After a busy season for both myself and Nick, we decided to take a road trip and second anniversary trip to one of my favorite places in the south, New Orleans. Now if you know anything about us, we love to find new and unique places along the way to our location and fight to see who can find the coolest restaurants once we get there! Needless to say, we didn’t have a bad meal there. Along the way, we stopped in Tallahassee for the night and caught an FSU baseball game with some friends and of course had to eat at MoMo’s Pizza. This will without a doubt be the longest blog I write. Oh the time I have now that my workshop is over! (That’s coming soon on my blog as well!)
Growing up with close family in New Orleans, I was privileged to spend summers spending time with them there. My hands cringe when I see friends go to New Orleans and hit all the tourist traps. New Orleans is known for it’s food, but you have to research
Day 1: Arrival, Garden District, Mothers
Check into The White Room at the Fleur De Lis Mansion Bed and Breakfast :We booked the room through Airbnb and it was even more gorgeous than the photographs on their site. I could have slept for days on their amazing memory foam mattresses. Located right by the Garden District, we rode around for a while and I pointed out some of my favorite places on Magazine that we would have to pop in during the week.
Warby Parker : They opened a location in the Garden District recently and both Nick and I ordered glasses! It was an amazing experience and we are regretting getting our portraits done in the studio! I’ve been buying Warby’s for 5 years now and their business model and customer service is beyond amazing. I love love them!
Garden District shopping :
Preparing for our photoshoot with Darian Tuesday afternoon, I ran in Whole Foods and they just happpened to have some of the most gorgeous garden roses ever and I proceeded to make the floral crown I was going to wear in our anniversary shoot!
Mothers: Nothing fancy but great soul food. Not a jaded tourist trap thankfully. Great ham but I always get their sides.
Day 2: District Doughnuts, Garden District shopping, Anniversary photos with Darian Kayce
District Doughnuts Y’all. I can’t begin to talk about how we went here 3 times in one week. Each day their flavors change and we are OBSESSED. Their staff was amazing and really wanted to get to know their customers. This probably wasn’t the best thing to eat to look skinny in our photos but they were worth it.
Deanie’s Seafood : Classic NOLa staple, amazing fried seafood and stuffed shrimp that will change your life.
Photos with Darian:
Where can I begin?! Like our wedding photography, I was searching around Instagram for someone who I was immediately drawn to. I sent her an email a few weeks before our trip and assured her we weren’t cat fishing her and we started planning our shoot together. Since N was going to be gone with work a little while and would miss our real anniversary, I wanted some sweet portraits of us together. She knocked it out of the dang park. Knowing I love the Garden District and more unique locations, we walked all around and found some gorgeous locations. I will post more at a later blog, but I’ll just leave these little goodies here. I can’t stop staring at them and dang, how hot is my husband????!??!?!? Woah.
Rock and Sake $5 LSU Roll on Tuesdays were an amazing snack after all the lunch from earlier in the day. I would love to take one of their sushi classes one day!
Day 3: St Roch, Willie Maes, Lakeside, City Park
St. Roch Market : A new venue to me, such a gorgeous hall full of vendors and market spaces. Located in the St. Roch neighborhood, it was worth the drive across town. Such a great meeting place for friends! We met the creator of 1 of 1 Blazers, Charles and got to talk to him about these one of a kind blazers! What a fun statement piece?!
Willie Mae’s Scotchouse : Best fried chicken you’ll ever eat, hands down. I love supporting this amazing business that was devastated by Katrina but rallied and came back stronger than ever.
All this food had us needing a walk around the city. That afternoon we walked over by the Lakeside area, where the levees broke during the storm. Our family lost two homes in that storm so it was bittersweet to see what the new owners had done to the homes I had so many memories in. After 8 feet of water, our family lost everything that we had in them. It’s a beautiful area that has grown so much after the storm. Walking along Lakeside Drive brings back memories and driving through City Park was nostalgic as well.
Day 4 :Check into AirBnb #2 in Lakeview Domenicas, Aunt Sallys, French Quarter, Irvin Mayfields, Cafe Du Monde
Mid-Century Modern in Lakeview– We LOVED this AirBnB! Such a great location (hello walking distance to everything great) and such a safe place. We loved meeting the homeowners and they were so welcoming. It felt like our own little home! This converted garage had everything we needed and more. It made me want to come home and simplify everything. Homeowner, D was a photographer and all the art in the home was photographs he had taken. Talk about charming! We can’t wait to come back and stay here!
Domenica John Besh is one of my favorite chef’s to come out of the Big Easy so visiting one of his many New Orleans restaurants was on our list. Inside the Roosevelt Hotel, this glam restaurant makes you feel like you are dining at one of Frank Sinatras favorite places to get a pizza.
French Quarter : We walked into St Louis Cathedral, walked into Aunt Sally’s but missed watching them make pralines for the day, but picked up a few boxes to bring to our Florida family. Even though it was a little rainy, we walked through the French Market for a few minutes.
Irvin Mayfields Jazz Club One of my friends recently moved to New Orleans and began working with Irvin. This Grammy award winner has 25 albums under his belt and owns a jazz club on Bourbon inside Royal Sonesta Hotel. We sat for hours watching him perform with multiple other musicians who all seemed to float on and off the stage. Sometimes there were 6 other musicians at the same time! It was magical. I will never forget that amazing night of music.
Cafe Du Monde : A New Orleans late night staple. Need I say more about their beignets? Also I love City Park’s Morning Call location for the times you don’t want to deal with the Quarter.
Day 5 : Hansens Opening Day, Bevi Seafood, Dorignac’s, City Park,
Hansens Snowballs : A few weeks before we left for New Orleans, I emailed Hansens’ asking when they would be open for the season. Snowball season is a real thing in the south. You can’t just have one any time of year, which makes them taste better when you actually get your hands on one. They hinted on opening when we were there but confirmed it right before we headed out!! What a staple of my childhood! I love snowballs so much- stuffed with ice cream and in about any flavor they offer. I’ll never understand the ones with pickle juice, but to each his own.
Bevi Seafood Co – New joint to grab crawfish and go. Take them to the Line and watch the sunset. All the cool kids are doing it.
Dorignac’s– I couldn’t have come to New Orleans without going to the best grocery store on the planet. I know it sounds insane, but really. They are the best. If we lived in New Orleans, I would have a major problem staying away from their amazing Doberge cakes, which we HAD to grab a chocolate and lemon, since Nick had never had one from there before.
District Hand Pies : Snack after lunch! A second location of District Doughnuts, but offers hand pies, both sweet and savory
Day 6: WW2 Museum, Central Grocery
National World War II Museum : My dad and grandfather have been before, but I haven’t been. This was an amazing facility for history buffs and novices alike. Your tour is guided with these interactive dog tags and your soldier assigned to that dog tag tells you all about their experience in the war. It was amazing and so eye opening. I am so thankful for our armed services. They have a great restaurant called American Sector that is on site and uses local produce thats even grown outside their doors!
Central Grocery : New Orleans Mufaletta staple! Can’t get one without a Barq’s in a glass bottle!
Until next time, NOLa.