30 May 2013

New Orleans 2013 - Sunday and Monday (AKA Shopping fail and Plantation win)

At Oak Alley Plantation
Now we come to our final two days in New Orleans and the surrounding area.  Sunday was a day to be dedicated to Mother's Resturant, Cafe Du Monde and shopping.

Lets work this day in reverse a bit.

So, Leanda likes to shop.  Who doesn't?  So I pull out the (mostly) trusty AAA guide.  Six miles of shopping to be had on Magazine Street!  Awesome!  Let us shop.

Fast forward to two tired people and no shopping.  This is strange says we!  We get back to the Quarter, and inquire as to the shopping on Magazine Street.  That's when we find out there is shopping... another couple of miles out from where we turned around.  One taxi cab ride later we arrived at Magazine and Washington streets.  Fairly ok shopping.  Nothing for me, but Leanda made a killing.

So, back to the beginning of the day.

We stolled over to Cafe Du Monde, known for its beignets and cafe au lait.  Beignets are basically fried dough... French doughnuts COVERED in powdered sugar.  If I'm honest, they were ok.  Nothing spectacular, but the ambiance and the company more than made up for it.

More exploring, then over to Mother's for some po'boys.  I got their Famous Ferdi Special (ham, turkey covered in debris).  Leanda once again noshed on some jambalaya.  Good food.  HUGE menue, so more to try the next time we are down there.  And we will go back.  Probably when Owen is a bit older and can appreciate the city and its history.  Our culinary day wrapped up with a light(ish) dinner at Bistroux, a hotel restaurant not far from our lodging.  I got a cuban sandwich and a drink known as a Pimm's Cup.  It was an interesting gin based drink.  Not sure I'll ever drink it again, as it is something of an acquired taste.

Monday we hopped into our rented Chrysler 200 (when I was expecting a Chevy Spark (or something similar)) and headed outside the city to visit Oak Ally Plantation.
An alley of oaks... get it?
Oak Alley Plantation is a sugar cane plantation situated on the Mississippi River.  Very picturesque.  Took a tour of the house, and learned a lot about the history of plantations in Louisiana.  A very different way of life from that of New England during the same period.  This is just one of the many plantations that you can visit, and I recommend this one, or any for a step back into history.  After a light snack of pecan ice cream, we headed for the Abita Brew Pub
One of the residents
Turns out the Abita Brew Pub is closed on Mondays!  Ah well.  Instead we hit a place called Zea in Covington, LA.  I chowed down on fried catfish, hush puppies, grits, rice and beans.  Leanda had a portobello panini.  VERY good food, almost glad the brew pub was closed.  The catfish fell apart if my fork got even remotely close to it.  If I'm ever near one of these again, I will pay a return visit.

And thus completes our adventure in New Orleans.  Tuesday was a super early wake up, near miss of a flight in DC and home.  We both really enjoyed New Orleans and look forward to returning again someday.

New Orleans is still recovering from Katrina and its aftermath.  But this is no reason not to visit.  Don't believe the negative stories you may here.  Visit once, and you'll fall in love just like we did.

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