Whether you’re merely stopping into the city for a brief visit or you’ve been living here for a while now and just still have a few items to check off of your New Orleans bucket list before you leave for good, there are plenty of reasons why you might be seeking out some of New Orleans’ most famous restaurants. Regardless of what your reasons are, there are quite a few for you to choose from. Below you’ll find a list we’ve compiled of some of our absolute favorite famous restaurants in New Orleans.
With oodles of fame comes a high price tag. Everyone wants the chance to experience the best that a city has to offer, but if you’re operating on a tight budget, you might be wondering just how you’re going to be able to see everything. That’s where GiftYa comes in. By partnering with a number of local New Orleans restaurants, they’ve come up with a way to help you find famous restaurants near you and help to lower your final bill a little bit by providing you with e-gift cards. Order one for your favorite tourist today!
823 Decatur St | French Quarter | tujaguesrestaurant.com
It’s not often that you find a restaurant that has been in operation for over 160 years - especially not within the same location where they originally opened their door. One hundred sixty years is quite a feat for a restaurant anywhere in the world, let alone New Orleans.
Regardless of its small chances, Tujague’s Restaurant is one of the few throughout New Orleans that can truly say it has stood the test of time. Originally opening its doors in 1856 (is that even a real year?) Tujague’s is still going strong, and they don’t have any intention of slowing down anytime soon.
They haven’t made it this far for no reason, after all. Any time you stop into Tujagues, you can be prepared to find impeccable service, as well as some of the best food you have ever laid your eyes - or mouth - on.
“I pulled up my britches up and headed in, glad I did. Tujague's is steeped in history here, but seems to also be a well kept secret.” - Yelp Review
8324 Oak St | Leonidas | jacques-imos.com
Contrary to popular belief, a restaurant doesn’t have to be around for an extensive number of years in order to be considered famous. Think, for instance, of actors or musicians who pop up, seemingly out of nowhere and are just as suddenly shrouded in the bright lights of fame.
This is, essentially, what happened with the Big Easy’s Jacques-Imo’s Cafe. If you’re from the area, you’ve probably heard of this immensely popular restaurant at the very least and frequented it at the very most.
Though they’ve been open for nearly twenty-five years now, they’ve been making pretty much all of the lists of amazing restaurants in the area since they first opened their doors - and for good reason.
When you first walk into Jacques-Imo’s Cafe, you are guaranteed to be overwhelmed with bright colors, bold artwork, and delicious food, and we have a feeling you won’t want to leave.
“To top off the evening, my daughter was surprised with both of the evening's desserts: creme brûlée and coconut bread pudding. I was fortunate to get a few bites and I would describe this as "New Orleans on a plate." - Yelp Review
912 Royal St | French Quarter | cafeamelie.com
New Orleans is home to two very distinct atmospheres: the grungy underground scene of many of their late night jazz and blues clubs and the bougie, refined scene of a classy Sunday brunch, or perhaps just a nice restaurant located in an old part of New Orleans - and both atmospheres are equally charming.
The French Quarter’s Café Amelie just happens to a host of the latter atmosphere, and it is quite famous for that very reason. Tucked away inside the historic Princess of Monaco Courtyard, which is actually where you’re allowed to dine during any meal.
With gorgeous views of lush greenery and some of the most delicious, beautifully presented food you can find in New Orleans, who wouldn’t want to indulge in everything Café Amelie has to offer? Stop by to enjoy some of the finest New Orleans has to offer and let yourself be swept up into the luxury of it all - at least for a little while.
“Looking for a magical little slice of New Orleans? Searching for that French cafe look and feel? Check this place out! Café Amelie was an adorable experience!” - Yelp Review
739 Conti St | French Quarter | oceanagrill.com
Despite what a lot of people might think, the fame of a restaurant doesn’t necessarily have to come out of it having something particularly special to offer up to its guests. Sometimes, what really makes a restaurant stand out is its ability to do even the simplest of things to the absolute highest order.
And that’s exactly how Oceana Grill made a name for itself. On the surface, it’s just another seafood restaurant - albeit one with a few cajun twists to cater to its most common clientele - but it hasn’t exactly been voted to be one of the best restaurants for everyday casual dining in all of the United States for no reason.
They might stick to the more traditional stuff here (think gumbo, shrimp poboy, and perhaps some crab cakes), but they do all of that traditional stuff to the best of their ability, and it really shows. Stop in to get your hands on some of the best casual seafood in all of New Orleans.
“This restaurant is amazing! The service was great and the Cajun seafood was fresh, flavorful and delicious! I was very impressed and will be going back here the next time I visit New Orleans.” - Yelp Review
819 Conti St | French Quarter | broussards.com
Falling slightly behind Tujague’s in terms of its ability to stand the test of time, the French Quarter’s world famous Broussard’s is celebrating its one hundred year anniversary this year, and they couldn’t be more excited about it.
If you’re in the mood for something a little more refined than what you might be able to find at a more casual restaurant, but still comfortably creative, Broussard’s is the place for you. Featuring a menu self-described as French-creole, you’ll find a wide range of decadence here at Broussard’s that will leave you jumping through hoops for another chance to dine here.
Enjoy their Gulf Shrimp & Sweet Potato Gnocchi and finish it off with their chocolate pecan gateau for the ultimate exploration of decadence. Be sure to ask your server about what wines will best pair with your meal while you’re at it!
“Ok now, THIS is everything I could've ever wanted in a New Orleans fine dining restaurant. It is a staple here in Nola and rightfully so...Broussard's is now my new favorite restaurant and will undoubtedly be back ASAP.” - Yelp Review
417 Royal St | French Quarter | brennansneworleans.com
New Orleans is pretty well known for doing plenty of things with a certain degree of charming extravagance, such as adding a kick to almost every meal with their creole-inspired spices or playing jazz and blues music all up and down an entire street.
If we wanted to compare it to something everyone understands, we’d say that Texas’s “everything’s big” can be likened to New Orleans’ “everything over-the-top.” The famous Brennan’s, located in the French Quarter, takes those ostentatious events made out of little things all around the city and applies them to breakfast food!
In fact, you’re the least bit of a breakfast food fan, we definitely recommend doing everything in your power to make sure you stop by this restaurant before you leave if you’re in town for a short stint. Enjoy their specialty eggs cooked benedict style, some of their pastrami hash, and top it off with a fruity adult beverage that will make your morning perfect.
“Recently visited Brennan's for the first time for dinner and I had the steak option, the best steak I have EVER had. I liked it so much that I booked a reservation for brunch the next day.” - Yelp Review
2401 St Ann St | Tremé | williemaesnola.com
Calling all chicken lovers! If you’re a vegetarian, this may not be the place for you - especially if you’re looking to step into a famous New Orleanian restaurant specifically because of that one thing that makes them so famous - but if you love fried chicken, it’s time to dig out your favorite fried chicken eating pants.
For over sixty years now, Willie Mae’s Scotch House has been serving up some of the most world-renowned fried chicken. And when we say this chicken is famous we mean it! People quite literally travel to New Orleans from all over the world, just to get their hands on a piece of this chicken.
Order the Willie Mae to see what it is that really made them famous - a fried chicken breast topped with pickles, purple cabbage, coleslaw sauce, and honey - but contrary to what the name might imply, you’ll have to get your scotch elsewhere!
“Willie Mae's is an impeccable local experience! The service is great; the food is robust; and the costs are affordable. We loved it! The cornbread is delicious (too)!” - Yelp Review
Whoever said that fame is fleeting surely hasn’t come across many of the New Orleans restaurants on this list. Let us know which one lived up to its name in the comments down below!