This is going to have to be a two-part blog post. My mom and sister came to town to visit for a weekend. And what’s a trip to Louisiana without going to New Orleans and eating lots of delicious food? We spent the morning on Magazine Street, browsing through its charming little boutiques. Finally, when we were absolutely famished, we stopped at Martinique Bistro for Brunch, it’s a quaint and enchanting little bistro. I really adore their outdoor private courtyard. Their menu is crafted by using local ingredients from nearby farmers and fishermen.
We sat down and immediately ordered some creole Bloody Marys. I began with the pine nut crusted goat cheese over a bed of baby lettuce. My sister had the Gulf Coast Apple Salad with blue cheese and my mother, the asparagus and watercress bisque. My mother must have really enjoyed her soup, because it was gone before I got to try it. The scarlet frill gave my sister’s apple salad an interesting appearance and I really enjoyed my goat cheese salad.
For entrees we had the house smoked salmon club, the seared scallop nicoise and the French style crepe. Even though we were stuffed, we ordered the chocolate soufflé for dessert served with a Guinness ice cream. I really just wanted to try it because of the ice cream; it almost had a coffee like flavor to it.
Feeling like we were going to burst at the seams, we headed back out onto Magazine Street for round two of shopping and to walk it off, of course. We drove back downtown, checked in to our hotel and went to roam the French Quarter. My mother had never experienced having chargrilled oysters in the Quarter so we had to bring her to Acme, which was packed and had a line out the door and around the corner. So we walked across the street to Felix’s, when we sat down to order we discovered they lost their liquor license (no wonder they had no line!) but suggested we walk around the corner and order our drinks and come back. So we did. Drinks in hand, we ordered crab fingers (if you haven’t had these before, you must!), chargrilled oysters and oysters Bienville. I actually really enjoyed their chargrilled oysters, you could taste the smokiness in them. Then back to the hotel room.
We got a taxi back uptown to the Upperline Restaurant, where our driver missed the street because he said we smelled so good! Finally having arrived at our destination, we were presented with a charming little house that is Upperline. It is definitely a restaurant that the locals frequent. It is warm and inviting, the people there are friendly. They serve mostly Cajun and creole food with a modern flare. To start we ordered the Fried Green Tomato with Shrimp Remoulade and Spicy Shrimp with Jalapeño Cornbread & Aïoli. I relished in my appetizer (is that weird to say?). It doesn’t sound like anything amazing on the menu, but it is! The flavors are zesty and fiery, but not over powering. For dinner we ordered the petite filet served with fried oysters and a béarnaise sauce, grouper and a slow roasted duck served with a peach sauce. I don’t think I need to say it again, but we left satiated.
My advice for anyone going to New Orleans, especially for the food, leave the Quarter! Not that there isn’t great places to eat at in the courter, but there is so much more else where around town. Go out and explore!