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Spring Restaurant Guide 

From A to Z

9 ROSES
1100 Stephens St., Gretna 366-7665 A massive menu keeps everyone satisfied at this West Bank Chinese and Vietnamese eatery. Start with fresh clams and basil leaves, order gingered chicken and lemongrass beef as a main course, and finish your meal with a sweet jackfruit milkshake. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Thu.-Tue. Credit cards. $

13
517 Frenchmen St. 942-1345 Late into the evening, the kitchen turns out crispy gourmet pizzas. Plenty of neighbors come by earlier in the day for turkey melts, cold roast beef on sourdough with smoked cheddar and horseradish mayo, and the many vegetarian-friendly options. No reservations. Delivery available. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

201 RESTAURANT & BAR

201 Decatur St. 561-0007; www.201restaurant.com Local seafood rules the menu, but who else serves Caribbean bouillabaisse (shrimp, mussels and scallops simmered in lightly curried shellfish broth with sweet peppers, mango and coconut jasmine rice) or chipotle-grilled Louisiana jumbo shrimp on a bed of lump crabmeat. Reservations recommended. Dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

A

ABITA BAR-B-QUE
69399 Hwy. 59, Abita Springs (985) 892-0205 A down-home barbecue joint that satisfies the Northshore's appetite for slow-smoked meat. Pork ribs, pork steaks, boudin sausage, brisket and chicken are all served with housemade barbecue sauce on the side. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

ABITA BREW PUB
72011 Holly St., Abita Springs (985) 892-5837; www.abita.com The pub at the Abita brewery glazes double-cut pork chops in Abita root beer and sautees crab claws in Abita Amber. A pint of Abita beer would go well with any dish on the menu. Reservations accepted for parties of four or more. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ACME OYSTER HOUSE
519 E. Boston St., Covington (985) 898-0667; 724 Iberville St. 522-5973; www.acmeoyster.com With an expanded menu at its Covington and Metairie locations, chargrilled oysters are now on the menu along with the classic fried oysters and Peace Maker po-boys. To sample the full range of deep-fried delicacies, order Captain Mike's platter. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

ACROPOLIS
3841 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 888-9046 It's almost all Greek to Acropolis, where the menu includes gyros and Greek dishes along with pizzas, a daily fish special and pasta. The moussaka, thin layers of eggplant, zucchini, potatoes and simmered ground veal topped with a creamy sauce, attracts diners like a siren song. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ADAM'S BARBECUE PLUS
1246 Franklin Ave. 942-1100 This neighborhood joint serves up heaping plates of pork ribs, beef ribs, chicken and smoked turkey legs all slathered with the house's special tomato-based barbecue sauce. It's take-out only, so bring a tablecloth for the hood of your car. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Cash only. $

ADAM'S CATFISH HOUSE
8523 Hwy. 23, Belle Chasse 392-0541; www.adamscatfish.com After 25 years, the Adams family has perfected the art of cooking catfish. Whole fried catfish made this restaurant famous, but the lighter grilled catfish salad appeals to the Atkins crowd. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Wed.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

ADOBE CANTINA & SALSA
1905 W. Thomas St., Hammond (985) 419-0027; www.adoberestaurant.com Get the party started with a blue agave tequila margarita and appetizers of ceviche and jumbo shrimp in smoky chipotle sauce. Management recommends the tacos Adobe platter with four steak tacos covered in beans. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

ADOLFO'S
611 Frenchmen St. 948-3800 Among Italian travel posters, guests sip Chianti and enjoy specials like the rack of lamb or savory veal Marsala with sides of homemade pasta and fresh salads in a buttery horseradish dressing. Reservations required for parties of four or more. Dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $$

AFT DECK OYSTER BAR
214 Royal St. (Hotel Monteleone) 523-3341; www.hotelmonteleone.com Most opt for a dozen oysters on the half-shell, but other popular options are the shrimp po-boys and sauteed seafood combo with catfish, jumbo shrimp, crawfish and stuffed crab. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ALBERTINE'S TEA ROOM
3811 St. Charles Ave. (Columns Hotel) 899-9308; www.thecolumns.com The name may bring to mind images of finger sandwiches and Earl Grey in china cups, but this tea room serves hearty brunch fare like grits and grillades and crabcakes over fried grits with a mango-and-roasted-pepper salsa. Reservations required for brunch. Breakfast daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

ALEX PATOUT'S
720 St. Louis St. 525-7788; 2025 Lakeshore Drive, Mandeville (985) 626-8500; www.patout.com Management recommends the slow-roasted Cajun duck served with an oyster dressing and the smoked pork loin served in a sauce of Southern Comfort, wild mushrooms and garlic alongside a sweet potato praline casserole and corn macque choux. Reservations recommended. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $$$

ALIBI BAR & GRILL
811 Iberville St. 522-9187; www.alibineworleans.com If you need an alibi, stop by this bar for po-boys, steaks, burgers and other tasty bar food. Witnesses say the shrimp plate of deep-fried shrimp with French fries is also popular. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

ALLEGRO BISTRO
1100 Poydras St. 582-2350 Office workers in the CBD find more than the standard lunch fare at Allegro, where the menu includes barbecue shrimp and the hearty pepper jelly-glazed crispy duck breast in a cranberry port demi-glace over basmati dirty rice. Reservations accepted. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $$

THE ALPINE BISTRO
620 Chartres St. 523-3005; www.thealpinebistro.com In the heart of the French Quarter, Alpine serves plates of its barbecue shrimp appetizer: jumbo Gulf shrimp in their shells with the traditional peppery butter sauce. Other Cajun classics include pecan trout 'Monique' in meuniere sauce, Creole jambalaya and crawfish etouffee. Reservations recommended. Breakfast Fri.-Sun., lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

ANDREA'S NORTHERN ITALIAN & SEAFOOD CUISINE
3100 N. 19th St., Metairie 834-8583; www.andreasrestaurant.com Chef Andrea Apuzzo recommends the breaded and sauteed veal chop Valdostana stuffed with fontina cheese and topped with creamy mushroom sauce and the snapper Crazywater, a red snapper fillet served with a touch of garlic, red pepper, plum tomatoes and oregano. Reservations recommended. Lunch Sun.-Fri., dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

ANDY MESSINA'S RESTAURANT
2717 Williams Blvd., Kenner 469-7373; www.messinas-restaurant.com For nearly 50 years, the Messina family has cooked classic Italian dishes with a Creole accent. No one goes home hungry after a dinner of eggplant parmigiana, shrimp bordelaise or veal Spedine stuffed with eggplant dressing and baked in red gravy and mozzarella cheese. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ANGELI ON DECATUR
1141 Decatur St. 566-0077 Try the sauteed portabello mushrooms with spinach, chicken, cream and a spicy roasted red pepper sauce or the Mediterranean pasta, fusilli pasta topped with sun-dried tomatoes, pesto sauce, artichokes, capers, kalamata olives and feta cheese. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

ANGELO BROCATO
214 N. Carrollton Ave. 486-0078; www.angelobrocatoicecream.com The famous Mid-City gelato store turns 100 this year. Celebrate the occasion with classic spumoni, handmade cannoli or Italian cookies with a cup of espresso. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

ANNADELE'S PLANTATION
71495 Chestnut St., Covington (985) 809-7669; www.annadeles.com The menu features contemporary Louisiana cuisine, and the management recommends the roasted Wisconsin duckling in a Grand Marnier-honey glaze with three-potato hash and seasonal vegetables. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri., dinner Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

ANSELMO'S
3401 N. Hullen St., Metairie 889-1212 Metairie residents looking for Old World Italian cooking head to Anselmo's for the osso buco and jumbo shrimp in a rosemary cream sauce. Management also recommends the signature salad Alyse with greens, Gorgonzola cheese, bacon and sugar pecans. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

ANTHONY'S SEAFOOD AND LOBSTER HOUSE
1 Poydras St., Suite 113 (Riverwalk Marketplace) 524-1243 Anthony's does things a little differently, like its ever-popular blackened lobster. Diners also enjoy the stuffed shrimp Drago, grilled or blackened, with jambalaya and corn macque choux. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

ANTOINE'S
713 St. Louis St. 581-4422; www.antoines.com Plenty of places serve oysters Rockefeller, but Antoine's invented it. Popular entrees include the trout amandine and the pompano Pontchartrain, a grilled fillet of pompano topped with crabmeat and sauteed in butter. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

ANTOINETTE
1910 Magazine St. 671-3990 Start with an appetizer of fluffy beignets stuffed with Louisiana crawfish and then try the slow-braised rabbit with tomatoes and herbs. Reservations accepted. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat., brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

APPLE SEED SHOPPE
201 St. Charles Ave. (Place St. Charles) 529-3442 The Apple Seed Shoppe serves salads, soups, healthy sandwiches and smoothies. Management recommends the new shrimp salad with lettuce, tomatoes, eggs, celery, red cabbage and shrimp in a white remoulade dressing. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Checks. $

APPLEBEE'S
315 N. Hwy. 190, Covington (985) 898-0500; 1000 W. Esplanade Ave., Kenner 469-6500; 1220 S. Clearview Parkway, Harahan 734-0042; 3142 W. Hwy. 190, Hammond (985) 419-2220; 3701 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 455-0755; 3850 I-10 Service Road, Slidell (985) 641-4800; 4005 Gen. DeGaulle Drive 361-9700; www.applebees.com At this popular national chain, diners too rushed to sit down for an order of barbecue riblets can call ahead and have their orders delivered car-side. For customers watching their weight, Applebee's has added a Weight Watchers menu. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

AQUARIANS MARKETPLACE
2801 Dauphine St. 943-8884 Aquarians feeds the followers of the increasingly popular raw food movement with dishes like raw pizza (flax crust, raw marinara, raw hummus, avocado, cucumbers, and red onions). Turkey and ham sandwiches are also served, so the menu is not entirely meat free. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

ARNAUD'S RESTAURANT
813 Bienville St. 523-5433; www.arnauds.com Serving classic Creole cuisine in the French Quarter since 1918, Arnaud's creates a perfect atmosphere for dining on shrimp Arnaud covered in remoulade sauce, trout meuniere or Pompano Duarte, a sauteed fillet with chile pepper, shrimp and tomatoes. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

ARTESIA RESTAURANT & INN
21516 Hwy. 36, Abita Springs (985) 892-1662; www.artesiarestaurant.com This Abita Springs guest cottage and restaurant now serves lunch. Make a weekend outing for the lamb shanks basted in Abita Amber with roasted potatoes and spring vegetable stew or the Champagne brunch. Reservations recommended. Lunch Fri.-Sat., dinner Fri.-Sun., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

ASIAN PACIFIC CAFE
3125 Esplanade Ave. 945-1919 In the former Sushi Cafe location, head Chef Victor Pasigan is proud of the mango blue crab roll, a popular order which won a recent food contest in Hawaii. Blue crab, lettuce, peanuts, cucumber, avocado and mango are rolled up in a soybean wrap and covered with a sweet chile sauce. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ASIAN SUPER BUFFET
3900 Williams Blvd., Kenner 712-0899 An all-you-can eat feast of steamed flounder with ginger sauce, salt-and-pepper shrimp, sushi and Mongolian barbecue awaits diners 365 days a year. On the weekends, sample specialties like Asian ginger lobster. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

ASSUNTA'S
2631 Gause Blvd., Slidell (985) 649-9768; www.assuntas.com When Assunta Vitagliano Young retired two years ago, her right-hand man, Larry McNeese, took over kitchen duties and has kept the tradition alive, serving up favorites like the frutti di mare: a combination of shrimp, crawfish, oysters, calamari, mussels, clams and bay scallops sauteed in diced tomatoes, olive oil and garlic. Reservations for parties of seven or more. Dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

AUGIE'S TOWER OF PIZZA
4428 Downman Road 246-9948 Augie's hand-tossed pizzas have been feeding folks since the 1960s. Traditional Italian appetizers and entrees, like stuffed artichokes and shrimp scampi, are also available along with a lunch buffet of soup, salad and pizza. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch buffet and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

AUGUST MOON
3635 Prytania St. 899-5129; www.augustmoonneworleans.com The Uptown Chinese restaurant received a face lift recently, but the menu kept all the classics, like the Happy Family with roast pork, chicken, beef and shrimp or the crispy lemongrass shrimp over vermicelli. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

AUSTIN'S RESTAURANT
5101 W. Esplanade Ave., Metairie 888-5533 The expanded seating means even more people can enjoy Austin's steak, lobster and duck. Management also recommends the recently added redfish papillotte, a redfish wrapped in parsnip paper and baked with shrimp, crabmeat, crawfish and lobster butter sauce. Reservations recommended. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

B

BABYLON CAFE
7724 Maple St. 314-0010 The housemade bread, baked daily, makes Babylon Cafe's chicken shawarma a cut above the rest. It's BYOB, and the staff will happily provide a corkscrew and glasses so that customers can enjoy a gyro plate or falafels with their own bottle of wine. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BACCO
310 Chartres St. 522-2426; www.bacco.com Italian cuisine pairs with local seafood at Bacco. Try the shrimp Bolognese in red sauce over linguine with a slice of housemade focaccia and, at lunch, a 10-cent martini. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

BACK PORCH GRILL
414 N. New Hampshire St., Covington (985) 892-5252 This low-key lunch spot combines Creole and Italian flavors in dishes like Creole stewed chicken over rice or fried catfish with potato salad. Pick-up available for customers in a hurry. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards and checks. $

BACK TO THE GARDEN
833 Howard Ave. 299-8792 Vegetables grow in this garden, and vegetarians are delighted with the sandwiches and garden salads. For those who prefer meat to plants, the menu also includes charbroiled chicken salad with shredded carrots and cucumbers. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Limited CBD delivery available. Credit cards and checks. $

BAGEL FACTORY
8127 Oleander St. 837-8707 The former Metairie-based bakery has moved into New Orleans. They still bake challah, biscotti, pastries and, of course, bagels. For lunch, try a bagel filled with chicken salad or deli meat. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and early dinner Mon.-Fri., breakfast and lunch Sat.-Sun. Checks. $

THE BAKERY
5321 Franklin Ave. 282-9203 'Mr. Gerry' has been serving up po-boys, hot lunches and seafood in Gentilly for 47 years now. This is where you can get the classic roast beef po-boy with gravy crafted from the drippings of the roast. Don't forget the shrimp, ham-and-cheese and oyster po-boys. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BALCONY BAR & CAFE
3201 Magazine St. 891-1225 Enjoy one of the 50 beers on tap while watching crowds amble past on Magazine Street. The bar also serves filling pub grub like half-pound burgers, pizzas and calzones. During the daily happy hour, Buffalo wings are 25 cents each. No reservations. Delivery available. Dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

BANDITO'S
535 Tchoupitoulas St. (Ambassador Hotel) 599-2111 Sip a frozen margarita with a plate of fajitas or Bandito's nachos loaded with guacamole, sour cream, black beans, cheese and pico de gallo. At the 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. daily happy hour, extended to closing on Wednesday, margaritas are two-for-one and tequila shots $4. Reservations accepted. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BANGKOK CUISINE
4137 S. Carrollton Ave. 482-3606 The perfect place to fill up before a night of dancing next door at Rock 'N' Bowl. This Mid-City Thai restaurant features pad Thai, chicken curry, sauteed scallops over glass noodles and tilapia with basil. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

BANGKOK THAI
513 S. Carrollton Ave. 861-3932 Tulane and Loyola students flock to this Thai restaurant for pad Thai, fiery curries and drunken noodles -- wide noodles with a stir-fry of sweet basil, baby corn, bell pepper and a choice of meat. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BANK CAFE
2001 Burgundy St. 371-5260 The kitchen at this trendy new Faubourg Marigny restaurant serves creative dishes. Sit at the vintage bar and enjoy Louisiana crab beignets with horseradish aioli or black drum on Swiss chard in a saffron broth. Reservations accepted. Dinner Tue.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

THE BAR & BISTRO AT LA LOUISIANE
725 Iberville St. 378-8200; www.lalouisianerestaurant.com Management recommends the lamb osso buco, Abita Turbo Dog-braised beef short ribs glazed with cane syrup and the New Zealand lamb chops marinated with garlic and herbs. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

BARCIA'S GROCERY
3633 Annunciation St. 899-9111 The po-boys and club sandwiches are both popular lunch items at this Uptown eatery. Guests also order the daily specials like red beans and rice on Monday, fried pork chops on Thursday and seafood plates on Friday. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat., early dinner Mon.-Fri. Cash only. $

BARRACKS STREET CAFE
430 Barracks St. 525-0330 For those dreaming of California, this low-key juice bar in the French Quarter offers Left Coast specialties like salads, fajitas, quesadillas and wraps of purple cabbage and cheddar cheese. Wash it all down with a fruit smoothie or fresh-squeezed juice. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

BARRECA'S
3100 Metairie Road, Metairie 831-4546 At Barreca's, the menu features the popular local mix of Italian cuisine with Creole accents, like crabcakes with spicy horseradish sauce and roast duck with Cajun rice. From 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays, the early-bird special is a great deal. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri. and Sun., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

BARRISTER'S PATIO BAR AND GRILL
2120 Pakenham Drive, Chalmette 271-2500 Sit on the patio and enjoy eggplant Napoleon (eggplant and shrimp stuffing between fried eggplant on pesto pasta in a hollandaise sauce) or the signature veal Pakenham of baby veal medallions sauteed in brown butter and topped with lump crabmeat. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

BARROW'S RESTAURANT AND BAR
2714 Mistletoe St. 482-9427; 4001 Lapalco Blvd., Harvey 328-3336 The menu at Barrow's used to feature one item: the famous fried catfish. At the recently opened Harvey location, ribs, steaks, pasta and gumbo have been added. No reservations. Lunch Thu.-Sat. on East Bank and Tue.-Fri. on West Bank, dinner Tue.-Sat. $

BASIL LEAF
1438 S. Carrollton Ave. 862-9001 Basil Leaf serves Thai food in an elegant atmosphere. The management recommends the spicy shrimp curry -- grilled shrimp served in Thai green curry with vegetables and noodles -- and the half-duck smoked in-house, fried and topped with a five-spice Cabernet sauce. Reservations accepted. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

BAYONA
430 Dauphine St. 525-4455; www.bayona.com When the weather is nice, Bayona's patio makes the perfect spot for a duck sandwich with cashew butter and pepper jelly on a seven-grain bread baked by Chef Susan Spicer's own bakery. Classic creations like crispy smoked quail salad with bourbon molasses vinaigrette continue to draw rave reviews from serious foodies. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

BAYOU BAGELRY
1907 St. Charles Ave. 525-9400; 3535 Severn Ave., Metairie 888-6400; 4626 Hwy. 22 (22 West Shopping Center), Mandeville (985) 845-1081; 6307 S. Miro St. 862-6800 Who says you can't get good bagels outside of New York? Customers keep returning for the wide variety of bagels, gourmet cream cheese spreads and bagel sandwiches, like the R&B with roast beef, cheddar and bacon dressed with mayo, lettuce and tomato. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily at all locations. Credit cards. $

BAYOU BAR
2031 St. Charles Ave. (Pontchartrain Hotel) 524-0581; www.pontchartrainhotel.com Guests sipping a cocktail can order from the menu of the neighboring Pontchartrain Cafe, which offers Creole crabcakes, trout Pontchartrain and the signature Mile-High Pie. On Sundays, the hotel offers a gospel brunch with music by Shades of Praise. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$$

BAYOU CAFE
6401 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (Four Points by Sheraton), Metairie 885-5700; www.fourpointsneworleans.com The Bayou Cafe, with a menu of gumbo, jambalaya and red beans and rice, can satisfy that hunger for a taste of New Orleans. American classics, such as burgers and Philly cheese steaks, are also available. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

BAYOU COFFEE HOUSE
326 N. Jefferson Davis Pkwy. 484-7390 The caffeinated drinks, along with the muffins, bagels and pastries, get people moving first thing in the morning. At lunch, popular options are the club sandwich, egg salad sandwich and the Santa Fe wrap with chicken, salsa, colby cheese and lettuce. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BEACH HOUSE
2401 N. Woodlawn Ave., Metairie 885-1407 This family-friendly location serves up salads, pasta, burgers and an affordable 16-oz. rib-eye steak for only $10.95. On the weekends, Beach House breaks out the karaoke machines. No reservations. Dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $

BEACHCORNER BAR & GRILL
4905 Canal St. 488-7357 There's no sand on the signature Beachburger, a 10-oz. burger grilled and dressed any way you please. An 8-oz. grilled tuna steak, served as a salad or sandwich, and fried shrimp have recently been added to the menu. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

BEAR'S RESTAURANT
128 W. 21st Ave., Covington (985) 892-2373 Come out of hibernation for a sloppy, gravy-drenched roast beef or a barbecue beef po-boy. Fried shrimp po-boys are also popular here. No reservations. Lunch Tue.-Sat. Checks. $

BECK-N-CALL CAFE
534 N. New Hampshire St., Covington (985) 875-9390 The folks at Beck-N-Call set up shop inside the old Pogue's Corner Deli about 10 months ago, serving soups, salads, wraps and sandwiches (grilled panini-style) along with daily hot-plate specials. The turkey club sandwich comes on a honey wheat bun featuring smoked turkey, bacon, Swiss cheese, romaine lettuce and tomatoes with honey mustard. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $

BEEF CONNECTION STEAK HOUSE
501 Gretna Blvd., Gretna 366-3275 The menu here focuses on thick-cut steaks and a variety of seafood. Try the unique spin on surf and turf, which includes filet mignon and barbecue shrimp. Reservations recommended. Lunch Sun.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

BEGUE'S
300 Bourbon St. (Royal Sonesta Hotel) 553-2278; www.royalsonestano.com Executive Chef Philippe Pinon combines local seafood with the tastes of Provence. Management recommends the grouper braised in bouillabaisse broth served with mussels, shrimp, clams and saffron potatoes in a roux sauce. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, champagne brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

BELLA LUNA
914 N. Peters St. 529-1583; www.bellalunarestaurant.com The moon above the Mississippi River always looks lovely from this romantic restaurant. Lovebirds nibble on osso buco with braised garden vegetables or grilled yellowfin tuna with Louisiana crawfish tails, redskin potatoes and white truffle oil. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

BENEDICT'S RESTAURANT PLANTATION
1144 Lovers Lane, Mandeville (985) 626-4557 Northshore residents rave about this 19th century plantation restaurant's Creole menu, which includes pecan-smoked prime rib with a Creole stuffed potato and Creole crabcakes with lump crabmeat. Reservations accepted. Dinner Wed.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

BENNACHIN
1212 Royal St. 522-1230 Bennachin's tasty West African dishes include fried black-eyed beans, apricot lamb served with broccoli and couscous and the jama jama in makonda, sauteed spinach with plantains and coconut rice. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BENNIGAN'S GRILL AND TAVERN
3010 Holiday Drive 394-2805; 3434 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 888-0664; www.bennigans.com From coast to coast, guests always find a good time at Bennigan's, where American classics like fajita chicken quesadillas, fried Monte Cristo sandwiches and Reubens provide the fuel for a party-time atmosphere. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

THE BESH STEAKHOUSE AT HARRAH'S
512 S. Peters St. (Harrah's New Orleans Casino) 533-6111; www.harrahs.com Rising culinary star John Besh keeps the high rollers well fed at this steakhouse inside Harrah's Casino. The American Kobe beef, served with lobster and shrimp-stuffed piquillo peppers, and the cowboy steak, an aged 32-oz. prime rib steak, will make every diner feel lucky. Reservations recommended. Dinner nightly. Credit cards. $$$

BETSY'S PANCAKE HOUSE
2542 Canal St. 822-0213 At the start of the day or the end of a long night, Betsy's breakfast special can satisfy guests' hunger for less than $4. Beyond the basic breakfast fare of eggs, grits, biscuits, pancakes and bacon, the lunch menu also includes fried chicken, turkey, and red beans and rice. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Credit cards. $

BEVE MEXICAN RESTAURANT
838 Derbigny St., Harvey 365-1522 The breakfast burrito features flour tortillas wrapped with eggs, bacon, potatoes, chorizo, refried beans, cheese and pico de gallo; the enchilada plates include corn tortillas baked and stuffed with shredded chicken, onions and cheese, all covered with Beve's homemade sauce and melted cheese. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri. Credit cards.

BIG APPLE DELI
7708 Maple St. 309-1465 Big Apple Deli gets most of its supplies from America's deli Mecca -- New York City. The cheesecakes, half sour pickles, pastrami and corned beef are all flown in directly from New York's famed Carnegie Deli. The massive sandwiches could feed a family of four. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BIG EASY DAIQUIRIS & CAFE
428 Canal St. 903-1763 Go for the grilled chicken sandwich, a grilled 8-oz. chicken breast served on specialty bread. Or maybe you're in the mood for the Cajun chicken strips, chicken strips marinated Cajun-style, then battered, deep fried and served with the house's specialty sauce. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BILLY'S PLACE
1025 Dealers Ave., Jefferson 818-2121 Popular here are the shrimp-stuffed avocado (fresh shrimp baked, peeled and seasoned over half an avocado) and the fried chicken plate (crispy chicken battered in Billy's special blend with baked macaroni). On Fridays, specials include lobster. No reservations. Delivery available. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Wed.-Fri. Credit cards and checks. $

THE BISTRO AT MAISON DE VILLE
733 Toulouse St. 528-9206; www.hotelmaisondeville.com Choose a bottle of wine from a cellar of more than 800 labels or an imported beer to accompany seared scallops wrapped with bacon over leek gnocchi or bacon-wrapped venison filet mignon in a caramelized onion glaze with grilled shrimp and a yam lyonnaise souffle. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

BISTRO MOISE
827 Toulouse St. (Hotel St. Marie) 571-2888 Nestled alongside Hillery's on Toulouse inside the Hotel St. Marie, Bistro Moise serves up breakfast and lunch. (Hillery's takes over for dinner.) Especially recommended are the cheese boards and French onion soup, topped with melted Gruyere cheese and beef a la bourguignonne. Reservations accepted. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BLUE BANANA
998 Jefferson Highway, Jefferson 309-9999 The menu features the same mix of Mexican and Italian dishes with burgers and pizzas that guests devour at the original location, Blue Tomato. Try the combination pizza of green peppers, onions, sausage, mushrooms and olives in red or white sauce. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $

BLUE MOON TAVERN
115 Focis St., Metairie 831-6725 No matter the color of the moon, guests always find tasty bar food like mozzarella sticks made from scratch, daily specials and the Blue Moon burger loaded with bacon, cheddar and honey hickory barbecue sauce. Live bands and karaoke get the party going. No reservations. Dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

BLUE TOMATO
4401 Jefferson Highway, Jefferson 734-3000 Despite the name, the tomatoes on the burgers are red. The menu here offers a wide range of American favorites, including burgers, pizzas and even Italian and Mexican dishes. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BLUEBIRD CAFE
3625 Prytania St. 895-7166 The huevos rancheros and buckwheat pancakes continue to be popular. Vegetarians rave about the new veggie hash of eggplant, sun-dried tomatoes, celery, carrots and shredded potatoes with two eggs. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Checks. $

BOMBAY CLUB RESTAURANT & MARTINI BISTRO
830 Conti St. 586-0972; www.thebombayclub.com Sample the Duck Duet (leg of duck confit and pepper-seared boneless duck breast with sweet potato beignets in a Calvados and Vermont maple syrup reduction) or the Asian five-spiced fillet of Atlantic salmon with sesame laced baby spinach and Maine lobster topped with a mango salsa. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily, late-night Thu.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

BON VIVANT CAFE & CATERING
429 Sugarpine Drive, Gretna 376-8840 After studying in Italy, Trudy Ruppenicker came home and opened Bon Vivant two months ago to serve traditional Cajun and Creole dishes with French flair. One early favorite is the fresh grilled salmon, marinated overnight in a sweet, spicy, savory marinade and grilled with a citrus sauce. Reservations accepted. Lunch Mon.-Fri., early dinner Wed.-Fri. Credit cards. $

BOULE PRIME HOUSE
1202 N. Highway 190, Covington (985) 809-0969; www.bouleprimehouse.com The USDA Prime steaks taste even better with one of Boule's signature butters flavored with garlic pesto, horseradish cayenne or rosemary Worcestershire. Only the strong tackle the 'cowboy steak,' a 32-oz. bone-in prime rib. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri., dinner Sat. Credit cards. $$$

BOURBON HOUSE SEAFOOD AND OYSTER BAR
144 Bourbon St. 522-0111; www.bourbonhouse.com This busy Brennan-owned establishment keeps Bourbon Street revelers well-supplied with bivalves. The menu also includes grilled gulf fish and the plateau de fruits de mer, a tower of fresh, cold local seafood. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily, brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$$

BOZO'S
3117 21st. St., Metairie 831-8666 The kitchen doesn't clown around when it comes to cooking seafood. The fresh fish, stuffed crabs, crawfish and shrimp can't be beat. Between lunch and dinner, the oyster bar satisfies people looking for a snack. Reservations accepted for dinner except Friday. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

BRAVO! ITALIAN KITCHEN
1711 St. Charles Ave. 525-5515; 3413 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 828-8828; www.bestitalianusa.com Let the kitchen take a bow for its wood-fired pizzas, seafood and pasta dishes, like the pasta bravo with wood grilled chicken and mushrooms in a roasted red pepper sauce over rigatoni. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

BRENNAN'S RESTAURANT
417 Royal St. 525-9711; www.brennansneworleans.com Brennan's helped make brunch a New Orleans institution with offerings like eggs Hussards -- poached eggs atop Holland rusks with Marchand de Vin and Hollandaise sauces. For dinner, management recommends the filet Stanley with a red wine sauce, sauteed bananas and horseradish sauce. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, brunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

BREWHOUSE GRILL
201 N. Carrollton Ave. 484-0525 This brewpub features the Lagniappe Pilsner, which goes great with the charbroiled oysters, pulled pork nachos, steaks or burgers. The bar has plenty of TVs to keep track of the big games. Oysters are 25 cents a piece during the weekday happy hour. Reservations accepted. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

BRICK OVEN CAFE
2805 Williams Blvd., Kenner 466-2097 The namesake oven makes crisp wood-fired pizzas loaded with grilled chicken, Italian sausage, tomatoes and herbs. The menu also includes Italian specialties like veal Liberta stuffed with prosciutto, fontina cheese and pine nuts in a Marsala wine sauce. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

BRIGTSEN'S
723 Dante St. 861-7610; www.brigtsens.com James Beard Award-winning chef Frank Brigtsen takes contemporary Louisiana cuisine to the next level. Favorites include the roast duck with corn bread dressing and honey pecan gravy and the non-fried seafood platter. The new crawfish shortcake is like a crawfish pie but served with black pepper shortcake. Reservations recommended. Dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

BROKEN EGG CAFE
200 Gerard St., Mandeville (985) 624-3388; www.anotherbrokenegg.com This Northshore cafe knows that breaking an egg is the only way to make a gourmet omelette. Later in the day, the lunch menu features home-cooked specialties like pot roast, meatloaf, turkey and dressing. Reservations accepted Mon.-Fri., call-ahead seating on weekends. Breakfast, brunch and lunch daily. Credit cards. $

BROOKLYN PIZZA
2701 Airline Drive, Metairie, 833-1288 The restaurant's most popular pie is the 20-inch Special, generously appointed with pepperoni, sausage, beef, Canadian bacon, mushrooms, onions, bell pepper and black olives. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $$

BROOKS' SEAHORSE SALOON
1648 Gentilly Blvd. 948-7050 This neighborhood joint by the Fair Grounds keeps regulars coming back with tasty bar food like burgers, onion rings and grilled chicken sandwiches. Catch the crawfish boil every Thursday. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

BROUSSARD'S RESTAURANT
819 Conti St. 581-3866; www.broussards.com In Broussard's cobblestone courtyard, guests enjoy redfish Pontchartrain (pan-fried fish on shrimp, crabmeat and oysters) and veal chops seasoned with Creole mustard and topped with wild mushrooms, asparagus, red wine demi-glace and beurre blanc. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

BRUNING'S SEAFOOD RESTAURANT
1922 West End Pkwy. 282-9395 With nearly 150 years of cooking experience, Bruning's has learned the perfect way to prepare seafood. Boiled seafood, broiled flounder and fried softshell crabs are all popular at this lakeside restaurant. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

BUBBA GUMP SHRIMP CO.
429 Decatur St. 522-5800; www.bubbagump.com Run, Forrest, run, and order a big plate of shrimp. At this movie-themed restaurant, they sell popcorn shrimp, fried shrimp, Cajun shrimp, boiled shrimp, coconut shrimp, and even fried chicken and ribs. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

BUD'S BROILER
500 City Park Ave. 486-2559; 605 Lapalco Blvd., Gretna 393-8160; 2008 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie 899-BUDS (2837); 2338 Banks St. 821-3022; 2800 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Kenner 466-0026; 3001 Ormond Blvd., Destrehan 725-1116; 3151 Calhoun St. 861-0906; 4101 Jefferson Highway, Jefferson 837-9419; 5600 Lapalco Blvd., Marrero 348-0492; 6325 Elysian Fields Ave. 282-6696; 8855 W. Judge Perez Drive, Chalmette 270-9599; 9327 Jefferson Highway, River Ridge 738-2452 Bud's Broiler has become a favorite local stop for grilled burgers and hot dogs topped with chili, cheese, hickory sauce and onions. The shakes, fries and onion rings round out a meal here. Shrimp and catfish po-boys have just been added to the menu. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Cash only. $

THE BULLDOG
3236 Magazine St. 891-1516; 5135 Canal Blvd. 488-4191; www.draftfreak.com With nearly 50 beers on tap, the menu leans towards classic pub grub like burgers along with Tex-Mex items, like the Tex-Mex egg rolls stuffed with spicy chicken, corn, black beans, peppers, onion and cheese. No reservations. Lunch Fri.-Sun., dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

BULL'S CORNER
1036 W. Airline Hwy., LaPlace (985) 652-3544; www.bullscorner.com Bull's Corner specializes in dishes such as the catfish Bucktown, a pecan-crusted catfish filet topped with meuniere sauce, and the fillet Norton: a 6-oz. filet mignon topped with Danish blue cheese, garlic sauce and served on a grilled portobello. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

BYBLOS
3301 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 830-7333; 2020 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 837-9777; 1501 Metairie Road, Metairie 834-9773; 3218 Magazine St. 894-1233 Reasons for Byblos' popularity range from a quick falafel sandwich at the Lakeside mall location to the Veterans location's full-scale Lebanese grocery. Popular at each spot are Middle Eastern staples such as grilled lamb kabob or chicken shawarma. Reservations recommended for parties of six or more. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

BYWATER BBQ
3162 Dauphine St. 944-4445 The flexible kitchen at Bywater BBQ is capable of serving anything from Tuesday's Mexican night to traditional smoked chicken, pork and beef brisket with all the favorite barbecue sides. Reservations accepted for parties of six or more. Delivery available. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri., brunch and dinner Sat.-Sun. Credit cards.

