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COOLinary 2013: Our favorite picks

July 24 2013 | What's New

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If someone asked you what the most delicious month of the year is, what would you say? December would be a good choice, with all of its holiday goodness. Or maybe February, because of all the Valentine’s Day chocolate lying around. But as for us – we say August.

During the entire month of August, some of New Orleans’s best restaurants come together and participate in COOLinary. Strategically planned during one of the hottest months of the year for the city, COOLinary celebrates dining in. During this month-long event, participating restaurants offer two-three course lunch menus for $20 or less, and three course dinner menus for $35 or less.

This is the perfect time to make reservations at the restaurants that you've been wanting to try. You'll get a great meal for less than you would pay during any other time of the year.

Out of the 50 restaurants participating this year, we have picked a handful of our favorites. We’ll be trying some of these menus next month, and we recommend you do too:

·         7 on Fulton – Despite the sleek design and contemporary dining, this Warehouse District restaurant manages to give a warm and romantic glow.

·         Bombay Club - The candle light and wingback chairs might make you think you've been transported to an old, English gentleman's club. Only a block from Bourbon Street, the food is mostly Creole and the drink options go on for days.

·         Bourbon Heat – Looking for a more energetic atmosphere than other restaurants on this list? Bourbon Heat is the perfect mix of New Orleans night life and Creole dining.

·         Chef Duke's Cafe Giovanni – Described as a "New World Italian" restaurant, Café Diovanni features live opera performances three nights a week.

·         Court of Two Sisters – World-famous for its daily jazz brunches, this restaurant features over 80 different menu items. The dinner menu offers mostly Creole dishes with the chef’s own special twist.

·         Deanie's Seafood Restaurant - This classic seafood restaurant is well respected, and for good reason. Whatever you order is going to be delicious, but we especially recommend their boiled seafood; it's the best in the city.

·         Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant – Yes, Gorden Biersch is indeed a chain restaurant, but it holds its own against the local New Orleans eateries. Besides, they brew their own beer on-site. And did we mention that their pecan crusted chicken is one of our favorite dishes?

·         GW Fins - Named in the "Top 10 Seafood Restaurants in America" by, GW Fins is a favorite local haunt. Wine lovers rejoice! The wine list is pretty impressive.

·         Kingfish - This Louisiana-centric restaurant has an atmosphere that beckons back to the days of Huey P. Long. Visit the cocktail bar and enjoy the creative cooking of chefs Greg Sonnier and Chris McMillian.

·         Pelican Club – Are you a picky eater? Don’t worry. Everyone can find something to enjoy at the Pelican Club. It offers a wide range of food - mostly imaginative takes on old standbys. It can be easy to miss, so keep an eye out when you're walking down Exchange Alley.

·         Ralph & Kacoo's - Shrimp Beignets and Blackened Gator are just a couple of treasure to be found on Ralph & Kacoo’s menu. The kid's menu starts at just $3.99, so it's a great option if you're looking for a restaurant that's kid-friendly.

·         Royal House Oyster Bar – This list wouldn’t be complete without a good oyster bar. Royal House is one of the best, and the atmosphere is just as good as the seafood. The restaurant also has an interesting history, so be sure to ask your waiter to tell you about it.

·         Tujague's - Order one of Tujaque's famous piquant shrimp remoulade, or sip on a cocktail at the two-century-old stand-up bar. Or do both! For being the second-oldest restaurant in New Orleans, Tujaque’s hasn't even begun to lose its touch.

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