The Best of the Brunches
Did you know that brunch was invented in New Orleans? That’s no lie, amies! It was invented by Madame Begue at her Decatur Street restaurant which merged with Tujague’s. The mid-morning meal was created to accommodate hard-working market workers (lots of German butchers) as well as hungry dock workers who received their break around 11 a.m. Learn more about Begue’s here.
Today brunch in New Orleans is more than something to satisfy hunger – it’s an art form – and live music can be a huge part of the experience. In our beloved New Orleans, you’ll find jazz brunches and burlesque brunches. The following restaurants get our vote for the best brunches in New Orleans. Make reservations for brunch here.
Looking for someplace not only unique but fabulous for brunch? Tito’s on Magazine Street and on St. Charles Avenue is the place to go. Along with traditional New Orleans brunch favorites like Shrimp & Grits and Crab Cakes & Eggs, you can satisfy your taste buds need for adventure with ceviches and other Peruvian dishes such as Lomo Saltado & Grits. This dish includes queso fresco fits, choclo, stir-fried tenderloin tips with savory pan gravy, topped with a fried egg.
Jazz up your weekend with brunch at Clarinet Bistreaux. Their brunch menu includes Fried Catfish Benedict, Honey Buttermilk Chicken Benedict and Shrimp Rockefeller Benedict. They also offer a great selection of pancakes – Banana Nut, Blueberry or Chocolate Chip. Add a Bloody Mary, a Mimosa or a specialty brew from the Clarinet Coffee Shop and you’ll have yourself a weekend to remember.
Suis Generis in the charming Bywater neighborhood is a wonderful and surprisingly affordable place to brunch. The cocktail menu is lots of fun (we highly recommend the Peachy Keen made with Smirnoff, Stirrings Peach Liqueur, lime, cranberry and soda) and can’t say enough good things about the Pancakes of Moment. Reservations aren’t always needed but we’d call and ask just to make sure. Parking was surprisingly easy as well.
Tujague’s deserves to be first because, well, they were first. While we couldn’t possibly taste everything on their brunch menu, we can vouch personally for the Crawfish and Goat Cheese Crêpes and their Crème Brûlée French Toast. The restaurant itself is a fascinating piece of New Orleans history. This brunch is a must.
Every Saturday and Sunday this popular 125-year-old restaurant throws a jazz brunch featuring Live New Orleans Jazz by the Joe Simon's Jazz Trio. While the whole menu is tempting, we went for the “Commander’s Brunch Favorites,” which includes a Classic Bloody Mary (spiked tableside with “ice block” vodka), their famous Turtle Soup (with a splash of sherry), Turducken Stuffed Quail, and their amazing Creole Bread Pudding Soufflé (finished right at the table with whisky cream sauce). We get full just thinking about it. Learn more and make reservations.
3rd Block's Eggs & Legs Brunch is a tribute to New Orleans burlesque queens of the 50s, who shook and shimmied their way to fame in the old days. While your palate dances to the culinary creations of Chef Nick Ocheltree, renowned burlesque dancer Bella Blue dances to live music. If you're worried about the sleeze factor, but it to rest. This is a show the whole family can enjoy. Menu-wise, if you can pass up the Shrimp & Tasso Corndogs or the Banana's Foster French Toast, more power to you. The Bella Blue cocktail's a real kick, too.
It’s impossible not to get excited about The Court of Two Sisters. Their large French Quarter courtyard, where Marie Laveau may have practiced her voodoo a hundred years ago, is full of culinary magic today. The buffet includes such Creole and Cajun delights as shrimp étouffée, jambalaya, red beans and rice, grillades and grits, bread pudding, bananas foster and king cake. A jazz trio plays along with every bite. Learn more and make reservations.
Meet Old Man River for Sunday Jazz Brunch on the historic Steamboat Natchez. Come experience the most magnificent views of the city, authentic jazz by The Steamboat Stompers, and a menu as long as the river itself! Enjoy gumbo made with a traditional Louisiana roux, brown sugar pineapple glazed ham, biscuits and gravy, shrimp and grits, white chocolate bread pudding and more. Click here to view the complete food and cocktail menus, see boarding times and make reservations.