C

CADDYSHACK
3217 Ridgelake Drive, Metairie 833-1799 The Caddyshack's rotating lunch specials make it a popular stop during the workday. Monday brings red or white beans with rice, served with a pork chop, veal or sausage. Thursday's special is veal Parmesan and spaghetti with meatballs and Italian sausage. No reservations. Lunch daily. Credit cards. $

CAFE ADELAIDE & THE SWIZZLE STICK LOUNGE
300 Poydras St. (Loews Hotel) 595-3305; www.cafeadelaide.com Veteran chef Kevin Vizard offers dishes such as seared tuna with roasted ratatouille and a truffle demiglace. For brunch, try the breaded and fried poached eggs served over a shrimp and tomato Provencal with Serrano ham and fried grit cakes in a tomato demiglace. Reservations recommended. Breakfast daily, lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily, brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$$

CAFE ARABESQUE
211 LaSalle St. 524-6455 Cafe Arabesque creates entrees such as shrimp scampi on a bed of angel hair pasta. A popular new item is a shrimp wrap filled with a housemade remoulade sauce. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards and checks. $

CAFE AU LAIT
307 Chartres St. 528-9933 Stop in a Cafe au Lait for a quick pick-me-up of the namesake coffee or linger for something from the kitchen's full menu of sandwiches, soups, salads, pastries, grilled items and more. One signature item is the Fat Tuesday sandwich -- turkey, ham, Swiss cheese, coleslaw and Thousand Island dressing. No reservations. Delivery available. Breakfast and lunch daily. Credit cards and checks. $

CAFE BANQUETTE
3445 Prytania St. 891-5773 Cafe Banquette offers bar food as well as local favorites such as the barbecue shrimp po-boy. Wraps include the chicken fajita wrap: spicy marinated and grilled chicken bundled in a flour tortilla with roasted red peppers, lettuce, feta and Monterey Jack cheeses, sour cream and a special Southwestern sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CAFE BEIGNET
334B Royal St. 524-5530; 819 Decatur St. 522-9929; 1031 Decatur St. 522-6868 Visitors treat themselves to the andouille hash browns: Cajun andouille sausage, potatoes, bell pepper and onion served with scrambled egg and French break. If you're a daring couple, split a massive muffaletta with its classic olive salad, but save room for those beignets. A fourth location at 311 Bourbon St. is scheduled to open in early April. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and early dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CAFE D'CAPPUCCINO
4041 Williams Blvd., Kenner 443-2299 Start your day with any of the popular breakfast items at this bustling Kenner coffeeshop, such as bagels, waffles, egg-white omelettes and breakfast wraps. Low-carb wraps, club sandwiches and more round out the menu. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CAFE DEGAS
3127 Esplanade Ave. 945-5635; www.cafedegas.com House specialties include a classic take on French onion soup, prepared with Swiss cheese and croutons. In addition to rotating specials, Cafe Degas always offers staples such as Parmesan-crusted veal medallions, served with lemon butter, capers and seasonal vegetables. Reservations recommended for parties of six or more. Lunch Tue.-Sat., dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

CAFE DE MELLO
81 French Market Place 522-3121; www.cafedemello.com Along with fair-trade, organic, shade-grown coffee, Cafe de Mello prepares a variety of crepes, from the chicken curry and the house special with ham, egg, cheese and salsa to the Brazilian, with ricotta cheese, ham, pineapple, banana and roasted cashews. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Credit cards and checks. $

CAFE DIBLASI
1801-4 Stumpf Blvd., Terrytown 361-3106 Hearty traditional Italian fare is given a New Orleans twist at this classic West Bank spot. Examples of this include the baby veal osso bucco and the pan-fried crabcake topped with blackened shrimp and a Creole cream sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

CAFE DITALI
2104 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey 361-5652; 8160 Belle Chasse Hwy., Belle Chasse 393-1160 Check out the pastas, pizzas and Philly cheese steak sandwiches, but regulars love the Chicken Pomodori, served with onions, bellpeppers, sun-dried tomatoes, cooked in butter and covered in both Alfredo and marinara sauce. Reservations recommended for parties of 10 or more. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CAFE DU MONDE
813 Decatur St. 525-4544; 1 Poydras St., (Riverwalk) 587-0841; 1401 W. Esplanade Ave. (Esplanade Mall), Kenner 468-3588; 1400 Poydras St. (New Orleans Centre) 587-0842; 3301 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 834-8694; 197 Westbank Expwy. (Oakwood Mall), Gretna 587-0849; www.cafedumonde.com Is there any better combination than a golden-fried, fluffy beignet coated in powdered sugar and the milky goodness of a cafe au lait? Apparently not to local eaters, as Cafe du Monde has expanded from its flagship Decatur Street spot to locations across the metro area. No reservations. Hours vary by location; Decatur Street location open 24 hours. Cash only. $

CAFE EAST
4628 Rye St., Metairie 888-0078; www.cafeeastnola.com Cafe East takes its customers on culinary trips across the Asian continent, offering diverse favorites such as Two Flavor Shrimp: crispy shrimp with sweet tomato glaze and honey pine nut sauce. The Samba Delight combines prawn and sea scallops in a Malaysian spicy Samba sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CAFE EN VIE
1241 Decatur St. 524-3689 This spot boasts two full walls of windows to afford a nonstop view of outdoor goings-on while enjoying espresso drinks or something stronger, like the Dolce Vita: espresso, Frangelico and creme. Nibble on an antipasto board -- cheeses, grapes, pepperoni, salami, apples, olive salad and housemade Melba toast. No reservations. Delivery available. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CAFE EQUATOR
2920 Severn Ave., Metairie 888-4772 Favorites include any type of pad Thai (with shrimp, beef or tofu), as well as the larb gai, a spicy Thai chicken salad flavored with red onion and cilantro, or the light and soothing soft tofu soup, where fresh tofu floats with delicate spinach in a clear, flavorful broth. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CAFE FRESCA
4441 W. Metairie Ave., Metairie 887-2010 Diners love to peruse the chef's daily specials, particularly the eggplant Vincent, a deep-fried eggplant pirogue served in a seafood cream sauce with angel hair pasta. The crabcakes are prepared as a traditional New Orleans jumbo crabcake. Ask for the soup of the day. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

CAFE GIOVANNI
117 Decatur St. 529-2154; www.cafegiovanni.com The 'New World Italian' cuisine of longtime Chef Duke LoCicero includes house favorites such as the Tuscany asparagus: fresh asparagus with fresh mozzarella, wrapped in prosciutto and lightly fried. Heartier, traditional fare abounds as well. Reservations recommended. Lunch Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CAFE GUMBOLAYA
1000 N. Peters St. 523-7418 Cafe Gumbolaya prepares a range of local favorites such as an appetizer of fried green tomatoes, topped with shrimp remoulade. In addition to the all-day breakfast menu, house specials include the catfish Pontchartrain, a fried fillet topped with shrimp and crawfish etouffee and served with jambalaya. Reservations accepted for large groups. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CAFE LATROBE
707 Conti St. 568-9992 This French Quarter spot combines flavors in dishes such as the New Orleans bouillabaisse, a blend of white wine and tomato sauce with sauteed shrimp, mussels, fish, oysters and andouille sausage. The pecan-crusted redfish is served with roasted garlic mashed potatoes and sauteed spinach. Reservations accepted. Breakfast and lunch daily; dinner Tue.-Sat., brunch Sunday. Credit cards. $

CAFE LATTE
2324 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 833-6343 Gain a jump on your day with any of the lattes and espressos served here, or stay for dishes such as the breakfast quesadilla: eggs, green onions and tomatoes, served with salsa and fruit. For lunch, try the New Orleans-style roast beef po-boy wrap. No reservations. Delivery available. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

CAFE LAVANDE
4241 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie, 888-0550 Freshly brewed espresso drinks pair up here with luxe desserts like the lavender creme brulee and the signature Chocolate Lover's Brownie. Before the sweets, though, try a hot. pressed panini sandwich or an oversized specialty salad. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CAFE LISE
1111 S. Tyler St., Covington (985) 892-3838; www.cafelise.com This Northshore favorite recently added the seafood Alfredo, which combines shrimp, crawfish and crabmeat, all served with pasta and topped with fried catfish. The shrimp and crawfish Lise and the shrimp Francisco are also popular. Reservations accepted. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Wed.-Fri. Credit cards and local checks. $

CAFE LUNA
802 1/2 Nashville Ave. 269-2444 Cafe Luna offers a shaded porch as an excellent spot to pass an afternoon chatting, browsing the Web with the wireless Internet access, or reading with a gourmet espresso drink. Also try the variety of pastries and panini sandwiches. No reservations. Continental breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CAFE MASPERO
601 Decatur St. 523-6250 This spot often sports a long line of determined diners snaking down Decatur Street. Local standards include overstuffed po-boys and muffalettas, jambalaya, red beans and rice, and fresh strawberry daiquiris. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Cash only. $

CAFE PAPARAZZI
321 N. Columbia St., Covington (985) 892-7440 Appetizer selections include the eggplant fries, cut fry-style and baked with mozzarella cheese and put through the oven and served with a marinara sauce. For dinner, try the seared salmon, served with Caesar salad and herbed, sliced potatoes and a vegetable. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

CAFE PICASSO
3401 Chartres St. 948-6881 Cafe Picasso specializes in Naples-style pizza that has a puffy crust and crispy bottom and comes topped with all manner of meat, veggies and seafood. A perennial favorite is the Meat Lover's pizza, heavily loaded with spicy pepperoni, beef sausage and veggies. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Checks. $

CAFE PONTALBA
546 St. Peter St. 522-1180 Just about all the local classics appear on Cafe Pontalba's expansive menu. Favorite appetizer selections include barbecue shrimp and seafood gumbo. For the main course, try the shrimp Creole, jambalaya or crawfish etouffee. Reservations accepted. Breakfast Sat.-Sun., lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards $$

CAFE PYRAMIDS
1113 Decatur St. 569-0041; www.cafepyramids.com Dine in the lush courtyard on the Pyramid Pizza, which piles grilled lamb and vegetables on top of a pita bread crust. Belly dancing performances liven up Wednesday, Friday and Saturday evenings, and hookahs are always available for your smoking pleasure. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

CAFE RANI
2917 Magazine St. 895-2500 While this Uptown favorite is known for health-conscious selections of salads, soups and teas, the menu now also boasts a sauteed shrimp and crawfish remoulade po-boy. Long-standing favorites include the shrimp and eggplant Rani pasta. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

CAFE RECONCILE
1631 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd. 568-1157; www.cafereconcile.com Cafe Reconcile attracts crowds clamoring for daily specials such as Thursday's white beans and shrimp. Great prices line the breakfast menu; try the 'Complete Breakfast': two eggs any style, grits, bacon or sausage, toast or a biscuit. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards and checks. $

CAFE ROMA
435 Wall Blvd., Gretna 392-2315; 1119 Decatur St. 586-0563; 1901 Sophie Wright Place 524-2419; 2026 Metairie Road, Metairie 833-7662; 3340 Bienville St. 827-2300; 3558 Paris Road, Chalmette 270-0999; 4001 Lapalco Blvd., Harvey 340-3535 With so many locations, you're never too far from gourmet pizzas like the popular spinach pie with feta and garlic. Pasta, breadsticks and the focaccia for sandwiches like the grilled portabello mushroom with red pepper are made in-house. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CAFE ROSE NICAUD
632 Frenchmen St. 949-3300 A soothing choice to unwind with a good read and a huge selection of coffees from across the globe (the Ethiopian blend is a favorite) or to sip a tea and surf the Web. The food menu is varied, with items such as bagels, vegetarian lasagna, housemade bread pudding, quiche and more. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CAFE ROYALE
3343 Metairie Road, Metairie 352-2557 Serving up pastries, coffee, cappuccino and espresso for early risers, Cafe Royale specializes in paninis at lunchtime; check out the Chicken Royale, with Provolone cheese, Roma tomatoes and mayo hosting a chicken breast that has been marinated and grilled, all on gyro bread. The owner plans to open for dinner later in the spring. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CAFE SATORA
3749 N. Causeway Blvd., Metairie 832-1444 This coffeehouse offers traditional breakfasts and light lunch fare, including salads, panini sandwiches and a rotating cast of housemade soups. Favorites include the cold grilled shrimp and avocado salad and the grilled chicken salad with honey-mustard dressing. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

CAFE SBISA
1011 Decatur St. 522-5565; www.cafesbisa.com Founded by the Sbisa family in 1899, Cafe Sbisa stays current with regular menu changes. New favorites include an appetizer of steamed Little Neck clams prepared in a garlic broth and the oysters Sbisa, which are served with creamed spinach, Herbsaint bacon and blue cheese. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily, jazz brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

CAFE UNIQUE
2529 Dauphine St. 948-8884 Cafe Unique proudly dishes up soul food classics like smothered chicken, homemade cornbread and pork chops. Daily specials include Cornish hen on Sundays, seafood gumbo on Fridays, and other hearty favorites throughout the week, such as ribs and stuffed bell peppers. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Cash only. $

CAFE VOLAGE
720 Dublin St. 861-4227 Cafe Volage serves up earthy, innovative bistro cuisine on its romantic veranda. Try robust dishes like the tomato-based rabbit stew or the braised veal shank, finished in a mushroom demi-glace and served over pasta. Reservations recommended on weekends. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

CAFE ZEN
2112 Belle Chasse Hwy., Gretna 393-2293 This West Bank sushi spot continues the tradition of sister restaurants Hana and Kanpai, with glistening slabs of sashimi and elaborate sushi rolls like the Special Salmon Roll, in which deep-fried salmon is stuffed with snow crab and wrapped in sticky rice and seaweed. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CAFFE! CAFFE!
3900 Hwy. 122, Mandeville (985) 727-4222; 4301 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie 885-4845; www.caffecaffe.com Regulars at both Caffe! Caffe! locations always have something new to come back for, with a daily specials menu that constantly rotates. Such offerings might include a tomato pesto soup, an avocado sandwich on seven-grain bread or a different flavor of herbal fruit tea. No reservations. Breakfast daily, lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CAJUN BAR & GRILL
2309 N. Causeway Blvd., Metairie 831-0095 The Cajun Bar & Grill serves a wide range of seafood, po-boys, traditional American food and lunch plates. The seafood platter features catfish, okra, stuffed crab, stuffed shrimp, softshell crabs and oysters, all served alongside Cajun potatoes, a salad and bread. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CAJUN CABIN
503 Bourbon St. 529-4256; www.cajuncabin.com Cajun Cabin keeps its spot amongst the bustle of Bourbon Street with Louisiana fare and potent specialty cocktails. Paw Paw's Cajun sampler for two includes alligator boudin, seafood gumbo, fried shrimp, crawfish pie, jambalaya and bread pudding with pecan praline sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CAJUN CATFISH HOUSE
521 Central Ave., Jefferson 733-9538 For 33 years, golden-fried fillets of white, flaky catfish have satisfied diners at this friendly family joint. The seafood gumbo is a favorite, as is the crabmeat-stuffed shrimp. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CAJUN MIKE'S PUB 'N' GRUB
116 Baronne St. 566-0055; www.cajunmikes.com Cajun Mike's always has a demand for its signature sandwich, Maria's Cubanito: a Cuban sandwich with roasted pulled pork, Swiss cheese, pickles, mustard and ham on a buttered roll then pressed on the grill. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

CAMELLIA GRILL
626 S. Carrollton Ave. 866-9573 Long-time favorites such as the chocolate freeze milkshake are served here on the bustling countertops that also hold omelettes that cover the entire plate. A variety of burgers are also popular, including the signature Doc Brinker's, two patties topped with Swiss cheese on rye with chili and coleslaw on the side. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Cash only. $

CANNON'S
4141 St. Charles Ave. 891-3200; 197 Westbank Expwy. (Oakwood Shopping Center), Gretna 364-1047 You can try Cannon's three most popular appetizers with the Appetizer Trio: generous portions of spinach dip, eggplant sticks and Biscayne coconut shrimp. The Cajun popcorn shrimp salad is chock full of plump shrimp, and chocoholics swear by the rich fudge nut brownie. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CARMINE'S ITALIAN SEAFOOD & GRILL
4101 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 455-7904 Popular dishes include the crawfish and shrimp ravioli. Steak lovers should know about the 16-oz. rib-eye steak, while seafood lovers swim in for steamed whole lobsters on Mondays and Tuesdays for $9.95. Finish your meal with white chocolate bread pudding. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner nightly. Credit cards and checks. $

CARRETA'S GRILL
1200 W. Causeway Approach, Mandeville (985) 727-7212; 1340 Lindberg Drive, Slidell (985) 847-0020; 2320 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 837-6696 Carreta's offers diners anything from a quick snack at the lively bar to a full-blown, multi-course meal. House favorites include a red snapper fillet served in a special sauce with steamed vegetables. When you've just got the munchies, try the crawfish nachos and mushroom quesadillas. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

CARROLLTON STATION BAR & GRILL
8140 Willow St. 865-9190 Carrollton Station offers live music every Saturday night, but you can satisfy your thirst and appetite here any night of the week. Come by Tuesday for steak night, when $9.50 buys you a sirloin steak, baked potato and salad. No reservations. Delivery available. Late lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CASA GARCIA MEXICAN RESTAURANT
800 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville (985) 951-8226; 8814 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 464-0354 Casa Garcia's has lunch specials between $6.95 and $7.95, typically a combination of Mexican staples such as tacos, burritos, enchiladas and the like. Dinner choices include Costillas de Monterrey, south-of-the-border style baby back ribs, and Filet de Los Cabos, a fish filet sauteed in wine, herbs and spices. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CASA TEQUILA
3229 Williams Blvd., Kenner 443-5423 The General Plate is an epic affair. It includes a stuffed poblano pepper, chicken enchiladas with green tomatillo sauce, rice and beans, and a beef burrito. Casa Tequila makes its own guacomole and pico de gallo. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CASABLANCA RESTAURANT
3030 Severn Ave., Metairie 888-2209; www.kosherneworleans.com The tanzia fassi features lamb baked in a clay pot with onions, prunes and almonds. Chicken Bastilla is a semi-sweet pie made with chicken strips and almonds, baked and topped with cinnamon. Favorites like falafel and hummus are also on the menu. Reservations recommended. Lunch Sun.-Fri., dinner Sun.-Thu. Credit cards. $$

CASAMENTO'S
4330 Magazine St. 895-9761; www.casamentosrestaurant.com The oyster loaf is a best seller and is composed of a dozen fried oysters sandwiched between pieces of Texas toast. Some folks are satisfied with just butter on the toast, while others always ask for it dressed. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Cash only. $$

CAUSEY'S COUNTRY KITCHEN
7245 Chef Menteur Hwy. 242-2604 Satisfy your chitlins craving here; they're served up with brown gravy. Their file gumbo with okra, seafood and smoked sausage is widely heralded. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CC'S COFFEE
2 Poydras St. (New Orleans Hilton Riverside) 525-0024; 650 Poydras St. (Poydras Center) 586-0278; 701 Metairie Road, Metairie 831-1449; 900 Jefferson Ave. 891-4969; 910 W. Esplanade Ave., Kenner 465-0527; 941 Royal St. 581-6996; 1597 Gause Blvd., Slidell (985) 641-3177; 2800 Esplanade Ave. 482-9865; 2917 Magazine St. 891-2115; 3647 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 454-1200; www.ccscoffee.com CC's continues to serve exciting specialty blends along with their standby coffees and espressos. The ever-popular Mochassippi involves espresso, skim milk, ice cream, flavored syrup and crushed ice. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

CELLAR'S MARKET
610 Tchoupitoulas St. 324-8002 Chef Henry Rice serves up daily specials along with panini sandwiches, salads and pizzas. He recently opened for breakfast due to popular demand, and many in the Warehouse District have flocked to Friday's wine tastings. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CELLARS OF RIVER RIDGE
1801 Dickory Ave., River Ridge 734-8455 Housed in a wine shop, the deli offers shoppers a reason to sit down and relax. The quesadillas are grilled inside pita pockets and are chock full of vegetables. Look for changing daily lunch specials. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CENTRAL GROCERY
923 Decatur St. 523-1620 Where better to sample a muffaletta than the place where our fair city's native sandwich was first created? The olive salad nestles comfortably against the meats and cheese in between the massive hard roll; these ingredients have been paired for over a century behind Central Grocery's lunch counter, and you can taste why. No reservations. Lunch and early dinner daily. Credit cards. $

C'EST BON RESTAURANT
131 S.W. Railroad Ave., Pontchatoula (985)386-4077 The C'est Bon Burger is 'the king of burgers in Pontchatoula' -- melted jack cheese, sauteed onions and mushrooms over a half-pound patty explains why. Salads tossed with fresh Gulf seafood and great gumbos and daily soups are all good bets. No reservations. Lunch daily, dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CHARLIE'S DELI AND CATERING
515 Harrison Ave. 486-1766 The Redman has made Charlie's a local favorite -- hot roast beef served atop French bread with grilled onion, melted Swiss and mayo. The Charlie Special is nothing to scoff at either. Half filled with corned beef and the other half with pastrami, it comes on rye bread with coleslaw. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Thu., dinner Fri.-Sat. Checks. $

CHARLIE'S SEAFOOD
8311 Jefferson Hwy. 737-9190 The seafood platter at Charlie's is not unlike Captain Ahab's Moby Dick: so huge few can defeat it alone. It comes with fried shrimp, oysters, crawfish, catfish, and a stuffed crab, along with sides of toast, fries and a salad. Po-boys and raw oysters are also available. No reservations. Lunch daily, dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

CHARLIE'S STEAKHOUSE
4510 Dryades St. 895-9705 Highly regarded as a top-notch steak joint with plenty to recommend. The au gratin sides are the most popular accompaniments to the two cuts that are available: filets and T-bones. The steak fries are as thick as steaks. No reservations. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

CHARTER HOUSE CAFE
601 Chartres St., 586-8383 This bar and grill serves half-pound Angus burgers on specialty bread; lighter fare includes the Greek salad, a bed of romaine lettuce piled high with tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, kalamata olives and feta cheese, all with homemade tzatziki dressing. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

CHATEAU COFFEE CAFE
139 Robert E. Lee Blvd. 465-9444 All pastries are made by the in-house pastry chef, and the cafe offers all manner of cakes and sweet treats. The daily hot special is ever-changing as are the homemade soups. Salads are drizzled as they are with homemade dressing. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, late-night Sat.-Sun. Credit cards and checks. $

CHATEAUBRIAND STEAKHOUSE
310 N. Carrollton Ave. 207-0016 The 20-oz. tenderloin Chateaubriand, meant to be shared by two, comes with braised carrots and onions, tomato Provencal, gratin Savoyarde, baby green beans and a savory bearnaise sauce. Your Dover Sole will be deboned tableside if you're in a seafood mood. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

CHEESESTEAK BISTRO
528 N. Columbia St., Covington (985) 875-9793 Not surprisingly, the cheesesteak is the pride of the menu here, and it is elevated to new levels of richness in the form of the Cheesesteak Deluxe, complete with mayo, onions, and mushrooms sauteed for optimum juiciness. Salads and baked potatoes with a wide variety of toppings round out the menu. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CHEVY'S FRESH MEX
1201 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey 368-2100; 1325 W. Esplanade, Kenner 469-5657; 3330 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 887-7788; www.chevys.com The salsa and guacamole are blended fresh throughout the day at these lively locations. The Sampler is perfect for sharing, with four wings, nachos, a flauta and a quesadilla. The flautas are almost a foot-long rolled tortilla filled with chicken and cheese. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CHEZ NOUS CHARCUTERIE
5701 Magazine St. 899-7303 Chez Nous serves specialties that anyone would be proud to bring to a potluck or to bring home to a hungry family. Cakes can by bought by the half or the slice, as well as gourmet grocery items and wine. There is a small counter for those who wish to eat on the premises. No reservations. Lunch and early dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

CHEZ VODUN
822 N. Rampart St. 558-0653; www.africanvodun.com The African peanut stew is a favorite, as is the portobello-tofu-veggie sandwich. A hip-hop collective performs every third Saturday of the month and a vocal group performs on Thursdays. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. No reservations. Credit cards. $

CHINA BLOSSOM
1801 Stumpf Blvd. Suite 8, Gretna 361-4598 Brining Gulf seafood into the Chinese food fold, China Blossom's shrimp and crabmeat delight is a festival of freshness, with jumbo varieties of the former and lump forms of the latter sauteed in ginger and wine sauce. Reservations accepted. Lunch Tue.-Fri. and Sun., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $

CHINA DOLL
830 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey 366-8822 All the Cantonese classics that Americans love so much can be found at this West Bank spot. Fans swear by the lo mein. Of course, crab Rangoon is a terrific way to start, and the General Tso always pleases. Check out their lunch specials for great deals. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CHINA ORCHID
704 S. Carrollton Ave. 865-1428 The Triple Dragon combines shrimp, chicken, barbecue pork and sauteed vegetables with crispy wontons. This cozy family restaurant also prides itself on its sesame chicken. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CHINA ROSE
125 Robert E. Lee Blvd. 283-3333 China Rose's special duck is sauteed in the housemade Kung Bo sauce, as is the Chef's Two Delight, which features shrimp and chicken. Reservations accepted. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CHRISTIAN'S RESTAURANT
3835 Iberville St. 482-4924; www.christiansrestaurantneworleans.com The best seller here is the smoked softshell crab; it's cold-smoked and lightly fried, served with meuniere sauce. Christian's popular Sundown Dinner Menu is now available 'from Sundown to Moonlight' Tuesday through Thursday. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

CHRISTINA'S EMPRESS OF CHINA
429 Wall Blvd., Gretna 392-3939 Christina serves Asian fusion cuisine in a smoke-free environment on the West Bank. The Curry Dynasty is a powerful presentation of jumbo shrimp, beef and chicken in a special creamy Malaysian curry sauce topped with oven-roasted almonds and cilantro. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CHRISTY'S PO-BOYS AND CUBAN FOOD
1102 Stumpf Blvd., Gretna 368-6498 The Cuban sandwich is not to be missed: a pressed po-boy of sorts, it combines ham, Swiss cheese, pickles and mustard. On Friday and Saturday, look for Cuban specials like oxtail. Tropical fruit shakes are also a treat, and a perfect match for a plate of black beans and rice. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat. Cash only. $

CHUN LEE RESTAURANT
1100 Elmwood Park Road 733-8562 For nearly a quarter century, Chun Lee has delighted regular diners with favorites like rumaki shrimp wrapped in bacon and specials like the Seven Stars chicken, stuffed with ham and served over vegetables. Hot and sour soup is also a longtime favorite. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CHURROS CAFE
3100 Kingman St., Metairie 885-6516 Here, authentic Cuban food is showcased in such classics of the island nation's cuisine as Ropa Vieja (stewed beef, enthusiastically spiced) and a classic Cubano sandwich, made with ham, roast pork, and melted cheese. No reservations. Delivery available. Breakfast Mon.-Fri., lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Sat. Credit cards. $

CIRO'S COTE SUD
7918 Maple St. 866-9551 The roasted duck breast at this casual spot is served with prune and apricot bourbon demiglace and mashed potatoes. Steamed mussels with blue cheese and a touch of heavy cream and white wine add a bit of decadence to a classic moules preparation. Reservations recommended. Delivery available. Dinner daily. Cash and checks. $$

CITY PERK
637 N. Carrollton Ave. 482-4450 In addition to pastries, bagels and croissants, City Perk offers fresh-pressed panini sandwiches and homemade chicken pot pies. All manner of gourmet coffee and espresso libations are also on hand. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CLANCY'S
6100 Annunciation St. 895-1111 The smoked softshell crab with crabmeat and meuniere sauce is popular this time of year, as is the grilled veal chop with boudin demi-glace. Don't miss the fried oysters and brie with your pre-meal cocktails. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

CLEMENTINE'S BELGIAN BISTROT
2505 Whitney Ave., Gretna 366-3995 Start with the moules vin blanc, made with a touch of cream, and continue your European sojourn with the Belgian-style fries (mayo available if you'd like it) and the pork Cordon Bleu, comprised of a pork tenderloin wrapped around Swiss cheese and ham. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

CLEOPATRA'S
2701 Manhattan Blvd. Harvey 361-1113 Moussaka, the rich and delicious comfort food of Greece, is prepared here with lamb or eggplant. The hummus is always popular, and for a quick lunch many opt for the shawarma. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CLOVER GRILL
900 Bourbon St. 598-1010; www.clovergrill.com Perhaps the only place in town where your burger is grilled beneath a hubcap. (You have your choice of Chevy, GMC or Ford.) Brimming with humor and attitude, the Clover Grill is also known for their huge three-egg omelettes. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

COBALT
333 St. Charles Ave. 565-5595; www.cobaltrestaurant.com For lunch try the Croque Darlin', a vamped-up old favorite with country ham, Gruyere cheese and a fried egg served on country bread. Come dinnertime, the slow roasted rack of lamb makes an appearance along with its ragout of white beans, mushroom, and artichoke. Reservations recommended. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily, brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$$

COFFEE AND COMPANY
1515 Poydras St., Suite 140 522-3335 Homemade breads are a specialty here, and if you're taking a break but don't want to caffeinate yourself, try their fresh fruit smoothies. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

COFFEE BEAN EUROPEAN CAFE
3244 Severn Ave., Metairie 456-9870 The quiet environment here is perfect for studying or losing yourself in your afternoon thoughts. Iced blended mochas are popular, and there are bagels, muffins and croissants on hand for snacking. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

COFFEE BOILING POT
305 Old Covington Hwy., Madisonville (985) 845-2348 The boiled seafood is popular here, while management recommends the Ruby red trout: grilled and topped with lump crabmeat, crawfish and lemon butter. Reservations for parties of eight or more. Lunch and dinner Thu.-Sun., dinner Tue.-Wed. Credit cards. $$

COFFEE COTTAGE
5860 Citrus Blvd., Harahan 818-0051 The scones and almond croissants go fast, so get 'em while they're fresh! Frozen coffee drinks are also popular at this casual, studying-friendly cafe. No reservations. Delivery available. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

COFFEE COVE
3431 Houma Blvd., Metairie 780-9445 Scones, muffins and sundry pastries tempt locals and hospital employees stopping in for a quick pick-me-up. Frozen cappuccinos are becoming more and more crucial now that temperatures are heating up, and you can find them here. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

COFFEE POT
714 S. Peter St. 524-3500 The courtyard is perfect for a leisurely breakfast of grits, eggs and sausage. They'll whip up all varieties of pancakes and blintzes, as well as a mean shrimp and crabmeat omelette. Specials are available every day. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

COFFEE RANI
234 Lee Lane #A, Covington (985) 893-6158; 3510 Hwy. 190 (Pontchartrain Square), Mandeville (985)674-2002 The Bluesy Chicken Salad features a grilled chicken breast over fresh spinach, walnuts, carrots and mushrooms with a poppy seed dressing and crumbled blue cheese on top. Pasta bowls, sandwiches and a breakfast menu make Coffee Rani a good choice any time of day. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards and checks. $

COLUMBIA STREET NATURAL FOOD
S 415 N. Columbia St., Covington (985)893-0355 All soups and sandwiches are made with organic ingredients. The soup changes daily and is made on the premises. Try the smoked Gouda sandwich with lettuce, cucumbers, carrots and tomatoes. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

COLUMBIA STREET TAPROOM AND GRILL
434 N. Columbia St., Covington (985)898-0899; www.columbiastreettaproom.com Every Thursday, catch the popular three-course dinner special, always prepared with an eye for the weather outside (soup if it's rainy, say) or the season in the garden. The catfish Lafayette, fried and served with crawfish cream sauce, is a regular bestseller. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

COME BACK INN
3826 Williams Blvd, Kenner 443-1623 On Saturdays, the shrimp Julia sells as fast as they can make it, thanks to the white crabmeat cream sauce that people love over angel hair pasta. The seafood combo dinner, which includes a daily fish, oysters, and shrimp fried and served with fries and a choice of salads, is available daily. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

COMMANDER'S PALACE
1403 Washington Ave. 899-8221; www.commanderspalace.com Chef Tory McPhail recommends Tomato-Tomahto, a roasted tomato with shaved basil salad topped with a cube of gazpacho that has been set in aspic, rolled in cornmeal and fried. Also offered is a 14-oz. pork porterhouse, served with black-eyed peas and cabbage caramelized in pork demi-glace and Vidalia onions. Reservations required. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily, brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$$

COMMON GROUNDS
335 Huey P. Long Ave., Gretna 227-2200 Perhaps the biggest slices of cake in town are to be found at Common Grounds. Chai and all varieties of espresso and coffee drinks are available. This is a popular stop for local nurses and businesspeople. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

COMMON'S
1010 Commons St. 525-3508 Comfort food can indeed be found conveniently and inexpensively in the CBD. Commons offers homemade meatloaf, burgers, spaghetti and meatballs, and other stick-to-your-ribs, down-home favorites. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

COOTER BROWN'S
509 S. Carrollton Ave. 866-9104 This nearly three-decades-old landmark has a seemingly endless supply of special and traditional sandwiches (though not nearly as large as that huge beer-tap selection), along with salads, a modest seafood selection, hot dogs and plenty of sides. Minors are allowed in the restaurant until 8 p.m. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. $

COPELAND'S
680 N. Hwy. 190, Covington (985)809-9656; 701 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 831-3437; 1001 S. Clearview Pkwy., Jefferson 733-7843; 1700 LaPalco Blvd., Harvey 364-1575; 4338 St. Charles Ave. 897-2325 Crowd-pleasing Cajun favorites include the Gumbo Ya-Ya and the shrimp and crab remoulade salad. Crawfish abounds when it's in season, making appearances on the massive seafood platter and the Cajun Popcorn salad. Drinks and appetizers are many and varied. Reservations recommended. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $$

COPELAND'S CHEESCAKE BISTRO
2001 St. Charles Ave. 593-995; 4517 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 454-7620; www.alcopeland.com Seafood and pasta are paired in the barbecue shrimp linguine and the crawfish ravioli. The shrimp, crab and avocado salad proves that even though 'cheesecake' is part of the restaurant's name, you can still eat a light meal. The fresh strawberry cheesecake is a favorite, but the bananas Foster cheesecake is not to be overlooked. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

CORKY'S BBQ
4243 Veterans Memorial Boulevard, Metairie 887-5000; www.corkysribs.com The pulled pork sandwich is sure to sate those with a jones for the blue hills of Tennessee. Coleslaw, beans and potato salad are the most-asked for sides. Washed down with a cold beer or daiquiri, it would be hard to go wrong. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CORNER CAFE
3316 Green Acres Road, Metairie 454-1008 Try the seafood stuffed artichoke, which is brimming with crawfish and catfish, and is drizzled in a savory sauce. The roast beef sandwich is done right, too. Reservations accepted. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CORNER OYSTER BAR AND GRILL
500 St. Peter St. 522-2999; www.thecorneroysterbarandgrill.com Enjoy traditional Cajun and Creole cooking, like the Vieux Carre Tray appetizer sampler -- bite size portions of popcorn shrimp, oysters and crawfish with a variety of dipping sauces -- while you watch Jackson Square's lively street performers or a game on one of the bar's 16 TVs. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

COSCINO'S PIZZA
1817 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville (985) 727-4984 Coscino's, which opened about nine months ago in Mandeville, serves some of the classic Italian dishes (especially the spaghetti and lasagna) along with the eponymous, New York-style pie in Mandeville. The lasagna features layered pasta, seasoned beef, red sauce, and ricotta and mozzarella cheeses. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

COTTAGE CAFE
423 10th St., Gretna 366-2233 Best Bankers like to relax at this casual, cozy joint over Creole fare with a twist. Try the popular eggplant Napoleon, a pair of fried eggplant medallions bookending a healthy portion of shrimp and mirliton dressing, topped with a creamy oyster sauce. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Thu.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

COUNTRY FLAME
620 Iberville St. 522-1138 The festive murals on the outer walls of this Quarter joint presage the fiesta flavor of the reasonably priced authentic Spanish, Cuban and Mexican food. The Puerco Frito, a spicy marinated pork dish, is fried and served with rice, salty-sweet yucca and spicy black beans. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

COURT OF TWO SISTERS
613 Royal St. 522-7261; www.courtoftwosisters.com The daily jazz brunch, served up in a beautiful French Quarter courtyard, is an institution for tourists and locals alike. Don't lose sight of the a la carte lunch and dinner menus, though, which offer up savory treats like Louisiana mixed grill: a hefty plate of charbroiled chicken breast, andouille sausage and boudin blanc with a sauce laced with Creole mustard and honey. Reservations recommended. Jazz brunch, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

COUSIN'S PO-BOYS
3808 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 780-7804 The pastrami supreme po-boy, served dressed with provolone cheese, is a popular offering at Cousin's, where the generosity lavished on the overstuffed sandwiches makes any hungry diner feel the family-style love. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $

COVENANT CAFE
1515 Poydras St. 522-3335; www.covenanthouse.org CBD workers charge up for the afternoon with Covenant Cafe's deli sandwiches, homemade soups, salads and daily hot lunch specials. A new favorite on the menu is the vegetarian-friendly spinach and artichoke lasagna. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $

COYOACAN COCINA MEXICANA
1432 St. Charles Ave. 525-9996 Upscale Mexican dining is the specialty at this St. Charles Avenue eatery above the more casual Taqueros, which Chef-owner Guillermo Peters moved from Kenner. He recommends the venison chops with the three-chile sauce. Or consider the crepa de langosta: sweet morsels of lobster and fruity strips of poblano chile. Reservations recommended. Dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

