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“Not Merely The Mock”

Galatoire's Restaurant
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Ranked #231 of 2,045 Restaurants in New Orleans
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $30 - $80
Cuisines: Cajun & Creole, French
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Large groups, Special occasions, Business meetings, Local cuisine
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: French Quarter
Cross street: Iberville
Reviewed April 9, 2013

I was in NOLA on business and working with a group who were eating close by elsewhere. I had about an hour to get a bite to eat on my own. Galatoire's had been on my radar for a while, and this seemed the time to drop by.

Note that the kitchen closes at 10pm, but diners can apparently stay as long as they need to finish their meal. I arrived about 9:50 and left an hour later, but only because I had to get back to my group.

I chose a couple of light items, namely the "Salad Maison" and the turtle soup, accompanied by a nice glass of pinot noir from New Zealand and followed by the house coffee. Someone in Galatoire's hundred year-plus history must have pointed out that in French, salad is "salade" and that the name for their menu item is thus an awkward mix of languages.

I let the staff know that I was on a tight schedule, and they brought my items in a timely fashion. A loaf of bread that I assume to have been baked in-house, though not quite fresh out of the oven, accompanied my order. I devoured it, even applying some of the accompanying butter, even though I don't usually butter my bread.

Overall, what I ordered proved ideal for both my schedule and my appetite, and I very much enjoyed the experience. Let me, however, offer a couple of minor comments that may interest prospective diners.

Aside from the Franglais name of the house salad, I'd suggest that they keep the greens fresh right up until the end of the evening. I realize I ordered just before closing, but the greens could have been a bit crisper. And in a perfect world, I'd have liked another anchovy or two on the thing.

The turtle soup, made with what I assume to have been a roux and garnished with a couple of teaspoons of sherry, generally exceeded expectations and was just the thing, except perhaps for one little thing: It could have arrived hotter. That said, I ate it and enjoyed it.

The coffee and water service was fine, and the staff is suitably gracious and not over-friendly, striking just the right note.

It might worth pointing out that, while the Bourbon Street location offers what must be the most tranquil experience on that street, the restaurant is probably not the place for a quiet, romantic dinner. Though the room is attractive and loaded with old-school charm, it's relatively small, quite bright, and not designed to dampen sound.

That said, I recommend the place highly. It's in the constellation of historic New Orleans creole restaurants and offers one of the few opportunities to spend quality time on on Bourbon Street.

1  Thank RouteBG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,322 - 1,326 of 1,769 reviews

Reviewed April 9, 2013

This trip was my first to NOLA in 30 years but I still recalled a wonderful meal at Galatoire's in the early 80s. From what I can tell, it has not lost anything in those three decades.

We had an early reservation (5:30) but seeing that the downstairs dining room was open, opted to sit there. (Downstairs is first come, first served) Service was efficient without being overbearing.

We started with a couple of great cocktails.

For entrees, we consulted with our waiter and added crabmeat sides to sauted fish and got incredible, well-balanced combinations.

For dessert, we split a bread pudding and had cafe brulot, a flaming concoction that is part coffee, part alcoholic beverage, part dessert.

Everything we tasted from start to finish was perfect.

There is one peculiar aspect to Galatoire's that was not an issue for us but might bug some people. It has a sort of "clubby" feel to it and, as a tourist, you are not in the club. Diners seemed to know each other and the waiters fairly well and the maitre d' would chat up the regulars. We don't tend to be regulars at restaurants, even those in our own town, so it was no big deal. However, the whole regulars vs. tourists distinction might offend the egalitarian sensibilities of some diners.

Again, we were thrilled with the food and the service. It won't take 30 years to come back.

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Thank TarheelFrancophile
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 9, 2013

The food is delicious!! And just because this is in the middle of the French Quarter doesn't mean it's crazy! This is a beautiful restaurant and you must be dressed appropriately to dine there. Jackets for men and no jeans al all. Loved it!!

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Thank DawnN2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 8, 2013

I had not been to Galatoire's in many, many years, so I wasn't sure if it would live up to my expectations and memory as one of the best restaurants in New Orleans. I was not disappointed. From the moment we walked in until we left, everything was perfect. We were seated in the downstairs dining room with excellent service from a waiter who was attentive but not intrusive. He took his cues from us instead of appearing every few minutes to see "if everything was alright." The food was well prepared and servings ample. There were three of us and everyone was pleased with everything. Our dining experience at Galatoire's definitely ranks at the top of my "best" list.

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Thank Dorothy07100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 8, 2013

It has lost a little glow and food preparation excellence but still a charming place with super service. Since I had eaten the same meal since 1968 on many visits there I was well aware that the dish was not what I had ordered. Casey corrected it but they didn't made a fresh dish. Still a place not to be missed !

Thank habroms
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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