Tasting My Way Through New Orleans or the Search for the Best Gumbo

oysters at Royal House

My first meal in New Orleans was at Royal House.

I had a relatively clear agenda on food- eat everything. But namely the things NOLA is known for. Perhaps a bit touristy but I was determined to stuff my face with as many oysters I can get. And also try a proper muffaletta, get some beginets and eat a lot of gumbo.

I started out with a half dozen oysters. They were good though I had a feeling there would be a better oyster bar in my future.

Taste of New Orleans

I was happy to see Royal House had a “Taste of New Orleans” combo which included chicken and sausage gumbo, crawfish etouffee, chicken and sausage jambalaya. My favorite was the gumbo. I found the etouffee a bit dry for my taste.

Service was very good. I think they were concerned I was eating alone….and not drinking. Little did they know…

Royal House

441 Royal St., New Orleans, LA 70130 — (504) 528-2601


muffuletta from Verti Marte

After d.b.a. I was dying for a snack. We stopped in at Verti Marte for a muffuletta. The ginormous sandwich was too much for me to finish at 3 a.m. so I wrapped up half and stuck it near my air conditioner in my hotel room. It made a glorious breakfast as well.

What’s great about Verti Marte is they’re open all night and they deliver.

Verti Marte Deli

1201 Royal St., New Orleans, LA 70195 — (504) 525-4767

sampler at Cafe Pontalba

While wandering around for lunch options, we came across Cafe Pontalba. Unsurprisingly, I got another sampler. This one included gumbo and jambalaya and red beans and rice. I loved the gumbo but thought only the red beans and rice was the next oustanding thing. We sat at the bar where I looked at all their bottles. I found some interesting things but I would label this a “normal” bar and not a craft bar. They made a great Campari & Soda.

Cafe Pontalba

546 Saint Peter St., New Orleans, LA 70116 — (504) 522-1180

gumbo at Acme

Now that I think about it, I really did a poor job of making a list of what to eat in New Orleans. I had a vague list in my head but since I was there for Tales, I hadn’t paid much attention of what all the good spots were. I’m really glad though someone pointed me towards Acme for oysters.

I couldn’t help it though. I wanted gumbo. Again. So I had a cup here. It was good though I liked the gumbo from Cafe Pontalba a bit more.

Oysters at Acme

The best oysters! When we saw the line, I had my doubts but also knew a line meant it was worth it. When we said we’d sit at the bar, the wait was cut in half. Hooray bar seating!

The friendly shuckers took our order and the oysters were so sweet and fresh. I wanted another half dozen.

Acme Oyster House

724 Iberville St., New Orleans, LA 70130 — (504) 522-5973


BBQ Shrimp at Dickie Brennan’s

Next door to Acme is Dickie Brennan’s. 

After oysters (and some drinks), we hit up the bar at Dickie Brennan’s. It was rapidly becoming a food crawl. We got the BBQ Shrimp which was touted as the best thing there. They were a bit on the cold side but I still liked them.

This was definitely a two-fer block. Oysters at Acme and BBQ Shrimp at Dickie B’s.

So far, I was in love with the food in New Orleans as I knew I’d be.

Dickie Brennan’s Steakhouse

716 Iberville St., New Orleans, LA 70130 — (504) 522-246


© The Minty 2012