Four restaurants that should be on your New Orleans shortlist

by Jocelyn Tolbert

When you’re in town for Cook. Craft. Create., you’re likely going to want to venture out to some of New Orleans’ iconic establishments. Sure, Emeril Lagasse’s Nola Restaurant or the fashionable Coquette are no-brainers. But don’t skip the following eateries with ACF chefs at the helm:

Deanie’s Seafood (841 Iberville St.) has been owned by ACF member Barbara Chifici since the mid-1980s and is loved by locals. It’s a favorite for fresh Louisiana seafood with Creole seasonings. The restaurant was voted “Best Seafood Restaurant” (Times Picayune) and “Best Place for Crawfish” (Tops of the Town 2014, New Orleans Magazine).

Dooky Chase’s Restaurant (2301 Orleans Ave.) is part of New Orleans history. Its roots stretch back to 1941, and its role on the Civil Rights Movement was a significant one. In the 1960s, Martin Luther King, Jr. and others would join local leaders for strategy sessions and dialogue over meals in the upstairs meeting room at Dooky’s. (It was also a stop on Homer’s New Orleans food tour in a recent episode of “The Simpsons.”) Today you can still find ACF member and owner Leah Chase in the kitchen, well into her 90s and churning out authentic Creole cuisine.

The AAC plans to induct Chef Susan Spicer into its Hall of Fame this year. The menu at her restaurant Bayona (430 Dauphine St.) takes inspiration from the Mediterranean, Asia, North Africa, France, Spain, Italy, and all around the United States. The unassuming spot gains rave reviews for the goat cheese crouton with mushrooms in Madeira cream, the lamb loin and the garlic soup.


ACF Chef Mark Quitney serves as executive chef for all the food and beverage outlets at Hilton New Orleans Riverside (2 Poydras St.). There you’ll find Spirits Bar & Lounge, with tasty New Orleans-style samplings and a wide assortment of cocktails including the Delta Breeze. There’s also a location of Drago’s Seafood here — and the charbroiled oysters are not to be missed.