New Orleans, LA

A friend of mine who is a Louisiana native invited me to the Cowboys vs. Saints game in New Orleans earlier this month. What a great trip! Lots of people traveled to the city for the game. Due to that fact, rates were high for hotels in the city center.  My friend suggested that we stay at Le Pavillon, but it was sold out! So we elected to stay at The DoubleTree New Orleans Airport in Kenner, LA.  Hilton offered breakfast for $10 per day when I called to confirm our stay prior to our arrival, and I added the upgrade. We rented a car at the airport however,  there was an Enterprise Rent-A-Car right next to the hotel. We will keep this in mind for future stays. There is so much to do in New Orleans, culture, music, historical sites, and of course restaurants.

Restaurants

Cafe Du Monde
Cafe Du Monde

New Orleans is known for its great food, and during our time there we visited some well known restaurants. Our first and mandatory stop early Friday morning was Cafe Du Monde for breakfast. Cafe Du Monde was busy but the line moved quickly. I ordered beignets and cafe au lait in a souvenir mug. 🙂 The beignets were delicious and there was so much powered sugar on top, you don’t really need to add sugar to your cafe au lait. 😉

In the evening we visited Deanie’s Seafood in Bucktown. Former students of mine from New Orleans raved about Deanie’s so I had to visit. I had the stuffed shrimp fried with fries. It was good but I’m pretty fond of the stuffed shrimp at Pappadeaux here in Dallas… Next time I visit Deanie’s I’ll try their barbeque shrimp.

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Grilled Oysters at Drago’s
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Drago’s Lobster Mac n Cheese

Saturday was a pretty full day but the restaurant highlight was Drago’s. It is one of my favorite places to visit in New Orleans. The Drago’s location we visited was in the Hilton Riverside Hotel in downtown New Orleans. I had the grilled oysters and the lobster mac ‘n cheese.  The grilled oysters are seasoned with parmesan and Romano cheese along with garlic, butter, and herbs. Yum!  The Lobster Mac n Cheese included a topping of garlic herb bread crumbs. Both great dishes but they were very salty. This was my second visit to Drago’s and I do not recall the food being this salty.  I will definitely visit again. However, I hope they reduce the sodium content in the dishes.

Ham plate at Mother's
Ham plate at Mother’s                                    

By Monday afternoon many of the Cowboys fans returned to Dallas. This gave us the opportunity to visit Mother’s Restaurant. There was a line but like Cafe Du Monde the wait was not long. I enjoyed a Baked Ham Dinner with greens, grits, and red beans & rice along with a Mother’s Spicy Bloody Mary to wash everything down. No salty foods here. Everything was good and you can add your own table salt to taste. I especially liked the red beans and rice.

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Cadillac Road to Table DFW

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Photo used with permission of D-MochaTraveler.

Yesterday I joined a friend and fellow blogger RC at The Eberhard in Dallas for Cadillac’s Road to Table DFW. Despite the rain and clouds it was quite an enjoyable experience. After our arrival and check in I drove the new 2016 Cadillac ATS. Our Cadillac rep told us about the many features of the sedan, and answered our questions about the vehicle. Every feature you could think of this car had: Wireless Charging, Touchscreen apps, On Star, XM, Wi-Fi HotSpot for 7 devices that can be purchased from AT&T,  Lane Assist, 3 types of tire options, and so much more. I was also impressed with the quality of the leather seats and the smooth ride in on city streets. The ATS starts at around 39K If you like speed the ATS-V is also available with even more options.

FullSizeRender IMG_1463The test drive took us to Local in the Deep Ellum area where Chef Tracy Miller prepared our dinner. We were greeted with a glass of champaign and an opportunity to take photos with selfie sticks provided by Cadillac.  For the three course meal we were given a menu to choose from. I chose the Organic Wild Baby Local Lettuces for the first course. The salad greens were a bit bitter but the goat cheese and sliced pecans took some of the bitter taste of the greens away. It was paired with the Planet Oregon Pinot Noir. For the second course I went with the Grilled All Natural Beef Tenderloin Filet served with a white cheddar grit cake and a rustic tomato fennel relish.  I asked for mine to be well done-I just don’t do medium or medium well steaks. LOL! But the beef tenderloin dish was really good and the grit cake was a great side paring. Last for dessert we had the Warm Deep Ellum Honey Spice cake, with a muscat port wine. The cake was very good especially with the sugar pears! The muscat port was a first for me as I’ve only had red port wines. Our server said there was an orange note in the wine, and you can taste the the hint of fruit.

12052625_10153620915268559_3224932931487702305_oAfter dinner we were shuttled back to The Eberhard in a 2016 Cadillac Escalade-nice. I can see why the Escalade has been a popular SUV for Cadillac:  lots of space, beautiful brown leather seats (that neatly fold down making it easier for passengers to exit the vehicle), and loaded with the latest features. The platinum version of the vehicle includes a center console cooler, rear seat entertainment system, and message seats, yes message seats! The Escalade starts at 72K.

There was an open bar for the after party at The Eberhard. Who can turn down an open bar? I took advantage of the opportunity to sample the Ebarhard’s Peach Mule. I love Moscow Mules and the peach added a sweet variation to the drink that is made with ginger beer, vodka, and lime juice. It was an excellent way to top off an enjoyable evening! Thanks Cadillac!