CRABBY J'S
2345 Paris Road 271-2301; 7420 W. Judge Perez Drive, Arabi 271-9907 Fans of Crabby J's seafood pastas, po-boys and plate lunches can now get them on the go at their new second location, which caters mainly to takeout and drive-through orders. Sit-down dining is still available at the original location. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CRABBY JACK'S
428 Jefferson Hwy., Jefferson 833-2722 This sister restaurant to the Uptown favorite Jacques-Imo's serves up innovative twists on local traditions. Popular dishes include fresh takes on the humble po-boy, including roast duck, paneed rabbit and fried green tomato topped with shrimp remoulade. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

CRAZY JOHNNIE'S STEAKHOUSE
3520 18th St., Metairie 887-6641; www.crazyjohnnies.com They may well be crazy over there at Johnnie's, with specials like the early-bird filet mignon dinner special served weeknights from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. or the Tuesday night wine lovers' special, when every bottle is half price. The overstuffed filet mignon po-boy, served with 'crazy potatoes,' is a good pairing with any vintage. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CREOLE CREAMERY
4924 Prytania St. 894-8680 This old-fashioned ice cream parlor is an excellent break from a day of antiquing on Magazine Street or a bobby-sox soda-shop date. Quirky flavors like Venetian cheesecake, black cherry chocolate chip and chocolate raspberry torte are all blended fresh in-house and served up old-school style in heavy glass dishes. No reservations. Open daily. Cash only. $

CREPES A LA CART
1039 Broadway St. 866-2362 Start off with a chicken Florentine crepe, stuffed with grilled chicken, mushrooms, red onion and baby spinach and topped with a dill cream sauce; finish with a sweet treat like the sundae royale -- vanilla ice cream melting inside a pancake with sliced strawberries, walnuts, chocolate chips, whipped cream and a cherry. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $

CRESCENT CITY BREWHOUSE
527 Decatur St. 522-0571; www.crescentcitybrewhouse.com This spring, the seasonal brew flowing from Crescent City Brewhouse's huge copper barrels is a traditional German unfiltered brown ale. It's a perfect complement for the smoked pork ribs, slow-grilled and served with roasted corn and house potatoes. Reservations recommended for large parties. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CRESCENT CITY STEAKHOUSE
1001 N. Broad St. 821-3271 All the steakhouse stalwarts -- thick prime cuts served with sides like potatoes lyonnaise and spinach au gratin -- are in attendance here. The real treat, though, is the vintage atmosphere, with dark wood, white tile and booths with forest-green curtains to retreat behind. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

CRESCENT COFFEE CAFE
3001A Gen. DeGaulle Drive 367-6013 Crescent Coffee Cafe has plenty for breakfast (coffee, pastries, omelettes, pancakes) and lunch and dinner (po-boys, seafood platters, soups, salads, sandwiches, fried chicken, daily gumbo). Consider the Crescent Burger, which includes Canadian bacon and hickory sauce. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CROISSANT D'OR PATISSERIE
617 Ursulines Ave. 524-4663 The atmosphere at Croissant D'Or is practically Parisian, with cheerful turquoise walls and the hum of afternoon cafe society. Perch in the bay windows with espresso drinks, homemade soups, quiches and delicately crafted pastries, or retreat into the airy courtyard and let le monde pass you by. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Wed.-Mon. Credit cards. $

CRYSTAL ROOM
833 Poydras St. (Le Pavillon Hotel) 581-3111; www.lepavillon.com Breeze through for the lunchtime soup, salad and pasta buffet, or enjoy a leisurely dinner under the sparkling chandeliers with specialties like the crawfish cakes, topped with a creamy crawfish sauce and served over greens in a Creole mustard sauce. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

CUCO'S
1300 Gause Blvd., Slidell (985) 641-4706; 2000 S.W. Railroad Ave, Hammond (985) 345-2634; 2766 Belle Chasse Hwy., Gretna 393-7766; 5048 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 835-0306; 5953 W. Park Ave., Houma (985) 868-0800 Cuco's Ultimate Margarita, blended with Cuervo Gold and served with a shot of Grand Marnier on the side, goes down easy once you're fortified with a plate of chimi-taquitos, diminutive wraps of beef, cheese or chicken rolled in flour tortillas, deep-fried and served with ranchero sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

CYBER BAR & CAFE AT THE CAC
900 Camp St. (Contemporary Arts Center) 523-0990; www.cacno.org With free Internet access, gourmet espresso drinks and light lunch specials, the Cyber Bar is a great spot to catch up on email or relax after catching an exhibit at the CAC. Try its version of the Cuban sandwich, a savory portion of ham and roast pork topped with melted cheese and 'mojo sauce.' No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $

D

DAIQUIRI EXPRESS & CAFE
1820 Dickory Ave., Harahan 734-0047; 2015 Woodmere Blvd., Harvey 347-7444 While there are two Daiquiri Express & Cafe locations, only one location -- in Harvey -- serves food. And it's a perfect match: either warm up the chill of those frozen daiquiris with hot wings or turn down the heat of the hot wings with a frozen daiquiri. (Take your pick.) Fridays bring crawfish. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

DAKOTA RESTAURANT
629 N. Hwy. 190, Covington (985) 892-3712; www.thedakotarestaurant.com Behind the mahogany doors of Dakota lie taste innovations that combine Louisiana charm with global flavors. The experimental spirit is exemplified by new menu items like the New Orleans-style barbecue rabbit and the grilled Gulf fish served with lobster fried rice. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri., dinner Sat. Credit cards. $$$

DANNY AND CLYDE'S
801 Martin Behrman Hwy., Terrytown 392-6783; 1944 Belle Chasse Hwy., Gretna 392-2242; 2201 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie 885-1332; 3441 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey 362-5637; 3450 Kabel Drive 394-0240; 4101 E. Ames Blvd., Marrero 348-9650; 4320 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie 888-0129; 5861 Citrus Blvd., Jefferson 734-0060; 68083 Hwy. 59, Mandeville (985) 809-2133; www.dannyandclydes.com At sunrise, whether you're out late or up early, nothing hits the spot like a buttery scrambled egg po-boy on fresh French bread, topped with sausage and cheese. Po-boys are now all available as wraps for the carb-conscious. No reservations. Hours vary by location. $

DANTE'S KITCHEN
736 Dante St. 861-3121; www.danteskitchen.com Dante's famous 'redfish on the half-shell' is grilled with the scales still on one side of the fish to keep the flesh tender and moist. A savory crabmeat and Brie French toast is served with onion relish and smoked tomato coulis. Reservations accepted for parties of six or more. Lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

DAVE'S PETIT PARIS
730 Common St. 524-7660 Specials include crawfish and crabcakes, eggplant Napoleon and Friday's fresh Gulf fish of the day topped with crawfish etouffee. If you've got a busy afternoon ahead, fortify yourself with the brucceloni: tender strips of beef wrapped around tomatoes and hard-boiled eggs served in marinara sauce over pasta. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri., brunch Sun. Major cards. $

DEANGELO'S
111 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 833-7331; 318 Dalwill St., Mandeville (985) 624-8500; www.deangelosmetairie.com Try the linguine tossed with hot Italian sausage, carmelized onions and roasted peppers in a tomato basil sauce, or the new cheese lasagna: spinach pasta layered with mozzarella, homemade ricotta and spicy asiago cheeses in a brandy cream sauce. Reservations accepted. Lunch Sun.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $

DEANIE'S SEAFOOD
841 Iberville St. 581-1316; 1713 Lake Ave., Metairie 831-4141 Deanie's harnesses the bounty of the Gulf and serves it up in myriad ways to hungry diners. A popular dish is the Giant Seafood Platter, a golden, heaping array of fried crab balls, shrimp, catfish, oysters and softshell crab served with French fries. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $$

DECKBAR & GRILLE
1715 Jefferson Hwy., Jefferson 837-7665 Visitors have always enjoyed Deckbar's hearty sandwiches and plate lunches, like the burger-sized crabcake served dressed on a bun or the Sister-In-Law po-boy -- an open-faced sandwich of hot beef brisket debris soaked in rich gravy. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Wed.-Sat. Credit cards. $

DEEP SOUTH LOUNGE
329 Decatur St. 529-3331 The star attraction of this spot has long been the mechanical bull, although the kitchen might be giving the bucking beast a run for its money. The menu includes classics like fried catfish and barbecue brisket, and the new breakfast menu features fluffy homemade biscuits in creamy sausage gravy. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

DEJA VU RESTAURANT AND BAR
400 Dauphine St. 523-1936; www.dejavurestaurant-bar.com The late-night crowd at Deja Vu, on any given night, includes a random selection of bead-bedecked tourists and cabbies taking a coffee break. However diverse the clientele, they all agree on the appeal of American-style diner specials like the chicken-fried steak po-boy and the Mexican omelette, with chili, cheese, onions and jalapenos. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

THE DELACHAISE
3442 St. Charles Ave. 895-0858 Late-night diners can hop right off the streetcar and into a plate of French-influenced tapas, like the grilled cheese on homemade foccacia and poached mussels in a curried coconut cream broth. Any one of the 45 beers or 75 wines by the glass pairs up charmingly with a plate of the 12 to 15 gourmet cheeses available daily. No reservations. Dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

DERIL'S DINER AND SHORT STOP
717 St. Peter St. 524-3287 Deril's took over the former Poppy's Grill in the French Quarter last November, so there's no longer breakfast, but lunch and dinner still cook with lots of classic bar food: steak sandwiches, chicken wings and half-pound burgers cooked over a flaming grill and prepared to order. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

DESIRE OYSTER BAR
300 Bourbon St. (Royal Sonesta Hotel) 586-0300; www.royalsonestano.com Satisfy your desire for fresh Louisiana seafood and New Orleans party atmosphere at Desire, whose intriguing sign has become a Bourbon Street landmark. Fuel up for a night on the strip with red beans and rice, jambalaya, and fried seafood with a great view of the party to come. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

DIA ROMA CAFE
3712 Williams Blvd., Suite O, Kenner 443-6663 Gourmet sandwiches on homemade bread and a variety of pizzas are the order of the day at Dia Roma. Try the foot-long chicken Caesar po-boy or a popular new white pizza topped with spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes, red onions, and mozzarella and feta cheeses in a garlic butter sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

DIAMOND STREET MARKET
923 S. Peters St. 524-2577 This neighborhood grocery and deli in the Warehouse District has been helping people make groceries for 14 years. A large wine and beer selection is a good way to wash down the daily specials, which include Wednesday's pork ribs, slow-cooked overnight in the oven. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Credit cards. $

DICK AND JENNY'S
4501 Tchoupitoulas St. 894-9880 This cheerful yellow clapboard house is a funky spot of sunshine with casual upscale dining. Look for a new menu come April, but for now, dishes like the pomegranate-lacquered duck breast and the citrus and tarragon-crusted speckled trout will more than do. No reservations. Dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

DICKIE BRENNAN'S STEAKHOUSE
716 Iberville St. 522-CHOP (2467) Before you dig into a juicy filet, try the turtle soup, escargot or the Napoleon salad: thick-sliced tomatoes layered with crumbled blue cheese and red onions over romaine lettuce with garlic croutons. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

DINO'S BAR & GRILL
1128 Tchoupitoulas St. 558-0900 This Warehouse District spot offers up great specials, like Tuesday's steak night and Wednesday's all-you-can-eat crawfish from 7 p.m. until they run out. Beyond that, the full menu of bar snacks includes juicy chicken tenders and creamy spinach-artichoke dip, greats prelude to sandwiches, burgers, po-boys and plate specials. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

DINO'S LAKEVIEW
339 W. Harrison Ave. 484-6460 Dino's puts value at the top of the list when concocting pizza, chicken, seafood and rib specials. Catfish box lunches include one or two pounds of thinly sliced, battered and fried fish, served with tartar and cocktail sauces and a generous portion of seasoned hand-cut wedge fries. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

DITCHAROS
640 Carondelet St. 529-7102 The fire shrimp are chile-marinated, tail-on shrimp served on a bed of ginger stir-fried vegetables with hoisin and sirracha with black sesame seeds and peanuts. Jalapeno strawberry sauce tops a grilled duck breast to make the grilled Muscovy duck breast, served with dirty rice. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

DIXIE CHICKEN & RIBS
6264 Argonne Blvd. 488-1377 This neighborhood family restaurant specializes in fried, baked and barbecue chicken, as well as tender, smoky ribs. Be on the lookout for daily specials like red beans and rice, homestyle meatloaf, and spaghetti and meatballs. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

DIXIE GYROS
110 Carondelet St. 523-6614 Gyro and falafel sandwiches and leafy Greek salads studded with olives and feta provide a lunchtime oasis for busy CBD workers. The Greek omelette is a popular dish, stuffed with peppers, tomatoes, onions and gyro meat. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and early dinner daily. Credit cards. $

DOC SMITH'S
1009 Poydras St. 561-0528 If you're feeling laidback, Chef Robert Bruce is happy to send over anything off the Smith & Wollensky's menu. Kick back to the game on a 42-inch plasma TV with your New York strip, or soak up an icy martini with the Angry Shrimp -- spicy blackened jumbo shrimp served with French fries in a lemon butter sauce. No reservations. Dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

THE DOCK OF NEW ORLEANS
1926 West End Park 284-3625; www.thedockno.com The Galley Menu offers seafood in the basket or by the pound, plus sandwiches and burgers, or you can sail around the lavish buffet and sample tasty ports of call like oysters Rockefeller, coconut-crusted shrimp and soft-serve ice cream with all the sundae trimmings. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

THE DOCK OF SLIDELL
118 Harbor View Court, Slidell (985) 645-3625; www.thedockslidell.com This bar/restaurant/marina offers a variety of grilled fish, such as tilapia, salmon and redfish. The Dock Burger is another popular entree. You can enjoy your meal in either an outdoor or indoor seating area, and there's live music on Saturday and Sunday. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Wed.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

DOLLY'S DELI
5151 Canal Blvd. 486-8600 Say hello to Dolly any day of the week for local classics like po-boys, fried seafood, fresh shrimp salad and fried chicken. Daily specials include meatloaf on Tuesdays and spaghetti and meatballs on Thursdays. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

DOMILISE'S PO-BOYS
5240 Annunciation St. 899-9126 The pictures of happy, smiling customers and friends that decorate the walls at Domilise's offer testament to the power of po-boys to please. The shrimp, oyster and catfish po-boys all satisfy a hungry belly, but it's the roast beef po-boy with two kinds of mustard and gravy that lingers most in patrons' minds. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Cash only. $

DOMINIQUE'S
1001 Toulouse St. (Maison Dupuy Hotel) 522-8800; www.dominiquesrestaurant.com Executive Chef Dominique Macquet was recently awarded a 2005 Distinguished Restaurants of North America Award for his locally influenced contemporary French cuisine, an accolade shared by only 800 restaurants in North America. We can easily see how dishes like the Kobe beef short ribs pave, served with beef debris, roasted butternut squash croquettes and red wine jus, could seduce the judges' palates. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

DON'S SEAFOOD HUT
4801 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 889-1550 Since 1973, Don and company have been satisfying our seafood cravings, and they're still going strong. Dishes like the lump crabmeat au gratin and broiled whole flounder on the bone are insurance they'll be a favored spot for many years to come. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri, dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $$

DONG PHUONG ORIENTAL BAKERY & RESTAURANT
14207 Chef Menteur Hwy. 254-0214, 254-0296 Vietnamese sweets in this restaurant's adjoining bakery are curiously intriguing alongside French bread, croissants and more recognizable pastries. Coconut custard, sticky buns and banana-ginger candy are winners, as is the restaurant's duck soup with bok choy and egg noodles floating in a steaming broth. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Wed.-Mon. Credit cards. $

DONNA'S BAR & GRILL
800 N. Rampart St. 596-6914; www.donnasbarandgrill.com Long a premier destination for live New Orleans music, Donna's is also a red-hot spot for barbecue, soul food and Creole specialties. Red beans and rice, shrimp Creole, and barbecue rib tips go perfectly with a raucous brass band jam. No reservations. Dinner and late-night Thu.-Mon. Credit cards. $

DORIGNAC'S
710 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 834-8216 Dorignac's grocery store has recently put its in-house restaurant at the forefront of its operation -- literally, by moving the dine-in and gourmet-to-to spot in an expanded space at the front of the store. Shoppers can now sample or take to-go dishes like stuffed mirliton, gumbo, turtle soup and rotisserie chicken. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and early dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

DOS JEFES UPTOWN CIGAR BAR
5535 Tchoupitoulas St. 891-8500 The air at Dos Jefes is redolent of the finer things in life -- or is that the scent of rare cigars and the tones of lightly live jazz? Either way, their upscale pub fare is worth the trip, with snacks like oysters meuniere and spicy black bean nachos to complement their extensive selection of single-malt Scotches and wines by the glass. No reservations. Dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

DOSON'S NOODLE HOUSE
8128 Oak St. 861-9724 Doson's offers up a combined menu of Chinese and Vietnamese classics, including the popular canh chua, a South Asian hot and sour shrimp dish. The Chinese special, Sizzling Go-Ba, piles a sizzling plate with stir-fried chicken, beef and vegetables. Reservations accepted. Lunch Tue.-Sat., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards and checks. $$

DOT'S DINER
2317 Jefferson Hwy., Jefferson 831-3681; 4150 Jefferson Hwy., Jefferson 833-9349; 6633 Airline Drive, Metairie 734-0301; 10701 Jefferson Hwy., Harahan 738-9678; 12179 Hwy. 90, Luling (985) 785-6836 Dot knows what you need for a late-night fix or an early-morning fortification; omelettes, ham steaks, bacon, eggs, grits and biscuits. Burgers and sandwiches round out the menu, as well as selected pies. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

DOUBLE DRAGON
8236 Hwy. 23, Belle Chasse 433-4333 Lobster is the star of the show at Double Dragon, served any of five ways; plain steamed, Cantonese style, 'salt-and-pepper' or with ginger or garlic sauces. Other specialties include the Garlic Delight, shrimp and chicken served in a spicy brown sauce, and General Gao's Chicken -- battered, deep-fried and served in a spicy honey glaze. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner served daily. Credit cards. $

DOUG'S RESTAURANT
348 Robert Blvd., Slidell (985) 649-1805 For 20 years, Doug's has provided Slidell with traditional Creole fare, including fresh local fish topped with fresh sauces and vegetables. Start with the turtle soup, then move on to the oysters Louisiane: fried oysters topped with a lemon pepper sauce, artichoke hearts, green onions and mushrooms. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Fri., dinner Sat. Credit cards. $$

DOUGH BOWL
1039 Broadway St. 866-9008 This place has been bowling over the college crowd ever since it set up shop alongside The Boot three years ago, serving pizza by the slice and half-pound burgers made of certified Angus beef. The Meat Madness pizza features pepperoni, ground beef, Italian sausage, Canadian bacon and regular bacon. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

DRAGO'S SEAFOOD RESTAURANT AND OYSTER BAR
3232 N. Arnoult Road, Metairie 888-9254; www.dragosrestaurant.com Maybe it's the years of practice that bring the special something to the famous charbroiled oysters. Start off with half a dozen, and move on to dishes like the whole lobster Empire, tossed with fresh sauteed oysters and mushrooms in a light cream sauce over angel hair pasta. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

DRYDOCK CAFE
133 Delronde St. 361-8240 Along with the muffalettas, po-boys, seafood gumbo and burgers are steak and fish specials. Ask about the availability of the Mediterranean pasta dish: shrimp, mussels and scallops, served over pasta with a tomato basil sauce. Reservations for large parties only. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

E

EASTERN CHINESE AND JAPANESE RESTAURANT
1801 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey 368-0788 This Harvey spot is where the best of the East meets in the West, with a menu that showcases Chinese and Japanese cuisine. Try the stir-fried steak dinner with black pepper and sizzling Chinese vegetables or watch the knife wizardry at the sushi bar. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Major cards. $$

THE EDGE BAR & GRILL
3400 Hessmer Ave., Metairie 780-2266 A hot Tuesday destination for the steak special -- a juicy 10-oz. filet served with garlic mashed potatoes for only $7 -- The Edge is a good bet any day of the week. With 12 big-screen TVs, it's the perfect place to park yourself in front of a plate of grilled tuna over angel hair pasta and cheer on the Saints. Lunch Mon.-Fri., late-night daily. Credit cards. $

ELEVEN79
1179 Annunciation St. 299-1179 There is an Old World feel at Eleven79 with its 1950s supper-club decor and Italian-American cuisine. Always on the menu is the grilled calamari with pecorino polenta and lemon butter or the signature Paneed Veal Eleven79 served with roasted red peppers, asparagus, buffalo mozzarella and lemon sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch Thu.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat., late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

ELIZABETH'S RESTAURANT
601 Gallier St. 944-9272; www.elizabeths-restaurant.com The signature eggs Elizabeth is a plate of grilled, butter-soaked French bread topped with ham, eggs and Hollandaise sauce, and the menu claims the Louisiana strawberry-stuffed French toast 'will make you take back things you never stole.' No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Tue.-Sat., brunch Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

THE EMBERS ORIGINAL BOURBON HOUSE
700 Bourbon St. 523-1485; www.emberssteakhouse.com The Embers has retained the original old New Orleans charm and added a tempting menu of Creole specialties like the Nicholas Oysters, which are seasoned, battered, flash-fried and topped with garlic sauce and jambalaya. Reservations recommended. Lunch Sat.-Sun., dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

EMERIL'S
800 Tchoupitoulas St. 528-9393; www.emerils.com Try the andouille-crusted Texas redfish, served over grilled vegetables and shoestring potatoes, with cane syrup-glazed pecans and Creole meuniere butter sauce. At lunch, try the new 'Taste of Emeril's' four-course tasting menu with wine pairings. Reservations required. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

EMERIL'S DELMONICO RESTAURANT
1300 St. Charles Ave. 525-4937; www.emerils.com This stately St. Charles Avenue landmark combines classic items, like a pan-fried redfish with amandine or meuniere sauce and brabant potatoes, with his own eclectic touches. One specialty is the hickory-roasted duck with white cheddar grits and dried cherry cane syrup. Reservations required. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily, jazz brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

EMPIRE BUFFET
1633 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville (985) 951-8686 Northshore residents have been heading to the Empire Buffet for five years to sample one of the area's largest offerings of Chinese food. On any given day, more than 80 items are available at the stations, including crawfish, fried fish, fried shrimp, baked salmon and fried rice. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

ENGLISH TEA ROOM
734 Rutland St., Covington (985) 898-3988; www.englishtearoom.com When it's high time for high tea, this house awash in flora and fauna provides the perfect setting. The full afternoon tea is available by reservation only; for lunch, consider the quiche spinach pie, accompanied by a mixed green salad. A gift shop and British groceries are also available. Reservations recommended. Breakfast and lunch daily. Credit cards. $

ERIN ROSE GRILL
811 Conti St. 523-8619; www.erinrosebar.com Among the favorite eats are Erin's Pie, Mama's meatloaf, cheeseburgers, tasty Reubens, corn beef and cabbage, and nachos, with quesadillas as appetizers and Guinness ice cream for dessert. No reservations. Delivery available in the French Quarter. Late lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

ERNST CAFE
600 S. Peters St. 525-8544; www.ernstcafe.net Diners and drinkers have been relaxing on the breezy outdoor patio here since 1902. The menu includes an array of reliable bar snacks and New Orleans classics, such as red beans and rice, jambalaya, juicy grilled burgers, and chicken tenders in honey-mustard sauce. No reservations. Lunch dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

ESPLANADE DELI
3443 Esplanade Ave. (The Esplanade at City Park) 821-8939 For 17 years, the Esplanade Deli has served up tasty pasta dishes, seafood, salads and sandwiches to Bayou St. John and beyond. Try the seafood pasta, a concoction of paneed red snapper tossed with linguine in a rich butter cream sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri. Credit cards and checks. $

ESPRESSO EXPRESS
701 Poydras St. 524-5115 Busy CBD workers can breeze right through on the way to work for pastries, bagels, teas and espresso drinks or linger over a long lunch. Fresh, leafy salads and homemade soups like the cream of broccoli, seafood chowder and smoked turkey gumbo provide fuel for busy afternoons. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $

ESPRESSO YOURSELF CUSTOM COFFEE
3604 DeLaRonde Drive, Chalmette 271-0380 Diners have a choice of a convenient drive-through for takeout or relaxing inside over pastries, espresso drinks, salads, wraps and sandwiches. Those on the go will appreciate the grilled chicken Caesar wrap, a full salad neatly tucked into a fresh lavash roll-up for easy handling. No reservations. Breakfast daily, lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., coffee and pastries only on Sun. Credit cards. $

ETOILE
407 N. Columbia St., Covington (985) 892-4578 Etoile is as renowned for its energetic, colorful decor done by owner/artist James Michalopoulos as for its contemporary Louisiana cuisine. Start off with a plate of the homemade pate maison, accompanied by cornichons and capers, and move on to the steamed mussels in creamy white wine dill broth, served with sweet potato fries. Reservations accepted for large parties. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

F

F&M PATIO BAR
4841 Tchoupitoulas St. 895-6784 Late-night antics involving the vintage jukebox and the leopard-print pool table -- on which dancing is encouraged -- have made F&M a local legend. Generous portions of cheese fries, burgers, fajitas and loaded nachos fuel the party well into the wee hours. No reservations. Late-night Mon.-Sat. Cash only. $

FAT HARRY'S BAR & GRILL
4330 St. Charles Ave. 895-9582 This perennial college hangout's solid bar menu offers a variety of salads, quesadillas, hot wings and other staples. A standout is the Jazz Burger -- a grilled patty of ground beef and sausage topped with cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses and finished off with a dollop of barbecue sauce. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

FATBURGER
620 Decatur St. 598-3914; www.fatburger.net As the name suggests, Fatburger specializes in fresh, cooked-to-order hamburgers that are never frozen. The onion rings are hand-battered, and in a nod to the hamburger's diner roots, Fatburger makes shakes with homemade ice cream. No reservations. Lunch and dinner. Credit cards. $

FAUSTO'S BISTRO
530 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 833-7121 Classic northern Italian and Sicilian cuisine is found at Fausto's. The house special frutti di mare is a heaping sauteed seafood extravaganza including oysters, crab claws, mussels, fresh Gulf fish, shrimp, calamari and softshell crab. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

FAZZIO'S RESTAURANT
1841 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville (985) 624-9704 Fazzio's has been under this ownership for two and a half years, but chefs Jimmy Williams, Chris Coleman and Robert Schwartz have been cooking up traditional Italian dishes, seafood and steaks for a whole lot longer. Whether it's the veal, fish or chicken dishes, Fazzio's is known for its cream sauces. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

FEELINGS CAFE
2600 Chartres St. 945-2222; www.feelingscafe.com This romantic Faubourg Marigny favorite offers patio dining and live piano music on weekend nights. The Creole menu includes dishes like the savory blend of shrimp, crawfish and crabmeat blended with dirty rice casserole and served atop a crisp fried eggplant medallion in a seafood butter sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch Fri., dinner nightly, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

FELIX'S RESTAURANT AND OYSTER BAR
739 Iberville St. (another entrance at 210 Bourbon St.) 522-4440; www.felixs.com For more than 55 years, Felix's has been shucking away to please the palates of mollusk-craving visitors. Start off with a dozen raw of the half-shell and move on to juicy steaks, fried seafood po-boys, blackened fish, pasta and salad. No reservations. Late breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, late-night Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

FELLINI'S
900 Carrollton Ave. 488-2155 Fellini's combines Italian and Middle Eastern flavors on its eclectic menu of pizzas, salads, wraps and pasta dishes. New menu items include lobster ravioli, meatball calzones and a Greek pizza topped with gyro meat, red onions, tomatoes and feta cheese in a garlic butter sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

FIESTA LATINA RESTAURANT
1924 Airline Drive 469-5792 This family-friendly Mexican joint is always festive and congenial. Try the carne asada, strips of spicy grilled beef served with rice, black beans, ranchero sauce, cheese and salad with sides of warm fresh flour tortillas and fried plantains. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards and checks. $

FIGARO'S RESTAURANT
7900 Maple St. 866-0100 This college hangout recently revamped its menu to include upscale Italian dishes to go along with the tried-and-true pizzas, salads and sandwiches. Try the shrimp Carrie: plump Gulf shrimp sauteed with onions, tomatoes and garlic, tossed in a spicy cream sauce and served over penne. Reservations recommended. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

FIORELLA'S CAFE
45 French Market Place 528-9566 Smack in the middle of lower Decatur Street, Fiorella's is an oasis for hungry pub crawlers and Quarter rats alike. The famous fried chicken is marinated in a secret blend of spices, cooked to order and served with homestyle sides like baked macaroni, mashed potatoes and gravy, red beans and rice or potato salad. No reservations. Delivery available. Breakfast Sat.-Sun., lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

FIRST CUP CAFE
3146A Calhoun St. 283-3838 This new Uptown neighbor offers gourmet coffee, organic teas, pastries, and bagels and cream cheese to go along with its living-room environment (complete with reading room) and free wireless Internet service. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

FIVE HAPPINESS
3605 S. Carrollton Ave. 482-3935; www.fivehappiness.com Satisfying our craving for Eastern flavor for more than 20 years, Five Happiness is a consistent winner of our Best of New Orleans® 'Best Chinese restaurant' accolades as well as a recipient of a Zagat's Survey certificate of distinction. Try the shrimp with honey roasted pecans, served with fried rice and egg rolls. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

FIVE O'CLOCK GRILLE & PREMIUM PIT BBQ
501 Bourbon St. 529-4256 Chef Bill Collins, a James Beard Award recipient for his barbecue, invites you to try dishes like tender smoked pork ribs and spicy crawfish quesadillas, washed down with drink specialties like the mango Long Island iced tea. Cajun and Caribbean food are also on the menu. Reservations accepted. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

FLAMING TORCH
737 Octavia St. 895-0900 Flaming Torch offers two floors of cozy, elegant dining rooms and earthy, comforting French bistro cuisine like coq au vin and cassoulet. Try the shellfish Pernod: thin, fresh crepes bulging with shrimp, scallops and crabmeat in a Pernod cream sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

FLANAGAN'S CAFE & PUB
625 St. Philip St. 598-9002 You hear a name like Flanagan's and you can't help but think of a cold pint of Guinness. Fair enough; just don't ignore the popular breakfasts that take the sting off the night before. Try the Eggs St. Philip, a New Orleans take on eggs Benedict, served on two crabcakes. The hefty, 10-oz. hamburgers are cooked and dressed to order. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

FLORA GALLERY AND COFFEE SHOP
2600 Royal St. 947-8358 This funky cafe is a great place to linger over a book and a hot cup of coffee or herbal tea. Popular dishes include bagels with flavored cream cheeses, pizzas, quesadillas and sandwiches like the spicy grilled chicken, doused in Korean hot sauce and rolled up in lavash bread. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Cash only. $

FONG'S CHINESE RESTAURANT
2101 Williams Blvd., Kenner 467-9928 For 27 years, Fong's has been serving up classic Cantonese cuisine on the buffet and a la carte, with an emphasis on fresh ingredients. Fong's Triple Treat is a bounty of stir-fried roast pork, shrimp, chicken and Chinese vegetables with bamboo shoots and bean sprouts. Delivery available. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

FORTISSIMO BISTRO & DELI
3331 St. Charles Ave. 899-5313 Directly off the streetcar line, Fortissimo offers the choice of picking up a sack of gourmet goodies to go from the deli or the prepared food bar or dallying in the adjoining cafe over a glass of wine. Try the oysters Fortissimo: pan-fried crisp and served over a bed of creamed spinach with melted smoked cheese. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch daily, dinner Mon.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards and checks. $

FOUL PLAY
4617 Sanford St., Metairie 457-0065 Everything is fair at Foul Play, the former Babyboomers Bar and Grill. Watch the game while munching on a po-boy or eat a filet mignon, flavored with a homemade marinade, while catching a local band. Daily happy hour specials available from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

FOX & HOUND ENGLISH PUB & GRILLE
1200 S. Clearview Pkwy. (Elmwood Village Shopping Center), Harahan 731-6000 Sports fans don't just come here watch the games amid the sports paraphernalia adorning the walls. They also come for the slow-smoked baby back ribs, smoked brisket and chicken. These hearty platters come with Texas toast and a choice of sides, which include barbecue beans, fresh coleslaw, potato salad, mashed potatoes, fries or corn. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

FQB
921 Canal St. (The Ritz-Carlton Hotel) 524-1331; www.ritzcarlton.com This cozy, upscale lounge is famous for elegant cocktails like the chocolate martini and the Davenportini, named for the local trumpeter who can be found playing live in the bar every weekend night. From the bar menu, try the plump citrus-seared scallops or the grilled shrimp over pappardelle pasta. Reservations recommended Thu.-Sat. Lunch and dinner daily, jazz brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

FRANK'S RESTAURANT
933 Decatur St. 525-1602 This old-school Sicilian-American restaurant has been family-owned and operated for decades. Try the Snapper Jack, a deep-fried filet smothered in shrimp, crawfish and softshell crab topping over pasta. Frank's also serves a hefty 1-lb. rib-eye cooked how you like it. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

FRANKY & JOHNNY'S
321 Arabella St. 899-9146; www.frankyandjohnnys.com Since 1942, Franky and Johnny's has been pleasing loyal locals with cold beer, hot boiled crawfish and neighborhood cuisine. Popular items include fried seafood po-boys, rich gumbo and daily lunch specials. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

FRENCH MARKET RESTAURANT AND BAR
1001 Decatur St., 525-7879; www.frenchmarketrestaurant.com Chef Clayton has a whole new menu in the works for Jazz Fest, but regulars will be glad to know he'll be keeping the Creole standards that have pleased palates for 20 years. One famous dish is the blend of lobster, shrimp and crawfish cooked in a traditional etouffee and served inside the lobster shell. Reservations accepted for five or more. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

FRENCH QUARTER BEIGNETS
816 Hwy. 190, Covington (985) 892-0125 You'd swear the body of water right there was the Mississippi instead of the lake when you're inside this perfect recreation of a French Quarter cafe, complete with flickering lamps and wrought iron. Diners love the fat, sugar-dusted beignets and cafe au lait. Coming soon is a selection of miniature hamburgers for a heartier meal. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Tue.-Sun., dinner Tue.-Sat. Cash only. $

FRESCO CAFE AND PIZZERIA
7625 Maple St. 862-6363 Tulane and Loyola students love this neighborhood joint for its gourmet pizzas, wraps, salads and sandwiches. The new Philly Wrap rolls up strips of tender steak with melted mozzarella cheese, bell peppers, mushrooms, caramelized onions, lettuce and tomato in fresh lavash bread. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

FRIAR TUCK'S
5130 Freret St. 891-4080 The rotund friar of lore loved good living, and he'd have had plenty of it at his namesake pub. Rib-sticking bar fare includes half-pound burgers, quesadillas and chicken tenders. Friday nights are popular for 2-for-1 drinks and a crawfish boil that goes on from 4 p.m. until the crustaceans run out. No reservations. Dinner and late-night Mon.-Sun. Credit cards. $

FRIENDS ON THE TCHEFUNCTE
407 St. Tammany St., Madisonville (985) 845-7303 Try the house signature eggplant Tchefuncte, a plate of crisp deep-fried eggplant medallions over angel hair pasta, topped with lump crabmeat and shrimp in cream sauce. Chicken Marsala, a boneless breast sauteed in Marsala wine and served over angel hair pasta, is also popular. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards and checks. $$

FROSTY'S CAFFE
2800 Manhattan Blvd., Suite B, Harvey 361-9099; 3400 Cleary Ave., Metairie 888-9600 Frosty's signature bubble tea is a popular favorite, with gummy tapioca balls floating in the sweet liquid. Frosty's offers more than 80 flavors. Not to be missed is the jasmine green tea with jellied lychee or the avocado shake. For more solid fare, the spring rolls are quite delectable. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

FUNKY BUTT
714 North Rampart St. 558-0872 The Funky Butt is an old-school New Orleans style supper club, with live local music and Creole cooking served up in an intimate, low-lit setting. Start off with a shrimp remoulade and move on to the Big Butt Special, a New Orleans tasting platter of gumbo, jambalaya, red beans and rice and smoked sausage. Reservations accepted for large parties. Dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

FURY'S
724 Martin Behrman Ave., Metairie 834-5646 Fury's is famous for its meatballs, which, along with the house special fried chicken, have kept tables packed for years. Though Fury's is considered a neighborhood place, even regulars must jockey for a table at lunch time to savor the speckled trout. No one wants to leave before having a serving of rich bread pudding with rum sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

