New Orleans isn't all "throw me somethin' mister" and "laissez les bons temps rouler." Saying that, we did arrive to our hotel, Le Pavillon, when there was a Christmas parade rolling through. Aside from catching beads on Bourbon Street or knocking back a flourescent green hand grenade then not remembering who the fuck you are... Can you tell I used to absolutely love the taste of those hummingbird nectar drinks? Anyway, ASIDE from all of that, New Orleans is a magical place that encourages individualism and imagination. New Orleans amplifies your internal song and urges you to sing it out loud. There's a weight to the air that makes you feel like you have to live hard and love even harder. The best way to experience the Big Easy is to give yourself over to it. Walk the blocks aimlessly, take all of the sounds in as they change from door to door, dance in the streets until you become dizzy and eat until you can't possibly fathom moving anymore. With that being said this is a top five guide of my favourite places to eat, drink, live and love.
1. Carousel Bar at Hotel Monteleone - The cheapest way to get the spins while drinking. All jokes aside, the bar turns while you're sitting at it. With the Hotel Monteleone being a sight to see in it's own, visiting the Carousel Bar & Lounge would put you on the set of many movies and tv shows.
2. Napoleon House - Now, I could live and die all inside Napoleon House. It's quite the New Orleanian staple with exposed brick interiors, a patio to eat/drink on and a fountain. Who doesn't bloody love a fountain? The food is incredible and well priced. BABE recommends: The Muffuletta and a Bloody Mary.
3. Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop - This is a wicked dive of a bar, a little ways off from the main tourist section of Bourbon. If I am completely honest with you...I don't remember a thing from this joint other than the awesome feeling I have from being there, BUT if my grandmother can go and party there with a drunk bride, groom and groomsmen after my wedding, then I definitely rate it.
4. Spotted Cat Music Club - If you're looking to dance, move and shake, then look no further. Not only is SCMC a fantastic jazz venue but it's located on Frenchmen Street, which is a magical music hub. You can pop round from spot to spot, and carry your drink with you.
5. The Court of Two Sisters - No trip to New Orleans would be complete without brunch, especially a brunch with a jazz ensemble. Tried and tested, The Court of Two Sisters is a family favourite of ours. We even have the cookbook.
BONUS Y'ALL: If you're lucky enough to be in NOLA for a Saints game, get yourself a ticket. Even if it's nose bleed. There is no bad seat at a Saints game. We love football, we love our team and we love our city. WHO DAT.
Fountain at Napoleon House
Wandering the French Quarter
Evidence we were at Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop