Hidden Gems in New Orleans’ Food & Drink Scene

by GO GlobeHopper

New Orleans is a city known for its food and drink scene, with countless culinary delights. But with hundreds of restaurants to choose from, it can be tough to find the hidden gems. If you’re looking for the hole-in-the-wall, off-the-beaten-path, unassuming type of restaurant or bar, then this list is for you.

All restaurant names are clickable for address location, hours, and phone number.


In the French Quarter

Zhang Bistro

Enjoy delicious Asian cuisine at Zhang Bistro, including egg drop soup, spicy Thai fried rice, and Peking duck.


Cuban sandwiches and fresh daiquiris are the name of the game at Manolito.

Double Dealer

This secret bar is certainly off the beaten path—and in the basement of the Orpheum Theater.

Black Penny

Located at the edge of the French Quarter, enjoy craft beer at the refurbished wooden bar.


In Uptown New Orleans


Gumbo, fried catfish, and other New Orleans eats are served at Brigtsen’s, a favorite for fine dining. Finish the meal off with a slice of pecan pie.


Tucked away off the streetcar line on South Carrollton Avenue lies Boucherie, a quaint restaurant serving contemporary Southern cuisine (like Krispy Kreme bread pudding). In the mood for something more casual? Their sister restaurant Bourree is just around the corner and offers up wings, craft daiquiris, and Cajun specialties like boudin and meat pies.

Empanola (Freret Street)

The lesser-known of the two Empanola locations, this one lies on the quiet part of Freret Street near Tulane University.

Jamila’s Café

Enjoy Tunisian and Mediterranean cuisine at Jamila’s Café with menu items like the crawfish, zucchini and spinach bisque, or tajine of lamb.


In Central City

PeeWee’s Crabcakes On the Go

Seafood smothered in seafood, loaded baked potatoes, and surf ‘n’ turf are PeeWee’s favorites.

Maïs Arepas

Enjoy over-stuffed arepas and Colombian cuisine at Maïs Arepas.

Café Reconcile

Café Reconcile trains youth to work in the hospitality industry. This lunch spot serves delicious Southern food like po-boys and catfish at reasonable prices.

Café Porche

Offering a simple menu with a cozy atmosphere, this nook serves omelets, soups, salads, and other light, healthy bites. The outdoor sno bar serves sno-balls made with soft, shaved ice doused in a flavor of your choice.


In Mid-City / Treme

Flour Moon Bagels

Grab a plain rosemary salt or poppy seed bagel or order a tartine with lox, roasted carrot spread, or heirloom tomatoes at this bagel shop located on the Lafitte Greenway.

Pal’s Lounge

Find pop-up bites, cold beer, and gingeritas at this beloved neighborhood bar.


Thin-fried catfish and Southern sides make the drive to Barrow’s well worth it.


Peppadew shooters, pimento cheese sandwiches, and BBQ shrimp are a few items on the menu at Rosedale.

Queen Trini Lisa

Queen Trini Lisa brings her Trinbagonian Island Soul Food to the Northernmost Caribbean City: New Orleans. The Coco bread fish sandwich and doubles are both favorites.

Aroma Indian Cuisine

Though its location may be unassuming, this restaurant is a hidden gem. Aroma serves traditional Indian dishes like chicken tikka masala, curry, and dhal.

Pagoda Cafe

Off the beaten path but in the running for the cutest breakfast spot in New Orleans, Pagoda Café is known for its breakfast tacos.


In Marigny / Bywater


This romantic French restaurant and wine bar is the perfect spot for a cozy date.


Enjoy wood-fired sourdough pizza, Italian cocktails, and natural wine at Margot’s.

Budsi’s Authentic Thai

Budsi’s has Thai street food like pork dumplings and drunken noodles as well as classic soups and curries.

Bar Brine

It’s Sneaky Pickle by day, and Bar Brine by night. Enjoy craft cocktails and small bites with great vegan and vegetarian options.


In Algiers

Barracuda – Algiers

Broccoli tacos, frozen margaritas, and deluxe nacho hour have us returning to Barracuda again and again.

Tavolino Pizza & Lounge

Just steps away from the Algiers ferry terminal, Tavolino specializes in thin-crust pizza and signature cocktails.

Plume Algiers

Authentic Indian cuisine and colorful outdoor seating make Plume a must-try for many.



Source:  Visit New Orleans

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