Clicking Away in New Orleans: Off the Beaten Path Part I, The Restaurants

Jacques-Imo's New Orleans (1)
I am debating about what to post! I’ve been to many great places lately: Toronto, New Orleans and next I will be in Las Vegas, Dallas, Rhode Island and New York City. So I don’t have a lot of time in my kitchen but I’m still enjoying good food. If you are following me on Instagram or my Facebook page (link), you probably already know about a few places ;)

The Toronto trip was in early October, but I just came back from New Orleans, so I think I”d rather let New Orleans cut in line this time when my memory is still fresh.

I’ve been to New Orleans many times and never miss the chance to go there when the opportunity presents itself. I can easily say that NOLA is officially my second favorite city in the US. Oh oh…do not trying to guess which city is my most favorite. I’m afraid that you would easily guess it right. I will visit that city right after Thanksgiving and you will know for certain then. (Shoot, I already revealed that it’s not my home base, Manhattan Beach or Los Angeles!)
Since I’d already been to NOLA many times before and did all the French Quarter, Jackson Square, Cafe du Monde and the whole nine yards, this time I wanted to do it differently. I wanted to explore all the local favorites instead of staying in town.

With the help of my hero, Chef Markvs, who was born and raised there in the city of New Orleans and not only that, he’s worked as a chef at many of the restaurants there. He gave me a comprehensive list of restaurants to visit on my five-day trip.

Wait…I can only eat two meals a day, or three meals max! What will I do in between meals is another interesting question. If I don’t want to walk around the French Quarter, NOLA has many other things to offer, but I’d already done most of them. There was one thing I did a long time ago, nearly 14 years ago, which was a tour of the plantations along the Mississippi River. That was so interesting. I set out to do it again on this trip, since I had to rent a car to go to places around town to eat anyway. I can kill two birds (or more) with one stone.

Wait…did I leave out the important part of this trip? Halloween! I am going to be in New Orleans for Halloween! Yikes, this city is spooky year round, do they really need Halloween? I guess there should be a way for the kids there to get their whole year supply of candies, of course, and beyond that, the citizens  LOVE a party (No, we really can’t tell that about you guys at all…)

The winner restaurant this trip is called Jacques-Imo’s. The restaurant has this tag line advertising their restaurant, right underneath their name:

“Warm Beer

Lousy Food

Poor Service”

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 2

Yet, they do not take reservations for parties under 5 people, and people are willing to wait hours for a table! The first night we went at 9pm and got a table within ten minutes. We went there again with a group because we loved it so much. We strolled in after 8:30pm with our group of five and they told us it would be 90 minutes, but we got a table in about half that.

WHERE: Jacques-Imo’s

8324 Oak Street, New Orleans, LA (Up Town)

Phone: 504.861.0886

WHEN:

Monday – Thursday: 5pm to 10pm

Friday and Saturday: 5pm to 10:30pm

Closed Sundays

HOW: Walk-in only unless you have party of five of more then you can call to make a reservation (weeks in advance, please)

WHO: Jacques Leonardi and his wife Amelia

WHAT: They will bring the best corn bread to you. This is how they look like. Do not let this go to waste. They are so good. The outside was so crispy. My husband thought they were fried.

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 12

Shrimp and alligator sausage cheesecake is a must. This is a savory appetizer that you shouldn’t miss. It’s like shrimp bisque married an andouille sausage quiche and had shrimp and alligator sausage cheesecake as their first-born…LOL…It just tasted like the bisque in a denser form. You have to try it for yourself.

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 4

The picture can’t do it justice. I thought I got it but I really couldn’t see from the small screen on my camera. It’s out of focus!

Deep-fried roast beef Po-boy with gravy. This is another very interesting dish. It’s like a Philly Cheesesteak sandwich on ecstasy!

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 8

Jacques-Imo's New Orleans

Fried grits with white corn and tasso. Another delicious dish that I never tasted anywhere else.

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 15

Shrimp Étouffée with rice

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 13

Blackened Lamb Sirloin

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 20

Stuffed Catfish

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 19

Rack of lamb with creole mustard sauce and red flannel hash

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 16

Fried Chicken

White meat

White meat

Dark meat

Dark meat

Along with the  “Lousy Food” that I could eat again for the second, third or forth round, the decoration is spectacular.

