Wanna know the best restaurants on Esplanade Avenue? There are plenty of good restaurants. I’m just going to stuff this phrase, “Best Restaurants on Esplanade Avenue,” in today’s installment at random intervals to get search engine traffic while I talk about Santa Fe, which is a very good restaurant on Esplanade Avenue. Is it the best? It depends on your criteria. For Frau Schmitt and myself, this is always our fallback place. When we can’t think of anywhere else to go, one of us will suggest Santa Fe. The other will agree. Why wouldn’t we?
I know you think I’m about to embark on a lot of blah, blah, blah, best restaurants on Esplanade Avenue, New Orleans. Let’s try to keep that at a minimum, shall we? There is nothing worse than reading a blog post that is written for search engine optimization, that is just so much key word chum salad to attract the attention of Google’s and Bing’s spiders and robots. Well, actually, there is a worse kind of blog post: it’s the post that is the most recent—-and it’s three years old!!! “The 2013 Jazz Festival is looking to be the best one ever!”
We don’t do that here. Our blog is kept fresh, updated 2-3 times per week. Count on it. Sometimes informative, more often entertaining than the opposite.
Where was I?
Oh, yeah, Santa Fe.
Santa Fe is a Creole Southwestern open-air restaurant on the lakeside end of Esplanade Avenue. It’s nice to sit outside under the awning and enjoy a good meal, and good sangria to go along with the vittles, while watching life in the neighborhood unfold at its own relaxed pace.
Notice I said that Santa Fe is on the lakeside end of Esplanade Avenue. It is so far outside the tourist bubble that it is all locals in this part of New Orleans. If you want to know what it is like to live in New Orleans, instead of just to visit, the farther you get from the French Quarter, the better. Santa Fe is as authentic New Orleans as is La Belle Esplanade, the inn’s website you are reading right now.
Best Restaurants on Esplanade Avenue!!!! Sorry. I couldn’t help myself.
What is Creole Southwestern food exactly. Everything in New Orleans gets Creolized over time. This means there is a lot of seafood and a lot of crawfish. Santa Fe serves tacos and burritos, of course, but the menu is heavy on local Creole twists. Like everything in New Orleans, the menu is full of surprises. The owners are Portuguese. Whatever the special is on any given day, especially if it’s a whole fish, order it. The Chicken Maximilian is also highly recommended.
When you read about New Orleans, you think we walk down the street with a shrimp po’ boy in one hand and a trumpet in the other. That’s not what life is like here. We do eat more than raw oysters, boiled crawfish, blackened red fish, red beans and rice, turtle soup, oysters Rockefeller, oysters Bienville, char-grilled oysters, oysters Iberville, oysters etc., etc., etc…
We eat other food too, and New Orleans cuisine is held to such a high standard that when we go out for southwestern food, tacos and burritos, we expect a lot more than ground beef and melted cheese in a tortilla. When we first moved to New Orleans, we lived Uptown. Our neighbors told us that Superior Grill served the best Mexican Food in the city. Now you know why we live Downtown. Uptown New Orleans and Downtown New Orleans are worlds apart and we much prefer where we live now.
The tres leches cake at Santa Fe is the best that you have ever had, made fresh, in house, every day. It’s better than the bread pudding soufflé at Commander’s Palace. That’s high praise.
You don’t need to travel far from our inn to have a fine and memorable meal. The best restaurants on Esplanade Avenue, indeed, some the best restaurants in New Orleans, are only a picturesque stroll from our front door. We truly live on a belle esplanade. Every day is filled with a certain joie de NOLA.
Would a former U.S. President enjoy eating at Santa Fe? You betcha he would!
It doesn’t matter who you are in New Orleans. If you are here, the city will love you. I guarantee it. If you are bored in New Orleans, it won’t be the city’s fault. Only boring people are bored. If you’ve read this far, I’m pretty sure you aren’t boring and we’re looking forward to meeting you and sharing what we know about this amazing city we call home. New Orleans, and all the best restaurants on Esplanade Avenue are calling you, too. Resistance is futile. We look forward to meeting you.
À votre santé,
La Belle Esplanade
…where every day is full of good food, good times, and the stuff that makes for good memories that will last a lifetime.
Monday, October 3, 2016: What happened today? For me it all went by in a happy blur. I’ll have to ask our guests what adventures they’ve had on what has been yet another balmy and glorious early autumn New Orleans day. There can’t be enough days like this.