I had been to New Orleans one other time for a bachelorette party -your stereotypical good time in NOLA. So when we decided to make the trip for our 3 year anniversary, I was looking forward to doing more than just drinking my face off.
We headed out of Houston and arrived at the Q&C Hotel just before happy hour. Our room was simple, yet stylish with exposed brick and ornate wallpaper behind the King sized bed. We freshened up and headed downstairs for a drink and bite to eat. It was Friday and I didn't think about needing a dinner reservation so after schlepping it to Luke in my 4 inch heels, I was a little put off at being told no tables were available for the evening.
A quick change of plans took us to Royal House (I know, so touristy) but I've never been known to make good decisions on an empty stomach. We each had a sugary, mixed-alcohol-something to drink because, you know, it's New Orleans and you have to, before switching to wine. Dinner was good and the night was young so we headed down Bourbon street with no destination in mind.
We ended up at Fritzel's- a jazz club located right on Bourbon street. The downstairs area was packed and we were told that no seats were available but that there was another band playing upstairs. We opted for that since we had finished our to-go wine from dinner and were in need of a refill. The upstairs was a cozy room with a balcony overlooking Bourbon Street. There were different birds and a large pineapple painted on the ceiling. The band was immediately to our right as we walked in.
We grabbed a drink and settled in to listen to the Messy Cookers jazz band. As the evening and drinks continued, the band took requests- "Do you know any Madeleine Peyroux?" I asked- she's a little too contemporary for us- "okay then, how about La Vie En Rose?". I got lucky with that and as they played, Tony and I danced the rest of the night away.
The next morning we had a delicious breakfast at the hotel before heading out to meet our tour group from Witches Brew Tours and explore St Louis Cemetery No. 1. See if you can spot the ghost in the picture above...
It was the perfect day for a walking tour, not too hot, not too cold, and just overcast enough to make the tombs appear even spookier than normal. We learned SO many interesting things on this tour, not only about the cemetery but about the French Quarter and the city itself- I highly recommend you book this for your next New Orleans adventure.
Our tour guide offered a recommendation for dinner: Tujague's. We had planned on going to NOLA but decided that a local knew best. She did not steer us wrong (pun intended)- dinner was incredible! We each had fish, split dessert, and sipped on wine. As dinner wound down, I perused Yelp for a nearby wine bar and stumbled upon Orleans Grapevine, just a few blocks away on Orleans St.
New Orleans may not be known for its wine bars but this place was amazing! We sat in the interior courtyard, surrounded by classic New Orleans architecture, lush plants, and a bubbling fountain. The umbrella covering our table had twinkling lights to further add to the romantic ambiance. The wine and conversation flowed late into the night...
The next morning we had a leisurely breakfast at Vacherie, strolled around the French Quarter, and stopped in at Cafe Beignet to pick up "sustenance" for the trip home- I may or may not have had 6 beignets during the 6 hour drive back to Houston- don't judge me.
New Orleans is such an incredible and diverse city, rich with history, good food, and great people. The time that you spend here is what you make of it and I couldn't have dreamed a more enchanting and romantic adventure.