MoonpieLover's Profile

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Kid friendly restaurants

As far as I know they don't take reservations. It's not destination dining (and definitely leans toward diner) and I don't recall having to wait, but I know how it is with a hungry family. Per librarian's comment, maybe try to go off-peak, or call when you're 15-30 minutes away and ask how busy they are (and if they'll kindly hold a table for you). Slim Goodies & Ignatius are a couple other back-up dinery breakfast/lunch spots in your area, though Joey's is larger their menu is a bit more varied.

In my experience the Guy bump seems to last about 3-4 months, then tapers off. Sammy's has a big poster of him on their wall, so he's been there too. Same thing there - popular lunch spot. And though it is counter-style ordering & service, food is cooked to order so it doesn't come out at fast-food speed (for Sammy's, a GPS is more important than a reservation - it's in a weird spot just at the foot of an overpass).

All parents know to pack emergency snacks when circumstances are likely to veer from the regimented norm (ie, vacations). You should be fine. Have fun, eat well, report back!

Jan 15, 2014
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Dinner for a Group of Ladies, March, Bywater

+1 for Mariza. There aren't too many options in walking distance from the Bywater, but check out Maurepas Foods & Bacchanal. They may be more casual than you're looking for, or perhaps just right (if they'll can accommodate a group of your size; neither typically takes reservations but maybe they would for a large group).

Jan 10, 2014
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Best open kitchen?

Emeril's - my favorite seats in the house (and great for single diners). Also NOLA -- another Emeril restaurant; a bit more casual and in the French Quarter. Haven't eaten there in a while but recall having a great time at their kitchen-view seats. I think R'Evolution also has open kitchen seats but I haven't been seated there. They also have a table IN the kitchen, but that's a whole other experience.

Jan 10, 2014
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Kid friendly restaurants

2nd American Sector, great for families; also agree with Mandina's or College Inn. Don't forget the ever-family-friendly Camellia Grill; also Stanley's in the Quarter. And all kids of all ages must go to Cafe du Monde.

You'll be close to Joey K's, a more than decent locals joint with a big menu that includes Creole standards and basic American fare.

For sweet treats you're near Sucre.

Also take a look at High Hat on Freret, it's deelish and may just have something for everyone (including great cocktails for Mommy & Daddy; as does Am Sector).

Lunch at Sammy's on Elysian Fields on the way to or from the Slidell swamp tour. Mmmm, Sammy's.

For something off the beaten path you might also consider Deanie's, not the one in the FQ (meh) but the original out in Bucktown. It's an old school seafood place close to the Lake; we went there with visiting relatives and their kids not long ago so I know they have a kid's menu.

Let us know where you end up and how it works out!

Jan 10, 2014
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Which NOLA cooking class?

The menu at the New Orleans School of Cooking is kinda "greatest hits" and the recipes are fairly simple. The room is quite large (if it's full and you're seated toward the back, the view isn't great - even with mirrors; and I don't believe they have monitors). But it's less expensive, convenient to the FQ, and shorter if you're pressed for time.

I did NOCE when it was in the old location at the House on Bayou Road and really enjoyed it. Frank Brigtsen was the Chef; he prepared dishes that he serves in his restaurant (I recall his yummy pecan pie in particular). We enjoyed the meal and picked up some good tips. A big factor was the setting -- that fabulous old house (we got a mini-tour) -- and the group that was there for the class. Interesting people, both tourists and locals, and we just had a good time together. Haven't been to the new location but I've heard good things.

I did Langlois last year and had a similar experience: great chemistry among the group (including the Chefs, Amy and Emily who were a hoot), which made it super fun and memorable. The menu here was the most ambitious - not necessarily complicated so fine for novice cooks, but a bit more eclectic. I think we made at least 4, maybe 5 courses - more than the other classes. It was also the only class I've taken in NO that allows hands-on participation (not a lot - it's not like a school where everyone has a station and prepares the dishes, but attendees are given the opportunity to help with this or that step). It's a bit pricey but it's a gorgeous facility. Not familiar with MGSoC. Let us know where you end up and how you liked it!