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GABBY'S FOOD & SPIRITS
6600 Morrison Road 242-9829 Regulars come back for specialties like the eggplant boat, fried chicken and grilled garlic shrimp, as well as daily lunch specials and a variety of po-boys. Night owls particularly appreciate the 5 a.m. closing time. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

GABRIELLE RESTAURANT
3201 Esplanade Ave. 948-6233; www.gabriellerestaurant.com Hardly bigger than a streetcar, this cheerful bright blue slice-shaped restaurant is a neighborhood favorite. Try contemporary Louisiana specialties like the buttermilk-battered rabbit, served over andouille grits with shrimp etouffee. Reservations recommended. Lunch Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

GALATOIRE'S RESTAURANT
209 Bourbon St. 525-2021; www.galatoires.com The shrimp remoulade is a time-honored tradition not to be missed at this storied local institution. Go on a Friday afternoon and watch the kings of Rex and captains of industry tuck into their oysters en brochette and feel yourself a part of New Orleans history. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$$

THE GALLEY SEAFOOD RESTAURANT
2535 Metairie Road, Metairie 832-0955 The Galley specializes in local seafood classics like the popular softshell crabs, blackened redfish with crawfish sauce and almond-fried trout. The crawfish tail po-boy is a signature dish regulars count on. Lunch Mon., lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

GARCÉS
4200 D'Hemecourt St. 488-4834 Try the Cuban steak sandwich, filled with slices of steak pounded thin and marinated in lime before fried. Ask about the daily specials, including Wednesday's ropa vieja: shredded beef tangled with sliced onions and green pepper. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Wed.-Mon. Credit cards. $

GARCÉS NO. 2
3809 Williams Blvd., Kenner 443-1223 Though it has no relation to the Mid-City Garces, Garcés No. 2 also offers Cuban cuisine, including a Cuban steak, white rice and black beans lunch special. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $

GATTUSO'S DELI
435 Huey P. Long Ave., Gretna 368-1114 Stop by this deli for a casual menu of wraps, po-boys, salads and sandwiches. Grilled shrimp is a favorite, especially served in an innovative club sandwich. Also popular are the hearty baby back ribs, glazed with watermelon-infused barbecue sauce. No reservations. Delivery available at lunch. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

GAUTREAU'S
1728 Soniat St. 899-7397; www.gautreaus.net Locals carefully guard the secret of Gautreau's, tucked away in a leafy Uptown residential neighborhood and recently voted into Bon Appetit magazine's 'Hot 50' American restaurants. Try the seared King salmon, served with gnocchi, pancetta, and carrot-cardamom broth. Reservations recommended. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

THE GAZEBO CAFE
1016-1018 Decatur St. 525-8899 Strategically located smack in the middle of the Decatur Street bar strip, the Gazebo is a great spot to fortify for a night out with gumbo, red beans and rice, and jambalaya. Drink specialties like ice cream daiquiris and sweet mudslides add to efficiency by combining cocktails and dessert. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

G.B.'S PATIO BAR AND GRILL/MADIGAN'S
8117 Maple St. 861-0067/800 S. Carrollton Ave. 866-9455 G.B.'s thoughtfully serves up its luscious grilled hamburgers in two sizes to accommodate all appetites and serves them with a choice of seasoned hand-cut fries or a loaded baked potato. Vegetarians will appreciate options like the sauteed mushrooms with wild rice. Reservations recommended for parties of six or more. Lunch Fri.-Sun., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

GEORGE'S MEXICAN RESTAURANT
1461 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville (985) 626-4342 One of the oldest Mexican restaurants in the New Orleans area, George's has been serving up spicy Tex-Mex cuisine for 21 years. Tuesday nights bring live music and $1 margaritas to wash down sizzling plates of fajitas with all the trimmings. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

GG'S COFFEE & CAFE
8480 Morrison Road 241-6788 GG's may be updating its specials after having been open for seven months, but the specialty teas -- passion fruit, mango and Pontchartrain Peach, to name a few -- will always be around for the warmer months. Grilled food comes out in wraps, burgers, sandwiches and specials. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

GIGI ASIAN BISTRO
4415 Banks St. 483-7884; www.gigiasianbistro.com The casual neighborhood atmosphere of Gigi's contrasts in the best way with innovative, sophisticated pan-Asian cuisine. Check soon for a dim sum menu; for now, enjoy creations like the creamy, spicy coconut milk lemongrass soup with lime juice, hot peppers and chicken. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $

GIOVANNI'S PO-BOYS
1325 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 835-4558 Giovanni's has a lock on the humble sandwich, well appreciated by Metairie regulars who come back for fried seafood, meatball and roast beef po-boys. Be sure and try the hefty muffaletta, loaded up with Italian cold cuts, cheese and tangy olive salad. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat. Checks. $

GIROD'S BISTRO
500 Chartres St. 524-9752 Located inside the historic Napoleon House, Girod's complements its classic casual menu with upscale bistro fare combining Provencal, Mediterranean and Louisiana influences. The house recommends the bouillabaisse, a saffron-tomato broth chock full of fresh Gulf fish, shrimp and oysters and topped with aioli and a falafel cake. No reservations. Dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

GLENN MICHAEL'S BEAUTY CAFE
1628 Metairie Road, Metairie 828-6848 Pampering takes on an extra dimension at this charming cafe inside Glenn Michael's full-service salon. Try the Blooming Tomato Salad, a hollowed-out tomato stuffed with chicken, egg or tuna salad over mixed greens with pinenuts and roasted peppers. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and early dinner Mon.-Sat., breakfast and lunch Sun. Credit cards. $

GOLDEN DRAGON
4417 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 887-6081 This cozy, family-style restaurant has served up Eastern specialties for 28 years. Try seafood dishes like the shrimp with honeyed pecans and the Chinese softshell crabs served with steamed Asian vegetables. Reservations for large parties only. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

GOODY'S CAFE
3516 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 887-3848 Hearty home cooking is the order of the day at Goody's, from Monday's red beans and rice to fruit-topped Belgian waffles for weekend breakfasts. Be sure to stop in for weekday plate lunch specials like meatloaf, chicken-fried steak and pork chops. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

GORDON BIERSCH BREWERY RESTAURANT
200 Poydras St. 552-2739; www.gordonbiersch.com This season's special beer, brewed on-premises, is the Blond Bock, a medium-hop beer with a malty flavor. The recipe is based on one used by 17th century monks, who drank the hearty ale to stave off hunger pangs. Those won't be a problem at Gordon's, with daily lunch specials like the pulled pork sandwich served with garlic fries. Reservations recommended. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

GRAND CENTRAL STATION CAFE
4402 Jefferson Hwy., Jefferson 733-4564 Serving up overstuffed po-boys for 30 years, Grand Central Station has recently reopened under new management. The cafe likely will still be as busy as its namesake, since popular menu items like the Central Station Special po-boy -- housemade roast beef, ham, Swiss and American cheeses -- will be held over. No reservations. Lunch daily. Cash only. $

GREAT WALL RESTAURANT
2023 Metairie Road, Metairie 833-2585 The Great Wall has overlooked Old Metairie for 26 years, but it hasn't kept diners away from the traditional Mandarin and Schezuan food served there. The lunch menu features 15 different combinations (including the Great Wall Mixed Vegetable) while dinner (including the Mandarin duck) can be served for as many as six people. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri., dinner Sat. Credit cards. $

THE GROCERY
2854 St. Charles Ave. 895-9524 This sunny spot in the picturesque Garden District specialized in hot, pressed panini sandwiches. Try the Cuban sandwich, with thin-sliced ham heated up with melted cheese, or the flavorful panini version of the usually unwieldy muffaletta. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat. Checks. $

GROUND PAT'I BURGERS
814 N. Hwy. 190, Covington 985-893-4208; 1305 W. Esplanade Ave., Kenner 466-8060; 2740 Severn Ave., Metairie 887-2711; 3124 David Drive, Metairie 887-9449; www.groundpati.com Founded in 1971, Ground Pat'I shells out free peanuts and juicy grilled burgers all over Louisiana. Besides the signature beef patties, try the charbroiled mesquite chicken breast served with steamed veggies or the slow-cooked tangy pork ribs. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

GUMBO SHOP
630 St. Peters St. 525-1486; www.gumboshop.com First you make a roux -- or better yet, leave it in the hands of the Gumbo Shop, which capably serves up the essence of New Orleans in a bowl. Besides the hearty signature seafood okra or chicken andouille gumbo, there are plenty of Creole specialties and po-boys to choose from. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

GUY'S PO-BOYS
5259 Magazine St. 891-5025 Po-boys are what you get at Guy's, where the casual atmosphere makes for a great lunch destination. Try the fried chicken club po-boy -- a boneless chicken breast battered, fried and served up dressed on French bread with bacon, cheddar and Swiss cheeses. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat. Cash only. $

GW FINS
808 Bienville St. 581-3467; www.gwfins.com GW Fins serves up fresh Louisiana seafood with a fun, frisky twist in a casual upscale atmosphere right on the edge of Bourbon Street. Try the New Bedford sea scallops, served over a rich mushroom risotto, or the blackened amberjack with sauteed spinach, crispy oysters and chile hollandaise. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

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HAAGEN-DAZS
1 Poydras St., 523-3566; 621 St. Peter St., 523-4001; 8108 Hampson St., 861-1005; www.haagendazs.com This gourmet ice cream chain indulges cravings into the wee hours at the French Quarter and Riverbend locations. Special concoctions like the Mint Chip Dazzler and the Bailey's shake are satisfying, as are old favorites like banana splits, root beer floats or the humble plain scoop. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

HANA JAPANESE RESTAURANT
8116 Hampson St. 865-1634 This neighborhood favorite is both a sushi bar and a full Japanese restaurant, providing light lunches and hot meals of noodles or cooked fish. Enjoy an assortment of specialty sushi rolls, including the Hana Special Roll with a combination of salmon, tuna, snow crab, cucumber, avocado, egg, and shrimp tempura. Reservations recommended for parties of six or more. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

HARBOR SEAFOOD AND OYSTER BAR
3203 Williams Blvd., Kenner 443-6454 The Harbor happily ships its fresh-caught Louisiana seafood all over the continental United States, but lucky locals get dishes like the crabmeat-stuffed eggplant in crawfish sauce. Also try the shrimp Cathy -- sauteed shrimp and mushrooms in lobster sauce served over rice with green salad and French bread. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

HARD ROCK CAFE
418 N. Peters St. 529-5617; www.hardrock.com This rock 'n' roll-themed institution is, surprisingly, debuting 64 new menu items this spring. It assures us, though, that they'll all be in the vein of the American soda-shop classics we rely on, like the juicy burgers and tasty ice cream floats. And you'll still be able to dine in the shadow of Britney Spears' hand-me-downs. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

HEAVENLY HAM
5300 Tchoupitoulas St. 891-5100 This deli prides itself on quick service, but with tasty gourmet sandwiches like these, you might want to linger. The Paradise Club is a flaky croissant loaded up with ham, turkey, bacon and Havarti cheese. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., lunch and early dinner Sun. Credit cards and checks. $

HEDGES BAR AND GRILL
4 Galleria Blvd. (Wyndham Hotel), Metairie 620-9412 The new chef at Hedges plans to change the menu for the spring soon, but for now try Creole specialties like the pan-fried crawfish cake served with corn macque choux. Be sure and swing by for the live music during Friday's happy hour. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

HELL'S KITCHEN
1201 Burgundy St. (inside Cosimo's) 525-4355 Patrons at Cosimo's have one Hell of a time when it comes to ordering food to balance the popular French Quarter bar's libations. The traditional bar food is all here, including burgers, wings and poppers, but there are some other pleasant surprises in the calzones and gourmet pizzas. No reservations. Delivery available. Dinner and late-night daily. Cash only. $

HERBSAINT BAR & RESTAURANT
701 St. Charles Ave. 524-4114; www.herbsaint.com Watch the streetcar roll by through large windows looking out on the hip Warehouse District as you discover Susan Spicer and Chef Donald Link's newest creations. The Kurobuta pork belly is an uncured bacon steak, served with curried lentils in a housemade chile vinaigrette. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

HERO'S ALL-AMERICAN GRILL
4700 Hwy. 22, Mandeville (985) 893-7700; 1211 Village Walk, Covington (985) 845-1000 The hand-formed, charbroiled 8-oz. All-American Burger is the star of the show at Hero's, where classic American diner-style cuisine is served up in a family-friendly atmosphere. Po-boys, seafood salads and specialty sandwiches are also popular. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

HERSHEY'S ICE CREAM PARLOR
70456 Hwy. 21, suite 400, Covington (985) 809-7445 Hershey's (no relation to the candy makers) moved into the Nord Du Loc Shopping Center last September and has taken advantage of the foot traffic ever since. There are 32 flavors continually on display with nearly 10 others on reserve in the back. The staff loves the German chocolate cake flavor. Check out the five sugar-free flavors. Lunch and dinner daily. Cash and checks. $

HICKORY CAFE & GRILL
1313 Hickory Ave., Harahan 737-0033 This friendly spot is a great stop for hearty full-meal salads, sandwiches and daily plate lunch specials. The signature Hickory Salad involves jumbo grilled shrimp served over mixed greens with roasted pecans, tomatoes and blue cheese in a pecan vinaigrette. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $

HILLBILLY BAR-B-Q
208 Tallulah Ave., River Ridge 738-1508 The hillbillies are moving -- but not to Beverly Hills, just into a new expanded space at the same address. All the better to accommodate the crowds that accumulate for a taste of the smoked barbecue chicken, pork and beef with all the sides, like coleslaw, baked beans and macaroni and cheese. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

HILLERY'S ON TOULOUSE
827 Toulouse St. (Hotel St. Marie) 571-2888 This casually elegant cafe inside the Hotel St. Marie offers Louisiana contemporary cuisine in the heart of the French Quarter. The roasted half-chicken is rubbed under the skin with a puree of garlic and bacon, then smoked, roasted and served in a savory butter sauce. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

HOBNOBBER'S BAR & GRILL
139 Carondelet St. 525-5428 CBD workers love Hobnobber's for hearty portions of homestyle New Orleans cooking. Half a dozen specials are dreamed up daily and rotated throughout the week, like the fried seafood plates, southern fried chicken and smothered okra with sausage over rice. No reservations. Delivery available. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri., bar open daily. Credit cards and checks. $

HOBNOBBER'S CAFE
5928 W. Metairie Ave., Metairie 734-8448 New light menu items, like the grilled boneless chicken breast served with tomatoes and broccoli, will please diners still in recovery from the holiday season. More decadent dishes, like the pan-fried crabcakes in crawfish cream sauce, are still available to tempt. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

HOME FURNISHINGS STORE CAFE
1600 Prytania St. 566-1707 In the tradition of old-fashioned in-store lunch counters, this homey cafe offers a welcome break from a busy shopping day with sandwiches, lunch specials and large, leafy salads. Try the crabcakes served with grilled vegetables, or the cool, creamy chicken salad scooped over mixed greens. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Checks and cash only. $

HONG KONG RESTAURANT
7400 Lakeshore Drive 282-1511 For more than half a century, Hong Kong has been pleasing palates with gourmet Chinese cuisine. The Crystal Shrimp is marinated in wine and garlic and prepared alongside stir-fried Chinese vegetables. The beef filet comes with a wine, butter and basil sauce. Reservations recommended for parties of six or more. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

HOOKAH CAFE
500 Frenchmen St. 943-1101; www.hookah-cafe.com This spot on the corner of happening Frenchmen Street leaves its floor-to-ceiling windows open on nice days to let in the energy of the street. Lounge on the red and purple velour pillows and enjoy the Tandoor salmon: a tender filet marinated overnight in a basil-herb sauce and roasted over wood charcoal, served with sauteed asparagus spears and wild mushroom biryani. Reservations accepted for large parties before 8:30 p.m. Delivery available. Dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

HOOTERS
301 N. Peters St. 522-9222; 2781 Belle Chase Hwy., Gretna 393-7177; 4748 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 889-0160; www.hootersoflouisiana.com We read Playboy for the articles, and we go to Hooters for the food. There's plenty of truth in those time-honored justifications, especially with time-tested, hearty bar food like burgers, famous hot wings, quesadillas and Carolina-style roasted oysters served with drawn butter. Reservations for large parties only. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

HORINOYA
920 Poydras St. 561-8914 Escape the bustle of downtown in Horinoya's tranquil dining room. The sushi chefs prepare classic sashimi, maki and nigiri sushi. Try the soybean paper roll, a rice-less roll with tuna, white fish, salmon, mixed vegetables and a special sauce. Reservations accepted. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner nightly. Credit cards. $$

HOUSE OF BLUES
225 Decatur St. 529-BLUE (2583); www.hob.com Jake might not find his four fried chickens and a Coke on the menu, but Elwood would be happy with his namesake sandwich: a blackened chicken breast dressed with chile garlic mayonnaise, green chiles and sour cream and served with fries. Reservation recommend. Lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sunday. Credit cards. $$

HOUSTON'S
1755 St. Charles Ave. 524-1578; 4241 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 889-2301; www.houstons.com This neighborhood steakhouse has a casual, energetic atmosphere, with an open kitchen allowing you to view the fresh cuts of prime beef sizzling away on the grill. Prime rib is a specialty, as is the tangy teriyaki-glazed Hawaiian rib-eye served with grilled veggies and a loaded baked potato. New items include a pan-fried fish of your choice. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

HUEY'S 24/7 DINER
200 Magazine St. 598-4839; www.hueys247diner.com This CBD spot is an oasis for late-night diners looking for something beyond the greasy usual in the wee hours. Classic diner food gets an upscale touch with sandwiches on fresh brioche, filet tips with eggs any style and thick, creamy shakes. Reservations accepted for large parties. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

HUGH'S WINE CELLAR
4250 Hwy. 22, Mandeville (985) 626-0066; www.hughswinecellar.com This shop has catered to the refined palate for more than 17 years with wines, cheeses, liquors and deli selections. The Northshore Reuben sandwich piles slices of rye bread with corned beef, Swiss cheese, pickled red cabbage and Hugh's special Creole mustard and broils it to perfection. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

THE HUNT ROOM GRILL
214 Royal St. (Hotel Monteleone) 523-3341; www.hotelmonteleone.com The house recommends the Black Angus sirloin or the almond crusted snapper sauteed in a white wine butter sauce. The Marquis Chocolat, a chocolate roulade soaked in Kirsch and served with mango-raspberry sauce, is a tempting denouement not to be resisted. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

HURRICANE'S
1414 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 833-0050 Sports can make you hungry, even if your athletic abilities are best suited to watching others play on the 17 televisions at this sports bar. Hurricane's serves up hamburgers, chicken or shrimp quesadillas, and daily lunch specials such as bell peppers stuffed with seafood and served with angel hair pasta bathed in marinara sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

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IGOR'S
2133 St. Charles Ave. 568-9811; www.igors.org Where else can you drink a pitcher of Abita, shoot some pool, read a paperback from the bar library, play the jukebox and eat dinner all while your laundry tumbles away in the dryer a few feet away? Free red beans and rice on Monday is a great deal, and the regular menu served up hefty burgers and sandwiches to tide you over during the spin cycle. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

IGOR'S BUDDHA BELLY BURGER BAR & GRILL
4437 Magazine St. 891-6105 This Uptown spot is one of the quirkier locales in Igor's late-night empire, with occasional DJ and performance nights by local artists. Cheese fries, burgers and other basic bar food will keep you sharp for a few games of eight-ball on the pool tables in the back room. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

IGOR'S CHECK POINT CHARLIE
501 Esplanade Ave. 949-7012 With live music nightly, laundry next door, foosball, pinball, pool and a menu of traditional, rib-sticking pub fare, you can hardly go wrong. Check Point's features acts from grinding metal to acoustic open-mic blues to keep you entertained while you fold or snack or just relax with a beer and a plate of cheese fries. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

IGOR'S GARLIC CLOVE
2135 St. Charles Ave. 522-6602 This cozy, casual St. Charles spot is chock-full of old-school atmosphere, from the red-toned walls to the red gravy. Watch the streetcar roll by as you sample specialties like the alligator and shrimp Orleans: alligator sausage and shrimp tossed in a spicy red pepper marinara sauce and served over pasta with a green salad and French bread. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

IMPASTATO'S
3400 16th St., Metairie 455-1545; www.impastatos.com Chef-owner Joe Impastato serves up authentic Italian cuisine with local touches. Primi piatti include a 10-oz. filet slowly smoked over pecan wood chips and the trout Marcello: a breaded, pan-sauteed filet of fresh speckled trout topped with lemon, butter, crabmeat and crawfish. Dinner Tue.-Sat, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

INDIA PALACE
3322 N. Turnbull Drive, Metairie 889-2436; www.indiapalacerestaurant.com India Palace prides itself on offering authentic cuisines -- from spicy curries to flaky naan -- from all over the subcontinent. Try the house specialty, saagwala: creamy curried spinach served with chicken, fish, beef, lamb or shrimp. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily, brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards and checks. $$

INDIGO
2285 Bayou Road 947-0123; www.indigonola.com Adjacent to the House on Bayou Road Inn, Restaurant Indigo shares its neighboring property's charming plantation feel. Start out with the beef tartare with wasabi creme fraiche on toast points and move on to dishes like the honey-lavender marinated tenderloin of pork, served with mango slaw. Reservations recommended. Dinner Wed.-Sun. Credit cards. $$$

INDONIQUE
4861 Magazine St. 891-8776; www.indonique.com This exotic tea shop is redolent with the scents of its 54 imported loose teas, exported from all the corners of the far East. All varieties of the humble leaf are represented, from Earl Greys to white and green teas and an authentic Indian masala chai, and scones and pastries also are available. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

IRENE'S CUISINE
539 St. Phillip St. 529-8811 This elegant, romantic spot serves a blend of rustic Southern Italian and French cuisines with a New Orleans touch. One specialty is the San Francisco-style cioppino, a steaming pot of redfish, clams, shrimp and mussels simmered in a spicy saffron-scented tomato fennel broth over pasta with ciabatta crostini. Reservations for parties of five or more. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ISABELLA'S PIZZERIA
4250 Hwy. 22, Mandeville (985) 674-5700; 70452 Hwy. 21, Covington (985) 875-7620 Besides gourmet pizzas and whole-meal salads, Isabella's has recently started offering hot pressed panini sandwiches. The Isabel dresses roast chicken and ham with lettuce, tomatoes and chipotle mayonnaise, and the portobello version adds in aioli, roasted peppers, caramelized onions, mushrooms and provolone cheese. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Delivery available. Credit cards. $

ITALIAN PIE
417 S. Rampart St. 522-7552; 901 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 832-1121; 1530 Lapalco Blvd., Harvey 362-3657; 1914 E. Judge Perez Drive, Chalmette 278-0001; 3600 Williams Blvd., Kenner 469-4999; 4350 Hwy. 22, Mandeville (985) 626-5252; 4840 Bienville St. 483-9949; 5217 Elysian Fields Ave. 288-0888; 5406 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 887-9977; 5538 Magazine St. 894-0005; 5650 Jefferson Hwy., Harahan 734-3333; 7070 Read Blvd. 244-7200; www.italianpierestaurants.com New to the menu are a selection of low-carb lavash wrap sandwiches, including Greek roast chicken, chicken Caesar, eggplant and spinach-artichoke. Also popular are the selection of gourmet pizzas and hearty salads. The Mediterranean pizza is topped with pesto, mozzarella, artichoke hearts, tomatoes, garlic, herbed ricotta and red onions. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

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JACK DEMPSEY'S
738 Poland Ave. 943-9914; www.jackdempseys.com Jack Dempsey's is a neighborhood spot specializing in steaks, seafood and lobster. Try the overflowing seafood platter for two, piled high with golden fried shrimp, oysters, redfish and catfish, plus stuffed crabs, gumbo and a pair of crawfish pies. No reservations. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Wed.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

JACMEL INN
903 E. Morris Ave., Hammond (985) 542-0043; www.jacmelinn.com Chef Phil O'Donnell provides diners with night seafood specials featuring mahi mahi, tilapia and more. The steak offerings include aged Chicago filet, a 7-oz. steak with maitre d' hotel butter and a Jacmel potato. Reservations recommended for parties of eight or more. Lunch Wed.-Fri. and Sun., dinner nightly. Credit cards. $$

JACQUES-IMO'S CAFE
8324 Oak St. 861-0886; www.jacquesimoscafe.com Chef Jack Leonardi is as apt to wander over to your table as a brass band from the Maple Leaf next door is to pop in and say hello. Daily specials make up a good half of the menu, but you'll always find Creole-influenced treats like the roasted acorn squash with mixed seafood in a curry coconut cream sauce and smothered chicken with biscuits, gravy and choice of sides. Reservations accepted for parties of five or more. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

JAEGER'S ON THE LAKE
1928 West End Park 283-7585; www.jaegersonthelake.com Jaeger's isn't joking when they suggest Big A's Serious Seafood Platter for the family; an intimidating plate (or several) of fried shrimp, oysters, crawfish, trout, softshell crabs, shrimp croquettes, oysters Bordelaise, onion rings, French fries and hush puppies. Reservations accepted. Lunch Sat.-Sun., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $

JAMILA'S CAFE
7808 Maple St. 866-4366 The mixed grill delights diners with shish kebabs, chicken breast, spicy housemade marguez sausage, asparagus and rice. Management also recommends the shrimp tarragon with shrimp and mussels in a garlic wine sauce over linguine. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

JAVA GROTTO
1943 Lakeshore Dr., Mandeville (985) 626-0976 This coffee shop prides itself on an atmosphere ideal for whiling away mornings over gourmet espresso drinks, pastries and sandwiches. Grab a fresh croissant or bagel with your breakfast latte, or linger at lunch with a turkey, bacon and Swiss cheese wrap dressed with spring mix and tomatoes. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

JAZMINE CAFE
614 S. Carrollton Ave. 866-9301 With a menu evenly divided between traditional American breakfast food and Vietnamese specialties, this new restaurant can satisfy both timid and adventurous eaters. For a traditional breakfast, try the deluxe platter with pancakes, sausage, grits and biscuits. Reservations accepted. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

JAZZ SEAFOOD AND STEAK HOUSE
2722 Williams Blvd., Kenner 468-3237 There's something to please every palate here, with an extensive menu of traditional steakhouse fare as well as traditional rich Creole dishes. A house specialty is the eggplant Napoleon: thick slices of sauteed eggplant layered with peppers, onions, garlic, shrimp, crabmeat and crawfish in a Romano cream sauce. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

JEAN LAFITTE BISTRO
240 Bourbon St. (above the Old Absinthe House) 523-3181 or 523-0103; www.jeanlafittesbistro.com Catch a bird's eye view of the party on Bourbon Street from above the historic Old Absinthe House bar as you tuck into Creole classics. Try the oysters a l'absinthe, topped with Herbsaint-infused creamed spinach, or the escargots Bourgignonne baked in garlic herb butter. Reservations accepted. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

JIGGER'S GRILL
1645 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 828-3555 This neighborhood hangout is a great spot to raise a glass or two after work in good company. The menu features daily specials like Wednesday's chicken-fried steak and Tuesday's fried half-chicken, served with mashed potatoes, salad and vegetables for only $5. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

JILLY JOE'S
91 French Market Place 525-5637 Besides traditional New Orleans dishes like bread pudding with run sauce, Jilly Joe's also offers a variety of bar snacks like chicken tenders and hot wings. Wednesday's deal can't be beat, with quarter-pound burgers for only $1. No reservations. Lunch and early dinner daily. Credit cards. $

THE JIMANI
141 Chartres St. 524-0493 A popular after-work spot for French Quarter service industry workers, the Jimani keeps the grill open until 6 a.m. nightly. The Chicago-style menu features burgers, club sandwiches, all-beef hot dogs and deep-dish pizzas. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

JIMMY BUFFETT'S MARGARITAVILLE CAFE
1104 Decatur St. 592-2565; www.margaritavilleneworleans.com You don't have to be a Parrothead to appreciate Jimmy's resort-style, Cajun-meets-Caribbean food. The 'Mother Ocean' seafood platter plumbs the Gulf for fried shrimp, oysters, catfish strips, conch fritters, corn sticks, Texas toast and fries. Free live music every day from 3 p.m. to midnight. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

JIPANG
814 Gravier St. 565-5322 This Japanese restaurant provides light and affordable lunches to CBD office workers. The sushi lunch special and the chicken curry over rice are both popular items. For breakfast, Jipang serves more Western fare like coffee, pastries and eggs cooked to order. No reservations. Delivery to CBD and part of the French Quarter. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $

JOE'S CRAB SHACK
8000 Lakeshore Drive 283-1010; www.joescrabshack.com You can see this festive Lakeside joint from miles away, with its fun beachside decor shining like a beacon to hungry guests. English-style fish and chips are on the menu, as are the more island-influenced coconut battered shrimp served with a plum dipping sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

JOEY K'S
3001 Magazine St. 891-0997 Joey K's is a friendly spot right on the funky Magazine street shopping strip. Take a break from browsing and enjoy the daily all-you-can-eat fried catfish special washed down with an 18-oz., frozen mug of beer. Daily specials include homestyle favorites like meatloaf and smothered chicken. Breakfast Sat., lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

JOHNNY'S PO-BOY RESTAURANT
511 St. Louis St. 524-8129 A favorite Quarter lunch stop, Johnny's offers up famous fried seafood po-boys to locals and tourists alike. Try Johnny's Special, a hot roast beef po-boy with grilled ham, Swiss and American cheeses and soaked in beef gravy. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Cash only. $

THE JOINT
801 Poland Ave. 949-3232 The Bywater is very pleased to have this neighbor, a spot where the meat is smoked in-house and the fresh lemonade and sweet tea never run out. Pork ribs, brisket and chicken are complemented by sides like the barbecue beans, tangy coleslaw and peppery baked macaroni. No reservations. Call for delivery availability. Lunch and dinner Thu.-Sat. and Mon., lunch and early dinner Sun. Credit cards. $

JUAN'S FLYING BURRITO
2018 Magazine St. 569-0000; 4724 S. Carrollton Ave. 486-9950; www.juansflyingburrito.com It's a certain distinction to be the punk-rock burrito capital of New Orleans. Funky local art graces the walls, cool music pours out of the kitchen, and fat, Mission-style burritos like the jerk blackened chicken with avocado, sour cream, black beans, yellow rice, salsa and hot sauce will last two meals' worth at least. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

JUDICE'S
421 E. Gibson St., Covington (985) 892-0708 This neighborhood favorite focuses on Creole and Italian dishes, such as duck and andouille gumbo or housemade pasta. When the chef's in the mood, though, diners might even find Asian specials on the menu. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily, dinner Thu.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $$

JUKEBOX CAJUN DINER
2560 Williams Blvd., Kenner 469-1112 The selections at Jukebox Cajun Diner are as varied as a ... diner jukebox. An extensive breakfast menu is served 'round the clock, with heaping portions of made-to-order omelettes and pancakes. If you're in the mood for lunch or dinner, the grilled patty melt is a tested and re-tested favorite. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

JUNIPER 1
15 Gerard St. Mandeville (985) 624-5330 Juniper's chef creates 'progressive Creole' cuisine with a menu that changes weekly to take advantage of the freshest produce, meat and seafood. Management recommends the pork osso buco, a braised pork shank with Creole demi-glace over oyster andouille dressing finished with Jack Daniels' cane syrup sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

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K-PAUL'S LOUISIANA KITCHEN 4
16 Chartres St. 596-2530; www.kpauls.com K-Paul's still serves up the Cajun specialties that created nationwide fads. New dishes include a fried oyster loaf on the lunch menu, served with garlic and green onion mayonnaise, and blackened beef tenders in Brie sauce. Reservations accepted. Lunch Thu.-Sat., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

KABBY'S ON THE RIVER 2
Poydras St. (Hilton New Orleans Riverside Hotel) 584-3880; www.emarketing360.com/hilton/no/hnor/ Watch the riverboats drift along the Mississippi while dining on a grilled yellowfin tuna with roasted pepper couscous. The upscale restaurant's eclectic menu of contemporary cuisine also includes blue crab bisque and a toasted pecan spinach salad. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

KABBY'S SPORTS EDITION & GRILLE
2 Poydras St. (Hilton New Orleans Riverside Hotel) 584-3880 Sports fans from around the country watch their favorites teams at the Hilton New Orleans' sports bar. A menu of burgers, po-boys, bar-style appetizers and beer keeps the patrons happy, no matter who wins the game. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

KANNO SUSHI
3205 Edenborn Ave., Metairie 455-5730 Some diners may need an emergency glass of water to douse the heat of the spicy veggies, snow crab and Cajun tuna in the 911 roll. Sushi eaters who want to skip their veggies should order a protein roll with spicy tuna, snow crab, whitefish and salmon. Reservations accepted. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

KANPAI
4116 Canal St. 483-0880 Advice is helpfully given by way of posted signs suggesting that diners not eat only the fish and leave the rice at this all-you-can-eat sushi buffet. The rest is up to you, though, and with dozens of fresh rolls, salads, Chinese pastries and delicate pastries to choose from, you may want more guidance through the bounty. Live piano music on weekend nights. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

KATIE'S
3701 Iberville St. 488-6582 Katie's serves both traditional Italian dishes and Cajun favorites. Try the chicken Marsala over pasta, one of the gumbos or a barbecue shrimp po-boy. On Thursday, Italian entrees are two-for-one. The addition of live piano music makes Saturday night a little more elegant. Reservations accepted for large parties. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

KENNER SEAFOOD INC. 3140 Loyola Dr., Kenner 466-4701; www.realpagessites.com/kennerseafood Choose from an extensive menu of New Orleans classic dishes, such as the fried softshell crab po-boy or the open-faced roast beef sandwich, served with gravy, mashed potatoes, peas and a garden salad. Wash it all down with an ice-cold beer or Barq's. Reservations accepted for large parties. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

KICKSTAND CAFE
690 Lafitte St., Mandeville (985) 626-9300 Located above a bike rental shop, the Kickstand is the perfect place to fuel up for or wind down from a scenic springtime ride. The Club Salad features turkey, ham, bacon, cheese and hard-boiled egg tossed with mixed greens, tomatoes, cucumbers, sprouts and walnuts. Delivery available for lunch Mon.-Fri. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

KIM SON
349 Whitney Ave., Gretna 366-2489 The kitchen skillfully prepares the cuisines of both China and Vietnam. Diners make a pilgrimage from all over the city for the warm bowls of pho soup, fresh spring rolls and salt baked crab with black and hot pepper. For a beef feast, order the seven-course Bo 7 Mon. Reservations recommended for six or more. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

KING BUFFET
601 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 837-4383 Diners find endless eating at King Buffet, where the buffet offers Chinese, Japanese and American food. Dinner features boatloads of seafood, like snow crab legs, boiled crab, oysters on the half-shell and sauteed lobster. A la carte items also available. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

KOKOPELLI'S
3150 Calhoun St. 861-3922 This Tex-Mex restaurant wraps up a few surprises inside its 25 different burritos that mix and match flavors from around the world. Try a Thai chicken or Texas barbecue burrito, or substitute hummus for guacamole. On 'Bring Your Buddy Tuesdays,' guests can buy a second burrito for half price. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

KOSHER CAJUN NEW YORK DELI & GROCERY
3519 Severn St., Metairie 888-2010 The Kosher Cajun Deli has created a Kosher shrimp po-boy. In fact, there's no shellfish to be found in this succulent loaf, which has battered and fried Alaskan Pollack fish playing the role of the crustacean. All bakery items, including fresh challah bread and hard-to-find kosher deli treats, are flown in from New York. Also try the kosher corned beef, pastrami and matzoh ball soup. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri. and Sun., dinner Mon.-Thu., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $

KRYSTAL'S 116
Bourbon St. 523-4030; www.krystal.com After a long night on Bourbon Street, nothing hits the spot like a sack of Krystal's miniature burgers, with the steamed-in onion flavor, pickle and mustard, hot and fresh. The breakfast menu offers inexpensive alternatives like biscuit sandwiches, eggs and pancake scramblers. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Cash only. $

KYOTO
4920 Prytania St. 891-3644 The sushi chefs at this Uptown restaurant prepare a full selection of rolls and raw fish. Guests who prefer cooked cuisine should try the tuna tataki ginzina, seared tuna over shredded turnips with sesame avocado sauce. Reservation recommended for parties of six or more. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

