Since the magical moment I fell in love with New Orleans (it only took one night), a piece of my heart yearned to be back, yet knew it wouldn’t be long before I would be. Lucky for me, one of my best friends is getting married this year and she chose New Orleans for her destination bachelorette party.
I was especially lucky because the bride-to-be knew how much New Orleans meant to me and she knew I would be off on my own most of the time instead of running around town with 17 other girls. That’s how you know you have amazing friends, they don’t make you feel bad about doing what you love. That’s not to say I ignored the group….I still spent a couple nights with them…but I knew I had places to go and people to see.
First up, checking out some music of course! Lucky for me, my amazing friend Michael (who I actually hadn’t seen in about 8 years) now lived in New Orleans. An amazing trombone musician, we bonded over our love for throwing food into other people’s mouths and how much we loved to sing “Moondance” loudly and with pizzazz. 🙂 We found him in The Den at The Howlin’ Wolf playing with his group, Hazy Ray. Catching them in town was quite the treat as the guys were just getting ready for a two month tour. It was nice to see a paired down version of the band. The venue was very intimate, it almost had a coffee shop type feel to it, if it weren’t for the divey chairs, velvet flare, and drinks.
We met up a couple more times during my time there. Michael also worked at House of Blues, a fantastic music venue in town where some GREAT musicians have played. Getting the backdoor tour was pretty neat!
It’s hard to tell but this is in the greenroom. The names are artists who have sold out and played at House of Blues. Some serious talent up there!
Many days spent visiting my favorite NOLA haunts.
Of course New Orleans would not be the same without a visit with the glorious Mary. I was so happy to see her. She is an incredible breath of fresh air, full of a life well lived, and also carries the badass air about her that assures you that you would never want to mess with her. If you’re new to this story, I met Mary during my first visit to New Orleans. Nick and I were lucky enough to stay with her and experience New Orleans through her eyes as a New Orleans native.
You know you’re in New Orleans when you see crawfish phad thai. haha. My next few days were filled with more wandering, street musicians, and of course shopping.
NOLA has a way of not just bringing art and creativity out of people. It just brings the life out of people.
Mary reccomended this AMAZING wig shop. Fifi Mahoney’s. BEST wig shop ever. They make custom wigs, makeup, all that jazz. I decided to splurge on myself and get a wig and my makeup one for the big night out with the girls. And man it was worth it!
NOLA has a way of bringing out my girly side. I ended up at Diva Dollz and purchasing things I didn’t need but I definitely wanted.
Per NOLA style, an evening that started with wandering the streets turned into the most I’ve danced in a long time.
We stumbled upon a new bar on Frenchman street called The Maison. The most crazy awesome funk band, Fat Ballerina was killing it and I immediately joined the sweaty hot crowd of people. Three hours later, I found myself in the back of the bar consoling my feet, but still getting up every other song again and start dancing. They were just too much fun. Just every killed it. Trumpet, drummer, singer, keyboard…craziness. I loved the trumpet player…he reminded me of a trumpet Allen Stone. They were a definite highlight of my trip. If you get a chance to check them out…you definitely should.
You can check out more of Fat Ballerina here.
Speaking of music..ah the street music…seriously could not get enough of this stuff. Endless amazing entertainment. Everything from jazz to modern to opera!
Of course no visit to NOLA is complete without a new food discovery.
Of course my first priority was Coop’s Place. I most certainly got my friend chicken, jambalaya, and green beans in bacon sauce. Because, I just can’t leave New Orleans without it. Recreating my first meal in NOLA is a must for me.
The green beans and bacon sauce was new for me. Jessica and I decided to split it, so that’s how it came to be. Ugh ‘m drooling all over again.
Another new place I got to try this time was Elizabeth’s. It was everything Mary said it would be. A lovely corner spot away from the hustle and bustle of the French quarter, located in the Bywater district. it’s all about the down to earth feel, food, and art.
Home of the praline bacon. Yup..PRALINE BACON. It’s basically bacon crusted with pralines…. perfect for those like me who love the salty sweet. Though this veered on the side of sweet….it’s like it’s marinated in sugar or something…
I couldn’t stay away from the fried green tomatoes, which were delicious.
Jessica got the Egg’s Elizabeth (basically a Benedict).
We left with our tummies happy and full. Just the way I love to leave any place while traveling. A full heart of happy and tummy of goodness.
Thank you NOLA! I know you won’t be far from my heart and soul.