Transcript: New Orleans
Malia Boyd answered your questions on January 27, 2004
New Orleans has always been a haven for folks who need to cut loose for a few days without tarnishing their hometown reputations or getting thrown in the pokey. Let's face it, at some point in their lives most people can benefit from walking around town with a drink in hand, eating a lot of deep fried foods, and listening to great live music in seedy neighborhoods for hours on end. But there's more to the City That Care Forgot than Party Gras, Jazz Fest, and Bourbon Street. Velvety public golf courses, primeval wetlands, super funky shopping, an abundance of art and antiques, lush parks, and a long list of family activities make it an alluring destination for all types of travelers.
Malia answered your questions Tuesday, January 27, at noon EST.
Malia Boyd has lived in New Orleans for 10 years. She is a contributing reporter for Food & Wine magazine, and she also writes for Martha Stewart Weddings, Travel + Leisure, Travel + Leisure Family, and Budget Travel Magazine. She is currently at work on the 5th edition of the Frommer's Irreverent Guide to New Orleans.
Malia Boyd: Hi all. I'm here and ready to answer your questions.
Spokane, WA: Hi Malia, My wife and I will be visiting New Orleans this month. We have never been and would like an idea of any highlights you might suggest for a 3-4 day visit: food, music, events etc. etc. Thank you.
Malia Boyd: Your first trip! How great. Lucky for you, New Orleans is a pretty small city and 3-4 days is enough time to catch a lot of the highlights. Definitely stroll through the French Quarter. You can't really come here without doing a daytime and nighttime walk-through. At night, the French Quarter is awash in live music opportunities, but if you want to get a little more off the beaten path, cross Esplanade Ave. and head to the Faubourg Marigny, the neighborhood just downriver. Its main drag, Frenchmen St. has myriad clubs featuring excellent live jazz, funk, rock--you name it. Snug Harbor is an obvious pick, and across the street is Café Brasil, a live music club so popular, crowds routinely end up on the street out front. Tipitina's Uptown is also a classic place for live local music and worth the cab ride.
For food, the Quarter has upscale places such as Peristyle, Bayona, and GW Fins (Reserve ahead at all of them. If you have to eat late, do it. They're worth it!), all of which serve extraordinary food. Out of the Quarter, try more casual places like Dick & Jenny's or Jacque Imo's, both of which take no reservations but are worth the wait. Another hidden gem Uptown is Gautreau's which dishes out gorgeous New Orleans-inspired food in a former neighborhood pharmacy.
There are so many more great places to eat and hear music, I could go on and on. To find out what's going on during your specific dates, grab The Times-Picayune's (the local paper) Friday section called Lagniappe, which is filled with tips on what's hot for the weekend/week ahead.
Tampa, FL: Where is your favorite place to stay?
Malia Boyd: The House on Bayou Road is one of my favorite places for a few reasons: The service is fantastic and the place, though it is a B&B, is still very private feeling. They have cottages or rooms in the Caribbean-style Plantation house. It is also in a spot that is preternaturally quiet for this city, giving you the illusion that you are in the middle of the country, when you are in fact a five minute ride from the Quarter. Call them about availability at 800-882-2968, or 504/945-0992.
New York, NY: On a recent trip to New Orleans a local friend took me out to breakfast at a place, I believe, called The Coffee Pot. She insisted I try the local breakfast dish "Lost Bread". It looked like French toast, but was more heavenly than any other French toast I've tasted! Can you tell me what makes Lost Bread so special, and what the history is behind this delicious dish?
Malia Boyd: You are referring to "pain perdu" or in English, lost bread. I'm not trying to shatter any illusions here, but it's just French toast using French bread or sometimes brioche instead of regular old Wonder bread. Perhaps The Coffee Pot just has a wonderfully seasoned grill?
San Francisco, CA: Hi Malia! I'll be in New Orleans, one of my favorite cities, around Labor Day. I've never been to New Orleans before during the summertime. Tell me, how bad (hot and muggy) is it really?