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James Beard Award-Winning Restaurants in New Orleans
 

James Beard Award-Winning
Restaurants in New Orleans

Chef Susan Spicer

Known as “the Oscars of the food world,” the James Beard Awards are the highest honor for food and beverage professionals in America. The Awards were established in 1990 to recognize culinary professionals for excellence and achievement in their fields, and to emphasize the Foundation’s mission to celebrate, nurture, and honor America's diverse culinary heritage through programs that educate and inspire. 

While winners are chosen from all over the country, New Orleans chefs have won over 20 James Beard awards since the program’s beginning in 1991. A plethora of New Orleans chefs have specifically won the Best Regional Chef Award for the South, including: Emeril Lagasse, John Besh, Alon Shaya, Susan Spicer, Frank Brigtsen, Donald Link and many more!

We’ve listed their award-winning restaurants below so you can experience the culinary brilliance for yourself. Find the venue that strikes your interest and make your reservation. Be sure to book in advance – these hotspots tend to fill up quickly!

James Beard Award-Winning Restaurants in New Orleans
Arnaud's Restaurant
813 Bienville St., New Orleans, LA 70112 [Map It]
(504) 523-5433
www.arnaudsrestaurant.com

Neighborhood: French Quarter
Attire: Dressy (Jacket May Be Required)
Price Range: $$$
Open For: Dinner, Sunday Brunch (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: French, Creole, Gluten-Free

Description: Leader of the culinary old guard since 1918. Dinner & Dixieland at world-famous Arnaud's with legendary Creole cuisine and music in the Jazz Room every night from 6:30. Sunday Brunch & Jazz. Fine cigars, cognacs, ports in Arnaud's Bar. Mardi Gras museum. Lunch Sunday-Friday 504-523-5433 13 private dining rooms for special occasions.

*Arnaud's French 75 Bar won James Beard Award for Outstanding Bar Program (2017).

Bayona
430 Dauphine St., New Orleans, LA 70112 [Map It]
(504) 525-4455
www.bayona.com

Neighborhood: French Quarter
Attire: Business Casual
Price Range: $$$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Continental, Contemporary

Description: Bayona has been distinguished as one of the top 40 places to dine in the U.S. by Conde Nast in 1993. Bayona is located in a romantic 150 year old creole cottage in the historic French Quarter. You may choose to be served while seated in our lush tropical courtyard where you will dine on Chef Susan Spicer's nationally acclaimed cuisine.

*This is the restaurant of James Beard Award Winner, Susan Spicer, who won Best Chef: Southeast 1993.

Brigtsen's Restaurant
723 Dante St., New Orleans, LA 70118 [Map It]
(504) 861-7610
www.brigtsens.com

Neighborhood: Uptown/Garden District
Attire: Business Casual
Price Range: $$$$
Open For: Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Cajun, Creole

Description: Owned and operated by Frank and Marna Brigtsen, Brigtsen's serves award-winning modern Louisiana cuisine in a renovated Victorian cottage. The menu changes daily and features fresh, local ingredients.

*This is the restaurant of James Beard Award Winner, Frank Brigtsen, Best Chef: South (1998).

Cochon
930 Tchoupitoulas St., New Orleans, LA 70130 [Map It]
(504) 588-2123
www.cochonrestaurant.com

Neighborhood: Arts District/Convention Center
Attire: Business Casual
Price Range: $$$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Cajun, Contemporary, Louisiana

Description: Chef Donald Link serves the flavors of Cajun country in a rustic yet contemporary setting. Stop in for locally sourced dishes made in the old style, from a wood-burning oven, many of them served with freshly cooked vegetables on the side that are garnished to your taste. Cochon means "pig" in French, so it's no surprise that the pork dishes served here are stellar.

*Cochon is the restaurant of James Beard Award Winner, Stephen Stryjewski, who won Best Chef: South 2011.

Commander's Palace
1403 Washington Ave., New Orleans, LA 70115 [Map It]
(504) 899-8221
www.commanderspalace.com

Neighborhood: Uptown/Garden District
Attire: Dressy (Jacket May Be Required)
Price Range: $$$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner, Sunday Brunch (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Contemporary, Creole, Louisiana, Gluten-Free

Description: New Orleans Magazine 1996 Chef of the Year. New Orleans Magazine 1995 Favorite Overall Restaurant. GQ's Golden Dish Award for Eggs Sardou. Located in the historic Garden District. You can walk through the kitchen to the bar and patio. Rated five stars. Original Jazz brunch, patio dining - Commander's Palace - that's what living in New Orleans is all about!