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 11

Paintings on the wall, murals and interesting choice of chairs and tables.

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 10

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 5

They are not afraid to put customers on a pickup truck bed. I guess if you wouldn’t mind getting your picture taken just like these two cuties that I asked to take theirs.

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 3

Jacques Imo's Cafe New Orleans 1

This is the outside. Here we go, official now, my favorite restaurant in NOLA. Salute to the chefs!

Do you know the “New Orleans-style BBQ shrimp”? The one that has no ketchup or horseradish but is soaked in flavorful, buttery but spicy sauce, comes with the head and shell still on and is served with a baguette. That’s what I’m talking about. The white Gulf shrimp from Louisiana are so sweet and smooth with the unique sauce that I love to dip the baguette in.

Have you ever wondered who originally thought of these? And Where do NOLA residents go to eat BBQ shrimp when they don’t cook them at home? The answer is Pascal’s Manale, the New Orleans legacy.

WHERE: Pascal’s Manale Restaurant

1838 Napoleon Ave., New Orleans, LA (Milan)

Phone: 504.895.4877

WHEN:

Monday – Friday 11:30am – 9:00pm

Saturday 5:00pm – 10:00pm ISH

Closed Sunday

HOW: Reservation on the website which is through OpenTable or Call

WHAT:

Fresh oysters (I’ve heard that the Oyster Rockefeller and Oysters Bienville are good but I don’t want my oysters cooked)

This is how it done. While you wait at the bar, you can buy chip and come the the "Oyster Bar" and they will shuck them fresh and serve to you on the bare counter. You mix your own sauce.

This is how it done. While you wait at the bar, you can buy chip and come the the “Oyster Bar” and they will shuck them fresh and serve to you on the bare counter. You mix your own sauce.

Happy me! High on the oysters! Wait who said I can't get high on oysters?…You haven't been to Pascal's Manale oyster bar, don't you.

Happy me! High on the oysters! Wait who said I can’t get high on oysters?…You haven’t been to Pascal’s Manale oyster bar, don’t you.

B-B-Q Shrimp

Pascal's Manale New Orleans 4

Crabmeat & Scallops over pasta

Pascal's Manale New Orleans 3

I’m not showing the fresh oyster on this post ;)
The next post already up “Off the Beaten Path Part II: Oyster Bars and Beignet” you will get to see PLENTY of them!


17 Comments on “Clicking Away in New Orleans: Off the Beaten Path Part I, The Restaurants”

  1. Nativegrl77 says:

    Reblogged this on Point4CounterPoint.

  2. Sam Han says:

    Shrimp Étouffée with rice is definitely my kind of food. I’ve had crocodile meat recently but I wish we have more variety with that meat here. It is not very popular but I do like the meat and “skin” that was braised.
    Btw, I want to be high on oysters too, lol…

  3. These posts drive me nuts, I need to get over there in a hurry.

  4. cookazido says:

    Thanks for sharing all this information, Miranti! It sounds like you have had some amazing meals. I am saving this so if I ever go there, I will know what restaurants to try. In the meantime, we get to live vicariously through you!:)

  5. Hell yeah. I need to go there!!

  6. ohlidia says:

    Oh, how lucky!

    • ;) Come on…When one can’t make their own clotted cream at home…they get on the plane and fly to NOLA…lol…

      I don’t know what happened to the reader. It doesn’t show your post :( I missed a lot of them since August! (Don’t worry I already caught up).

  7. I read this last night sometime after midnight and it made me so hungry that I had to go to sleep!

  8. Everything looks truly declicious. The photos have everything but the smell.

  9. Lived in LA (not the other one!) for many years so your post brought back great memories. New Orleans is filled with many great back-street restaurants that only the locals know about, and they don’t stay in business long unless the food is fantastic.

    • So true…I actually been in French Quarter many times and found that the food there were greats but I dine with many tourist and the menu are catered to them. Off the beaten path, I’ve found many amazing restaurants that served quite interesting foods that I can’t find anywhere else. Plus the price was unbelievable! We literary paid half of what we paid in town.


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