’s only.

The dinner menu of K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen keeps changing daily according to the availability of local ingredients. But some dishes stay almost constant like shrimp, turtle soup, crawfish etouffee, blackened Louisiana drum, corn maque choux, and bread pudding. The restaurant is reasonably priced and attracts a lot of tourists as well as locals for its beautiful location in the heart of the French quarter and amazing food. The brick interiors are cosy and inviting, and the friendly staff with good service is the icing on the cake. Though the ambience is on the elegant side with white tablecloths the restaurant still has the K-Paul’s Cajun-style jambalaya on its menu, which is a favorite of the locals.

5 . Brigtsen’s Restaurant

Chef Frank Brigtsen who started this enchanting New Orleans food place Brigtsen’s restaurant in Uptown New Orleans, has been trained under the famous Chef Paul Prudhomme of K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen fame. So it was no wonder that this riverbed restaurant soon became a local favorite of Big Easy for its Cajun-inspired cuisine and menu. Since decades Brigtsen’s restaurant has been a favorite New Orleans food place for Cajun and Creole cuisine.

The Chef and owner Frank Brigtsen are considered a legend himself like his trainer chef Paul Prudhomme and his culinary prowess are evident in the success and popularity of the restaurant. He has received many awards such as Best chef Southeast from the prestigious James beard Foundation. Chef Brigtsen also procures most of his ingredients locally and has daily specials on the menu to provide variety in the menu.

Some of the not to be missed dishes of Brigtsen’s restaurant are Paneed rabbit, Andouille gumbo, pulled pork, and shrimp. Other popular choices of dishes are blackened tuna and roast duck. The locals love this flagship restaurant of Chef Frank Brigtsen for its Cajun and Creole dishes and going to uptown New Orleans for this restaurant is worth due to the charming neighbourhood too. One can spend the evening in the Carrollton/Riverbend area, exploring the authentic neighborhood and then go for dinner in the enchanting restaurant.

6 . Atchafalaya Restaurant

Another Uptown favorite New Orleans food place is the Atchafalaya restaurant. Located at the corner of a worn off path in the historical settings, this restaurant is in a former grocery store. The trip is worth going the distance for the delicious food and their killer Bloody Mary bar. The only five “A” restaurant in New Orleans, Atchafalaya restaurant is a local favorite to celebrate memorable occasions. The locals, as well as tourists, often visit many times due to the delicious contemporary creole cuisine, warm hospitality, fantastic service, and crafty cocktails.

This famous New Orleans food place was started in 2009 by Rachel Jaffe and Tony Tocco. The restaurant since its inception has been known for its innovative take on New Orlean’s culinary flavours. Later with the introduction of live music, cocktail menu and innovative food, it gained more popularity.

The dressed-down Bloody Mary bar has a live jazz set, where locals prefer going for Saturday and Sunday brunch. The dining area has an elevated seating plan. Their crab omelette is an excellent choice for breakfast times. For dinner shrimps and grits make the popular choice due to their amazing taste. Atchafalaya restaurants specialise in fried green tomatoes with a butter-poached crab topping. This is the must dish to start every meal with.

10 BEST Cajun and Creole Restaurants In New Orleans

7 . Sassafras Restaurant

One of the favorite New Orleans food places for casual dining, Sassafras restaurant has been serving delicious food for two decades. The Sassafras restaurant serves cuisines like Southern and American with comfort food. They specialise in serving authentic New Orleans flavour in a comfortable ambience.

The Sassafras restaurant had a setback after the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina, but it kept on rising above the tide after that due to its great food, fantastic environment and excellent customer service. Most of the regulars return again and again for its exceptional food and amazing hospitality at a reasonable price. Due to the constant maintenance of taste and service, Sassafras restaurant has a top position in New Orleans for casual dining. With an environment of comfort with upscale ambience and delicious New Orleans flavours in its food, it keeps on being the locals and tourists alike. Their popular Creole dishes include Seafood stuffed Peppers, Catfish Orleans, File Gumbo, Smothered Okra, Chicken Bernard, pasta, signature salads, and decadent desserts.