KYOTO II
5608 Citrus Blvd., Harahan 818-0228 Diners in Harahan can get their raw fish fix at Kyoto II, where the chefs slice up a variety of rolls, sushi and nigiri. The beef teriyaki dinner is popular with diners who prefer turf to surf. Reservations accepted. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $$

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LA BELLA'S RESTAURANT & BAR
2219 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Kenner 466-4675; www.labellas.com Chef-owner Joey LaBella is known for providing food for the Masters golf tournament and catering for the Superdome and the krewes of Endymion and Bacchus. Try the eggplant pirogue: a hollowed-out eggplant deep fried and then filled with a shrimp, crab and crawfish cream sauce and served over a pasta. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

LA BOULANGERIE
625 St. Charles Ave. 569-1925; 3143 Ponce de Leon St. 940-0577; 4526 Magazine St. 269-3777 These three French bakeries make magical use of butter in their flaky croissants and delectable pastries. Freshly baked breads, like the olive fougasse, redolent of olive oil and rosemary, will undo anyone's Atkins plan in one whiff. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

LA CARRETA
108 N.W. Railroad Ave., Hammond (985) 419-9990; www.carretarestaurant.com La Carreta features authentic Mexican cuisine, fiesta-style patio dining and live music on weekends. Try the Alambres, chopped steak, onions and melted cheese served with flour tortillas and frijoles charros, or the tamales La Carreta -- two tamales wrapped in corn husks and served with enchilada sauce and a chile relleno. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

LA CASA GOMEZ
643 W. Causeway Approach, Mandeville (985) 624-8667 The 15-year-old La Casa Gomez moved into this much bigger Casa nearly a year ago, doubling its size. That's all the better to make room for the Mexican and Cuban food, from the sizzling fajitas (chicken and beef, shrimp and quesadilla) to the roast pork: pork well seasoned with Spanish seasoning and served with black beans, white rice and platanos. Reservations accepted. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. Credit cards. $

LA CHATELAINE
800 Iberville St. (Chateau Sonesta Hotel) 586-0800; www.sonesta.com/neworleans_chateau Diners find a quiet breakfast at this low-key hotel cafe just off Bourbon Street. The menu ranges from light pastries and fruit to substantial plates of eggs Pontchartrain with two poached eggs on an English muffin covered in shrimp, crabmeat, creamed spinach and Creole hollandaise sauce. Reservations accepted. Breakfast daily. Credit cards. $

LA COTE BRASSERIE
700 Tchoupitoulas St. (Renaissance Arts Hotel) 613-2350; www.lacotebrasserie.com Located in the hip, modern Renaissance Arts Hotel, La Cote Brasserie serves an eclectic menu. Start off with the foie gras and poached pears appetizer, and move on to the cedar plank-roasted lobster, served with red rice, baby vegetables and a basil butter emulsion. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

LA CREPE NANOU
1410 Robert St. 899-2670; www.lacrepenanou.com The art nouveau facade at Crepe Nanou signals the cozy, romantic French bistro within. The fondue appetizer is a must -- follow it up with Continental comfort food like a crepe Bourgignonne -- a slim pancake wrapped around tender beef tips in a red wine sauce. No reservations. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

LA CUISINE
225 W. Harrison Ave. 486-7664 Guests can't go wrong with softshell crab three ways topped with amandine, meuniere and Pontchartrain sauces. Brunch favorites include gourmet omelettes and local dishes such as grits and grillades. Reservations accepted. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $$

LA MACARENA PUPUSERIA AND RESTAURANT
4221 Williams Blvd., Kenner 464-4525 Try La Macarena's homemade traditional chicken flautas, topped with slaw, pico de gallo, salsa and cheese. Spanish albóndigas -- Spanish-style meatballs served with saffron rice, gravy, sweet fried plantains and homemade black beans -- are also a favorite. Bring your own bottle (for now). Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

LA MADELEINE
547 St. Ann St. 568-0073; 601 S. Carrollton Ave. 861-8662; 1325 St. Charles Ave. 410-8500; 3300 Severn Ave., Metairie 456-1624; 3434 Hwy. 190 (Albertson's Premier Shopping Center), Mandeville (985) 626-7004; 5171 Citrus Blvd., Jefferson 818-2450; www.lamadeleine.com Not fast food, but la cuisine rapide, this chain makes light and healthy fare with a French flair. The chicken cordon bleu dinner, served with garlic mashed potatoes and green beans, is a recent hit. Choose from a selection of baked goods, including the strawberry Napoleon, for dessert. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

LA MARQUISE PASTRY SHOP
625 Chartres St. 524-0420 La Marquise bakes light and fluffy pastries. For lunch, management recommends the signature La Marquise, an oversized croissant filled with roast beef, turkey and ham. Gumbo, red beans and rice and other traditional Cajun dishes are also available. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Cash and checks. $

LA PENICHE
1940 Dauphine St. 943-1460 With a breakfast menu served round the clock, La Peniche will be happy to cook its pecan, peanut butter and banana waffle for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The menu also boasts eggs Benedict with grilled tomatoes, or try the signature Kathryn burger with grilled ham, Swiss cheese and grilled onions. No reservations. Open 24 hours, except for 2 p.m. Tue. to 9 a.m. Thu. Credit cards. $

LA PETITE GROCERY
4238 Magazine St. 891-3377 As the name suggests, the restaurant is small and the setting intimate, but the atmosphere quickly becomes lively on Friday and Saturday nights. Although the menu changes to accommodate seasonal ingredients, the grilled veal flank steak is a standard favorite. It's served on a mushroom duxelle risotto with a truffle marrow demi reduction. Reservations recommended. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

LA PROVENCE
25020 Hwy. 190., Lacombe (985) 626-7662; www.laprovencerestaurant.com Get a whiff of the beef bourguignonne, a Burgundy-style beef stew, and you'll know there's a true Frenchman in the kitchen. But Chef Chris hasn't shunned local flavor: His Louisiana crawfish cakes are a delicious twist on the traditional crabcake. Reservations recommended. Dinner Wed.-Sun., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

LA RIVIERA
4506 Shores Drive, Metairie 888-6238; www.larivierarestaurant.com This Metairie restaurant serves four veal dishes including the popular panneed veal topped with jumbo lump crabmeat and a lemon butter sauce. The house specialty is crabmeat ravioli: ravioli stuffed with jumbo lump crabmeat topped with a white cream sauce and Parmigiano cheese. Reservation recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

LA SPIGA BAKERY 2
440 Chartres St. 949-2253 Devotees are used to tracking down La Spiga's pies and pastries at Crescent City Farmers Markets. For those who prefer a sit-down meal, the Faubourg Marigny retail location is now open for business three days a week. Sandwiches and homemade soups have been added to the lunch menu, and you'll love their angel food cake with fresh Louisiana strawberries. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Thu.-Sat. Cash and checks. $

LA THAI CUISINE 9
33 Metairie Road, Metairie 828-3089 Chef Merlin Chauvin's Maryland-style crabcake is prepared with jumbo lump crabmeat, baked in an oven with Japanese bread crumbs, and topped with extra jumbo lump crabmeat over a bed of sweet chile sauce. The dish comes with grilled asparagus and fresh sauteed vegetables. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri., dinner Sat. Credit cards. $$

LAGER'S INTERNATIONAL ALE HOUSE
3501 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 887-9923 With 75 beers on tap and a wood-paneled pub atmosphere, you might be surprised that Lager's offers an extensive menu featuring everything from wraps and salads to steaks and pasta dishes. Order the crawfish banditos appetizer or a portabella mushroom wrap, and wash it down with a cold pint of Kronenberg lager. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., dinner Sun. Credit cards. $$

LAKEVIEW HARBOR
911 Harrison Ave. 486-4887 Lakeview Harbor combines a busy bar with a kitchen that stays open for its hungry late-night crowd. Diners find a menu of classic burgers, steaks and pizzas, as well as daily specials such as red beans and rice. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

LAMA'S SEAFOOD RESTAURANT
7007 Read Lane 242-5656 Joe Lama aims to please with fresh seafood served up at fair prices. Stop by for hot boiled crawfish or the traditional seafood platter, or mix it up on Fridays with a new specialty seafood dish each week. Daily lunch specials priced less than $5 include red beans and rice. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. $

LANDRY'S RESTAURANT
789 Harrison Ave. 488-6496 The reasonable prices and family-friendly atmosphere keep the guests coming back to Landry's for seafood, daily lunch specials and a selection of home-cooked fare. Management recommends the grilled or fried chicken Parmesan, served over angel hair pasta with red or cream sauce. No reservations. Breakfast Sat., lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Thu.-Sat. Cash only. $

LAS PENITAS
4520 Freret St. 891-9557 Las Penitas combines popular Nicaraguan dishes with a few Mexican favorites. The recently expanded menu includes whole fried tilapia served with rice and beans and your choice of plantains or tortillas. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Mon.-Tue., Thu.-Fri. Credit cards. $

LAURENTINO'S RESTAURANT 4
410 Transcontinental Drive, Metairie 779-9393; www.laurentinos.com Xavier Laurentino has recently expanded his menu of tapas to include more than 50 favorite items priced from $1.50 to $4.95 apiece. From the entree menu, Xavier recommends the seafood zarzuela, a Spanish-style bouillabaisse, or the lobster paella, which must be ordered a day in advance. No reservations. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

LE BON TEMPS ROULE
4801 Magazine St. 897-3448 Le Bon Temps is a lively local two-room bar that stays open late and serves tasty food into the wee hours of the morning. The menu features chicken quesadillas, juicy burgers and other deliciously unhealthy snacks. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily, open 24 hours on Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $

LE CITRON BISTRO
1539 Religious St. 566-9051; lecitronbistro.com Located in a landmark Creole cottage, this Lower Garden District restaurant serves Creole cuisine with a few innovations. New menu options include rabbit in romesco sauce over angel hair pasta and escolar topped with fried oyster mushrooms and a meuniere sauce. Reservations required for parties of five or more. Dinner Wed.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

LE PARVENU RESTAURANT
509 Williams Blvd., Kenner 471-0534 In an old cottage hidden behind railroad tracks, diners enjoy Chef Dennis Hutley's innovative Creole cuisine. To celebrate its ninth birthday this April, Le Parvenu will release a summer special: A $28 4-course 'table d'hotes' menu and a choice of six bottles of wine for $9 apiece. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

LEBANON'S CAFE 1
500 S. Carrollton Ave. 862-6200 On a sunny day, Lebanon's is the perfect place to enjoy a light Mediterranean meal while dining at an outdoor table. The restaurant's interior is also spacious and colorfully decorated, and the menu offers a selection of dishes such as chicken and beef shawarmas, hummus and baklava. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

LEE'S HAMBURGERS 1
03 Schlief Drive, Belle Chasse 392-9922; 904 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 836-6804; 2100 Airline Drive, Kenner 472-0966; 4301 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 885-0110 You can get your burger craving squelched, and choose from hot dogs, chicken sandwiches, chili cheese fries or shakes. The Airline Drive location also serves daily lunch specials such as rib-eye steak or gumbo. The Schlief location is closed for renovations until summer. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Methods of payment vary by location. $

LEMON GRASS RESTAURANT
217 Camp St. (International House Hotel) 523-1200; www.lemongrassrest.com Chef Minh Bui's menu blends traditional Vietnamese ingredients with classic French flair and fresh Louisiana seafood. Appetizers of shrimp, pork, avocado and cilantro-filled summer rolls and crusted nut oysters with wasabi leek confit perfectly complement entrees of wok smoked salmon steak and a crawfish pasta with an Asian twist. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

LIBORIO CUBAN RESTAURANT
321 Magazine St. 581-9680 Go for Cuban classics such as the seafood paella at Liborio's, which comes with shrimp, fish, chicken, scallops and sausage in saffron rice and sweet plantains. Another house favorite is the Ropa Vieja, beef brisket stewed with onions, olive oil, tomatoes, and garlic and served with black beans and rice. Free live music on Fridays. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

LI'L DIZZY'S
1500 Esplanade Ave. 569-8997 Fried chicken fanatics who were wearing black armbands when the Bacquet family handed over its Riverbend location to Margaux's brightened up when the family opened Li'l Dizzy's. The menu also serves up a breakfast selection and the usual array of Bacquet-inspired soul and Creole creations. Reservations accepted. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $

L'IL RAY'S DINER AND BAR
133 N. Carrollton Ave. 309-8824 L'il Ray's is a retro-style diner that's sure to please with hearty fare served all day and night. A revised menu offers some new selections, such as the Roma omelette, stuffed with fresh spinach, mushrooms, onions, tomatoes, garlic, and feta cheese. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

LILETTE
3637 Magazine St. 895-1636 A contemporary French restaurant with a hint of New World Italian influence, Lilette has a flair for spicing up traditional dishes. Try the grilled hangar steak with fries and marrowed bordelaise sauce, or the potato-crusted black drum with mixed mushrooms, baby vegetables and beurre rouge. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

LITTLE TOKYO
590 Asbury Drive, Mandeville (985) 727-1532 Chef A.H. Yeoh boast a large selection of sushi to choose from (as many as 80 rolls, 20 sushi, 20 sashimi) and tries to come up with a new roll creation each week. One recent addition: The Burning Man Roll, with spicy tuna and tempura batter inside and pepper tuna and avocado outside. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

LITTLE TOKYO RESTAURANT
1521 N. Causeway Blvd., Metairie 831-6788 From tempura-battered beef to crunchy rolls, Little Tokyo's chefs bring all the delicious dishes of Japan to Metairie. Lunch and dinner specials are a bargain. Try the sushi combination lunch or the chicken teriyaki dinner. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $$

LITTLE TOKYO RESTAURANT PART II
3225 Williams Blvd., Kenner 443-7660 Paradise for diners who can never eat enough Japanese cuisine, Little Tokyo II offers an a la carte menu and a lunch buffet loaded with sushi, rolls, tempura-battered vegetables and hibachi-grilled steak and seafood. Reservations accepted for large parties. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $$

LIUZZA'S BY THE TRACK
1518 N. Lopez St. 943-8667; www.nola.com/sites/liuzzas With a gumbo of sausage, chicken, shrimp and oysters widely regarded as the best in the city, Liuzza's is an irresistible detour on the way to the Fair Grounds. The barbecue shrimp po-boy and the horseradish-spiked 'Breath Taking' roast beef po-boy are some of the most popular menu items. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

LIUZZA'S RESTAURANT & BAR INC.
3636 Bienville St. 482-9120 For 50 years, diners have packed this Mid-City haunt for the tasty fried seafood, plates of pasta and frosty mugs of beer. The Frenchuletta repackages the standard muffaletta filling on a po-boy loaf. Customers rave about the fried green tomatoes. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

THE LIVING ROOM STEAK AND LOBSTER HOUSE
2800 Magazine St. 324-9550 This rare surf-and-turf addition to the lower Garden District features the namesake steaks and lobsters, including the ambitious, 36-oz. porterhouse. Seafood, though, can come in such delicate packages as the tuna tartare (served in a martini glass). Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$$

LOGAN FARMS
3770 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 456-7311; metairie.loganfarms.com Logan Farms sells their dry-cured hams whole, while the deli keeps the lunch crowd happy with sandwiches layered with their signature meats and a hot line on the weekdays caters to the business crowd. New daily specials include grilled catfish with seafood stuffing and chicken Marsala. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

LOLA'S
3312 Esplanade Ave. 488-6946 The full rack of lamb chops served with basmati rice and fresh vegetables is a perennial best seller, and for good reason. The calamari salad is also delicious, and you can't go wrong with the daily fresh fish special. Lola's is strictly BYOB, so pick up a bottle of Rioja on the way over. No reservations. Dinner daily. Cash and checks. $$

LONE STAR STEAKHOUSE & SALOON
901 S. Clearview Pkwy., Metairie 736-0140; 1319 W. Esplanade Ave., Kenner 469-0404; www.lonestarsteakhouse.com This national chain boasts that along with a great steak, they serve up hearty portions of Texas hospitality. In addition to a selection of steaks, the menu offers a variety of seafood dishes such as lobster, salmon and shrimp. If you can't make up your mind, try the Texas Trio, a combination plate of grilled steak, smothered chicken and fried shrimp. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

LOUIS XVI RESTAURANT FRANCAIS
730 Bienville St. (St. Louis Hotel) 581-7000; www.louisxvi.com Guests lose their heads over the French fare and graceful table-side preparation at this lavish restaurant. The Poisson Louisiane, a fresh fish fillet topped with sauteed banana and fresh bell pepper, would satisfy the palate of a king. Ask for a recommendation from the extensive wine list. Reservations recommended. Breakfast and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

LOUISIANA BISTRO
4012 Ithaca St., Metairie, 525-3335 This contemporary Creole restaurant in Metairie is popular for its 'Creole surf and turf,' a seared filet topped with crawfish tail Scampi. Another favorite is the crab potpie, a puff pastry filled with different types of cheese, lump and claw crabmeat covered with a Mornay sauce. Reservations accepted. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Major credit cards. $$$

LOUISIANA GRILL
2223 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville (985) 727-5585; www.louisianagrill.com Seafood is the main attraction here, but burgers and steaks are also a good bet. Trout Myrtle is the house special: It's a fried whole speckled trout topped with a special Myrtle sauce made with lump crabmeat and crawfish and served with vegetables and rice. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $$

LOUISIANA HERITAGE CAFE & SCHOOL OF COOKING
321 N. Peters St. (Bienville House Hotel) 299-8800; www.laschoolofcooking.com This Cajun and Creole restaurant lives up to its name with a live cooking class by Chef Joseph Faroldi -- all courtesy of owner Tricia Rivers Smith, who opened the business in the space previously used for Gamay Bistro. Faroldi cooks daily between 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m., and private and group classes are available. Reservations accepted. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

LOUISIANA PIZZA KITCHEN
95 French Market Place 522-9500; 615 S. Carrollton Ave. 866-5900 Consider the chicken roulade, a grilled chicken breast stuffed with crawfish and andouille sausage, served with fettuccine in a tomato and basil cream sauce. LPK puts a spin on the classic ravioli with the artichoke ravioli, a ricotta cheese version in a pesto cream sauce with sun-dried tomatoes and artichokes and Parmesan cheese. Reservations for large parties only. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

LOUISIANA PURCHASE KITCHEN
8853 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (Westgate Shopping Center), Metairie 468-3663 This restaurant moved up to the front of the Westgate Shopping Center about eight months ago to further entice commuters along Veterans. They often pull over to sample regional favorites such as the jambalaya, oysters Bienville, seafood gumbos and barbecue shrimp. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat., lunch Mon. Credit cards. $

LOUISIANA STAR
409 N. Columbia St., Covington (985) 893-8873 Start with an appetizer of steamed mussels in spicy white wine cream sauce, accompanied by sweet potato fries. Move on to Poulet Roti, an herbed, marinated roasted half chicken served with mashed potatoes, caramelized cauliflower and tasso ham jus. Reservations accepted for groups of six or more. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

LUCKY'S BAR & GRILL
1627 St. Charles Ave. 523-6538 This laundromat-bar-restaurant is the most fun you've ever had during the spin cycle. The place is open 24 hours, so stop in any time for a burger, sandwich or a selection of bar munchies. Don't miss the weekend barbecue special: ribs or chicken served with baked beans and potato salad. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

LUCY'S RETIRED SURFERS BAR & RESTAURANT
701 Tchoupitoulas St. 523-8995; www.lucysretiredsurfers.com There may not be any waves, but Lucy's casual, beachy atmosphere is the next best thing for surfing enthusiasts and after-work revelers alike. Stop in for happy hour and stay for a burger, fajitas or fish tacos. The daily specials, such as grilled amberjack spinach salad, are also tempting. Reservations for large parties only. Lunch Mon.-Fri., brunch Sat.-Sun., dinner daily. Credit cards. $

LULU'S IN THE GARDEN
2203 St. Charles Ave., Garden District Hotel 586-9956; www.lulusinthegarden.com Using ingredients from the Crescent City Farmer's Market and the restaurant's own OK Farm, Chef Corbin Evans creates light and delicious meals in a quiet setting overlooking St. Charles Avenue. Try the roast duck with Satsuma-pomegranate glaze and mushroom wild rice crepe. Reservations accepted. Breakfast Mon.-Sat., lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Wed.-Sun., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

M

MADRID RESTAURANTE
2723 Roosevelt Blvd., Kenner 469-5599 This formal, white-tablecloth restaurant makes a shrimp and calamari paella cooked in calamari ink, as well as the more traditional paella Valencia full of chicken, sausage, calamari, shrimp and mussels. The wide selection of tapas ensures a taste of something new with each visit. Try the lobster-stuffed piquillo peppers or the mussels Madrid. Reservations accepted. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

MAGAZINE PO-BOY AND SANDWICH SHOP
2368 Magazine St. 522-3107 This casual sandwich joint sells every kind of po-boy available, but their hot plates are worth a try as well. For less than $6, take your pick of red beans and rice, hamburger steak, spaghetti with meatballs and more. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily, dinner Sat. Cash and checks. $

MALONEY'S RESTAURANT 5
000 Old Gentilly Road 942-2400; maloneysrestaurant.com Located inside the Big Easy Travel Plaza, Maloney's refuels travelers with reasonably priced all-you-can-eat buffets at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Try the daily specialty bottomless plate of barbecue ribs, or indulge in the seafood buffet on Fridays. The live jazz brunch on Sunday for $8.99 is a treat. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sun. Open 24 hours on Thu.-Sat. Credit cards. $

MAMA ROSA'S SLICE OF ITALY
616 N. Rampart St. 523-5546 Mama bakes a pizza just like they do in the old country, and she puts together a mean muffaletta. The Mama's Outrageous combines Canadian bacon, ham, provolone and mozzarella cheeses topped with homemade olive salad. Reservations recommended for large groups. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

MAMA'S TASTY FOODS
1641 Louisiana Ave. 899-6162 When Mama says it's tasty, you can take her word for it. Hungry patrons appreciate the late hours and a wide selection of po-boys, including trout, shrimp, sausage and meatball. Red beans and rice, fried chicken and skinless marinated chicken are old standards. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Cash only. $

MANDARIN HOUSE CHINESE BUFFET
1545 Lapalco Blvd., Harvey 263-5333; 3400 Holiday Drive, Metairie 352-5608 Mandarin House serves American and Chinese food buffet-style to hungry and budget-conscious residents. Populating the restaurant's many buffet lines are items like fried and barbecue chicken, baked salmon, fried rice, egg rolls, shrimp with broccoli and pepper steak. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

MANDE'S RESTURANT
340 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville (985) 626-9047 Late risers love Mande's, where breakfast favorites like eggs Sardou and eggs Benedict are served well into the lunch hour. For a real treat, try the Cajun Benedict with a crawfish patty on an English muffin covered with a poached egg and hollandaise sauce. Lunch specials, such as crawfish etouffee served over fried eggplant, are served daily. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Credit cards and checks. $

MANDICH RESTAURANT
3200 St. Claude Ave. 947-9553; www.mandich.net One of the kitchen's standards is trout Mandich, a broiled fillet of speckled trout with a crisp crust served with butter and lemon. In the summertime, when crab prices go down, Mandich also tops its signature dish with lump crabmeat. Also good bets are oysters bordelaise, shrimp stuffed with crabmeat and roast pork loin. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

MANDINA'S
3800 Canal St. 482-9179 For three-quarters of a century, Mandina's no-nonsense servers have welcomed neighbors and families with their generous plates of stuffed shrimp, fried catfish, onion rings, and spaghetti with meatballs. The red beans with Italian sausage is perfect, especially with a draft beer. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Cash only. $$

MANGO HOUSE
8115 Jeannette St. 862-5848; www.mangohouserestaurant.com Start out evenings at the Mango House with a special rum punch, baskets of sweet potato chips and the savory ground-pork empanada appetizer. For a main course, order the double-cut grilled pork chop marinated in Jamaican jerk seasoning or Gulf fish steamed in banana leaves with ginger and garlic. No reservations. Dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

MANUEL'S HOT TAMALES 4
709 S. Carrollton Ave. 482-6616 Dining is strictly al fresco at Manuel's famous tamale joint; the only available seats are picnic tables in front. Most orders are to-go anyway -- fresh tacos, enchiladas and moist corn tamales with chili, cheese and Manuel's special spicy sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

MAPLE CAFE
541 Oaklawn Drive, Metairie 833-8877 The owners of the Maple Street Cafe have expanded to Metairie with this restaurant that features a nice choice of appetizers, salads, soups, sandwiches, pastas and entrees. For dinner, consider the stuffed shrimp in phyllo dough: fresh Gulf shrimp and a seafood stuffing wrapped in phyllo dough topped with white wine lemon butter. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., dinner Sun. Credit cards. $$

MAPLE STREET CAFE
7623 Maple St. 314-9003 Many diners opt for the salads and sandwiches, but the Duck Jameel, a pepper-crusted duck breast with blueberry cognac sauce, is an excellent option for guests seeking something more elaborate. Reservations recommended for dinner. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., dinner Sun. Credit cards. $$

MARGAUX'S
8400 Oak St. 865-1559; www.margauxsonoak.com This restaurant, formerly the local favorite Zachary's, has been owned by Margaux and Stephanie Newman since last summer. So far, the sisters Newman have kept Zachary's popular Creole lunch buffet and brunch. Their brand-new dinner menu puts a new spin on New Orleans basics like redfish, shrimp, crawfish and oysters. Reservations recommended. Breakfast Mon.-Sat., lunch buffet and dinner Tue.-Sat., brunch Sun. Reservations recommended. Credit cards. $$

THE MARIGNY BRASSERIE
640 Frenchmen St. 945-4472; www.cafemarigny.com Award-winning Chef Scott Varnedoe heads up the kitchen at this swank Faubourg Marigny bistro. His creations include the cast-iron seared beef tenderloin set atop an andouille caramelized red onion and goat cheese cheesecake. Weekday happy hour begins at 4 p.m. Reservations accepted. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily, brunch Sat.-Sun. brunch. Credit cards. $$

MARISOL RESTAURANT
437 Esplanade Ave. 943-1912; www.marisolrestaurant.com Owners Janis Vazquez and Chef Peter Vazquez adapt their menu constantly to use each season's best vegetables. Get a taste of the deft Vazquez touch with Marisol's Tapas Happy Hour (Wednesday through Friday, 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.), with its crab-and-cheese toasts, chorizo-stuffed dates in bacon, and sauteed shrimp in spicy tomato sauce, and octopus stewed in paprika. Jazz brunch Sunday morning. Reservations recommended. Lunch Wed.-Sun. Major cards. $$$

MARK TWAIN'S PIZZA LANDING
2035 Metairie Road, Metairie 832-8032; www.marktwainspizza.com The best order here is one of Mark Twain's hand-tossed pizzas, such as the Mysterious Stranger (spinach, feta, choice of vegetables) or the Huck Finn (mushrooms, green peppers, red onions, olives). Also good is Aunt Polly's salad, with cucumbers, green olives and Genoa salami, with a red-wine vinaigrette dressing. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $

THE MARKET CAFE
1000 Decatur St. 527-5000 The Market Cafe has been family owned and operated since 1982, with an all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet, piled-high po-boys, and fresh seafood. The Jazz Cats combo and drummer Joe Gunn's quintet play in the Market's patios every day of the week, one on each side of the kitchen. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

MARTIN WINE CELLAR
714 Elmeer Ave., Metairie 896-7300; 3827 Baronne St. 899-7411; www.martinwine.com Martin's delis serve up sandwiches of all sorts -- the Baronne Beast is topped with rare roast beef, ham, lettuce, tomato, and mayo, served hot or cold on French. Or pair an inexpensive wine by the glass with the Sena Salad -- grilled chicken, golden raisins, toasted pecans, pepper jelly vinaigrette and blue cheese. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards and checks. $

MARTINIQUE BISTRO
5908 Magazine St. 891-8495 Aromatic spices fill the air in this intimate dining room, which serves up French cuisine blended with Caribbean flavors. This spring's new menu features roasted maple-leaf duck breast and grazed leg quarter with a port-and-dried Bing cherry reduction. Or try the Gulf shrimp entree, sauteed with sun-dried papaya and curry. Reservations recommended. Dinner nightly. Credit cards. $$

MAT & NADDIE'S
937 Leonidas St. 861-9600 In addition to their popular grilled oyster appetizer, Mat & Naddie's is known for their chicken waterzooi, a Belgium stew of organic boneless chicken breast, braised leeks, baby carrots and jasmine rice finished with a liaison base. A nightly wine dinner pairs three courses with complementary wines. Reservations recommended. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

MAURICE FRENCH PASTRIES
1114 S. Carrollton Ave. 866-7052; 3501 Hessmer Ave., Metairie 885-1526; www.mauricefrenchpastries.com Chef Jean-Luc Albin creates addictive French cakes and desserts. Try the St. Honore, a crown-shaped cream puffcake flavored with vanilla, chocolate, Grand Marnier or Amaretto -- it's named for the patron saint of bakers. Or order a fresh fruit cake, a yellow butter cake filled with seasonal fresh fruit and iced with Bavarian cream topped with fruit and toasted almonds. No reservations. Open daily. Credit cards. $

MAXIMO'S ITALIAN GRILL
1117 Decatur St. 586-8883; www.maximositaliangrill.com This French Quarter staple is a favorite of musicians, who often can be found in its booths and tables, sitting underneath the restaurant's collection of black-and-white Herman Leonard photographs of jazz greats. Best bets are housemade ravioli with four cheeses and the fired-roasted fish of the day. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

MCALISTER'S DELI
2701 Airline Drive, Metairie 830-4030; www.mcalistersdeli.com With more than 27 types of sandwiches, McAlister's Deli offers nearly anything you might want between two slices of bread. Special offerings for the tykes include grilled cheese, peanut butter and jelly, or a small cheese pizza -- none for more than $3 and each accompanied by Lay's chips and a bag of Teddy Grahams. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

MCNULTY'S BITTER END
5129 Canal Blvd. 483-7930 Located near New Orleans' historic cemeteries, McNulty's offers a place to relax with 'spirits and food for the soul.' Enjoy a 'banger' (British slang for a sausage) or a meat pie, while talking with friends or waiting your turn at the pool tables. A steak sandwich and cold beer on tap is a favorite combination here. No reservations. Dinner and late-night Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

MEAUXBAR BISTRO
942 N. Rampart St. 569-9979 Asian flavors can be found in appetizers such as the Paradise spring rolls filled with jumbo shrimp and pork. Contemporary French entrees include the tarragon- and thyme-roasted chicken, both with mashed potatoes and French beans. Or try the duck confit, with garlic sauteed potatoes, mixed greens and a warm sherry vinaigrette. Reservations accepted. Dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

MELIUS BAR & CAFE
1701 Lake Ave., Metairie 828-9446 Breakfast includes omelettes and other traditional fare. Try $10 Steak Night beginning at 6 p.m. Saturday, a 10-oz. filet with garlic mashed potatoes and salad. A management favorite is the 'savory' hamburger steak with your choice of vegetable, salad and creamed mashed potatoes. No reservations. Breakfast Mon.-Fri., lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

MESSINA'S RESTAURANT
2717 Williams Blvd., Kenner, 469-7373; messinas-restaurant.com Messina's specializes in New Orleans Italian cuisine, with dishes such as veal Spedine -- veal wrapped in an eggplant dressing. Seafood is also an important part of Messina's, with seafood platters, a raw oyster bar, and barbecue baked oysters over angel hair pasta. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

METRY CAFE & BAR
601 Metairie Road, Metairie 834-1212 Owner Frank Panno invites you to try the red beans and rice, served with chicken, pork chops or smoked sausage. Or order the 'Metry Special,' hot roast beef with grilled ham and melted Swiss on French bread. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Cash only. $

MI MAMACITA'S
2345 Florida St., Mandeville, (985) 674-1400 Mi Mamacita's specializes in New Mexican cuisine, featuring many southwestern favorites, but with less cumin and an emphasis on green and red chile sauces. The chicken wrap appetizer makes an impression with a seasoned chicken breast, cheese, green chile sauce and onions, all fried and served with chili con queso sauce or ranch dressing. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards and checks. $

MICHAEL'S MID-CITY GRILL
4139 Canal St. 486-8200 Michael's cooks hearty American favorites. The burgers are popular, but guests also devour orders of ribs, seafood, po-boys and chicken tenders. Ask about the daily specials. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

MICHAUL'S LIVE CAJUN MUSIC RESTAURANT
840 St. Charles Ave. 522-5517; www.michauls.com Live music and free dance lessons draw crowds, but so do the entrees. This spring, the management recommends the Zydeco Jambalaya, featuring spicy shrimp, chicken and sausage. Or order the chicken Michaul, a boneless breast of chicken with seafood dressing topped with Swiss au gratin. Reservations recommended. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

MID-CITY DELI & CATERING 4
107 S. Carrollton Ave. 486-8889 There's a wide-ranging menu with reasonable prices at this Mid-City deli. For lunch, there are Italian and Greek dishes, daily specials, a seafood platter priced less than $9, and po-boys that hold their own with the best in town. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

MID CITY LANES ROCK 'N' BOWL 4
133 S. Carrollton Ave. 482-3133; www.rocknbowl.com New Orleans icon John Blancher's bowling alley/dance hall gets festive this spring with two management favorites -- crawfish quesadillas and the 'Super Bowl,' a hearty gumbo of andouille sausage, turkey, shrimp and oysters. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Thu.-Sat. Credit cards. $

MIDDENDORF'S SEAFOOD RESTAURANT
Highway 51 North (exit 15 off I-55 North), Manchac (985) 386-6666 Catfish connoisseurs come from around the world for Middendorf's razor-thin fried fillets. The crawfish cakes or barbecue oysters, broiled and served with a spicy herb sauce, are recommended appetizers. Other seafood fare includes a piping hot oyster stew and softshell crabs. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

MIDI
614 Canal St. (JW Marriott Hotel) 527-6712; www.midirestaurant.com Dishes like the baked Bourbon Street grouper coated in crushed pecans or the crown point beef filet stuffed with Boursin cheese and wrapped in apple-smoked bacon blend French cuisine with Louisiana influences and ingredients. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

MIKE ANDERSON'S SEAFOOD RESTAURANT
#1 Poydras St., Suite 163 (Riverwalk Food Court) 522-7727l 215 Bourbon St. 524-3884; www.mikeandersons.com Both locations serve The Howard, a seasonal fish marinated in olive oil, herbs and seasonings, baked with the scales still on the fish to retain its natural flavor. Or try the Guitreau, a grilled fish filleted with sautéed crawfish, shrimp, mushrooms and white wine-onion butter and spices. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

MIKE SERIO'S PO-BOYS & DELI 1
33 St. Charles Ave. 523-2668 A classic sports deli, Mike's invites fans of all foods to try the popular grilled Reuben sandwich, fresh-cooked corned beef, covered with sauerkraut and Thousand Island dressing. Or order the fried oysters, rolled in batter then sizzled until golden brown. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

MIKIMOTO
3301 S. Carrollton Ave. 488-1881 This Uptown sushi spot is best known for an assortment of raw fish over rice for only 99 cents. Not listed on the menu are the chef's specials for spring, which include: the mango roll, fresh mango with snow crab and fresh salmon; the hot mustard roll, with fresh salmon and shrimp in a hot mustard sauce; the blue crabmeat roll; and the samurai roll. Reservations accepted. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

MILANO'S PIZZA
3002 Cleary Ave, Metairie 780-7500 Milano's is known for gourmet pizzas such as the Cajun pizza, with shrimp, crawfish, andouille and chicken. Seafood also figures prominently in the garlic shrimp pizza, while the popular spinach pizza features spinach, a garlic butter sauce, mushrooms, onion, tomato and feta cheese. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $$

MIMI'S ITALIAN & SEAFOOD RESTAURANT
10160 Jefferson Hwy., River Ridge 737-6464 Management recommends the 8-oz. certified Angus beef filet, grilled in a cast-iron skillet with garlic-parsley butter, baby green beans and Gruyere cheese fries. Seafood-lovers are invited to try Victoria's jumbo shrimp with lemon sauce over angel hair pasta. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

MIYAKO JAPANESE SUSHI BAR & HIBACHI
1403 St. Charles Ave. 410-9997; 3837 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 779-6475 The artistic chefs at Miyako entreat hungry diners with carefully prepared California rolls, fresh sashimi and nigiri. The kitchen turns out hibachi-grilled entrees and other authentic Japanese dishes. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

