Most people think that to get a good meal in New Orleans, you have to be in the French Quarter or CBD, but these days as other neighborhoods experience a revitalization, you can find some really great meals outside of the Quarter. We’ve come across a number of really unique places on St. Claude Avenue (the northern border of the Marigny); places serving a variety of foods throughout the day.
St. Roch Market – this impressive and historic market hall dates back to 1875 when it was established as a state-owned open-air public market. Today, the light, airy, and attractive market features a central dining area surrounded by independent food stalls offering a variety of items from oysters on the half shell and fried Louisiana crab cakes, to Vietnamese street food, fresh fruit juice and smoothies, pastries, cookies, and cakes, local produce, and cocktails.
We tried and really enjoyed various items from several of the stalls a few of which include: the crab cakes from Elysian Seafood
and the peppery Smokey the Bear juice blend from Juice NOLA. We wish we’d tried the macarons and other confections from Bittersweet Confections, because it all looked so good. St. Roch Market is located at 2381 St. Claude Avenue.
Kebab – We’ve been fortunate in our travels across Europe to sample some really great kebabs, but haven’t had the same luck traveling in the US…until we happened upon this place on Saint Claude. Kebab, as their name indicates, specializes in kebabs, served on fresh homemade bread, and they’re really good.
We sampled a few items from their menu and enjoyed it all: pork gyro kebab with pickled cucumbers, and tzatziki; falafel with hummus;
and authentic double-fried Belgian fries (some of the best fries we’ve found stateside) served with aioli (their version of fritesaus) and their house ketchup. We added some of the coconut habañero hot sauce for extra kick. Kebab also makes their own sodas and cocktails; we tried the Beet up Beet citrus Soda. Kebab is located at 2315 St. Claude Ave., one street over (west) from St. Roch Market.
Fry & Pie – tucked away in the courtyard of the Hi-Ho Lounge on Saint Claude Avenue, this place, which serves variations of just two foods – fries and pies – has taken French Fries to a whole new level. Their gourmet fresh-cut fries are loaded with all sorts of interesting and flavorful toppings (and given creative names)
and their pies are perfectly portioned mini pies for one. The menu items are rotated out regularly. At the time of our visit we sampled a number of items and really enjoyed the Pig Lebowski – fries topped with pulled pork, BBQ sauce, aged cheddar, and cole slaw; The X-Fries – with house-made chili, 3 cheeses, fried onions, sour cream, and jalapeños;
Thai Fighter – topped with Thai chicken, spicy peanut sauce, pickled vegetables, mozzarella, and cilantro; and Off the Beaten Path – sweet potato fries topped with roasted beets, goat cheese, pecans, and balsamic reduction. Note: portions are generous. Their pies are just as good as their fries, but are limited to just two varieties at any given time.
We tried and really liked the Orange Dream pie, a refreshing orange custard with creole cream cheese, orange zest and whipped cream on a graham cracker crust,
and the Gentleman Jim’s Cherry Cordial, a delightful combination of cherry mousse, chocolate ganache, cherry kirsch liquor on a chocolate cookie crust and topped with whipped cream. Note: You’ll have to walk through the bar to get to the courtyard to ‘dine in’, or pick up your ‘take out’ order from the window at the side of the building. Fry and Pie is located at 2239 St. Claude Ave; a 4-minute walk west from St. Roch Market. They’re open from 5 p.m. – 12 a.m. (sometimes later), 6 days/week.