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Steven Wells Hicks is an epicurean essayist and the author of three novels: "The Gleaner", "The Fall of Adam", and "Horizontal Adjustment," all available through amazon.com

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

New Orleans Dining: My Ten Best for 2011

The revised and updated 2012 New Orleans Dining: A Guide for the Hungry Visitor Craving an Authentic Experience is finally off the press and on Amazon.com, so it’s time to get back to blogging after too long of an absence. Since it’s that time of the year when everyone is putting out “10 Best” lists, and I needed a way to loosen up my typing fingers, so just for the fun of it, here’s mine.

Like anyone else’s list, it’s 100% subjective. Since it’s my list, I created the categories. Just for the hell of it, I also named a second place in each of them. I’d be curious to know how many of the twenty places you’ve visited, so if you’d be kind enough to reply with a number and the name of a restaurant I was crazing not to include, I’d like to see it.

That said, drum roll, please…..

Best Creole Classic: Galatoire’s, French Quarter

Second Place: Commander’s Palace, Garden District

Best Neighborhood Place: Charlie’s Seafood, Harahan

Second Place: Mandina’s, Mid-City

Best Bistro: Herbsaint, Central Business District

Second Place: La Provence, Lacombe

Best Cajun: Brocato’s Eat Dat, New Orleans East

Second Place: K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen, French Quarter

Best Italian: Mosca’s, Avondale

Second Place: Irene’s Cuisine, French Quarter

Best Owner/Chef: Bayona (Susan Spicer), French Quarter

Second Place: Brigtsen’s (Frank Brigtsen), Riverbend

Best Poor Boys: Parkway Bakery & Tavern, Mid-City

Second Place: Seither’s, Harahan

Best Breakfast: Surrey’s Juice Bar & Café, Lower Garden District

Second Place: The Ruby Slipper, Mid-City

Best Raw Oysters: Casamento’s, Uptown

Second Place: The Red Maple Inn, Gretna

Best Down-Home: Willie Mae’s Scotch House, Tremé

Second Place: Café 615 (“Da Wabbit”), Gretna

Have I lost my mind? You tell me: hickwrites@gmail.com

Happy New Year and better times ahead.