MO'S CHALET
3201 Houma Blvd., Metairie 780-2961; www.moschalet.com Mo's features live music playing big band, oldies and classics from the 1940s to the present. While you're reliving your high school soundtrack, grab a hamburger, steak or seafood platter. No reservations. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

MO'S PIZZA
1112 Avenue H., Westwego 341-9650 Mo's churns out pizzas, lasagna, spaghetti, muffalettas and Italian salads. Try the veal parmigiana special on Thursdays. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

MOE'S SOUTHWEST GRILL
69292 Highway 21, Suite 300, Covington (985) 893-9895; 61123 Airport Road, Suite 5, Slidell (985) 643-6639; www.moes.com This chain of restaurants specializes in fresh, convenient Tex-Mex cuisine for dine-in or take-out. Burritos such as the Homewrecker -- packed with your choice of meat, rice, beans, cheese, salsa, guacamole, soul cream and lettuce -- get a lot of attention. The Fat Sam fajitas have similar ingredients and are also a popular choice. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

MONA LISA RESTAURANT
1212 Royal St. 522-6746 Try the scrumptious Caesar salad with homemade croutons and Caesar dressing. Top it off with the spinach lasagna and one of Mona Lisa's specialty pizzas. Reservations recommended. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

MONA'S CAFE
504 Frenchmen St. 949-4115; 3149 Calhoun St. 861-2124; 3901 Banks St. 482-7743; 4126 Magazine St. 894-9800; www.shopno/monas.com Mona's is a city staple for affordable Middle Eastern food. Feel confident ordering the gyros, tabouleh, baba ghanoush and falafel sandwiches, as well as new sauteed vegetable dishes and eggplant sandwiches for vegetarians. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

MOONLIGHT CAFE
1921 Sophie Wright Place 522-7313 Moonlight Cafe will satisfy your munchies with tuna, salmon and shrimp kebabs, plus the Moonburger with mozzarella, sauteed mushrooms and grilled onions. Happy hour drink specials from midnight to 3 a.m. No reservations. Delivery until 3 a.m. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards and checks. $

MORNING CALL COFFEE STAND
3325 Severn Ave., Metairie 885-4068; 4436 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (Clearview Shopping Center), Metairie 779-5348; www.morningcallcoffeestand.com Morning Call has been serving cafe au lait and beignets since 1870. But if you're going to treat yourself to the fluffy pastries heaped in powdered sugary goodness, do yourself a favor and don't wear black clothes. Open 24 hours at the Severn Avenue location; breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night daily at the Clearview location. Cash only. $

MORTON'S OF CHICAGO
365 Canal St. (The Shops at Canal Place) 566-0221; www.mortons.com Try the Cajun rib-eye, marinated for 60 hours, then cooked to order. The double-cut filet mignon is served with sauce bearnaise. Finish the evening with the painfully luscious Godiva chocolate cake. Reservations recomended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

MORTON'S SEAFOOD RESTAURANT & BAR
702 Water St., Madisonville (985) 845-4970; www.mortonsseafood.com The cypress-lined patio on the Tchefuncte River is a peaceful place to enjoy the shrimp and crabmeat bisque or the mirliton and shrimp casserole. If that doesn't float your boat, there are a myriad of daily specials to choose from. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Wed.-Mon. Credit cards and checks. $$

MOSCA'S
4137 W. Hwy. 90, Avondale 436-9942 or 436-8950 VIP's and locals alike flock to Mosca's for renowned Italian fare served family style: chicken a la grande and platters of spaghetti are large and meant to be passed around the table. No reservations. Dinner Tue.-Sat. Cash only. $$$

MOTHER CLUCKER'S 1
35 Carondelet St. 558-0099 Mother Clucker's doesn't ruffle feathers when it comes to its chicken tenders, chicken wings and salads: they're very popular with the CBD lunch crowd. A variety of sandwiches and wraps fill out the menu. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri. Credit cards and checks. $

MOTHER'S
401 Poydras St. 523-9656; www.mothersrestaurant.net Get your New Orleans favorites here: roast beef po-boys, ham po-boys, and jambalaya. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

MOTHER'S RESTAURANT 1
31 Huey P Long Ave., Gretna 368-8678 Even though it's only open during the business hours, Mother's sees a lot of business thanks to its location next to the Gretna courthouse. Breakfast includes a variety of three-egg omelettes, including the Greek variety with feta cheese. Get them with browns or grits and make it a sunny morning. Reservation accepted for parties of six or more. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $

MR. B'S BISTRO
201 Royal St. 523-2078; www.mrbsbistro.com Get the high class versions of New Orleans favorites: New Orleans barbecue shrimp, Gumbo Ya Ya with chicken and andouille, and pasta jambalaya. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Mon.-Sun., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

MR. ED'S SEAFOOD AND ITALIAN RESTAURANT
1001 Live Oak St., Metairie 838-0022 Eclectic is the name of the game at Mr. Ed's, where paneed trout topped with crabmeat, green onions and mushrooms are served side by side with Italian food and nice, fried chicken. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $$

MR. JOHN'S STEAK AND SEAFOOD HOUSE
2111 St. Charles Ave. (Avenue Plaza Hotel) 679-7697; www.mrjohnssteakhouse.com Mr. John's is proud to offer USDA Prime beef, as well as such delectables as cornmeal-crusted redfish and center-cut filet Oscar, both with crabmeat topping. Reservations recommended. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri., brunch Sat.-Sun., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

MR. ROO'S DELI & CATERING
3501 Severn Ave., Metairie 885-4010 The club sandwich sports turkey, ham, lettuce and American cheese. The club salad consists of a bed of iceberg lettuce dressed with chicken strips, cheddar, bacon and tomatoes. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

MR. SAM'S DELI
3531 Jefferson Hwy., Harahan 837-6300 Mr. Sam's Deli offers diners the staples of New Orleans home cooking. In addition to stuffed po-boys and salads with grilled or fried chicken or fried shrimp, Mr. Sam's is known for its red beans, white beans and chicken fried steak. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Cash and checks. $

MUCHO GUSTO
1107 Decatur St. (inside Molly's at the Market) 299-0673 Molly's at the Market soothes patrons hunger with Mexican munchies: jibaritos, mole enchiladas, chimichangas, fish tacos, sopes and nachos. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $

MULATE'S THE ORIGINAL CAJUN RESTAURANT
201 Julia St. 522-1492 Live music plays every day starting at 7, while the kitchen offers up blackened red fish and fried alligator. Customer favorites also include zydeco gumbo, catfish Mulate's, crabmeat au gratin and homemade bread pudding. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

MULLIGAN'S TAVERNE
3535 Severn Ave., Suite 10, Metairie 888-5858 Karaoke takes center stage on Friday and Saturday nights, and patrons scarf down the 1/3-lb. burger in between snickering at the entertainment. Happy hour specials Monday through Friday from 4-7 p.m. and Saturday from 8-10 p.m. provide the courage. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

MURIEL'S JACKSON SQUARE
801 Chartres St. 568-1885; www.muriels.com This rambling Jackson Square restaurant sports a bordello-themed room upstairs and sets an honorary table for the ghost of Claude Trepagnier downstairs. Chef Erik Veney serves up goat cheese and crawfish crepes and pan-seared, pecan-crusted drum. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

N

NACHO MAMA'S MEXICAN GRILL 7
21 Common St. 558-0830 Nacho Mama's in the CBD is no longer associated with the Uptown establishment, but they're still a staple for the downtown lunch rush, serving burritos, tacos, quesadillas and nachos up fast. No reservations. Lunch weekdays. Credit cards and checks. $

NACHO MAMA'S MEXICAN GRILL
3242 Magazine St. 899-0031 Owner Shane Finkelstein has sold the downtown Nacho Mama's to concentrate on the Uptown sit-down dining experience. Fajitas, chimichangas and the 'Tijuana lift my skirt' burrito are supplemented by happy hour and daily drink specials. Reservations recommended for large parties. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

NAPOLEON HOUSE BAR AND CAFE
500 Chartres St. 524-9752 Had Napoleon escaped and accepted the offer of living at this famed French Quarter establishment, he may have dined on the muffaletta, served hot with ham, salami, melted Provolone cheese and homemade olive salad. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

NARDO'S TRATTORIA
6078 Laurel St. 895-9441; www.nardostrattoria.com Located inside the former Norby's spot, Nardo's offers an assortment of seafood dishes and entrees ranging from three-cheese calzones to osso buco. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

NEW CITY DINER
1340 Poydras St. 561-0061 Spice up your workday with lunch fare like the Thai baked chicken with zucchini and cabbage. Want something heartier? Try the beef brisket smothered in gravy over rice. No reservations. Delivery available for large orders. Breakfast and lunch weekdays. Credit cards and checks. $

NEW ORLEANS CAKE CAFE
307 Exchange Alley 525-2600 Besides desserts, this French Quarter bakery does light breakfasts and lunch, with omelettes, fresh-baked croissants and pastries the biggest crowd pleasers. For lunch, there are fresh soups daily, salads and sandwiches including a roasted chicken salad sandwich. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch daily. Checks. $

NEW ORLEANS FOOD AND SPIRITS
208 Lee Lane, Covington (298) 875-0432; 210 Hammond Hwy., Metairie 828-2220; 2330 Lapalco Blvd., Harvey 362-0800 Several locations please diners with cheesy crawfish egg roll to start, followed by the softshell Lafayette: softshell crab dressed with shrimp sauce. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $$

NEW ORLEANS GRILL
300 Gravier St. (Windsor Court Hotel) 523-6000; www.windsorcourthotel.com British-trained chef Jonathan Wright serves up a salad of fennel and shaved hearts of palm dressed with truffle oil and a roasted elk loin served with pumpkin and lemon puree. Help yourself to the establishment's massive wine cellar. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

NEW ORLEANS HAMBURGER AND SEAFOOD CO.
817 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 837-8580; 1005 S. Clearview Pkwy., Jefferson 734-1122; 6920 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 455-1272; www.nohsc.com On-the-go snackers pick up the One Handed Barbecue Shrimp po-boy, but leisurely diners love the crawfish and eggplant Napoleon. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

NEW YORK BAGEL CO.
3923 Magazine St. 371-5982 Uptowners will be thrilled with this new addition, which features the Brooklyn Bomber (smoked chicken breast, havarti cheese, spicy mayo and tomatoes on a choice of 19 different bagels) or the New Yorker (Nova lox, cream cheese, finely shredded red onions and capers with the same bagel choice). No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

NEW YORK PIZZA
208 N. Carrollton Ave. 482-2376 New York Pizza's signatures include the Bronx, dripping with pepperoni, Canadian bacon, sausage and salami. Pick up the Snooie bread to feast on first: an Italian bun covered with melted Swiss, mozzarella, oregano and tomatoes. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

NICK'S ON CARROLLTON
1120 S. Carrollton Ave. 566-1414 The Carrollton consists of a fried chicken breast sandwich dripping with grilled onions and smothered in cheddar cheese. Burgers are big and juicy and served with spicy fries. No reservations. Lunch daily, brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards and checks. $

NINJA
8433 Oak St. 866-1119 The popular box sushi is your choice of fish layered with snow crab, rice, avocado and green onions. The dinner for two includes tempura, beef and chicken teriyaki, gyoza dumplings, edamame, seaweed salad and a choice of two rolls. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

NIRVANA INDIAN CUISINE
4308 Magazine St. 894-9797 The dhanya ghost is a leg of lamb stewed with coriander and spices. Vegetarians find safe haven with the tamatar and capsicum: tomatoes stuffed with bell peppers, vegetables and homemade cheese. Reservations recommended for parties of five or more. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

NOLA
534 St. Louis St. 522-6652; www.emerils.com Anything under the wing of Emeril Lagasse is guaranteed to be divine. Try the cedar plank fish rubbed with citrus and horseradish or the roasted duck with a caramel whiskey glace. Reservations highly recommended. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner nightly. Credit cards. $$$

NOODLE BAR & TEA SHOP
702 Decatur St., 571-8928 Snack on the miso soup or go for a heftier meal of soba noodles, tempura shrimp or pad Thai. Sip a tea that's straight from China. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

NUVOLARI'S
246 Gerard St., Mandeville (985) 626-5619; www.nuvolaris.com Within the New York-style dining room, start with the homemade crabmeat ravioli, proceed to the veal Parmesan Florentine, and if you still have room, finish with the homemade white callebaut cheesecake. Reservations recommended for parties of four or more. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

O

OCEANA GRILL
739 Conti St. 525-6002; www. oceanagrill.com Oceana grill offers barbecue shrimp, oysters on the half-shell and blackened catfish with crawfish cream sauce. Not in the mood for seafood? There's a steak topped with buttered garlic sauce. Reservations accepted and recommended for large parties. Breakfast Fri.-Sun., lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

O'FLAHERTY'S IRISH PUB
514 Toulouse St. 529-1317; www.oflahertysirishpub.com Come here for the Guinness, stay for the three rooms of Irish folk music, and consider the Irish beef stew and Connermara shepherd's pie as a bonus. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

O'HENRY'S FOOD & SPIRITS
301 Baronne St. 522-5242; 634 S. Carrollton Ave. 866-9741; 710 Terry Pkwy., Gretna 433-4111; 1375 Gause Blvd., Slidell (985) 646-1600; 3020 Severn Ave., Metairie 888-9383; 8859 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 461-9840; www.ohenrys.com O'Henry's is family-friendly, serving burgers, pasta and Creole-style dishes. Try the crawfish Monica or the chicken Tchoupitoulas with crawfish cream sauce and andouille dressing. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

OKI NAGO
2712 N. Arnoult Road, Metairie 780-8588; www.okinago.com Oki Nago sports an all you can eat buffet laden with sushi, hibachi dishes, teriyaki, fried tempura, oysters and salad fixings. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $$

OLD COFFEE POT
714 St. Peter St. 524-3500 Breakfast at the Coffee Pot is a happy dose of hot biscuits and gravy or grits and grillades. For lunch, try the blackened redfish, shrimp Creole, or a hearty seafood platter. Reservations recommended for large parties. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

OLDE NAWLINS COOKERY
729 Conti St. 529-3663; www.oldenawlinscookery.com' Olde Nawlins presents barbecue shrimp 'cookery style,' as well as a long variety of menu items like turtle soup, blackened redfish and crawfish etouffee. Reservations accepted. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

OLIVE BRANCH CAFE
1995 Barataria Blvd., Marrero 348-2008; 5163 Gen. DeGaulle Drive 393-1107; www.olivebranch.cafe.com Billing itself 'THE gourmet pizza place' on the West Bank, the Olive Branch Cafe makes its mark with pizzas like the muffaletta, topped with salami, ham, imported olives and mozzarella, and the shrimp pesto pizza, topped with shrimp, pesto sauce, artichokes, tomatoes, mozzarella and provolone. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

OLIVIER'S CREOLE RESTAURANT 2
04 Decatur St. 525-7734 The management at Olivier's recommends the Creole rabbit, which is braised and simmered in roux gravy and served with sage seasoned oyster dressing. The gumbo sampler is a must try as well. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

THE ORIGINAL FRENCH MARKET RESTAURANT AND BAR
1001 Decatur St. 525-7879; www.frenchmarketrestaurant.com Seafood the likes of crawfish, king crabs, lake crabs, lobster etouffee, crabcakes and chargrilled oysters seduce French Market wanderers in off the street. Reservations accepted for parties of five or more. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

THE ORIGINAL PIERRE MASPERO'S RESTAURANT 4
40 Chartres St. 534-8990 All day long, Pierre Maspero's satisfies French Quarter appetites. Bloody Mary and eggs for breakfast, muffaletta and beer for lunch, and a dinner of baked crawfish bread covered in crawfish tails and a mushroom cream sauce will carry you through the day. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

ORLEANS CAFE
135 Decatur St. 581-1136 The management recommends the tuna Marigny with crawfish tails in Crystal cream sauce. Or try the Red Fish Americaine: blackened red fish in a lovely lobster cream sauce. Reservations accepted. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, late night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

ORLEANS GRAPEVINE
720 Orleans Ave. 523-1930; www.orleansgrapevine.com The cup runneth over at Orleans Grapevine, with 60 wines offered by the glass and 150 by the bottle. They also serve sophisticated dishes like Boursin-stuffed chicken breast on a ragout of black-eyed peas, tasso, mushroom and spinach. Pour yourself into the Godiva chocolate brownie sandwich, with a goat cheese ice cream center. No reservations. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

OSAKA JAPANESE CUISINE AND SUSHI BAR
792 E. I-10 Service Road, Slidell (985) 643-9276 Osaka serves up a healthy dose of hibachi items as well as funky sushi rolls, like the deep-fried 911 roll. Reservations accepted on weekdays only. Lunch and dinner served daily. Credit cards. $$

OSCAR'S
2027 Metairie Road, Metairie 831-9540 Oscar's is your typical bar and grill, with the requisite dart boards, pool tables and big screen TVs tuned to sports. They happily serve traditional bar food -- hamburgers, baked potatoes and sandwiches -- to keep your beer company. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

OUTBACK STEAKHOUSE
60 Park Place Drive, Covington (985) 893-0505; 830 E. I-10 Service Road, Slidell (985) 649-4329; 1501 Barataria Blvd., Marrero 341-5544; 2746 Severn Ave., Metairie 455-6850; www.outback.com Aussie steaks, lamb, ribs and chicken go national with this popular chain steakhouse. Most popular of all is the massive Blooming Onion fried appetizer, hands down. Reservations accepted. Lunch Sun., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

P

PALACE CAFE
605 Canal St. 523-1661; www.palacecafe.com Try chef Darin Nesbit's barbecue duck breast with hickory-smoked leg smothered in a chicory barbecue sauce. Or take a gander at the paneed Mississippi rabbit stuffed with bacon and Gruyere cheese. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily, jazz brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$$

PALM COURT JAZZ CAFE
1204 Decatur St. 525-0200; www.palmcourtcafe.com Get out of the heat to hear some cool jazz, all the while dining on crawfish Nantua: crawfish in a flamed brandy sauce, or shrimp ambrosia in Pernod and fennel sauce on a bed of spinach pasta. Reservations recommended. Dinner Wed.-Sun. Credit cards and checks. $$

PALMETTO'S
1901 Bayou Lane, Slidell (985) 643-0050; www.palmettos.net Live music jams on some Wednesdays and Saturdays, and diners usually go for the seafood gumbo, this variation a combination of crab, shrimp and oysters, or the eggplant Palmetto, where fried eggplant is doused in crab and shrimp sauce. Reservations accepted. Dinner Tue.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

PAMPY'S CREOLE KITCHEN
2005 N. Broad St. 949-7970; www.pampyscreolekitchen.com Chef Austin Leslie mans the kitchen, deep frying Cornish hens and injecting them with Cajun spices. The fried chicken is anything but conventional. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri., dinner Sat. Credit cards. $$

PANASIA THAI RESTAURANT
500 St. Charles Ave. (Best Western Parc St. Charles) 299-8004 The chicken coconut soup has a cream base with lime, lemon grass, galangal and mushroom spicing up the mix. Reservations recommended. Breakfast and dinner Mon.-Sat., lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $$

PAPANINI'S COFFEE BISTRO
235 Derbigny St., 371-5015 This coffee shop has been a favorite destination for those with business at the Gretna courthouse with fresh pastries, muffins and breakfast wraps in the morning. At lunch, pressed panini sandwiches are the house specialty. No reservations. Delivery available. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Cash and checks. $

PARADISE CAFE
3717 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 888-4141 A combo gift shop and cafe, Paradise Cafe serves soups, gumbos and salads with excellent homemade dressings. Particularly good is the Paradise Club: turkey, bacon, lettuce and tomato. No reservations. Breakfast daily, lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

PARASOL'S RESTAURANT AND BAR
2533 Constance St. 899-2054; www.parasols.com Known for its roast beef po-boys, this Irish Channel institution also serves deep-fried pickles, oyster po-boys and gravy cheese fries -- not to mention a good pint of Guinness. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

PARKWAY BAKERY & TAVERN 5
38 Hagan Ave. 482-3047 Now here's a place the family can hang out. Available for parties and hosting free concerts every Saturday at 7 p.m., Parkway makes an exemplary roast beef po-boy. Try the oyster and shrimp po-boys for a change. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

PASCAL'S MANALE
1838 Napoleon Ave. 895-4877 The original barbecue shrimp is extra-large shrimp prepared in a spicy, tangy barbecue sauce. An oyster bar, homemade pastas and crab-stuffed trout are customer favorites. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

PATIO GRILL & HIGHWATER BAR
2221 Lakeshore Drive, Mandeville (985) 626-9190; www.thepatiogrill.com Choose from a variety of pizzas, steaks, seafood, 4- or 8-oz. burgers, wraps, pastas and salads. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

PATTON'S RESTAURANT AT THE HISTORIC SALMEN-FRITCHIE HOUSE
127 Cleveland Ave., Slidell (866) 6-PATTON; www.pattonsrestaurant.com Try the Thomas, which is pan seared and topped with a crabmeat lemon wine sauce. Feast on the Jim Beam Drunk'n Duck: a duck breast served with caramelized onions, mushroom savory bread pudding and Jim Beam sauce. Reservations recommended. Dinner Thu.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards and checks. $$

PAUL'S CAFE
210 E. Pine St., Ponchatoula (985) 386-9581 Paul is proud of his cafe's 'good old home cooking,' like eggs, biscuits and grits in the morning and homemade onion rings, overstuffed shrimp po-boys and red beans and rice for lunch. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Credit cards and checks. $

THE PEARL RESTAURANT AND OYSTER BAR
119 St. Charles Ave. 525-2901 You can infer from the name (and the oyster mosaic on the sidewalk outside) that oysters are the main attraction here. But let the seafood gumbo and crawfish etouffee have a fair stab as well. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

THE PELICAN CLUB RESTAURANT & BAR
615 Bienville St./312 Exchange Alley 523-1504; www.pelicanclub.com The management suggests the filet mignon with shitake mushrooms and a Medeira sauce, or the Trio of Duckling: a combo of Peking duck leg confit, Chinese barbecue duck and Maigret duck breast served with honey and Louisiana navel orange sauce. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

PEPPER'S RESTAURANT 4
416 Magazine St. 897-1940 Pepper's goes beyond ordinary bar food with the eggplant and shrimp trox clair, the restaurant's top seller. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

PERE ANTOINE
741 Royal St. 581-4478 Try the Seafood Pirogue, a casserole of crabmeat, scallops and shrimp tossed with rice, white wine and a touch of spinach. It's topped off with a cheesy cream sauce. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

PERISTYLE
1041 Dumaine St. 593-9535 Try the pork chop, slow-grilled on tasso wild rice pilaf. It's topped with a port wine and sultana reduction. Also highly recommended is the boneless duck breast, grilled with seared foie gras and served with duck crackling sweet potato hash in a stratified foie gras berry reduction. Reservations recommended. Lunch Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

PETE'S PUB
444 St. Charles Ave. (Hotel Inter-Continental) 585-5401; www.new-orleans.intercontinental.com Escape the complexity with Pete's Pub's simple favorites: pasta, pizzas, chicken tenders, chicken fajitas and specialty burgers. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards and checks. $$

PETUNIA'S PLACE 2
020 Hwy. 59, Mandeville (985) 674-3436 With a name like 'Petunia's,' images of that Porky's porcine partner come to mind, and sure enough she graces the menu here. Speaking of pork, the barbecue pork ribs are slow-cooked and topped with barbecue sauce and served with homemade potato salad or French fries. Also consider the daily specials, po-boys and hand-cut onion rings. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

PETUNIA'S RESTAURANT
817 St. Louis St. 522-6440; www.petuniasrestaurant.com Petunia's crepes are saintly, literally, since they're all named after saints. The St. Edith is stuffed with cheddar, mushrooms, onions, tomatoes and ham and covered with hollandaise. The dessert crepes are, well, heavenly. Reservations recommended for dinner. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

P.F. CHANG'S CHINA BISTRO 3
301 Veteran's Memorial Blvd. (Lakeside Shopping Center), Metairie 828-5288; www.pfchangs.com The management reports that the chicken lettuce wraps are P.F. Chang's signature appetizer, while the pork flank in Sichuan sauce is a great entree. Choose from 50 wines by the glass. Limited number of reservations available. Lunch and dinner daily, late night on weekends. Credit cards. $$

PHILIP CHAN'S ASIAN CAJUN BISTRO
301 Decatur St. 522-4964 To the tune of live piano music at 7 p.m., Atlanta's Chef Philip Chan serves up contemporary Louisiana cuisine with an Asian flair. Management recommends the Asian Cajun Stuffed Chicken, with eggplant, cheese and crawfish. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

PHILIP'S BAR AND RESTAURANT
733 Cherokee St., 865-1155 This Uptown college bar and restaurant has finger food for those who want a snack with a beer, but has made its name for its pizzas. With more than 20 items to choose from, building your own pizza is popular, but the chicken pesto and Thai chicken pizzas stay in demand. No reservations. Dinner Mon.-Sun. Credit cards. $

PHILLY'S STEAKHOUSE
4639 Westbank Expwy., Marrero 328-2222 Management recommends the Hawaiian Delight: chicken, shrimp, bell peppers and onions served with a sweet-and-sour sauce. The Lean and Mean combines chicken, shrimp, smoked hot sausage, onions and cheese. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Sun.-Fri. Credit cards and checks. $

PHO TAU BAY
113C Westbank Expwy., Gretna 368-9846; 216 N. Carrollton Ave. 485-7687; 1565 Tulane Ave. 524-4669; 3116 Arnoult Road, Metairie 780-1063 Start off with raw spring rolls, veggie or shrimp, with a hoisin-peanut sauce. Vietnamese po-boys are growing in popularity. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

PHOENECIA
4201 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (Independence Mall), Metairie 889-9950 A surprising amount of seafood can be found amongst the hummus, falafel, stuffed grape leaves, tabbouleh, vegetarian platters and lamb kebabs. Reservations recommended on weekends. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

PICCADILLY CAFETERIA
533 Lapalco Blvd., Gretna 391-1063; 2222 Clearview Pkwy., Suite 107, Metairie 454-6271; 2609 Jefferson Hwy., Jefferson 834-2695; 3200 Paris Road, Chalmette 271-6860; 3800 S. Carrollton Ave. 482-0775; 4150 Gen. De Gaulle Drive, Algiers 392-7030; 4403 Chef Menteur Hwy. 282-7198; 8908 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 467-4224: www.piccadilly.com When they want food quick, and a lot of it, people flock to Piccadilly Cafeteria for the comfort food they grew up with. Fried chicken and liver in onion sauce are popular. No reservations. Breakfast Sat.-Sun. at select locations, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

PIZZA FIESTA
240 Decatur St., 581-6969 Antoine Davis has been cooking pizza for more than two decades, the last seven at Pizza Fiesta located inside Club Decatur. Davis' latest offering to check out is the seafood pizza, which includes shrimp, crabmeat, bell peppers and onions atop mozzarella cheese. The calzones are also recommended. No reservations. Delivery to downtown. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

PIZZA FLORENCE
4445 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 888-7888 Pizza Florence offers a variety of pizzas, pastas, sandwiches and salads, such as the supreme pizza and grilled chicken salad. Management recommends the Mediterranean lavash wraps. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

PJ'S COFFEE AND TEA
106 Reilly Center (Tulane) 862-8063; 143 Elk Place 585-1775; 154 E. Hall Ave., Slidell (985) 643-9040; 224 W. Thomas St., Hammond (225) 381-2495; 644 Camp St. 529-3658; 800 Metairie Road, Metairie 828-1460; 945 Magazine St. (National D-Day Museum) 525-0255; 1532 Robert E. Lee Blvd. 283-6686; 1545 Lapalco Blvd., Harvey 368-6600; 1600 N. Hwy. 190, Covington (985) 871-9326; 1808 B W. Airline Hwy., LaPlace (985) 359-7575; 2963 Hwy. 190, Mandeville (985) 674-1565; 3700 Orleans Ave. (American Can Co.) 934-1192; 4100 Gen. DeGaulle Drive 392-4280; 4436 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (Clearview Shopping Center), Metairie 885-4543; 4480 Hwy. 22, Mandeville (985) 624-9015; 5300 Tchoupitoulas St. 895-2007; 5432 Magazine St. 895-0273; 7624 Maple St. 866-7031; 10158 Jefferson Hwy., River Ridge 738-779761103 Airport Road, Slidell (985) 847-9474; 70456 Hwy. 21, Covington (985) 875-7894; New Orleans International Airport (West Terminal and Terminal B), Kenner 466-2103; www.pjscoffee.com You'll find students studying, couples hanging out and plenty of pastries to go with your cup of coffee. Look for PJ's outside of New Orleans as they go national. No reservations. Menu and hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

PLANC COFFEE AND TEA
1827 Hickory Ave., River Ridge 738-2220; www.planc.com Planc has gotten in on the wireless coffee-shop craze, so bring your laptop and catch up on your email while binging on Orange Julius, salads, soups, sandwiches and pastries. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

PLANTATION COFFEEHOUSE
5555 Canal Blvd. 482-3164 Plantation Coffeehouse boasts that its hummus is 'the best in the city.' Also, try the Greek salad of mixed greens with feta cheese, red onions, kalamata olives, cherry tomatoes and sun-dried tomatoes. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $

POINTE DELI
5050 Williams Blvd. (Treasure Chest Casino), Kenner 443-8000; www.treasurechest.com Treasure Chest Casino has expanded to the deli case: breakfast sandwiches, pastries, hot and cold sandwiches, burgers, po-boys, soups, salads, and coffees and desserts. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

POLYNESIAN JOE'S
869 Magazine St. 525-9301; www.polyjoes.com Play a game of volleyball while you wait on your drink, mozzarella sticks, chicken wings and charbroiled burgers served on 5-inch buns with lettuce, tomato, pickles and onions. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

PONTCHARTRAIN CAFE
2031 St. Charles Ave. (Pontchartrain Hotel) 524-0581; www.pontchartrainhotel.com The blackened trout Pontchartrain covered in crabmeat is popular, but it's the Mile High Pie, an 8-inch stack of Neopolitan ice cream in a pie crust with layers of peppermint ice cream and meringue on the top, that everyone really anticipates. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

PONTCHARTRAIN GRILLE
5050 Williams Blvd. (Treasure Chest Casino), Kenner 443-8000; www.treasurechest.com Treasure Chest Casino's a la carte restaurant has a rotating menu, but if you see the crabmeat au gratin (so popular as an appetizer that Chefs Mikko Gruenzner and Keston Mimmitt made is an entree), make sure to snatch it up. Reservations recommended. Dinner Wed.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

PONTCHARTRAIN POINT CAFE
8536 Pontchartrain Blvd. 282-4233; www.pontchartrainpoint.com Management crows about the fresh boiled seafood, black and blue tuna salad, and firecracker po-boys. Reservations accepted for parties of 6 or more. Lunch and dinner daily, breakfast Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

THE PORT HOLE RESTAURANT
4406 Pontchartrain Drive, Slidell (985) 643-1419 Monday night features an all-you-can-eat snow crab special, while lobster is center stage Tuesday through Thursday nights at this Slidell seafood haven. The seafood platter is a lot to handle and features softshell crab for an extra $6. Reservations accepted. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

PORT OF CALL
838 Esplanade Ave. 523-0120; www.portofcallneworleans.com Be prepared to stand in line on the sidewalk with tourists and locals alike, who come for the much lauded burgers, the super-stacked baked potatoes and the pizzas. Reservations accepted. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

POYDRAS DINER
1555 Poydras St. (Exxon Building) 568-0733 Regulars grab the shrimp topped with Creole sauce and the stuffed chicken with eggplant at lunchtime. Lenten crowds went for fish on Friday. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $

THE PRALINE CONNECTION
542 Frenchmen St. 943-3934; www.pralineconnection.com The Praline Connection serves 'soul food, honey,' like fried pickles, fried chicken, smothered pork chops or chicken livers. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

THE PRALINE CONNECTION GOSPEL & BLUES HALL
907 S. Peters St. 523-3973; www.pralineconnection.com Sunday mornings get rocking with a full gospel choir at brunch. Lift your spirits with gumbo, red beans, greens, fried chicken and stuffed bell peppers. Reservations recommended for parties of 10 or more and for Sunday brunch. Lunch Mon.-Fri., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

PUCCINO'S
17th Street and Severn Avenue, Metairie 835-3151; 3128 Magazine St. 894-8898; www.lovepuccinos.com If you're looking to supplement your Italian-style coffee, try the grilled campagnola: grilled chicken breast sandwich with roasted red peppers, provolone and pesto mayonnaise. Reservations available for special events. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

PUPUSERIA DIVINO CORAZON
2300 Belle Chase Hwy., Gretna 368-5724 Try the pupusas: thin grilled cakes filled with pork, cheese or onions. Also popular is the faro del pacifico platter: papusa, chicken tamale, meat pie and sides of cabbage salad and rice. Reservations accepted for parties of six or more. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

PURPLE ROSES
1116 Tulane Ave. 566-0950 Purple Roses kept the Lenten crowd satisfied with its seafood platter special at lunch, while the crawfish fried rice is also popular. Lunch features entrees such as Kung Pao chicken or shrimp with broccoli, plus rice, chow mein and a drink. The pho, or soup, choices include a rice noodle sauce, fresh herbs and vegetables. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Cash only. $

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QUARTER SCENE RESTAURANT
900 Dumaine St. 522-6533 Tennessee Williams was a famous former customer of Quarter Scene, which has new hours, from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Try the Caribbean Belgian waffle topped with mixed fruit for breakfast, and the pecan crusted catfish for dinner. Reservations recommended for parties of six or more Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

QUARTER VIEW
613 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie 887-3456 Popular among patrons is the fried seafood platter and the trout stuffed with crabmeat dressing. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tuesday through Sunday. Credit cards. $

QUIZNO'S
308 St. Charles Ave. 371-5955; 339 Baronne St. 581-1735; 817 W. Esplanade Ave., Kenner 466-9195; 1170 Terry Pkwy., Terrytown 394-3808; 1400 Poydras St. 598-4330; 1801 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey 368-7839; 2315 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Kenner 461-5607; 3200 Severn Ave., Suite 106, Metairie 454-9892; 4021 Behrman Place, Suite G 362-0261; 7105 Jefferson Hwy., Harahan 737-2588; www.quiznos.com Quizno's delivers hot subs and provides a variety of salads that can be all veggie or have meat added. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

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R&O PIZZA PLACE
216 Hammond Hwy., Metairie 831-1248 R&O's pizza crusts are pretty special, and so are the muffalettas. Try the stuffed artichokes, Italian salads, seafood dishes and the roast beef po-boy. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Wed.-Mon. Credit cards. $$

RADOSTA'S
249 Aris Ave., Metairie 831-1537 Radosta's butcher roasts and slices the meat for their roast beef po-boy. Specialty po-boys like the Joan's Special with grilled shrimp, herbs and spices and the hamburger po-boy with fresh ground meat also satisfy connoisseurs of our city's favorite local sandwich. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Fri. Credit cards. $

RAG'S TOO OLD FASHIONED PO-BOYS
103 W. 30th Ave., Covington (985) 892-7895; www.ragspoboys.com Rag's covers all the bases when it comes to traditional po-boys; shrimp, roast beef and oyster are all top choices, along with signature po-boys such as the Herbie: roast beef, ham and Swiss cheese. Try the buffet, which during the week offers fried chicken, country fried steak and more, and on weekends goes with fried oysters, crawfish, crab and the like. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sun. Credit cards. $

RAGUSA'S SICILIAN DELICATESSEN
3363 Severn Ave., Metairie 454-2723 This Italian deli, with its 'old country meets Crescent City' flavors, now stays open for dinner. The artichoke bread, a French loaf stuffed with artichokes and three kinds of cheese, the eggplant Parmesan sandwich, and the signature muffalettas are all tasty treats any hour of the day. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

RAINEY'S RESTAURANT & CATERERS 90
1 Vallette St. 368-1564 There's a new menu daily at this Algiers lunch spot. There's always some kind of beans -- red beans, butter beans -- served with pork chops or fried chicken, and there's fried catfish daily. Oxtails are always in demand, and Friday is seafood day. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Cash or checks. $

