Last month over Saint Patrick’s Day weekend, my mom, sister, and I took a girls trip down to New Orleans for a fun little getaway to warmer weather. We decided on New Orleans because none of us had been there yet and I’m always a yes person when it comes to places I haven’t yet been. Plus I was confident in my ability to eat my way through the city.
The weekend forecast was filled with high percentages of rain and clouds. We hoped and prayed for a non-rainy weekend and it ended up being sunny and gorgeous the entire time we were there. The weather was definitely on our side.
We stayed in an Airbnb in Broadmoor, a neighborhood just slightly north of downtown.
On our first full day in New Orleans, we kicked things off at Elizabeth’s Restaurant for a Saint Patrick’s Day brunch. We ordered a bottle of champagne for mimosas, praline bacon to share, and all of the great southern cooking you can eat for brunch on a Saturday.
After brunch, we made our way over to the French Quarter to walk around and scope out the scene. I was most excited about seeing the old architecture and history of the city. The streets were adorned with street performers, bright colored beads, marching bands, and puddles of beer and liquor. It was just as I imagined and I loved it. I could’ve stared at the old shotgun houses with colorful shutters forever. We walked around the entire district at least twice after drinking a hand grenade each and were feeling pretty relaxed by late afternoon. 😉
For dinner, we went to High Hat Cafe in the Freret neighborhood. I ordered house-made strawberry lemonade and catfish. My mom ordered the 1/2 chicken and my sister had the shrimp poboy. It was a nice, relaxing atmosphere with classic Louisiana fare.
On our second day in NOLA, we started the day off in the Garden District. First up was brunch at Another Broken Egg on Magazine Street. It was a gorgeous day so we sat outside on the patio and enjoyed the view of the street as people walked by. The food was amazing. I ordered the biscuits and gravy, my sister had the lobster and brie omelette, and my mom had the waffle sliders.
After brunch we continued on down Magazine Street to explore the entire Garden District. This was probably my favorite area that we explored. There were so many adorable boutiques, record stores, salons, and cafes. I could also smell the flowers budding on the trees and plants all over. We made a stop into Sucré, a charming sweet shop with macarons, truffles, ice cream, and iced tea.
We continued to walk through the garden district for several hours just enjoying the sights and the beautiful weather.
Eventually we made our way back over to the French Quarter for the ultimate tourist foodie experience at Café du Monde. There was no way we’d get make it all the way down to New Orleans without having their famous beignets and chicory coffee. And let me tell you, they lived up to their hype. I wish I could get beignets this good in Nashville.
For dinner we ate at Gumbo Shop for some traditional New Orleans sausage gumbo and a bottle of wine. Another perfect ending to a beautiful day in the south.
On our third day in New Orleans, we began our day with breakfast and lattes at Gracious Bakery. It was a perfect bakery with all the goodies from cinnamon rolls to breakfast sandwiches and savory croissants. I can say with confidence it made its way to one of the top 3 bakeries I’ve been to. The staff was also so lovely and they gave us all kinds of great local recommendations for place to visit. If I lived in New Orleans, this is where I’d spend a lot of my time, no doubt.
After breakfast we made our way over to The Outlet Collection at Riverwalk to do some shopping and even paid a visit to the Harrah’s Casino.
For lunch, we took the suggestion of the kind lady at the bakery and went to Parkway Tavern (which is Obama’s favorite place to get poboys!) I had the home-cooked hot roast beef with gravy poboy and it was one of the best sandwiches I’ve ever had. I also ordered the fried pickles and it was the largest order of fried pickles I’ve seen.
After our big lunch, we felt like going for a little drive around the city. My sister remembered that one Buzzfeed article about the abandoned amusement park outside of New Orleans that was completely wrecked from Hurricane Katrina and it brought back memories of the eerie photos I’d seen online. So we looked up the address of that old Six Flags and took a little trip to see how close we could get. The entrance is blocked off, but we were able to snap a few photos of the park from the highway. It was definitely a bit chilling to see in real life.
Because we were so full from a late (and massive) lunch, we skipped dinner and went back to our Airbnb to rest from our big day. After a quick nap, I browsed online for some dessert places since I was having an intense chocolate craving (per usual.) I stumbled upon an article about Shake Therapy and as soon as I saw pictures of their gigantic and ornamental milkshakes, coaxed my mom and sister into going with me even though they weren’t hungry. In my book, there’s always room for dessert. So to Shake Therapy we went.
It was time to head back home on Day 4, but before we went to the airport we made one final breakfast stop. We went to Riccobono’s Panola Street Café for some Huevos Rancheros. My mom and sister had a late morning flight, so I was stuck working remotely at the airport for several hours before I caught my flight back to Nashville in the late afternoon.
Our trip to New Orleans was one of my favorites. It was so great to all visit a place none of us had been to and we were thoroughly pleased with the culture, the music, the food, and the people. I highly recommend a vacation to New Orleans if you haven’t been (or even if you have.)