Tuesday, May 11, 2010

New Orleans!

I went to visit a friend in New Orleans this past weekend. It was my first time there, and I wasn't sure what to expect because of the mixed things I'd heard in the five years since Hurricane Katrina. It was a wonderful trip though. New Orleans is a great city, rich in history, culture and delicious food.

Though NOLA isn't best known for its shopping, we went to some really cute boutiques on Magazine Street. My favorite shop was Fairy. I found two dresses that I will probably wear to wedding events. Their prices are reasonable, and the customer service is great. We then had a fantastic lunch at St. James Cheese Company.
We also walked around the Garden District. The homes in this area are gorgeous - they have these huge windows and gas lamps. The house used in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is there (above), which happens to be right next to Sandra Bullock's house. The famous Lafayette Cemetery is also in the neighborhood, where many movies like Interview With a Vampire have been filmed.
Obviously The French Quarter is a must-see at night. We walked by the Lalaurie Mansion, which is supposedly one of the most haunted places in the country. Nicholas Cage bought it before he knew its history then couldn't sell it.
There's an art market at Jackson Square on Sundays. It's also near the St. Louis Cathedral and Cafe du Monde. The cafe has delicious coffee made with chicory and beignets (French for powdered doughnut/funnel cake-like things). A can of their coffee is a nice souvenir. There's also a great restaurant for brunch around there called Stanley, a nod to A Streetcar Named Desire, of course.

One of my favorite places that we ate there was John Besh's restaurant August. The French cuisine is superb, and they use local ingredients. We also happened to be seated in between Mos Def and Jonathan Vilma, a Saints player. Then in walked Tim Robbins, who is filming The Green Lantern there.

I'd definitely like to go back to N'awlins again!

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