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The New Orleans cuisine scene is as eclectic and distinctive as the city itself—it’s a place where tradition and modernity exist side by side through the lens of heritage, culture, and history; but where new and inventive forays into gastronomic horizons are not only welcomed but encouraged with gusto (and gumbo).

And while Creole and Cajun cuisine have deep roots in the heart of New Orleans kitchens everywhere, the Big Easy also has a reputation for its seafood street cred: whether it’s boiled, baked, or breaded and fried to crispy catfish perfection, the city’s diverse array of top-notch restaurants know how to provide big, fresh flavors with fish dishes that are mouth-wateringly delish palate pleasers. Below are some of the best spots to grab some of New Orleans’ signature seafood dishes—a culinary foray into greatness for fish fans everywhere.

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Catfish Cred At Barrow’s

Often referred to as New Orleans’ Favorite Catfish Restaurant, Barrow’s Catfish has been a family-owned fave in the Big Easy since 1943. From the restaurant’s early beginnings serving up a simple fried catfish dish with a side of potato salad; to its current menu loaded with all manner of seafood delights, Barrow’s continues to impress with its Southern charm, hospitality, and deceptively simple menu loaded with the classics.

  • Address: 8300 Earhart Blvd. Suite 103
  • Hours: Monday through Thursday 11AM-9PM; Friday & Saturday 11AM-10PM
  • Reservations: No
  • Price: $$-$$$
  • What To Try: Catfish King (4-piece signature catfish platter); Crawfish & Corn Bisque, Barrow’s Classic Lemonade

South Meets East At Morrow’s

An iconoclastic cuisine mashup of classic New Orleans cuisine and authentic Korean dishes may seem farfetched, but Morrow’s knows how to make it work with their inventive menu that serves up both po’boys and lettuce wraps; fried seafood platters and Korean BBQ with aplomb. Self-described as a place where “great food & dope vibes collide,” Morrow’s has also quickly gained a following since its inception in 2018—and it’s easy to see why.

  • Address: 2438 Saint Claude Ave.
  • Hours: Monday through Thursday 11AM-10PM; Friday & Saturday 11AM-11PM; Sundays 10:30AM-4PM
  • Reservations: Call for more info (504)-827-1519
  • Price: $$$-$$$$
  • What To Try: Char grilled Oysters; Gumbo Ramen; Shrimp Po’boy

Mosquito Supper Club Celebrates The Best Of The Bayou

Celebrating the Gulf Coast’s seafood bounty though locally-sourced, fresh ingredients that define their signature tasting menus, Mosquito Supper Club prioritizes the classics—but don’t let that fool you. Regardless of season, the menu is inventive and revolutionary; packed with twists on tradition that elevate some of New Orleans’ most signature dishes.

  • Address: 3824 Dryades St.
  • Hours: Open seasonally through July 2022; open Thursday through Sunday with an “early-bird” seating beginning at 5:30; see website for further seating times and options. Bar is open 5:30PM-9:30PM.
  • Reservations: Yes
  • Price: $$$$
  • What To Try: Though the tasting menu changes seasonally, past faves include Shrimp & Okra Gumbo; Fried Stuffed Crab; Raw Oysters & Mignonette

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Pêche’s Wood-Grilled And Wonderful Seafood

Traditional Gulf Coast cooking is not the only inspiration at the sensational seafood grill Pêche: the menu also takes its cue from South American and Spanish cuisines, too. But that doesn’t detract from this hip seafood grill’s sustainably-sourced signatures—instead, it enhances tried-and-true traditional flavors by rustically re-imagining creative dishes, served directly from the open hearth to guests’ plates.

  • Address: 800 Magazine Street
  • Hours: Sunday through Thursday 11AM-9PM; Friday & Saturday 11AM-10PM
  • Reservations: Yes
  • Price: $$-$$$$
  • What To Try: Whole Grilled Redfish; Raw Bar Gulf Shrimp; Fish Sticks With Urban South Beer Batter

Arnaud’s Is A French Quarter Fave

Arnaud’s is a true New Orleans staple: classic Creole cuisine served in a warm and inviting turn of the century dining room where it’s not unusual to hear live Dixieland; this French Quarter icon showcases the Big Easy biggest flavors with a flair for Bourbon Street pomp and Southern charm that’s only outshined by the fantastic menu packed with a plethora of palate-pleasing faves.

  • Address:
  • Hours: Open for dinner Wednesday through Saturday 5:30PM-9PM and Jazz Brunch 10AM-1:30PM
  • Reservations: Yes
  • Price: $$$-$$$$
  • What To Try: Shrimp Creole; Smoked Pompano Bourgeois; Oysters Arnaud

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La Petit Grocery Has La Grand Saveur (Big Flavor)

2016 James Beard Award Winner Chef Justin Devillier brings his signature flair to New Orleans classics at the famed New Orleans spot La Petit Grocery. A community staple for almost 20 years, this delish dining destination is at the cornerstone of its neighborhood—literally housed in a more than century old building that’s hosted everything from a butcher’s shop to a florist. And it’s not just La Petit Grocery’s location that impresses—it’s the elegant and eclectic menu that’s effortlessly casual and unabashedly delish.

  • Address: 4238 Magazine Street
  • Hours: Dinner served Sunday through Thursday 5PM-9:30PM; Friday & Saturday 5PM-10:30PM
  • Reservations: Yes
  • Price: $$-$$$$
  • What To Try: Blue Crab Beignets; Shellfish Stew; Gulf Shrimp & Grits

New Orleans’ Gulf Coast location and vibrant, eclectic heritage makes it an epicenter for fresh seafood dishes that are guaranteed to please any visiting foodie: a cuisine scene packed with distinctively delicious restaurants bursting with Southern charm and flavor. And these epic establishments are the cream of the crop—offering prospective diners everything from signature classics steeped in tradition, to contemporary, flavor-forward flavors and twists on OG Big Easy faves as original as the city itself.