*Commander's Palace has won multiple James Beard Foundation Awards, including: Outstanding Service (1993), Outstanding Restaurant (1996), and Best Chef: South for Chef Tory McPhail (2013).

Domenica
123 Baronne St., New Orleans, LA 70112 [Map It]
(504) 648-6020, (800) 925-3673
www.domenicarestaurant.com

Neighborhood: Central Business District/Downtown
Attire: Casual
Price Range: $$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Italian, Pizza

Description: Domenica is the creation of internationally acclaimed Chef John Besh and his executive chef and partner, Alon Shaya, who was awarded “Best Chef-South” by the James Beard Foundation in 2015. Domenica won “Best Pizza 2012” from New Orleans Magazine and was chosen as a top restaurant of 2012 by Food & Wine. Located in the storied Roosevelt New Orleans hotel, Domenica brings an elegant take on the unique cuisine of rural Italy prepared using only the best local ingredients. Homemade pastas, cured meats and wood-fired pizzas all paired with a stylish, vibrant atmosphere create a dining experience, that is sure to start a few traditions of its own.
Dooky Chase's Restaurant
2301 Orleans Ave., New Orleans, LA 70119 [Map It]
(504) 821-0535

Neighborhood: Treme
Attire: Business Casual
Cuisine Type/s: Soul Food, Creole

Description: Led by world famous chef, Leah Chase this family restaurant serves up an incredible array of creole and soul food in a restaurant atmosphere full of local art.

*This is the restaurant of James Beard Award Winner, Leah Chase, who won 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award.

Emeril's Restaurant
800 Tchoupitoulas St., New Orleans, LA 70130 [Map It]
(504) 528-9393
www.emerilsrestaurants.com

Neighborhood: Arts District/Convention Center
Attire: Business Casual
Price Range: $$$$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Contemporary, Louisiana

Description: The restaurant that won Emeril the James Beard Award for Best Chef: Southeast in 1991. This is Emeril Lagasse’s flagship restaurant in the heart of the historic Warehouse District! Nestled in a renovated Pharmacy warehouse on Tchoupitoulas Street, eight blocks from the Vieux Carre, the rustic interior features exposed brick and glass walls flanking one side of the main dining room, with plaster-lathe wood forming a wine wall on the other. Local artists are displayed creating an energetic, yet warm atmosphere that reflects the feel of the neighborhood. There is a food bar overlooking the open kitchen, where 10 or so lucky guests view Chef Emeril and his crew creating culinary delights directly in front of them. The chef's wine room recreates the feel of a wine cellar with oak barrel slat ceiling and slate. Over twenty five years after bursting onto the culinary scene it is still the talk of the town.
Galatoire's Restaurant
209 Bourbon St., New Orleans, LA 70112 [Map It]
(504) 525-2021
www.galatoires.com

Neighborhood: French Quarter
Attire: Dressy (Jacket May Be Required)
Price Range: $$$$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Cajun, Continental, Gluten-Free

Description: Located in the historic French Quarter, Galatoire's has the reputation of being the best of the old line establishments of New Orleans. Along with excellent French Creole cuisine, a festive and yet elegant atmosphere lure locals and visitors alike. Steeped in tradition and run by fourth generation proprietors, Galatoire's has delighted the many who have dined on renowned specialties such as shrimp remoulade, oysters en brochette and crabmeat Yvonne.

*Galatoire's is the James Beard Award-winning restaurant for Outstanding Restuarant (2005).

Gautreau's Restaurant
1728 Soniat St., New Orleans, LA 70115 [Map It]
(504) 899-7397
www.gautreausrestaurant.com

Neighborhood: Uptown/Garden District
Attire: Dressy (Jacket May Be Required)
Price Range: $$$$
Open For: Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Cajun

Description: Gautreau's offers Modern French and contemporary Louisiana fare using only fresh ingredients. The menu changes about every six weeks. Gautreau's was just named one of "The Bon Appetit Hot 50 " in the magazine's "guide to what's hot now...the best flavors, most innovative menus, and latest scenes from coast to coast" March 2005 issue.

