New Orleans in Half a Day

So let me start off my saying… what a freaking 24 hours the hubs and myself have had.  If I can give advice to anyone, it would be that you should never.. ever.. EVER… even if the price is awesome… fly with Allegiant Airways.  Not only did we drive three hours to get to Pittsburgh, but upon arrival, got delayed, sat in the terminal for 2 hours and then were told our flight was cancelled.  No apparent reason was given, and we were given a crappy $8 voucher for food (which is like… half a beer at an airport) and a hotel room for the night.  We lost out on a whole 24 hours with my sister (who I only get to see twice a year), a corporate world vacation day, and all the money we had spent on a fancy hotel room.  It all sucked. The whole situation.  And in talking to the customer service line at the airport, they didn’t even know the flight was cancelled.  I’ve never dealt with a more incompetent business.

That being said, lessoned learned with Allegiant.  We did make the best of the whole situation and tried to remedy the night.  Being an ex-Pittsburgh native, I got to show the hubs a little of the city I love.  We got to go to the Andy Warhol Museum and a great restaurant called Butcher and the Rye. It did turn out ok in the end but we’re still bummed about what we missed.

 

 

We did make a lot of friends and comrades sharing in our misery at the airport.  I’m pretty sure we all would have rented a bus and pulled a 16 hour drive today if they had cancelled our flight again.  This picture says it all… we’re finally getting to board a plane.. the hubs still questioning whether we’re going to actually take off and me… happy that we’re on our way.

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Buutttt we finally made it!  24 hours later then expected, but here!  Kate picked us up at the airport with a list of restaurant suggestions in hand.  These are moments when Yoder genes come out strong with our love of food and it’s wonderful!  Now, I’ve been here three times and New Orleans is just one of those destinations that you look forward to your eating.   Kate’s top pick and recommendation was K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen and man, I don’t know how anyone could be disappointed with a meal here.  I’m seriously still in a delicious food coma.  We had the most wonderful waitress named Sheila.  She gave recommendations (Kate asked her to pick her favorites and surprise her with dinner), showed us how the chef wanted us to eat meals and made the whole dining experience amazing.  Every time a new round of food came, forks were passed around with little bites of everyone’s dish.  I’m pretty sure we would have licked the plates if it wasn’t frowned upon.

If you had a gun to my head, I still probably couldn’t decide what I liked the best here.  The decision making process to even pick an item on the menu was hard enough.  See this intense pondering?

K-Paul’s is this wonderful mix of a little bit eclectic and a little bit classy.  It still has that Southern Charm too.  I loved all these illustrated recipes both framed on the wall and on the tablecloths.

So what did you finally decide on you ask?? Here was our lineup:

  • Apps
    • A bowl of rolls (yes, a bowl) with hot jalapeno cheese rolls, cornbread muffins and a sweet dessert muffin.
    • Rabbit and Veggie Sausage with Creole Mustard Sauce
    • Chicken and Andouille Gumbo
    • Cajun Jambalaya
  • Main Course
    • Blackened Stuffed Pork Chop Marchand de Vin
    • Eggplant Pirogue with Seafood Atchafalaya
    • BBQ Shrimp (and I honestly can’t remember the name of it but it came on a bed or rice, with sautéed veggies)

Our wonderful waitress, Sheila, showing us how the chef recommends eating these meals.  She was without a doubt one of the best waitresses I’ve ever had in my life.

  • Dessert
    • Sweet Potato Pecan Pie
    • Custard Marie Crème Brûlée with a Praline Bottom
    • Espresso

A few of you might ask, “Why the lemon rind?” Well, I have an answer for you on that. In America, serving Espresso with a lemon rind is often seen as a “classy addition” as well as a means to dampen it’s bitterness. It is served this way in North America and sometimes in France, but never in Italy. Outside of Italy, this is called an “Espresso Romano.” It actually does seriously alter the espresso flavor.  I haven’t decided if I love it one way or another.

Dinner was followed by a good stroll through the French Quarter.  Street performers, Pat O’Brians, people watching, and weddings.. yes, even weddings.  I can’t escape them, even on vacation.  What a lovely bride and groom though!  I loved their umbrellas, especially the ring bearers lol.

Here’s some New Orleans trivia for you.  Wedding and funerals typically have a “second line.”  This refers to the brass brand parades held for these events. The “main line” or “first line” is the main section of the parade, or the members of the actual club with the parading permit as well as the brass band. Those who follow the band just to enjoy the music are called the “second line.” The second line’s style of traditional dance, in which participants walk and sometimes twirl a parasol or handkerchief in the air, is called “second lining.” (source: Wikipedia)

Pretty cool right? Pat O’Brian’s was, of course, a place we always stop (and the husband’s personal fav), so we swing by to grab drinks before we continued our walking tour of the Quarter.

We stumbled across a street performer we had seen the last time we were in New Orleans.  This wonderful older gentleman who plays songs by request on various sized glasses.  He even got Kate in on the action, letting her play one and showing us how you can ‘see’ the tone of the glass in the water.  Certainly one of the more unique performers, but New Orleans is loaded with them.  There is no city like it and being a photographer, walking around taking photos at night, is a dream.

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Our journey continues tomorrow!  We have high hopes that the rain will hold off and we’ll get to see one of the Easter Day parades here.  Fingers crossed!  I’ll then be taking a hiatus for a week, as we’ll be out of the country cruising.  So clients, have no fear!  I’ll get back to you as soon as I have internet access.  Until then, cheers from The Big Easy.  – Alysha

 Alysha Yoder Photography (b) www.alyshayoderphotoblog.com

(w) www.alyshayoderphoto.com (e) alyshayoderphoto@yahoo.com (p) 610.762.7810

 

 

 

 

 

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