Jan 10, 2014
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Steak on Sunday?

Galatoires 33 is open. And very good.

Aug 27, 2013
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Camellia Red Kidney Beans

Try TopValue markets. Not sure if they're stocked at all of the stores, but the one in Long Beach carries them.

Jun 20, 2013
MoonpieLover in Los Angeles Area


Merchant in the CBD; Velvet uptown.

May 22, 2012
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Recs in Valley Blvd. Vicinity for Small Group - Narrow the Expansive Net

Thanks everyone for the input. We ended up at Sea Harbour, a safe choice maybe but a very successful one. They took a reservation for 14, we turned out to be 12. Got there about 10 minutes before our res and were seated about 10 minutes after it so all in all an easy wait. Big round table with the lazy Susan, comfortable for all of us. The only issue was noise - the place is loud and the large table made conversation with those across from you next to impossible, but I guess we should have expected that. FYI, they do have a small banquet room (maybe several, but I just saw the one) which looks appropriate for groups of 20-30ish. The food was really, really good, not dirt cheap but certainly reasonable. The picture menus have both Chinese and English descriptions so ordering was easy, and if we weren't sure exactly which dish was being served (not all servers speak English) it was all fine once we dug in. The vegetarians were happy, the kids were happy, and the cart-lovers all agreed that there's great benefit to simply ordering what you want. Thanks hounds -- and now I have a good list to try with smaller parties.

Oct 10, 2011
MoonpieLover in Los Angeles Area

Recs in Valley Blvd. Vicinity for Small Group - Narrow the Expansive Net

Thanks Ray. Sea Harbour or 888 seem like the most likely options at this point. Obviously they both specialize in seafood - we'll want some meaty meat too - especially the porky kind. Does one or the other have the edge in that regard, either in variety or quality? Also both will take a reservation for our group -- but do you have any history with them in terms of how well they do to get you in at or near the time of your reservation? We can deal with a short wait, but tales of hour-long waits are kinda scary. In your experience, should we expect that even with a reservation? Thanks again for your insight.

Oct 05, 2011
MoonpieLover in Los Angeles Area

Recs in Valley Blvd. Vicinity for Small Group - Narrow the Expansive Net

Need your help to decide where to go for a family weekend brunch/lunch on or near Valley Blvd. that will appeal to a variety of palates - from mild-mannered to pretty sophisticated foodie. There will be about 12-14 of us so the room and service should be able to accommodate us. Originally we were planning on going to a traditional dim sum place, but now we're widening the net since it seems like there may be better food beyond the cart - which of course has thrown the decision into indecision - and we need some help reeling it in.

So it can be any cuisine or region and we're not fixated on atmosphere either - a large banquety style room or small hole in the wall would both be acceptable (but we can get a bit raucous when there's piles of food in front of us, so no church-of-food places). Interesting food is okay but we're not looking for extreme eating or offal worship - not that there's anything wrong wtih that - and if it's on the manu a few people might go there, but not all. Primarily we're looking for really good food, not expensive, that will take good care of us - plus it needs to be open Sundays and located on or near the Valley Blvd. strip (within a couple of miles, we're going to a nearby event right afterward. Which also means the service can't be toooo languid).

These are on the short list - your yeas, nays, or alternates would be much appreciated: Michele’s Pancakes, Sea Harbor, Luscious Dumplings, Chung King, JTYH.

Thanks all.

Chung King Restaurant
1000 S San Gabriel Blvd, San Gabriel, CA 91776

Luscious Dumplings
704 W Las Tunas Dr, San Gabriel, CA 91776

JTYH Restaurant
9425 Valley Blvd, Rosemead, CA 91770

Oct 03, 2011
MoonpieLover in Los Angeles Area

Best BBQ shrimp in the French Quarter

+1 Mr B's; also Bourbon House

Bourbon House
144 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA 70130

May 19, 2011
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Oyster Po'Boys

Wow, maybe those "inconsistency" rumors are accurate -- I have had pretty much the opposite experience. Too bad.