*Host restaurant to James Beard Award Winner, Sue Zemanick- Best Chef: South 2014.
Hansen's Sno-Bliz
4801 Tchoupitoulas St., New Orleans, LA 70116 [Map It]
(504) 891-9788
www.snobliz.com

Neighborhood: Uptown/Garden District
Attire: Casual
Price Range: $
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Desserts, Snowballs

Description: When the weather heats up, locals line up for this 74-year tradition. Snoballs, (not to be confused with snowcones) are NOLA concoctions made by combining fluffy ice and homemade syrups in a layering process. Flavors like Banana, Cardamom and Strawberry Shortcake make for a refreshing, warm weather treat.

*James Beard Award Winner for "American Classics" Award (2014).

Herbsaint Bar and Restaurant
701 St. Charles Ave., New Orleans, LA 70130 [Map It]
(504) 524-4114
www.herbsaint.com

Neighborhood: Central Business District/Downtown
Attire: Dressy (Jacket May Be Required)
Price Range: $$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Cajun, Contemporary

Description: Popular dishes include the wild green salad spiced with gorgonzola and peppered pecans, eggplant Napoleon, shrimp bisque, gumbo, short ribs, pork loin, rib-eye, lamb and salmon with mustard-seed coating. For dessert try a twist on the classic beignet-chocolate beignet or the saffroned semolina cake with caramel.

*Herbsaint is the restaurant of James Beard Award Winner, Donald Link, who won Best Chef: South (2007) and Rebecca Wilcomb (2017).

La Petite Grocery
4238 Magazine St., New Orleans, LA 70115 [Map It]
(504) 891-3377
www.lapetitegrocery.com

Neighborhood: Uptown/Garden District
Attire: Casual
Price Range: $$$$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Cajun, French, Gluten-Free

Description: A charming eatery in the heart of Uptown, La Petite Grocery caters to the palates of New Orleanians and leisure travelers with its delicious French cuisine. Daily happy hours with an intimate dining experience.

*This is the restaurant of James Beard Award Winner, Justin Devillier, who won Best Chef: South 2016.

Peche Seafood Grill
800 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA 70130 [Map It]
(504) 522-1744
www.pecherestaurant.com

Neighborhood: Arts District/Convention Center
Attire: Casual
Price Range: $$$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Seafood, Louisiana, Vegan

Description: Peche, the newest member of Chef Donald Link + Stephen Stryjewski's family of restaurants, celebrates local seafood, and features an open wood fire grill and a raw bar.

*Peche was the host restaurant to Chef Ryan Prewitt, when he won the 2014 James Beard Award for Best Chef: South.

*James Beard Award Winner of Best New Restaurant (2014).

Restaurant August
301 Tchoupitoulas St., New Orleans, LA 70130 [Map It]
(504) 299-9777
restaurantaugust.com

Neighborhood: Central Business District/Downtown
Attire: Dressy (Jacket May Be Required)
Price Range: $$$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Continental, Vegetarian, Contemporary

Description: Some of August's popular specialties include wild pheasant and rabbit with sage and morel mushrooms, seared bass and shrimp- and lobster-stuffed piquillo peppers. The foie gras appetizer is the rave of the town, while the reasonably sized entrees always leave room for dessert. The wine list includes an impressive 250 bottles, some of which can be quite expensive. Chef John Besh combines everything to make this restaurant a unique CBD stop!

*John Besh won the James Beard Award for Best Chef: Southeast (2006) for his cuisine at Restaurant August.

Shaya
4213 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70115 [Map It]
(504) 891-4213
www.shayarestaurant.com

Neighborhood: Uptown/Garden District
Attire: Casual
Price Range: $$
Open For: Lunch, Dinner (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: Middle Eastern

Description:

*James Beard Award Winner of Best New Restaurant 2016 and Rising Star Chef of 2017, Zachary Engel.

Willie Mae's Scotch House
2401 St Ann St., New Orleans, LA 70119 [Map It]
(504) 822-9503

Neighborhood: Treme
Attire: Casual
Price Range: $
Open For: Lunch (Call ahead for hours)
Cuisine Type/s: American, Soul Food

Description: Willie Mae's is a local and international favorite, known for its simple menu and famous fried chicken.

Willie Mae Seaton started serving her delicious chicken over 30 years ago. She continued to run her homie Treme restaurant as it grew in popularity and even made her way back to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina to keep her secret recipe alive.

In 2005 Willie Mae won the "American Classics" James Beard Award for local restaurants that keep regional culinary traditions alive.

With international acclaim and the love of an entire city, Willie Mae Seaton passed away in the fall of 2015. Her great-granddaughter, Kerry Seaton, continues to run the restaurant and preserve this incredible local gem.

 
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