RAISING CANE'S 1
270 N. Hwy. 190, Covington 985-809-0250; 1654 Gause Blvd., Slidell 985-405-1423; 1735 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey 297-1622; 4036 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 297-1633; 919 S. Clearview Pkwy., Jefferson 216-2424; www.raisingcanes.com This Baton Rouge-based chain is popping up all over south Louisiana and Mississippi, built on a popularity that is perhaps best explained in Raising Cane's mantra: 'We have only one love: chicken fingers.' Find the fried goodness in everything from sandwiches to tailgate-party sized boxes. Favorite sides are French fries and coleslaw. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. $

RALPH & KACOO'S THE SEAFOOD RESTAURANT
519 Toulouse St. 522-5226; www.ralphandkacoos.com This family-friendly locale in the French Quarter can prepare a seafood platter fried, broiled or blackened. Management recommends the Ruby, a seasonal fish stuffed with crabmeat dressing and topped with hollandaise sauce and crabmeat. A new lunch menu has just been introduced. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

RALPH'S ON THE PARK
900 City Park Ave. 488-1000; www.ralphsonthepark.com Renowned chef Gerard Marais offers the freshest selections from his garden as featured ingredients. While options change with the seasons and availability, the restaurant has developed tried-and-true favorites. The grilled herb-crusted lamb chops feature tender domestic lamb chops, grilled with a mustard-herb crust and served with a natural sauce, satin potato and wilted spinach. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat., dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

RASCAL'S DELI 1
400 Poydras St. 522-1787 Everyday at Rascal's you can order the seafood platter, which combines fish, shrimp and oysters along with French fries and a salad, for $6.95. Breakfast sticks to the essentials: eggs, grits, sausage, and of course coffee. No reservations. Delivery available for large orders. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

RASPUTIN
600 St. Charles Ave. 561-9261; www.doylerestaurantgroup.com Vodka is the drink of choice at this Russian-themed restaurant. The bar stocks more than 100 varieties from around the world to complement the caviar and tapas offerings. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

THE RED EYE GRILL
852 S. Peters St. 593-9393; www.redeyegrill.net Billed as 'the last place you want to be,' the Red Eye's location and late hours make it a convenient spot for a post-concert burger or a sandwich of grilled yellowfin tuna flavored with a secret seasoning and a special sauce. Jalapeno poppers and mozzarella sticks also make tasty late-night snacks and be sure to check out the weekly specials. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night Mon.-Sat., dinner and late-night Sun. Credit cards. $

RED FISH GRILL
115 Bourbon St. 598-1200; www.redfishgrill.com Red Fish Grill brings you a number of dishes revolving around one of Louisiana's signature catches. A top redfish choice here comes hickory-grilled and served with potatoes and crabmeat in a lemon butter. Order oysters raw, barbecue, baked or fried. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

RED MAPLE
1036 Lafayette St., Gretna 367-0935; www.theredmaple.com This 41-year-old West Bank dining hot spot features contemporary New Orleans cuisine, steaks and seafood, fish and lobster entrees along with favorites such as boiled beef brisket and the Red Maple bread pudding with rum sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Wed.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

RED PALACE CHINESE RESTAURANT
1025 Westbank Expwy., Harvey 366-7071 The menu here offers family-style dinners, plus a number of beef, seafood, chicken and pork dishes. The staff recommends the softshell crab in crawfish sauce and the Atkins-friendly catfish fillets, steamed and glazed with a ginger-soy reduction. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. $$

RED STAR CHINESE
8330 Earhart Blvd. 861-1933 Red Star serves remixed renditions of classic dishes. A fiery interpretation of Gen. Tso's chicken and spicy crispy shrimp are the specialties here, and egg rolls or an order of shrimp fried rice can be added to any entree. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $

REGINELLI'S PIZZERIA
741 State St. 899-1414; 817 W. Esplanade Ave., Kenner 712-6868; 874 Harrison Ave. 488-0133; 3244 Magazine St. 895-7272; 5608 Citrus Blvd., Harahan 818-0111; www.reginellis.com The menu at Reginelli's is getting a facelift with new items like a ham and brie pita with sundried fruit chutney. Diners will still be able to recognize classics like specialty pizzas topped with shrimp, pesto sauce, mozzarella, red onions, kalamata olives, roasted red peppers and feta. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $

RENDON INN
4501 Eve St. 822-9858 Check in at the Rendon Inn for a platter of the house-smoked barbecue brisket and pulled pork served with sides of baked beans and potato salad. Friday is gumbo night, and the management claims to serve one of the best bowls in town. Reservations accepted for large parties. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $

RENE BISTROT
817 Common St. (Renaissance Pere Marquette Hotel) 412-2580; www.renebistrot.com Chef Rene Bajeux's updated menu might include bouillabaisse, a rotisserie roasted duck with vinegar and honey glaze or the Saint Jacques, a dish of sea scallops with orange, fennel and black olive salad in a basil vinaigrette. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

RESTAURANT AUGUST
301 Tchoupitoulas St. 299-9777; www.rest-august.com It would be difficult to find a more celebrated chef over the past three years than Restaurant August's John Besh. You can taste the reasons why in everything from the gnocci, crab and truffle appetizer to the tasting menu that features the tortelli of lobster with asparagus, sweet peas and meyer lemon. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

RESTAURANT CUVEE
322 Magazine St. 587-9001; www.restaurantcuvee.com A knowledgeable staff and Chef Bob Iacovone's creativity in the kitchen make a meal at Cuvee memorable. For an entree, management recommends the Steen's cane syrup cured duck breast with whole confit leg accompanied by seared Hudson Valley foie gras with pear glace. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. and some Sun. Credit cards. $$$

RESTAURANT CYPRESS
4426 Transcontinental Drive, Metairie 885-6885 The crabcakes are always in demand here, with two crabcakes sauteed and topped with jumbo lump crabmeat, served with a champagne beurre blanc and a side of asparagus. Reservations recommended. Lunch Thu.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

RESTAURANT DES FAMILLES
7163 Barataria Blvd., Crown Point 689-7834 A glass-walled dining room lets guests take in views of the swamp as they eat orders of softshell crab Foster, a lightly battered and fried crab topped with green onions, artichoke hearts and mushrooms in a buttery wine sauce. Pasta Lafitte, angel hair pasta tossed with crabmeat and shrimp in a spicy cream sauce, is also worth the trip. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat., brunch and dinner Sun. Credit cards. $$

RIB ROOM
621 St. Louis St. 529-7045; www.ribroom.net The Rib Room dramatically roasts meats and seafood on an imported rotisserie located in the dining room. The spit-roasted rack of lamb comes with a rosemary and roasted garlic sauce, while the roasted shrimp is served with lemon butter and mushroom raviolis. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, champagne jazz brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

RICCOBONO'S PANOLA STREET CAFE
7801 Panola St. 314-1810 A pleasant neighborhood cafe that makes a famous eggs Benedict, a fine eggs Pontchartrain and a popular rendition of Tex-Mex huevos rancheros. The kitchen also serves plain and buckwheat pancakes and a crabcake Benedict with two crabcakes topped with hollandaise sauce. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Credit cards. $

RICCOBONO'S PEPPERMILL RESTAURANT
3524 Severn Ave., Metairie 455-2266 This family-friendly locale in the French Quarter can prepare a seafood platter fried, broiled or blackened. Management recommends the Ruby, a seasonal fish stuffed with crabmeat dressing and topped with hollandaise sauce and crabmeat. A new, lower-priced lunch menu has just been introduced. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

RIOMAR
800 S. Peters St. 525-3474; www.riomarseafood.com Chef Adolfo Garcia focuses on Mediterranean-influenced recipes prepared with fresh seafood, like the pan-seared tuna wrapped in Spanish Serrano ham and finished with a romesco sauce. At lunch, the menu focuses on tapas, like shrimp sauteed in garlic wine sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

RIP'S ON THE LAKE
1917 Lakeshore Drive, Mandeville (985) 727-2829 This seafood joint offers all the traditional platters like stuffed and softshell crab with French fries and features fried green tomatoes topped with shrimp remoulade as one of its appetizers. Sunday breakfast brings out the eggs Benedict and Florentine, with pancakes and waffles, too. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Wed.-Mon., breakfast Sun. Credit cards. $$

RISTORANTE CARMELO
541 Decatur St. 586-1414; www.ristorantecarmelo.com This restaurant makes a spicy lobster fra diavolo in red sauce over linguine and an authentic veal sorentino, a dish of sauteed white veal, eggplant, prosciutto and mozzarella in a touch of tomato sauce. Owner Carmelo Chirico was born in southern Italy, so he knows the cuisine of the Old World firsthand. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

RISTORANTE DA PIERO
401 Williams Blvd., Kenner 469-8585 Guests are serenaded nightly by an opera singer while dining on Romagnia regional specialties like filetto al pepe verde, medallions of beef served with green peppercorn sauce and pasta. Seasonal specials take advantage of the freshest regional produce and seafood. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Sun., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $$

RISTORANTE DEL PORTO
205 N. New Hampshire St., Covington (985) 875-1006 The approach to Tuscan fare of husband-and-wife team of David and Torre Solazzo includes the use of farmers' market produce and homemade cheese and breads. Try the homemade gnocchi, prepared with potatoes, flour and cheese and folded with a butter-poached Gulf shrimp. Reservations required. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Fri., dinner Sat. Credit cards. $$

RISTORANTE FILIPPO
1917 Ridgelake Drive, Metairie 835-4008 Chef Philip Gagliano keeps it simple with Italian fare that can't go wrong. He notes the veal marsala as his personal favorite. The menu also includes fresh fish, chops, chicken, steaks and a selection of Californian and Italian wines. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

RISTORANTE LA RIVIERA
4506 Shores Drive, Metairie 888-6238; www.larivierarestaurant.com Seafood risotto and lump crabmeat-stuffed ravioli topped with a rich white sauce are specialties in Chef Aldo Marcone's repertoire of classic Italian cuisine. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

RIVER 127'
100 Iberville St. (Wyndham New Orleans at Canal Place, 11th floor) 553-5082; www.wyndham.com Look down on the world below while enjoying an order of shrimp Grande Isle, battered gulf shrimp in garlic parsley and lemon garlic sauce, or a few Barataria Bay crabcakes seasoned with fresh herbs and finished with lemon caper butter. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

RIVER'S EDGE RESTAURANT
801 Decatur St. 525-4478 Diners who like variety appreciate the daily specials, homemade soup of the day and the River's Edge sampler with chicken gumbo, shrimp Creole, red beans, jambalaya and bread pudding. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

RIVERSHACK TAVERN
3449 River Road, Jefferson 837-7118/834-4938 The bar stools here have two legs and most wear pants and shoes. The whimsically decorated shack serves fried green tomatoes, alligator pizza and specials like chicken Kiev every night until midnight. The atmosphere gets rowdy Saturday night with free live music. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

RIVERSIDE BAR & GRILL
708 Water St., Madisonville (985) 845-3731 This seafood restaurant specializes in boiled crawfish and not much else. Come for the food and full bar, stay for the live bands, karaoke and ladies' nights. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

ROADHOUSE GRILL
5131 Lapalco Blvd., Marrero 341-3636; www.roadhousegrill.com Munch on a bucket of free peanuts while perusing the menu of bacon-wrapped shrimp appetizers, the new baby back ribs and the signature Roadie, a 13-oz. sirloin marinated in Jim Beam bourbon sauce and served with sizzling Cajun-seasoned onion rings. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ROBERT'S FRESH MARKET CAFE & BAKERY
1325 Annunciation St. 524-6431 Shoppers discover gourmet treats at this grocery store cafe. Why buy ingredients and cook, when you could take home fried chicken with three-cheese macaroni, jerk pork chops with zydeco rice or Creole crawfish etouffee? No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

ROBIN'S ON CANAL
2501 Canal St., 821-0999 Try the cottage special, which includes pancakes, eggs, meat and choice of side, at this full-service sit-down restaurant. Also popular are the house omelette with everything in it and a side of hash browns or the daily specials like red beans and rice. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Credit cards. $

THE ROCK
5209 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie 885-3762 A solid place for tangy barbecue shrimp, fresh-cut fillets and a constantly updated specials board. All desserts are homemade, so don't have a meal without one. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ROCK-N-SAKE BAR & SUSHI
823 Fulton St. 581-7253; www.rocknsake.com The hip urban decor and rock 'n' roll energy set this place apart from other sushi shops. Sample creative combinations like the Hawaii 5-0 filled with fried coconut shrimp, cream cheese and mango slices. Reservations recommended for parties of 10 or more. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner nightly, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

ROCKY & CARLO'S
613 W. St. Bernard Hwy., Chalmette 279-8323 Out in 'Da Parish' Rocky & Carlo's dishes up overwhelming plates of veal cutlets, baked macaroni and fried seafood fit for a champ. Open late daily for those who need a roast beef sandwich before bedtime. Reservations accepted. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Cash only. $

ROCKY'S OLD NEW ORLEANS BAR & PIZZA JOINT
3222 Magazine St. 891-5152 Known for gourmet pizzas like the Magazine topped with pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms and tasso ham on white or wheat crust, this funky pizzeria also makes killer salads and sandwiches. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ROLYPOLY SANDWICHES
701 Poydras (One Shell Square) 561-9800; 5409 Tchoupitoulas St. 891-8373; www.rolypoly.com The management recommends the Sante Fe Chicken: melted jack, onion, tomato, ranch and a side of salsa grilled golden brown. Try the Philly Melt: roast beef, melted jack and cheddar, onion, mushroom, green pepper, grilled (again) and served with a ranch BBQ sauce. No reservations. Delivery available. Hours vary by location. Credit cards and checks. $

ROMAN PIZZA
7329 Cohn St. 866-1166; www.eatromanpizza.com Roman Pizza has built a devoted clientele on the merit of its homemade dough, which forms the base for any pizza you want done your way. There are a number of popular salads for starters (or for entire meals), such as the Italian salad -- piled high with olives, cheese, pepperoni, red onions and green peppers. No reservations. Delivery and pick-up only. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

ROMANO'S MACARONI GRILL
3410 Hwy. 190, Mandeville (985) 727-1998; www.macaronigrill.com A variety of northern Italian dishes are the draw here, with a menu that changes monthly. The current menu includes Penne Rustica, which is baked in Romano's wood-burning oven for an extra rich taste. It features shrimp, smoked prosciutto and chicken drenched in a cheese sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

ROSIE LEA'S BUBBLE TEA CAFE
7638 Maple St. 861-4450 Bubble tea is a blend of sweet tea (choice of ceylon, green or jasmine), milk and tapioca pearls. At Rosie Lea's, a multitude of flavors and fruits can be added for taste, including almond, lychee, pear, avocado and kiwi just to name a few. Regular coffee (locally roasted) and tea also available along with an assortment of pastries and bagels. No reservations. Open daily. Credit cards. $

ROYAL BLEND COFFEE & TEA HOUSE
204 Metairie Road, Metairie 835-7779; 222 Carondelet St. 529-2005; 621 Royal St. 523-2716; www.royalblendcoffee.com Savor a cup of joe with an Executive Club layered with turkey, ham, American and Swiss cheese, mayo, Dijon mustard and homemade honey mustard between two slices of seven-grain bread. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat, brunch Sun. at Metairie location. Credit cards. $

RUE DE LA COURSE COFFEEHOUSE
401 Carondelet St. 586-0401; 1140 S. Carrollton Ave. 861-4343; 1500 Magazine St. 529-1455; 3121 Magazine St. 899-0242 Rue offers specialty espresso drinks, sandwiches and pastries. On one of the typical New Orleans hot days, try the iced caffe mocha, which combines espresso, chocolate milk and chocolate froth and tops it with whipped cream and cocoa or cinnamon. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Cash only. $

RUSSELL'S MARINA GRILL 8
555 Pontchartrain Blvd. 282-9999/282-9980 Russell's serves breakfast all day and into the night, for those of you with the post-partying comfort munchies. Otherwise, try any of the recently added wraps sandwiches, or the highly recommended fried onion mum. Chase it all down with the Big Al's Bloody Mary. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

RUSSELL'S SHORT STOP PO-BOYS
119 Transcontinental Drive, Metairie 885-4572 What says classic New Orleans more than po-boys and gumbo? Russell says not much, offering classic fare like roast beef or meatball po-boys and two types of gumbo. Try the new po-boy finger sandwiches, perfect for a light lunch. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

RUTH'S CHRIS STEAK HOUSE
711 N. Broad St. 486-0810; 3633 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 888-3600; www.ruthschris.com Here, the filet is the most tender cut of corn-fed Midwestern beef broiled to perfection. Not a steak fan? Try the barbecue shrimp, sauteed New Orleans style in reduced white wine, butter, garlic and spices. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri. and Sun., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

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SAIA'S ON THE LAKE
200 Hammond Hwy., Metairie 831-5700 Sal Saia mixes up prime steaks and seafood that makes the mouth water. Management recommends the seafood-stuffed eggplant boats. The 'drunken' shrimp are fresh Gulf shrimp sauteed in a lemon-vodka cream sauce with capers, garlic and chopped Roma tomatoes, all served over penne pasta. No reservations. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

SAKE CAFE
4201 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 779-7253; 817 W. Esplanade Ave., Kenner 468-8829 This sushi bistro proves it's not short on inspiration with maki like the Rocky II roll: shrimp tempura, snow crab and avocado wrapped in a soybean sheet. If you're not in the mood for raw fish, the pan-seared Chilean sea bass comes with scallops and a Japanese orange miso sauce. Reservations accepted, recommended on weekends at Metairie location. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SAKE CAFE UPTOWN
2830 Magazine St. 894-0033; www.sakecafeuptown.com Sake Cafe Uptown offers a sushi/Panasian menu as unique as its atmosphere. If you like it spicy, check out the Akita snapper, a deep-fried fillet served with asparagus in a chile lime miso sauce. For a new twist on shrimp, try the Kuruma jumbo shrimp stuffed with snow crab and topped with a peanut wasabi sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SAL AND SAM'S
4300 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 885-5566 Sal and Sam's prides itself on its steaks and osso buco: veal shanks marinated in a marinara sauce. Live piano jazz courtesy of Joey Arndt is a feature on weekends, and some dishes are prepared tableside, including Caesar salad, steak Diane and bananas Foster. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

SAL'S SEAFOOD
1512 Barataria Blvd., Marrero 341-8112 Sal offers up seafood pretty much any way you like it, but you can supplement the experience with stuffed artichokes, a delicious roast beef sandwich and, of course, gumbo. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat., takeout only on Sun. Credit cards. $

SALT 'N' PEPPER RESTAURANT 2
01 N. Peters St., Suite C 561-6070 Salt 'n' Pepper serves Indian and Pakistani food to Quarter wanderers until midnight every night. The owner suggests the biryanee, basmati rice with mutton or chicken, but the restaurant also features fresh naan bread and many vegetarian dishes. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

SALTWATER GRILL
1340 S. Carrollton Ave. 324-6640 This neighborhood seafood joint has endeared itself to Uptowners. Chef Russell recently added chargrilled oysters, as well as a spinach, artichoke and crabmeat dip, both of which, he claims, have been 'rockin' out the door.' Reservations accepted for parties of five or more. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

SALVATORE RISTORANTE
3226 N. Arnoult Road, Metairie 455-2433; www.chefsfreerecipe.com The Sal's Delight is a mesquite-grilled petite filet, a fried softshell crab with lemon butter caper sauce, and sauteed baby veal finished off with crabmeat and mushroom sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

SAMMY'S LIVE OAK MARKET & DELI 8
01 Live Oak St., Metairie 835-0916 You can't beat Fridays at Sammy's Live Oak Market and Deli, where the special is all-you-can-eat trout. The hot, gravy-soaked roast beef po-boy is a popular standby or you can peruse their grocery section. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

SAMMY'S STEAK & LOBSTER
627 Bourbon St. 525-8442 Entice beautiful passersby with Mardi Gras beads from a table on Sammy's Bourbon Street patio, while you fill up on Sammy's blackened steak and shrimp. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SAMURAI SUSHI
239 Decatur St. 525-9595 To help put a little spring in the step of sushi lovers, Samurai offers an expansive menu that includes new treats such as the Decatur Roll: spicy crawfish and cilantro on the inside topped with a seared piece of garlicky white tuna. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SANDRO'S TRATTORIA
6601 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 888-7784 'Close your eyes and you think you're in Tuscany,' boasts the managers at Sandro's, which will soon be undergoing an expansion to include outdoor dining. Specialties include the frutti del mar pasta -- steamed mussels, shrimp and oysters in a light white wine sauce over fresh pasta. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

SANTE FE RESTAURANT
801 Frenchmen St. 944-6854 At this Faubourg Marigny hot spot Chef Mark says his duck is 'without a doubt the best around.' The bird is sauteed and baked medium rare then dressed with a duck jalapeno and raspberry glaze and accompanied by an ample portion of wild rice and assorted seasonal vegetables. No reservations. Dinner Wed.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

SAPPORO
3544 W. Esplanade Ave., Metairie 779-9288 This popular Japanese sushi bar boasts a low-carb menu on top of its large selection of chef specials. Ask for the seasonal bluefin fatty tuna and enjoy the ambiance. Sushi rolls, salads and cooked Japanese fare also available. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

SARA'S
724 Dublin St. 861-0565; www.sarasrestaurant.com Sara's is housed in an unassuming cottage in Riverbend. With its innovative fusion of Indian, Mediterranean, Thai and French Creole flavors, eclectic specialties include the green curried scallops with jasmine rice and black bean salsa. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards and checks. $$

SASSAFRAS CREOLE AND SEAFOOD RESTAURANT
11999 I-10 Service Road (I-10 Service Road and Bullard Avenue) 241-1900 This new restaurant presents a hearty menu of Creole dishes with everything from seafood and gumbo to red beans and rice and shrimp. Grilled platters of chicken and steak are always available, along with the catch of the day. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

SAZERAC BAR & GRILL
123 Baronne St. (Fairmont Hotel) 529-4733 The Sazerac serves exquisite cocktails, but the Pontchartrain jumbo shrimp is celebrated here. Try imaginative pasta dishes like the pecan pesto sauce, tossed with tomatoes, artichokes, shrimp, andouille, basil and garlic in penne pasta and finished with a hint of cream. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

SCHIRO'S COMMUNITY CAFE AND BAR
2483 Royal St. 944-6666 Have a meal, have a drink, make some groceries, and wash your tightie-whities in whatever order you like. Schiro's happily offers up sandwiches, salads and wraps, like the Tuscano: pesto-smoked turkey with provolone and red peppers. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily, dinner Mon.-Sat., grocery/laundry only on Sun. Credit cards. $

SECRET GARDEN TEA ROOM AND CAFE
3626 Magazine St. 895-2913 The Secret Garden invites customers to linger for a while with its classic tea serving: three courses to complement tea, starting with assorted sandwiches, followed by scones and ending with a dessert course of pastries. Other menu favorites include housemade soups and quiche choices. Reservations recommended weekends. Lunch and tea time Mon.-Sat. Major cards. $

SEMOLINA
100 Tyler Square, Covington (985) 898-0004; 1121 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey 361-8293; 1503 Gause Blvd., Slidell (985) 641-3456; 2999 Hwy. 190, Mandeville (985) 626-8923; 3226 Magazine St. 895-4260; 3501 W. Chateau Blvd., Kenner 468-1047; 4436 Veterans Memorial Blvd. (Clearview Shopping Center), Metairie 454-7930; 5080 Pontchartrain Blvd. 486-5581; www.semolina.com Semolina's is a local favorite, and for much more than just pasta. There is something for everyone, with dishes from the bayou to Latin America, from the Southwest to Italy and more. Thai curry shrimp is a perennial favorite, and the daily specials include a double-cheeseburger pasta on Wednesdays. For a limited time, enjoy 12 different crawfish dishes. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SERRANO'S SALSA COMPANY
4436 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 780-2354; www.serranossalsacompany.com Serrano's Latin-American cuisine combines a wide offering of menu choices with an impressive liquor cabinet. In between tequila shots, make room for the Brazilian mixed grill: huge portions of chicken and beef fajitas, slow roasted pork carnitas, ribs, spicy chorizo, grilled quail and grilled corn. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SESAME INN
408 N. Causeway Blvd. (985) 951-8888; www.sesame-inn.com Fans of traditional Hunan and Szechuan food can feast here without fear of encountering Americanized Chinese food. Old staples like kung pao chicken are available alongside other chicken, pork, beef, vegetarian, low mein and fried rice dishes. Check out the sizeable shrimp dish selection, especially on the dinner menu. Lunch and dinner daily. Delivery available. Credit cards and checks. $

SHELL SHUCKED
1506 S. Carrollton Ave. 861-1003 When taking a break from shucking oysters in the back, the management at Shell Shucked recommends the fried green tomatoes with a crawfish remoulade sauce, as well as the blackened drum with seasoned veggies. Finish the evening off with the homemade banana bread pudding. No reservations. Lunch Fri.-Sun., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SHIMMY SHACK
1855 Dock St., Harahan 729-4442 Grab a sandwich or a burger, or if you're in the mood for something a little more sophisticated, try the oysters and brie on a warm pita, topped with balsamic vinaigrette. Reservations recommended for large parties. Lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sunday. Credit cards. $

SHOOTERS BAR & GRILL
3655 18th St., Metairie 456-2618 Catching a little March (and soon April) madness, along with the upcoming baseball season, is but one way to enjoy Shooters' 9-foot screen or the half-dozen 25-inch TVs. For fuel, try the 8-oz. Shooter Burger served with French fries. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

SIAM CAFE
435 Esplanade Ave. 949-1750 The Buddhist Delight offers a variety of market-fresh vegetables stir-fried and seasoned in the traditional Thai way. Always a best-seller is the pad Thai, which mingles sauteed shrimp, chicken breast, peanuts, bean sprouts and scallions with traditional chantaboon noodles and seasons it all with chili powder. No reservations. Dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

SICILY'S PIZZA
301 N. Hwy. 190, Covington, (985) 893-0005 The rotating buffet menu includes salad bar, pizza, pasta bar, dessert and freshly ground flavored coffees. Popular standards like classic lasagna and meatballs marinara are offered alongside crawfish penne and seafood eggplant casserole. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

SIDELINES BAR & GRILL
1229 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 831-4002 Televised sporting events aren't the only things that incite cheers here. There's also steak night every Thursday, an 8-oz. filet mignon served with Cajun creamed potatoes and French bread for $10. Fish lovers might prefer 8 ounces of grilled tuna served on a sesame seed bun and topped with homemade lemon and pepper cream sauce. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

SID-MAR'S OF BUCKTOWN
1824 Orpheum Ave., Metairie 831-9541; www.sidmarsofbucktown.com Seafood lovers can point their bow toward Bucktown. Sid-Mar's seafood bisque boat features crawfish, shrimp and crab in a seasoned red roux. The Fisherman's Platter is heaped with stuffed crab, softshell crab, oysters, shrimp and catfish with French fries, a salad, hushpuppies and toast. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

SILKY O'SULLIVAN'S
311 Decatur St. 525-1011 Watch the Hornets play on Silky's three big-screen TVs while feasting on Memphis-style ribs, pulled pork and brisket that has been smoked for 10 hours over apple wood. The barbecue treats are dry-rubbed, but there's always Silky's special sauce to add some humidity. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $$

SLICE PIZZERIA
1513 St. Charles Ave. 525-7437 Get what you want in the amount you want by choosing a slice of Sicilian soft, thick crust, white pizza or thin Neapolitan-style crust and building up with your favorite toppings. If you're not feeling hungry, you can hang out till midnight and sip one of Slice's many artisan wine choices from around the globe. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

SLIM GOODIES
3322 Magazine St. 891-3447 The tagline at Slim Goodies is 'classic diner cuisine with a vegetarian twist.' The omelettes are huge and boast inventive ingredient combinations at this popular Uptown diner. The spinach salad is a generous and fine choice for vegetarians and light food seekers. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

SMILIE'S RESTAURANT
5725 Jefferson Hwy., Harahan 733-3000 Owner Augie Lopez has been in the biz for more than 25 years with signatures like the veal Augie: paneed veal topped with a lump crabmeat, mushroom and shallot sauce. This year Smilie's is offering a whole Maine lobster stuffed with seafood dressing. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri., dinner Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

SMITH & WOLLENSKY
1009 Poydras St. 561-0770; www.smithandwollensky.com The management at this revered steak joint recommend the spicy New Orleans filet: filet mignon dusted with Creole seasoning, smothered in an herb butter and served over a bed of spinach. Try the chocolate creme brulee for dessert. Reservations recommended. Lunch, dinner, late-night daily. Credit cards. $$$

SNAPPER JOHN'S
509 S. Tyler St., Covington (985) 892-9592 The New Orleans barbecue shrimp features 10 large shrimp sauteed in a housemade spicy sauce and served with French bread. The shrimp or chicken Creole is cooked with a sauce of tomato, garlic, bell pepper, onions and mushrooms and served with a choice of rotini pasta or rice. Reservations accepted. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SNUG HARBOR JAZZ BISTRO
626 Frenchmen St. 949-0696; www.snugjazz.com Very few places can outdo Snug Harbor's live jazz. While you're there, check out the fish Marigny, a fillet of fish topped with Gulf shrimp and drizzled with Creole cream sauce. There's also a classic Cajun gumbo that includes shrimp, chicken, sausage, okra and rice. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SOPHIE'S ICE CREAM PARLOR
1912 Magazine St., 561-0291 Satiate your sweet tooth at this 1950s-style soda fountain where they make all their own ice cream, Italian gelato, nectar soda and malts. Try the popular and refreshing watermelon or lemon sorbets and treat yourself to their selection of pastries, apple pie, cheesecake and cookies. No reservations. Delivery available. Open Tue.-Sun. Cash only. $

SOPHISTICATED SALADS
6387 Jefferson Hwy., Harahan 737-1860 The stuffed tomato with chicken salad features chicken salad piled on a tomato atop romaine lettuce and drizzled with poppy seed dressing. Shrimp and pasta salad features shrimp, spiral pasta and pico de gallo, topped with Parmesan cheese and Parmesan dressing. No reservations. Delivery available for orders of three or more salads. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards and checks. $

SOUTHERN PO-BOYS
720 Claiborne Drive, Jefferson 835-3035 Shrimp (dressed however you like), roast beef drenched in gravy, oyster, catfish, softshell crab, meatballs homemade from scratch daily -- Southern takes the po-boy seriously. Italian muffalettas also have devoted followings. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

SPEAKEASY SPORTS BAR & GRILL
4345 Williams Blvd., Kenner 466-4069 The menu at this sports bar was changed recently, but the basics remain: hamburgers, fries and cheese fries. Most customers come for the three big-screen TVs that air sports, the video poker, pool tables or dartboards. Happy hour lasts from opening to 7 p.m. every day. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

SPORTS CENTER BAR & GRILL
3805 Hessmer Ave., Metairie Tuesday night is Surf and Turf Night, with a 6-oz. lobster tail, a 6-oz. filet and baked potato for $12.75. Friday offers all-you-can-eat catfish for $8.50 and dig into a literal pile of boiled seafood every weekend. No reservations. Delivery available. Open 24 hours. Credit cards and checks. $

SPUDLY'S SUPER SPUDS
2609 Harvard Ave., Metairie 455-SPUD (7783); www.spudly.com Spudly's Super Spuds saves you from the Atkins diet with the Super Duper: shrimp, crab and crawfish in a baked potato topped with cheddar cheese sauce and chives; or the Pizza Spud: spiced pepperoni, mozzarella cheese, chives and Italian sauce in a baked potato. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

SQUARE ONE RESTAURANT
701 Poydras St. 593-9884 Navigate the tables full of business suits at this One Shell Square eatery for the traditional breakfast menu that includes bacon, eggs, sausage and grits. At lunch there's a Chinese buffet or a menu of American foods such as a grilled chicken salad with vinaigrette dressing. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $$

ST. CHARLES TAVERN
1433 St. Charles Ave. 523-9823 Hop off the streetcar anytime day or night for a chili or crawfish etouffee omelette, as well as the tavern's now-famous hash one of four ways. The Tavern Combo consists of red beans and rice with andouille sausage, seafood jambalaya and gumbo. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

ST. JOHN'S COFFEE HOUSE
535 E. Boston St., Covington (985) 893-5553; www.stjohnscoffeehouse.com In addition to a full range of fair-trade coffees, tea drinks and pastries, this coffeehouse serves up salads, sandwiches and wraps and what management argues is 'the best cheesecake in town.' No reservations. Breakfast daily, lunch Mon.-Sat. Cash or checks only. $

STAR STEAK & LOBSTER
237 Decatur St. 525-6151 The star attraction for diners is a lobster feast for two that features a pair of lobsters and double orders of soup, salad, baked potatoes or French fries, and bread pudding, all for $39.95. Or order up the filet mignon filled with shrimp, crawfish, crabmeat and lobster stuffing and topped with red wine mushroom sauce. Reservations required. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

STARBUCKS COFFEE CO.
300 Canal St. (The Shops at Canal Place) 566-1223; 424 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 837-7874; 817 W. Esplanade Ave., Kenner 472-6190; 1290 Front St., Slidell (985) 641-6257; 1451 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey 365-0208; 2701 Airline Drive, Metairie 828-6700; 2801 Magazine St. 897-4944; 3301 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 828-5257; 3601 Hwy. 190, Mandeville (985) 626-5234; 5161 Citrus Blvd., Jefferson 818-0633; 5800 Magazine St. 269-5113; 7700 Maple St. 864-0411 New at Starbucks this season is a dessert line of over-the-top decadent pastries. Try the chocolate peanut butter stack: layered chocolate brownie sandwiched with white chocolate peanut butter, caramel and creamy milk chocolate topped with crushed peanuts. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards and checks. $

THE STEAK KNIFE RESTAURANT & BAR
610 Poydras St. 212-5656; 888 Harrison Ave. 488-8981; www.thesteakknife.com Start a hearty feast with a Seraphine Salad, an avocado half stuffed with marinated hearts of palm and artichoke, laid atop mixed greens and topped with asparagus, red onion and vinaigrette. For a main course try the Gulf Fish Robert, a fresh fillet pan-sauteed then topped with lump crabmeat, mushroom and lemon-butter sauce. Reservations accepted. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $$

THE STEAK PIT
609 Bourbon St. 525-3406 The New York strip steak is a belly-filler, served with a garden salad, baked potato and onion soup, while the Jim Beam Bourbon barbecue baby back ribs take half a slab of ribs; the Pit slow cooks them with that special sauce, then serves them up with New Orleans filthy rice. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $

STELLA!
1032 Chartres St. 587-0091; www.restaurantstella.com Chef Scott Boswell has picked up a few new tricks after his appearance on the Iron Chef. New Orleans gets an Asian treatment with the breast of Moullard duck, marinated then seared and served with foie gras won tons, mooshu pancake stir-fry and currant-cassis reduction. Reservations recommended. Dinner Wed.-Mon. Credit cards. $$$

STEVE'S DINER
828 Gravier St. 522-8198 Steve's keeps its food friendly by offering home-style breakfasts and offering daily specials. If you're not in the mood for eggs and grits, Steve recently installed a new grill and is serving up charbroiled burgers: 7-oz. hand-formed patties cooked to order. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $

STILL PERKIN'
The Rink, 2727 Prytania St. 899-0335 The friendly staff at Still Perkin' offers a slightly different iced mocha made with coffee, not espresso. Pastries and desserts abound, and those not in the mood for caffeine can sip on frozen lemonade and frozen granitas. It also serves panini sandwiches from La Spiga and salads. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

STINGRAY'S SEAFOOD GRILL & BAR
1303 W. Esplanade Ave., Kenner 443-4040 Shrimp Nicole is a favorite here, which includes shrimp, diced mushrooms and green onions served over a choice of fettuccine or angle hair pasta. While you're working on that, sip on the Stingtini, a concoction of rum, blue Curacao, pineapple and other fruity juices. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

STITCHES BAR & GRILL 3
941 Houma Blvd., Metairie 454-6266 Stitches' happy hour greets you weekdays with drink specials from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. On Wednesday and Thursday nights, you can order the rib-eye special, served with a baked potato, for only $6.95. For soup, try the crab corn bisque. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Sat. Credit cards. $

STIXX RESTAURANT
535 E. Judge Perez Drive., Chalmette 276-2742 Stixx mixes Asian and Cajun in dishes like the paneed chicken: chicken served over angle hair pasta and topped with crawfish cream sauce. There's also a full-service sushi and sashimi bar. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri., dinner Sat. Credit cards. $$