Apr 04, 2011
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Best Corn Dogs in New Orleans

American Sector in the WWII Museum. The dog is house made, and the breading is not overly sweet, has a true corn flavor and is fried to perfection. It's on the kids menu, comes with excellent fries and the whole shebang is served in a cute little metal lunchbox. But make no mistake, it's a grown up dog (and not small either). This is a John Besh restaurant, his take on retro American comfort food. Good cocktails too or you can get a big seltzer bottle with homemade syrup flavorings for the table. Tasty fun.

Depending on when you'll be in town, a new place opening on Freret St. will have a killer pork belly corn dog on the menu (I hope). They were making them at the recent Hogs for the Cause BBQ event and people were swooning. It's called The Company Burger, they're supposed to open early summer 2011.

Apr 04, 2011
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Oyster Po'Boys

I've heard other people comment on it being inconsistent too, but that's never been my experience (and heaven knows I've found that to be true of certain other places). I agree about their gumbo, it's one of my favorites. I know the bbq shrimp po'boy is a house specialty and also very popular, but I much prefer the garlic oyster (as long as I'm not going straight to a meeting, or a dentist appt, kissing booth, etc.). Try it next time and report back.

Apr 04, 2011
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Oyster Po'Boys

I'm partial to the garlic oyster po'boy at Liuzza's by the Track. They don't skimp on the garlic. Or the oysters.

Liuzza's Restaurant & Bar
3636 Bienville St, New Orleans, LA 70119

Apr 04, 2011
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Pescetarian Downtown

Rio Mar! Rio Mar! Rio Mar! Pescetarian heaven, in the Warehouse District about 10-15 min walk from your hotel. Price point less than Le Foret, more than Felix's (about on par w/ Domenica, MiLA, Palace). Start by ordering something off the crudo menu and go from there. It's Spain meets New Orleans, creative and really good seafood. Great cocktails too. And +1 for the oysters & raw bar at Luke; ditto if you can get up to Casamentos, it's a classic New Orleans experience.

Casamento's Restaurant
4330 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70115

Rio Mar Restaurant
800 South Peters, New Orleans, LA 70130

123 Baronne Street, New Orleans, LA 70112

Le Foret
Camp St, New Orleans, LA 70130

Mar 30, 2011
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

New Orleans with kids six and ten

For lunches there's a Camellia Grill in the FQ now, kids love the whole counter thing and the waiters can be pretty entertaining. Stanley, Cafe Amelie and Acme are kid friendly but with some local atmosphere, and can satisfy palates that aren't too adventurous as well as offering something more interesting for the folks. Even Napoleon House could work - if they're muffaletta averse there are standard turkey or roast beef po'boys and such plus PImm's Cups for Mom & Dad; kids might like the spooky dark atmosphere (or opt for the patio) and the place comes with a great story to tell. For super casual grab po'boys from Johnny's and sit by the river or in Jackson Square and watch the action.

For the family dinner, if they're well behaved I say go for Antoine's or Arnaud's. I think Arnaud's food is a bit better right now but that's a matter of much debate, and they have the Mardi Gras museum upstairs so you can make it a combo outing (and take em back up there if they get fidgety. I mean it's still just looking at stuff, but at least its an activity; meanwhile you're still steeping in the real cultural deal). Antoine's has lots of Mardi Gras decor as well and that hallway to roam, maybe some music will be going on in their bar next door that the kids can peek in on. At either place order bananas foster for dessert and get the whole tableside flambe thing. Pretty memorable for kids (well, grown-ups too). Beware the route you take if you're trying to avoid exposing them to the Bourbon St. raucousness at night.

PS Send a report on Ste Marie!

