Sunday, February 3, 2013

Visit New Orleans: The Big Easy (Day 1)

I always wanted to go to New Orleans but for some reason or another, I never made it there. I obviously was never going to have a reason to go there, so I took matters into my own hands and just booked a trip. While in the process of booking my flight/hotel, I came to realize that Superbowl was being hosted there (I do not watch football) and that pretty much anything Thursday through the weekend was not available or ridiculously priced. Instead of changing my plans altogether, I just decided to modify slightly and leave earlier and come back earlier. So, instead of it being a weekend trip, it ended up being during the week, but its New Orleans, so I am going to have fun regardless!!!

In order for me to make my way to New Orleans, I had to make a short stop in Dallas. Dallas, is another place I have never been, but it was only for a short layover, so I didn't get a chance to leave the airport and explore the city. I was however hungry once we landed and in dire need of something to eat so I had to find something I could grab quickly and stumbled up Reata Grill. 

We were in a bit of a time crunch, because our flight was delayed heading into Dallas and our layover time was shortened. As a result of this, we decided to just get the Breakfast Burritos and share it. When it arrived, we were giving two separate plates and we had thought that our server had accidentally given us two orders instead of the one, until we received our bill and saw that we were only charged for one. It was really nice and greatly appreciated that our server had went out of his way to separate the meal for us. The burrito was made with scrambled eggs, crisp Applewood smoked bacon and cheddar cheese inside of a soft flour tortilla. It was served along with breakfast potatoes, salsa and fruits. What you see pictured is actually a half portion so it really is enough to share between two. It was actually pretty good and well worth the price.

Once we finished eating, we finally hopped on our plane to our final destination, The Big Easy. Instead of staying in the typical hotel or directly inside the French Quarter, I found a bed and breakfast type place called Melrose Mansion. It is a very beautiful, old Mansion but with midcentury modern design.

Not only where the grounds and common areas magnificent but the room was just as spectacular. I stayed in a Junior Suite and was extremely satisfied excluding the fact that the bed was next to the door. The staff was incredible also, extremely nice and very helpful.

Shortly after check-in and situating ourselves, we were once again hungry and wanted to grab some lunch so we hit the streets for a stroll and made our way to Stanley Restaurant.

This restaurant didn't live up to expectations. The service left something to be desired, although there also wasn't anything to complain about. I had heard about the food here, but it really wasn't that good. My boyfriend, who made the trip with me, decide to get the "World Famous Stanley Burger". I don't know in what world it is famous; it is just a regular burger that you could have probably gotten almost anywhere.

The same goes for the onion rings too.

I couldn't go to New Orleans without having a po-boy and the Soft-Shell Crab Poor Boy sounded like it was going to be a good one. A Whole Cornmeal-Crusted Soft-Shell Crab, Cole Slaw, Spicy Remoulade and Creole Cocktail Sauce on Toasted French Bread, why wouldn't that be delicious? Although it looked delectable, the bread was slightly rubbery and the overall flavor felt like it was lacking something. It needed that kick.

The restaurant wasn't exactly bad but with so many options it definitely doesn't warrant a return. 

After lunch, we walked around Jackson Square for a little bit and took in a little taste of the city. We saw fortune tellers, artist and street performances.

After the show, we made our way through Artillery Park and over to the Moonwalk. We sat for a bit by the water and took it all in. 

We were getting tired from our early morning  and all day travel, so we made our way back to the hotel for some rest.

After resting and freshening up, we headed to Coop's Place for dinner. It is a small restaurant/bar so we had a short wait for a table to open up before we were seated. It was well worth the wait. 

We ordered the Cajun Fried Chicken. Although a 4 piece wasn't on the menu, the server special ordered it for us. The chicken was beautifully delicious and perfectly seasoned. It was truly amazing in itself although the Rabbit & Sausage Jambalaya and coleslaw it came with was really good also. 

The drinks were also really good and strong. Excellent prices not seen in expensive Miami.

My boyfriend loved it so much that he want to come back and eat here another time, but I wouldn't let him since I wanted to try other places in the short time we were staying there, but I will be back on my next trip.

After dinner, we made our way to Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop Bar, otherwise known as the oldest bar in the United States. 

We kicked back a couple of drinks including the popular New Orleans Hurricane.

Lafitte's is a really nice and unique bar. Very low-key with candle lighting and piano music versus the funky and rowdy atmosphere of most bars in this city. I had a really good time here!

After a few drinks and the lure of the late night sky, it was time to call it a night! I cannot wait for tomorrow!!!

Reata Grill
Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, Terminal D, Gate D33
3200 E Airfield Dr 
DallasTX 75261

(214) 740-0024
Reata Grill on Urbanspoon

Stanley Restaurant

547 St Ann St New Orleans, LA 70116
(504) 587-0093
Stanley Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Coop's Place

1109 Decatur St New Orleans, LA 70116
(504) 525-9053
Coop's Place on Urbanspoon

Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop Bar

941 Bourbon St New Orleans, LA 70116
(504) 593-9761

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