SUBWAY
237 N. Peters St. 568-0169 On-the-go diners throughout New Orleans have easy access to this wildly popular chain of often healthful sandwiches. But then there's the French Quarter location, which is under new ownership and, along with old favorites like the classic BMT sub, offers delivery and serves Blue Bell ice cream. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Delivery available. Credit cards. $

SUGAR HOUSE
315 Julia St. (Embassy Suites Hotel) 525-1993; www.embassysuites.com/es/neworleans The management recommends the crabmeat-stuffed shrimp: three butterflied jumbo Gulf shrimp wrapped around crabmeat dressing and coated with coconut curry oil before roasting. All entrees come with a house salad and a choice of garlic mashed potatoes, rice pilaf or rosemary mashed potatoes. Reservations recommended. Lunch buffet Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SUGAR PARK TAVERN
800 France St. 940-6226 You can choose almost anything you like and have it wrapped in a calzone, or pick your favorite ingredients to go on top of a super-thin crust New York-style pizza. There also are daily specials that include soups, salads and sandwiches. Vegetarians can order a meatless chili or burger. No reservations. Delivery available. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $

SUKHO THAI
1913 Royal St. 948-9309 Focusing on classical Thai cuisine, this Faubourg Marigny restaurant offers dishes such as the Lime Steamed Fish, a whole flounder steamed over crushed lemongrass, topped with housemade spicy lime-garlic juice, which is absorbed into the fish, and garnished with sliced lime and fresh garlic. Reservations recommended for large parties. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

SUN RAY GRILL
619 Pink St., Metairie 837-0055; 1051 Annunciation St. 566-0021; 2600 Belle Chasse Hwy., Gretna 391-0053; 3700 Orleans Ave., Suite 3A 274-0091; www.sunraygrill.com The pecan-crusted chicken salad is a tossed green salad topped with pecan-crusted chicken breast with Creole honey-mustard dressing. Another common denominator is the Sierra Madre Pork Chop, a porterhouse pork chop basted with Grand Marnier and ancho chile-laced barbecue glaze and served with mashed potatoes and roasted corn and peppers. Reservations recommended on Friday and Saturday nights and for large parties. Delivery available at Annunciation Street location. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SUPER POPEYES
3850 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 885-0356 Super Popeyes super-sizes the usual fast-food menu adding fajitas (chicken, beef or a combination of both). Housemade Southern-style cheesecake is served plain or with sliced strawberries or chocolate sauce. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

SUPERIOR GRILL
3636 St. Charles Ave. 899-4200; www.superiorgrill.com Once again, Cajun food insinuates itself into other styles in dishes like the enchilada Del Mar: crawfish-stuffed enchiladas topped with a mesquite-grilled tilapia fillet served with grilled vegetables and Mexican rice. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily, late-night Fri.-Sat., brunch Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

SURREY'S CAFE AND JUICE BAR
1418 Magazine St. 524-3828 Fresh-squeezed organic juices and a host of traditional breakfast items are favorites, but the black bean crabcakes seasoned with habanera cumin and garlic and served with poblano remoulade sauce deserve special attention. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily. Cash only. $

SWAMP ROOM
5216 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 888-5242 The Swamp Room serves bar snacks and beyond late into the night. Hungry patrons sink their teeth into a 10-oz. Swamp Burger or those looking for a deal should show up for the 8-oz. fillet and potato meal at just $9.99 on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

SWEET DADDY'S
2534 Florida St., Mandeville (985) 626-0208; 420 S. Tyler St., Covington (985-898-2166) For southeast Louisiana Cajun barbecue with a spicy sauce all its own, visit either spot and bring the kids. The menu includes chicken and sausage gumbo, baby back ribs, smoked chicken, all-you-can eat specials, and the popular pulled pork sandwich, which is hickory-smoked for 12 hours. No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

SWEET GINGER
228 Camp St. 571-7500 Sweet Ginger puts its unique stamp on crispy Louisiana oysters by tossing them with a homemade sweet chile sauce. The Red Ocean has shrimp and crawfish braised in red curry and vegetables with sesame-crusted softshell crab. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

SWEET OLIVE CAFE
336 Camp St. 299-8188 Hearty and affordable meals are the rule at this Warehouse District eatery, which offers breakfasts and lunch fare including the Huey P. sandwich: sliced marinated duck breast topped with melted provolone cheese and served on a multigrain Kaiser dressed with aioli, Creole mustard, shredded lettuce and tomato. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Fri. Credit cards. $

T

TAJ MAHAL INDIAN CUISINE
923-C Metairie Road, Metairie 836-6859 The Shahi Murgh takes two days to prepare and quickly sells out, but if you can catch it, the chicken breast stuffed with housemade cheese, fresh herbs and spices, topped with dried fruit and a fabulous almond and cashew gravy is divine. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

TAN DINH
1705 Lafayette St., Gretna 361-8008 Just opened in a new location, the management at Tan Dinh recommends catfish steaks that are simmered in a special hot sauce and served with white rice and cucumber. Another favorite is marinated roasted chicken served with a soy dipping sauce and plain flour buns instead of white rice. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Wed.-Mon. Cash only. $

TANDOORI CHICKEN
115 University Place 299-1926 The all-you-can-eat buffet features a generous variety of the restaurant's favorites, including tender chicken baked in clay tandoor ovens, as well as a range of vegetable dishes like saag paneer. Load up with garlic naan bread on the side. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

TAQUERIA CORONA
857 Fulton St. 524-9805; 1827 Hickory Ave., Harahan 738-6722; 3535 Severn Ave., Metairie 885-5088; 5932 Magazine St. 897-3974 Diners will find a casual atmosphere at the four locations with a menu of dishes that all are made fresh daily. Try the hearty rib-eye carne asada taco, which starts with grilled marinated rib-eye steak served with grilled cebollita (seasoned green onion). No reservations. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $

TAQUERIA JALISCO
2004 Daniels Road, Terrytown 368-1868 Taqueria Jalisco specializes in traditional dishes from central Mexico. The grilled beef fajitas served with rice, beans and a salad or fish lightly battered, fried and served with the same accompaniments come highly recommended. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

TAQUEROS COCINA MEXICANA
1432 St. Charles Ave. 525-9996 Chef Guillermo Peters not only moved his Taqueros in from Kenner but also split the operation into two separate dining venues, with the upscale Coyoacan upstairs and the more traditional Cocina Mexicana downstairs. Popular Mexican dishes include appetizers, soups, tacos and tortas, a Mexican sandwich prepared in a baguette. Reservations accepted. Dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $

TCHOUP-N-JOE'S
870 Tchoupitoulas St. 581-2858; www.tchoupnjoes.com Tchoup-N-Joe's has been happily cruising along for nine months now and attracts local folks with fare like char-grilled oysters and grilled portobello mushrooms. Don't forget the three flat-screen TVs zeroed in on sports. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

TEA GARDEN
1918 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 833-0668 The Tea Garden serves good food at reasonable prices and a relaxed atmosphere. Try the Seafood Worbar, which consists of sauteed shrimp, scallops, crawfish and crab flavored with wine and served in a light brown sauce. Reservations recommended. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

TECORO'S SEAFOOOD & ITALIAN RESTAURANT 3
525 Williams Blvd., Kenner 466-5550 Tecoro's offers the Three Sisters Stuffed Chicken, featuring fried chicken breasts served three different ways: Sister Terrie (proscuitto, sun-dried tomatoes, artichokes, green onions and provolone cheese), Sister Corliss (spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, pine nuts, garlic and feta cheese) and Sister Rosemary (rosemary-stuffed chicken), all served with a potato and vegetable. Reservations recommended on weekends. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

TED'S FROSTOP
6303 S. Claiborne Ave. 861-3615 Ted's Frostop has been a cornerstone of the Calhoun shopping area since 1955. Ted serves quick breakfasts at 'low-low' prices. Hearty plate lunches change daily, and a local favorite is the Lot-o-burger. Ted also offers New Orleans' own original, the po-boy sandwich. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch daily, dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

TEDDY'S GRILL
5325 Franklin Ave. 288-9370 Teddy's Grill has served down-home classics since 1961, like fried chicken cooked to order. Roast beef is slow cooked on premises and the gravy is made from scratch. Have it on a po-boy or on a plate. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner Wed.-Fri. Credit cards. $

TEXAS BAR-B-QUE
3320 Houma Blvd, Metairie 456-2832; 9851 I-10 Service Road 245-4402 Swing by either location for straightforward barbecue and see why people have kept coming back for 35 years. The menu offers old standards like ribs, beef brisket, beans, pork, potato salad and coleslaw. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

THEO'S PIZZA
4216 Magazine St. 894-8554 This newcomer neighborhood pizza joint's specialty pizzas range from The Hippie, which is loaded with veggies, to the Hawaii Five-O, that classic eclectic combo of pineapple and Canadian bacon. Sandwiches and salads are also available, and Wednesday night means wine specials. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

THREE HAPPINESS 1
99 Lafayette St., Gretna 368-1355 Three Happiness' vast but reasonably-priced menu offers a variety of traditional Chinese, Mandarin and Cantonese dishes and Vietnamese cuisine. The managers recommend the roast duck, barbecue quail or spring rolls. Reservations recommended on weekends. Lunch and dinner daily, breakfast Sat.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

TIC TOC CAFE
3205 36th St., Metairie 834-6272 It's always breakfast somewhere in the world, so the Tic Toc serves hearty breakfasts 24 hours a day. Daily specials include Wednesday's barbecue beef pot roast served with potatoes, a vegetable and salad. Every day features a hamburger special with French fries and a drink for under $4. No reservations. Open 24 hours. Credit cards. $

TIMES BAR & GRILL
1827 Front St., Slidell (985) 639-3335; 1896 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville (985) 626-1161; www.timesgrill.com If you want to go to Times, make sure you have a big appetite. The Hulk Burger is a massive 1 1/2-lb. char-grilled hamburger dressed any way you can handle it. If you eat it all, you get your photo on the Hulk Wall of Fame. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

TOMMY'S CUISINE
746 Tchoupitoulas St. 581-1103 Chef Tommy Andrade presents a Creole-Italian menu that features daily specials, osso buco and stuffed pork chops. The duck Tchoupitoulas is crispy roasted duck glazed with raspberry demi-glace and served with fresh spinach and wild rice. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

TONY ANGELLO'S RISTORANTE
6262 Fleur de Lis Drive 488-0888 Perhaps the best way explore the fine Italian meals at Tony Angello's is to select the 'feed-me' option: Chef Tony Angello will bring out several courses of his favorites of the night. Eggplant Tina is thinly sliced eggplant, lightly battered and fried, then layered with cheese and fresh marinara sauce. Reservations recommended. Dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

TONY MANDINA'S RESTAURANT
1915 Pratt St., Gretna 362-2010; www.tonymandinas.com Tony Mandina's specializes in southern Italian cuisine. The restaurant proclaims its eggplant/veal parmigiana is 'The Best of Both Worlds': Italian breaded eggplant and tender veal layered with mozzarella and marinara, served with pasta. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue., Fri.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

TONY MORAN'S
240 Bourbon St. 523-3181; www.tonymorans.com Italian classics are given an update in dishes such as penne pasta topped with sauteed crawfish tails, garlic, shallots, sun-dried tomatoes and pesto sauce. The Twice-baked Lasagna Della Casa features homemade lasagna baked with healthy layers of meat, Ricotta and Mozzarella cheeses, and creamy spinach. Reservations recommended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

TORTORICI'S
441 Royal St. 522-4295; www.tortoricis.com To the tune of the nightly live piano music, Tortorici's creates an Italian and Creole fusion with dishes like stuffed redfish braciola, a fresh redfish that's filled with seafood stuffing before it is rolled, paneed and baked then topped with fresh Louisiana shrimp and mushrooms in a light cream sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

TRAUTH'S LAKE HOUSE & STEAMERY
3700 Williams Blvd., Kenner 443-6488 Get seafood cooked anyway you like it, or try fresh offerings of broiled catfish stuffed with crabmeat, or crabmeat au gratin: white crabmeat covered with melted cheese and served with garlic rounds, new potatoes and a house salad. Reservations accepted for eight or more. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

TREASURE ISLAND BUFFET
5050 Williams Blvd., Treasure Chest Casino, Kenner 443-8000; www.treasurechest.com/site/dining Every now and then the slot machines might break your bank, but the food never will. Treasure Chest Casino's buffet is stocked with fried oysters, shrimp, catfish, boiled shrimp and mussels. Add a 16-oz. rib-eye or lobster tail for $7. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

TREY YUEN CUISINE OF CHINA
600 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville (985) 626-4476; 2100 N. Morrison Blvd., Hammond (985) 345-6789 Try the honey-pecan shrimp: large Gulf shrimp glazed with a creamy coating and served on honey-roasted pecans. Or hunt for the stir-fried alligator with mushrooms and onions in oyster sauce. Reservations recommended for parties of eight or more. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

TRICOU HOUSE
711 Bourbon St. 525-8379; www.711bourbon.com Make this a stop on your French Quarter party route for (so the chef insists) the best etouffee on Bourbon Street. You can also fortify yourself with daily all-you-can-eat specials: catfish on Monday and Thursday, barbecue ribs on Wednesday and Sunday, and boiled Cajun shrimp daily. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

TROLLEY STOP CAFE
923 St. Charles Ave. 523-0090 This 24-hour local favorite offers a full menu of breakfast, lunch and dinner items daily. Favorites include burgers, stuffed omelettes and the Trolley breakfast, which includes two pancakes, two eggs and two choices of meat. Or try the daily specials like meatloaf and red beans and rice. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Major credit cards. $

TRUE BREW CAFE
200 Julia St. 524-8441 Visit this cafe associated with the theater for its new extended menu of sandwiches, wraps, soups, salads, pastries and full breakfast menu featuring omelettes and homemade biscuits. Try the popular Julia Scram for breakfast or the turkey avocado sandwich for lunch. Specialty drinks, espressos, lattes and mochas are made with cold-dripped coffee for freshness. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

TUCKER'S TAVERN
635 S. Roman St. 522-0440 Tucker's is 'Home of the Stuffed Deep-Fried Burger.' Yes, the kitchen actually batters and deep-fries a hamburger. One of the most popular variations is The Big Tuck, a deep-fried burger filled with pepper Jack cheese and bacon and then topped with barbecue sauce and cheddar cheese. No reservations. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Fri., lunch and early dinner Sat. Credit cards. $

TUJAGUE'S
823 Decatur St. 525-8676; www.tujagues.com The city's second-oldest restaurant has been satisfying patrons since before the Civil War. The shrimp remoulade is classic and admirable, as is the beef brisket with Creole sauce. Lighter items are available at the bar. Reservations recommended. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

TWO SISTER'S KITCHEN
223 N. Derbigny St. 524-0056 The Two Sisters will welcome you with open arms filled with heaping bowls of seafood gumbo (Friday's special). Other daily specials include spaghetti on Tuesday, chitterlings on Wednesday and stuffed peppers and barbecue chicken on Thursday. In the mornings, $5 will buy a full breakfast of eggs, meat, grits, coffee and toast. No reservations. Breakfast and lunch Mon.-Sat. Cash only. $

TWO TONY'S RESTAURANT
105 Hammond Hwy., Metairie 831-0999; www.two-tonys.com Co-founded by Tony Montalbano and his son, Chef Anthony, Two Tony's serves up Italian and seafood. Tony recommends the baked eggplant Samantha: a decadent invention featuring shrimp and crabmeat au gratin baked with breaded eggplant and topped with sharp cheddar cheese. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

TYLER'S BEER GARDEN
3841 Orleans Ave. 482-7207 When they say the kitchen is open at Tyler's, they're not goofing around -- from 11 a.m. to 6 a.m. That's because Tyler's specializes in 'Mid-City Munchies' including cheese fries for starters, 'Where Ya At' breakfast wraps, and the Bayou St. John burger served with cheese and 'drug through the garden' (i.e., dressed). No reservations. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

U

UGLESICH'S
1238 Baronne St. 523-8571; www.uglesichs.com Uglesich's still pulls locals in with promises of great fare like a creamy oyster Brie soup, made with fried oysters with blue cheese dressing, followed by the barbecue oyster plate, sauteed with new potatoes in olive oil, butter, basil, garlic, Worcestershire and lemon. If you dare to try replicating the deliciousness at home, you can always purchase the Uglesich's Restaurant Cookbook. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Cash only. $$

UGLY DOG SALOON & BBQ
401 Andrew Higgins Drive 569-8459; www.uglydogsaloon.net The Ugly Dog satisfies sports-bar requirements with nine TVs and hearty servings of Memphis-style barbecue pork, beef, ribs and sausage. Bartenders serve $1.25 domestic beers during happy hour. Reservations accepted, except during lunch rush. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

UPPERLINE RESTAURANT
1413 Upperline St. 891-9822; www.upperline.com The New York Times has declared Upperline's Cane River Shrimp (shrimp, garlic, mushroom and bacon sauteed together and laid across crispy grits) the best in the nation. The oysters St. Claude, a recent addition to the menu featuring spicy and garlicky oysters, is so good, patrons are reportedly ordering them for appetizer, entree and dessert. Reservations recommended. Dinner Wed.-Sun. Credit cards. $$$

UPSTAIRS AT MIMI'S
2601 Royal St. 947-8015 The ceviche and tuna caper toast starts with albacore tuna mixed with red, orange and yellow peppers doused with citrus juices and a blend of extra-virgin olive oil, all served over toast. Gambas Ala Planche is grilled shrimp drizzled with lemon juice and cilantro. There are selections of Spanish wines, sherries and ports to go with the tapas. No reservations. Dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

V

VAQUEROS
2037 Metairie Road, Metairie 837-7776; www.vaqueros-restaurant.com Vaqueros brings the tastes of the southwest to New Orleans, courtesy of Chef Joseph Griffo. He recommends the Tequila & Brown Sugar Lacquered Cowboy Cut Pork Chop. Reservations recommended for large parties. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

VEGA TAPAS CAFE
2051 Metairie Road, Metairie 836-2007; www.vegatapascafe.com Check out the brand new menu, including a special salad with red oak lettuce, cherries, Serrano ham and pistachios, graced with a burned sugar sherry vinaigrette. Vegetarians can chow on Asparagus A La Planche: grilled asparagus with marinated mushrooms and skordalia, a Greek-style garlic paste. Reservations accepted for parties of six or more. Dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $$

THE VELVET ROOM
916 Lafayette St. 589-0069 The building that houses the Velvet Room was a bordello built in 1850. In keeping with its colorful past, this jazz and blues supper club seduces diners with nightly live jazz and dishes like the Aphrodisiac Duck Salad and the Shrimp Menage a Trois. Reservations recommended. Dinner and late-night Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

VENEZIA
134 N. Carrollton Ave. 488-7991; 587 Central Ave., Jefferson 734-3991 Diners are happy to tuck into the trout amandine or eggplant Vatican, a hollowed-out, batter-fried eggplant filled with seafood cream sauce. The New York-style pizza is also worth a gander. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. at Jefferson, daily at the Carrollton Avenue location. Credit cards. $$

VERA CRUZ
7537 Maple St. 866-1736 Vera Cruz gets into the spirit of expansion on Maple Street with a new five-star chef and weekly food specials. College kids show up for the two-for-one margarita specials on Tuesdays and Thursdays and recommend new dishes like the Spanish paella and the chile rellenos (stuffed with either seafood or beef). Reservations accepted. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

VERANDA RESTAURANT
444 St. Charles Ave. (InterContinental New Orleans) 585-4383; www.new-orleans.intercontinental.com Here patrons dine on European fare with a Cajun accent in the pleasant atrium of the InterContinental. Executive Chef Willy Coln's continental menu offers steak, seafood and pasta specialties. Sunday morning's jazz champagne brunch includes a Cajun dessert station. Reservations recommended. Breakfast and dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

VERONA RESTAURANT
1821 Hickory Ave., River Ridge 739-9875 Start your meal with a hot soup made of six different onions or a new favorite like the shrimp and corn bisque. Move on to the gyro platter, the newly added trout Florentine or the shrimp Esplanade, shrimp sauteed in olive oil then served over angel hair pasta with a light tomato sauce. Reservations recommended. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner daily, brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

VERTI MARTE
1201 Royal St. 525-4767; www.vertimarte.com Verti Marte will soothe your hurts and hangovers. French Quarter revelers can recharge with the Royal Feast: roast beef, ham, turkey, cheeses, olives and WOW sauce; or with the All That Jazz: ham, turkey, grilled shrimp, mushrooms, tomatoes, cheese and (again) WOW sauce. No reservations. Delivery available. Open 24 hours. Credit cards for in-store purchases. $

VIANNE'S TEA SALON AND CAFE
544 Gerard St., Mandeville (985) 624-5683; www.viannes.com Vianne's specializes in high tea, but you can eat your fill of tea sandwiches, scones, savories, and desserts while selecting from the establishment's 50 teas. The cafe menu offers fresh baked scones, crumpets, daily specials, salads and soups. Reservations recommended. Cafe menu, high, royal and court teas Tue.-Fri. from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sat.-Sun. from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m, brunch Sun. Credit cards and checks. $

VIC'S KANGAROO CAFE
636 Tchoupitoulas St. 524-4329 Casual ambience and delicious Australian food is the mantra at this CBD hangout. This is the place to go on a cool night for an imported beer and warm shepherd's pie: seasoned ground beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes and cheddar cheese. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

VICTOR'S GRILL
921 Canal St. (The Ritz-Carlton, New Orleans) 524-1331; www.ritzcarlton.com/hotels/new_orleans Enjoy Chef Matt Murphy's lobster Thermidor and grilled New York strip with seared foie gras. The pecan-crusted rack of lamb is served with grilled vegetables and garlic mashed potatoes. Reservations recommended. Breakfast daily, dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

VINCENT'S
4250 Hwy. 22 (Pine Tree Plaza Shopping Center), Mandeville (985) 624-2300; 4411 Chastant St., Metairie 885-2984; 7839 St. Charles Ave. 866-9313 Returning customers agree that the jumbo lump crabcakes are fantastic. Excellent Italian choices include the corn crab bisque, veal and spinach cannelloni and the seafood-stuffed pork chop. Reservations recommended for large parties and on weekends in Mandeville. Hours vary by location. Credit cards. $$

VISKO'S RESTAURANT 5
16 Gretna Blvd., Gretna 366-1516 Classic Visko's dishes still exist like the Seafood Saint Vincent (fish sauteed in a buttery seafood stock, topped with shrimp and crabmeat), but diners are lining up for the newcomer, charbroiled oysters. Reservations recommended for parties of eight or more. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

VOLEO'S SEAFOOD RESTAURANT 5
134 Nunez St., Lafitte 689-2482 Although Voleo's has discontinued offering steaks, patrons will welcome the chef's new German menu items. Voleo's trademark dishes still remain like the flounder Lafitte, a rolled fillet stuffed with crabmeat and corn, fried and covered in a Crawfish Paradise sauce. Reservations accepted. Dinner Mon. and Wed.-Sat. Credit cards. $$

VOOBREW COFFEE AND TEA
830 N. Rampart St. 324-6420; www.voobrew.com Popular espressos are named after Voodoo priests and priestesses. A couple favorites include the Chicken Man, a raspberry-vanilla latte, and the Dr. Bebe (named after a local cemetery tour guide), a banana-fudge latte. Munch on muffins or opt for the added sweet touch of freshly baked cupcakes. No reservations. Open daily. Credit cards. $

VOODOO BBQ
100 E. James Blvd., Kenner 464-1880; 1501 St. Charles Ave. 522-4647; 8550 Pontchartrain Blvd., 283-8301; www.voodoobbqgrill.com The cooks at Voodoo BBQ know that good things often take time, so they slow-roast their dry-rubbed brisket and pork for 16 hours. The tender meat is served with a choice of three homemade sauces and sides like corn pudding, Gris Gris Greens and Rattle Snake Beans. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards.$

W

WAREHOUSE DISTRICT PIZZA 1
068 Magazine St. 529-1466 This pizzeria cooks a pie that's a little bit wild with toppings that include venison, duck or pheasant sausage. The Warehouse District Special, a 20-inch pizza with a variety of toppings, will feed a crowd. No reservations. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sun. Credit cards. $$

WASABI
900 Frenchmen St. 943-9433; 5243 Canal Blvd. 488-8828; www.wasabirestaurant.com With a new location in Mid-City, this friendly and elegant Asian bistro can accommodate both crowds sharing sake and summer rolls (crabmeat, avocado, asparagus and smelt roe wrapped with cucumber) and couples lingering over plates of sashimi. No reservations. Lunch weekdays, dinner Mon.-Sat., late-night Fri.-Sat. $$

WEAVER'S PO-BOYS
800 Navarre Ave. 488-9267 This butcher-shop-turned-lunch-spot no longer serves hot lunches but still attracts crowds for its roast beef po-boy. Check out the ham, which is deboned on site, and indulge in a variety of milkshakes, root beer floats and sno-balls. No reservations. Lunch Mon.-Sat. Credit cards. $

WEE-GEE'S
1299 Hickory Ave., Harahan, 737-2002 Wee-Gee's moved into the old Grato's location in Harahan about 10 months ago and has provided its own take on 'casual' Italian food with fresh ingredients. Salads, sandwiches, calzones, gourmet pizzas and classic Italian dishes are available here. Reservations accepted. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

WHOLE FOODS
3135 Esplanade Ave. 943-1626; 5600 Magazine St. 899-9119; www.wholefoods.com The Whole Foods in Mid-City will relocate to Metairie in May. Those lucky enough to live near these markets will have the privilege of dining on effortless gourmet food-to-go and a wide variety of wine, cheese, breads and pizza. No reservations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

WILLIAMS RESTAURANT & LOUNGE
3100 Toledano St. 821-5023 With Big Daddy Cole manning the barbecue pit, diners are in for a treat. The Saturday and Sunday lunch specials give the masses what they want, with barbecue smoked sausage, chicken, ribs, and rib-eye steaks. For dinner, try a seafood platter served with homemade rolls or cornbread. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards and checks. $

THE WINE LOFT
752 Tchoupitoulas St. 561-0116; www.thewineloft.net There are dozens of wines to choose from, both by the bottle or by the glass, and the staff can help you pair them with something tasty to eat. The Charcuterie Board boasts a traditional combination of imported meats such as chorizo, sopressta and capacollo, along with fresh-baked bread and roasted garlic aioli, Dijon mustard and cornichons (pickles). Reservations recommended. Dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

WINSTON'S PUB AND PATIO
531 Metairie Road, Metairie 831-8705 The fish and chips are a beer-battered cod fish fillet with waffle fries and malt vinegar, or the Forest Hills Burger is an 8-oz. flame-grilled patty served open-faced with either waffle fries or beer-battered onion rings. Dine inside in booths or on sofas or outside in the patio. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

WOLFE'S OF NEW ORLEANS
7224 Pontchartrain Blvd. 284-6004; www.wolfesofneworleans.com Chef Tom Wolfe's panko-crusted red fish with a smoked Gouda veloute and the Steen's cane syrup roast duck with foie gras and calvados-glazed sweet potatoes are both popular. For the third year in a row, Wine Spectator honored Wolfe's wine list with an Award of Excellence. Reservations recommended. Lunch Tue.-Fri., dinner Tue.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$$

WOW WINGERY
231 Carrollton Ave. 488-6410; 1650 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey 361-5655; 2170 Gause Blvd., Slidell 985-661-9692; 3100 Severn Ave., Metairie 885-1322; 4436 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 889-9693; 5359 Mounes Blvd., Harahan 733-8600; www.wingery.com Try the chicken quesadilla, fajitas and sweet potato pies. The selection of 15 sauces for the wings really sets these restaurants apart. Try Santa Fe chipotle, Bombay coconut curry or Italian garlic and herb. Wings are 35 cents each on Monday, and on Tuesday kids can eat for less than a dollar. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $

Y

YE OLDE COLLEGE INN
3016 S. Carrollton Ave. 866-3683 It still serves the oyster loaf advertised on the outside wall, but the nearly 75-year-old restaurant's 'Atkins friendly' catfish Manchac (broiled catfish with a crab and Brie sauce) shows that Ye Olde College Inn also keeps up with modern trends. Reservations recommended. Lunch daily, dinner Mon.-Sat., late-night Fri.-Sat., brunch Sun. Credit cards. $$

YO MAMA'S BAR & GRILL 7
27 St. Peter St. 522-1125 After kicking back a few of Yo Mama's 63 varieties of tequila, diners are ready to stare down the horns of the Bullfighter burger, loaded with jalapeños, avocado and salsa. Anyone with enough audacity to try the peanut butter bacon burger deserves a slap on the back from the King himself. No reservations. Lunch, dinner and late-night daily. Credit cards. $

YOUNG'S RESTAURANT 8
50 Robert Blvd., Slidell (985) 643-9331 There's no sign advertising the steaks and seafood at Young's Restaurant. 'We just go by word of mouth,' says Chef Craig Young. Speaking of mouth, diners often find theirs watering at the choice between the 8-oz. petit filet (served solo or with boiled shrimp, sauteed crabmeat or grilled shrimp) or the 14-oz. filet (served with a baked potato and a salad). No reservations. Dinner Tue.-Sat. Credit cards. $$$

Z

ZEA ROTISSERIE
1401 W. Esplanade Ave. (The Esplanade Mall), Kenner 468-7733; 1655 Hickory Ave., Harahan 738-079 Obviously, Zea is famous for its selection of rotisserie meat and chicken, but the Thai ribs (pork ribs marinated in Thai sauce and slow cooked with sesame seeds and cilantro) are 'zelicious' at Zea's Rotisserie. The less carnivorous enjoy the entree-size spinach salad dressed with pepper jelly vinaigrette. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ZEA ROTISSERIE & BREWERY
4450 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie 780-9090 Spring-like but with true spunk is a salad that starts with fresh leaf spinach with sun-dried tomatoes, raisins, roasted pecans, sesame seeds, kalamata olives, blue cheese and a signature pepper jelly vinaigrette dressing. Carnivores can chew on Thai ribs: premium-cut St. Louis-style spare ribs seasoned and slow roasted. No reservations. Delivery available. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ZEKE'S RESTAURANT 1
517 Metairie Road, Metairie 832-1133 Zeke's prepares oysters on the half-shell with garlic butter and a special seasoning and then grills them on an open fire. The boiled seafood, which changes seasonally, is popular with the serious seafood connoisseur. Reservations recommended for large parties. Breakfast Sat.-Sun., lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

ZOE BISTRO
333 Poydras St. (W Hotel) 207-5018; www.zoebistrot.com This hip eatery boasts a menu of elegant dishes from starters like the fried green tomato Napoleon to entrees like the redfish sauteed in brown butter and topped with lump crabmeat. The Pink Poodle dessert is in fact a pink poodle made from strawberry meringue served atop a chocolate torte. Reservations recommended. Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$$

ZYDEQUE
808 Iberville St. 565-5520; www.zydeque.com Named by Esquire Magazine as "The Best New Barbecue Restaurant in America," Zydeque smokes its Cajun, dry-rubbed barbecue over hickory and pecan right in the heart of the French Quarter. Chef Tenney Flynn fills the plates with Memphis-style ribs accompanied by boudin balls and the Southern Comfort mashed sweet potatoes sell well all day long. No reservations. Lunch and dinner daily. Credit cards. $$

click to enlarge Take a trip across the Asian continent, courtesy of Cafe - East's mahi mahi. - DONN YOUNG
  • Donn Young
  • Take a trip across the Asian continent, courtesy of Cafe East's mahi mahi.
click to enlarge The inventive menu of 201 Restaurant & Bar features the - Caribbean bouillabaisse. - CHERYL GERBER
  • Cheryl Gerber
  • The inventive menu of 201 Restaurant & Bar features the Caribbean bouillabaisse.
click to enlarge Diners get fired up about Brick Oven Cafe's pizzas and - Italian specialties. - DONN YOUNG
  • Donn Young
  • Diners get fired up about Brick Oven Cafe's pizzas and Italian specialties.
click to enlarge Get a taste of Europe at Clementine's Belgian Bistrot in - Gretna. - CHERYL GERBER
  • Cheryl Gerber
  • Get a taste of Europe at Clementine's Belgian Bistrot in Gretna.
click to enlarge Chef Wendall Ross keeps the Tujague's tradition alive. - CHERYL GERBER
  • Cheryl Gerber
  • Chef Wendall Ross keeps the Tujague's tradition alive.
click to enlarge Look good, eat well: Glenn Michael and Kim Gilbert of - Glenn Michael's Beauty Cafe offer Maudie Megeson - (center) an egg salad sandwich. - DONN YOUNG
  • Donn Young
  • Look good, eat well: Glenn Michael and Kim Gilbert of Glenn Michael's Beauty Cafe offer Maudie Megeson (center) an egg salad sandwich.
click to enlarge On a roll: Owner Komei Horimoto serves sushi at - Horinoya. - CHERYL GERBER
  • Cheryl Gerber
  • On a roll: Owner Komei Horimoto serves sushi at Horinoya.
click to enlarge Chef Andrea Apuzzo prepares red snapper in the kitchen - of Andrea's Northern Italian & Seafood Cuisine. - CHERYL GERBER
  • Cheryl Gerber
  • Chef Andrea Apuzzo prepares red snapper in the kitchen of Andrea's Northern Italian & Seafood Cuisine.
click to enlarge Juniper's Garry Greenwood serves "progressive Creole" - cuisine, including the tilapia with mango sauce. - DONN YOUNG
  • Donn Young
  • Juniper's Garry Greenwood serves "progressive Creole" cuisine, including the tilapia with mango sauce.
click to enlarge Tommy Adams keeps customers happy at Ragusa's - Sicilian Delicatessen. - DONN YOUNG
  • Donn Young
  • Tommy Adams keeps customers happy at Ragusa's Sicilian Delicatessen.
click to enlarge Khalil Jamhour tempts patrons with Cleopatra's falafel - plate. - DONN YOUNG
  • Donn Young
  • Khalil Jamhour tempts patrons with Cleopatra's falafel plate.
click to enlarge Join the gang at Bandito's for a frozen margarita and a - plate of fajitas. - CHERYL GERBER
  • Cheryl Gerber
  • Join the gang at Bandito's for a frozen margarita and a plate of fajitas.
click to enlarge Chef Duke LoCicero specializes in "New World Italian" cuisine at Cafe Giovanni. - CHERYL GERBER
  • Cheryl Gerber
  • Chef Duke LoCicero specializes in "New World Italian" cuisine at Cafe Giovanni.
click to enlarge Start your good times at Tyler's Beer Garden with a plate - of oysters. - DONN YOUNG
  • Donn Young
  • Start your good times at Tyler's Beer Garden with a plate of oysters.
click to enlarge The Steak Knife Restaurant & Bar's Jessica Cater invites - meat-lovers to either of the restaurant's New Orleans - locations. - DONN YOUNG
  • Donn Young
  • The Steak Knife Restaurant & Bar's Jessica Cater invites meat-lovers to either of the restaurant's New Orleans locations.
click to enlarge Chef Susan Spicer's Bayona serves classic creations like - the smoked quail salad with bourbon molassess - vinaigrette. - CHERYL GERBER
  • Cheryl Gerber
  • Chef Susan Spicer's Bayona serves classic creations like the smoked quail salad with bourbon molassess vinaigrette.
click to enlarge One of the many stars of the show at Covington's Etoile - is the homemade pate maison. - DONN YOUNG
  • Donn Young
  • One of the many stars of the show at Covington's Etoile is the homemade pate maison.
click to enlarge Chef Paul Cattoche cooks up the house specialties at - Maximo's Italian Grill. - CHERYL GERBER
  • Cheryl Gerber
  • Chef Paul Cattoche cooks up the house specialties at Maximo's Italian Grill.
click to enlarge Casablanca's Linda Waknin offers a non-dairy chocolate - mousse cake, in addition to myriad Middle Eastern - offerings. - DONN YOUNG
  • Donn Young
  • Casablanca's Linda Waknin offers a non-dairy chocolate mousse cake, in addition to myriad Middle Eastern offerings.
click to enlarge Chefs Sellers Johnson and Austin Leslie create the - memorable cuisine at Pampy's Creole Kitchen. - CHERYL GERBER
  • Cheryl Gerber
  • Chefs Sellers Johnson and Austin Leslie create the memorable cuisine at Pampy's Creole Kitchen.
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