Feb 16, 2011
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Large Group Dining - with Chef's attention

Agree Calcasieu is a good option. Commander's might be able to arrange something, they're very accommodating and Chef Tory McPhail is great in and out of the kitchen. But the one that came to mind right away is the New Orleans Cooking Experience. The venue is lovely and unique, they have a cooking school, as well as catering services so you could arrange some sort of combo. Frank Brigtsen and Leah Chase teach there regularly -- both are noted chefs and terrific raconteurs. The only complication is that they will be moving later this year (the compound has been purchased by the Joan Mitchell Foundation and will become an art center). After August, I believe, but make sure they won't be in the midst of construction or other havoc.

Feb 15, 2011
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Know of any places to eat off the 405 fwy - near Long Beach or Seal Beach?

Consider The Factory. Take the Atlantic exit in LB. Tasty farm to table fare, good beer selection. Or there's always the venerable Bake 'n Broil, if comfort food is what you're after. If you're willing to detour as far as Beachwood (good choice), it's no further to hit 2nd Street in Belmont Shore, where there are gobs of other options, just depends on what you're looking for. Le Creperie, Open Sesame, Bono's, Cafe La Strada, Sunin, and George's to name a few.

Feb 08, 2011
MoonpieLover in Los Angeles Area

Place to eat at the bar solo?

I second Swizzle Stick, great cocktails, mixologists, and food. It's a big bar so easy to find a spot, and because its in a hotel there are often single diners there. Coquette and Iris both good choices. I also like dining at the (small but servicable) bars at Herbsaint and Cochon. And there's always Acme. Or Mandina's. I've also dined solo at French 75, which is a separate room from Arnaud's so has more of a bar feel than a restaurant feel. But they'll serve the full Arnaud's menu, it's a pretty, classic room and the drinks are awfully good. But last time I was there some cigar smokers had taken over. That was a while ago, may not be an issue now.

Mandina's Restaurant
3800 Canal St, New Orleans, LA 70119

930 Tchoupitoulas St., New Orleans, LA 70130

701 Saint Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70130

Apr 12, 2010
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Is there a nice bar in Long Beach?

320 Main in Seal Beach. Finally a serious mixologist in the area. Fine cocktails, well prepared (and regular old drinks too), and still casual and friendly. Full restaurant as well. (I've only had apps, which were quite tasty).

Around 2nd St there's a hideous dearth of decent, adult bars. Besides those already mentioned, both Bono's and Nico's have small full bars; Kelly's in Naples serves mammoth Martinis to a mature crowd. Up by the pier there's Belmont Brewing Company (which might not qualify as divey, but doesn't qualify for much better. Gets a college-y crowd); and La Palapa which books the worst music ever but has a decent beachfront atmosphere. I'm still looking for the one that fits me perfectly, so far 320 comes closest. But one of these might work for you. Let us know.

Belmont Brewing
25 39th Place, Long Beach, CA 90803

4901 E 2nd St, Long Beach, CA 90803

La Palapa Restaurant
2222 E 7th St, Long Beach, CA 90804

Apr 10, 2010
MoonpieLover in Los Angeles Area


Is it open yet? If so, has anyone tried it? If not, any word on when or what?

Apr 06, 2010
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Mexican Coca-Cola

Canseco's on Esplanade has bottles.

Sep 04, 2009
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Cocktails and bars

Don't forget the Swizzle Stick at Cafe Adelaide -- just let Lu work her magic. They used to have a cocktail-and-dinner pairing which was terrific (you sit in the bar). If that's still on it's great fun. And tasty too!

On a sazerac tour last year our top two were French 75 (no surprise) and, believe it or not, Tujaques. We liked Leah's version over some of the usual suspects including Napoleon House, Carousel Bar, Ritz (we weren't in the Library, but it was post-Chris anyways), Delachaise and a few others. We didn't get to Besh's though.

Dec 23, 2008
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

What's New that We Can't Miss?