10 BEST Cajun and Creole Restaurants In New Orleans

8 . Café Amelie

Café Amelia is one of the New Orleans food places famous for their food and the location they are in. The restaurant is located on the Royal Street of the French Quarter in the historic Princess of Monaco Courtyard and Carriage House. The Princess of Monaco Courtyard is more than 150 years old. The Café Amelia combines the enchanting courtyard setting with superb Louisiana food fare. It is equally preferred by the locals and tourists for its ambience as its food.

The Café Amelia opened in 2005 and was soon a local favourite for both tourist and locals for its mouth-watering food and refreshing cocktails. Café Amelia has one of the most romantic and beautiful courtyards in the New Orleans food places. The patrons can dine both al fresco or outside in the yard and inside the air-conditioned and elegant dining rooms. Apart from delicious food, the Café also has a good list of signature cocktails in its bar. Café Amelia is also preferred by the locals for private parties, weddings and receptions along with the Princess of Monaco Courtyard.

The diners are advised to make prior reservations and specify their seating preference of outside courtyard or the indoor Carriage House. During the winter and rainy season, the café Amelia utilises its Blue Room located upstairs for dining.

10 BEST Cajun and Creole Restaurants In New Orleans

9 . Restaurant R’evolution

Restaurant R’evolution offers both classic Louisiana food fare and new innovative dishes created by world-renowned chef John Folse and Executive Chef Rick Tramonto. Chef Rick Tramonto is from Chicago and is a James Beard award winner. Chef John Folse is a local personality from Donaldsonville. Along with the competent Chef de cuisine Jana Billiot, both these chefs have created a dual vision of an imaginative and showy menu with matching prices.

The restaurant located on Bienville Street in the famous Royal Sonesta hotel uses local ingredients such as crawfish, alligator, persimmons, and sassafras to get the authentic flavour. The menu consists of a modern take on Creole/Cajun dishes such as Crawfish Stuffed Flounder Napoleon and the Gulf Shrimp.The signature dish of the restaurant – Death by Gumbo is a gumbo served with a whole and semi-boneless quail stuffed with oysters, file rice and Andouille sausages.

If unsure what to eat, then try the tasting menu of Restaurant R’evolution where one can taste a bit of a few dishes and then decide what to order. The restaurant has a competent bar that is known for handcrafting a great Sazerac. This New Orleans food place is must visit to try their ultra-contemporary take on traditional Cajun dishes.

10 . Bon Ton Café

Bon Ton is one of the first New Orleans food places serving authentic Cajun food of Lafourche Parish. The restaurant opened in the 1900s and located at Magazine Street has a casual ambience with gingham tablecloths and wrought iron furniture, but the food is of fine dining standards. The Bon Ton Café is located in a historic building which is best suited to its historic story.

The Bon Ton Café was started in 1900 and was reinvented in the 1950s by a couple. The couple introduced their family recipes from Lafourche and Terrebonne parishes in the restaurant. The highlight of the traditional Cajun dishes served in the restaurant is specialities like crawfish etouffee, fried steak, catfish, jambalaya, soft-shell crab and turtle soup. The most popular dish in the restaurant is crawfish Bisque, which is the best one in the city. Their refreshing house drink, the Rum Ramsey goes well with all the dishes.

The service is warm and gracious, like the olden times when dining was unhurried and relaxing. The usual order of things at the restaurant is ordering, drinking, then eating, then talking and then drinking. It is not a place for quick meals. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner. Prior reservation for dinner is recommended as the restaurant is always crowded during dinner times.

10 BEST Cajun and Creole Restaurants In New Orleans

On the whole, New Orleans is a must-visit tourist destination and for you to try the New Orleans food places for Cajun and Creole cuisines. The Cajun seafood New Orleans is world-famous. You can book your flight tickets in advance or customise your visit with the best tour package deals, the lowest airfares, discounted hotel accommodations to make your New Orleans trip pleasant, hassle-free, safe and memorable.