Great ideas so far, thanks everyone. If those who have been to Daisy or Patois have specific recommendations on what to try or what to avoid, please share. Good idea to check out Il Posto -- hey, we gotta eat lunch somewhere on the non-Fest days, right? But that's a whole other wonderful problem!

Mar 28, 2008
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

What's New that We Can't Miss?

Don't know about Arabesque. Any details or reviews? Middle Eastern food, I assume? I've actually not been to Iris yet so maybe now's the time, thanks for the reminder.

We went to Cochon when it first opened, about 2 weeks after. It was still rough around the edges; better the 2nd time. I thought Luke was quite good food-wise; minor service issues as reported on the boards (nothing unforgiveable - just quibbles). We were there at lunch.

Thanks hounds.

Mar 28, 2008
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

What's New that We Can't Miss?

I visit New Orleans every Fest plus one or two times more per year. During each visit, I like to have a nice dinner at an old favorite or two, and also try at least one new place. Or someplace old that's doing something new, or has a new menu or chef. I tried Luke last visit; now I'm in search of ideas for new places for this Fest visit. So far MiLa's leading the list, but what others am I missing?

If it helps, "new" to me is within the past 12-18 months (there have been a lot of openings these past few years so I might have fallen a bit behind!). Also, "nice dinner" could, but doesn't have to, be ultra swanky or expensive (MiLA notwithstanding). But not a dive -- I've got those covered on the off-nights. I'm in search of very good food, pleasant service and decent atmosphere. Any type of cuisine -- from down home to wildly inventive -- anywhere in the city, including off the beaten track or (gasp!) Metarie. Thanks!

Mar 27, 2008
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Best Choice on Magazine?

I'll be squiring relatives who are visiting N.O. for the first time. We have a few meals planned, varying between the grand dames (Commander's, Galatoire), neighborhood joints (Parkway, Liuzza's) and one or two notable newer, semi-adventurous restaurants. One of the days will include shopping and strolling along Magazine, and it's likely we'll end up having either lunch or dinner there. I need some advice on choosing between Lillette, La Petite Grocery, Iris, Martinique, Table One, or anywhere else (along these lines) that's recommended. What say ye, eaters?

Feb 18, 2008
MoonpieLover in New Orleans

Long Beach Convention Center. Good Places to EAT?

Unchain yourself...

To the unbelievable delight of the deprived denizens of the LBC dining scene (using the phrase loosely), Tracht's just opened a couple of weeks ago in the refurbed Renaissance Hotel on Ocean. Owned by Suzanne Tracht of Jar fame. Dinner only so far. I've only been for appetizers and cocktails but food, service, atmosphere were excellent all around, especially considering it's brand new.

Jar and now Tracht's are known for steaks, but Tracht's will need to knock 555 off the throne -- it's reigned that domain for years. Very traditional steak and seafood menu; wood, white tablecloths, booths, piano. Get the chocolate souffle for dessert.
Even though it's located in the cutesy touristy Shoreline Village, the last time I had dinner at Parker's Lighthouse the food was actually pretty good. Menu wasn't particurly inventive, but the quality was solid and service fine, plus nice views of the Queen Mary and bay. And it's not a chain.

A few blocks further, but plenty walkable (well, depending on how much time you have, what kind of shoes you're wearing, etc.), Utopia on 1st Street is lovely.

Further up Pine St. George's for Greek food is inexpensive and reliable. Casual; large portions; friendly folk.

111 East Ocean Blvd, Long Beach, CA 90802

Utopia Good Food & Fine Art
445 E 1st St, Long Beach, CA 90802

Parker's Lighthouse
435 Shoreline Village Drive, Long Beach, CA 90802

George's Greek Deli
318 Pine Ave, Long Beach, CA 90802

555 East American Steakhouse
555 E Ocean Blvd Ste 208, Long Beach, CA 90802

Jul 21, 2007
MoonpieLover in Los Angeles Area