We'd need six months in New Orleans to visit every highly recommended restaurant. If you're in town, ask every local you meet about the places they patronize. Here are the few we can vouch for:
841 Iberville Street
If you can stand a little -- OK, a lot -- of noise with your dinner, this casual dining restaurant will do fine. The menu is packed with New Orleans staples, and unlike some other seafood restaurants, the portions-and the drinks-are generous enough to satisfy the most demanding appetites.
Café du Monde
800 Decatur Street
A New Orleans classic and a popular tourist stop for good reason. We highly recommend the perfectly fried, sugar-dusted beignets -- a good thing, since that's the only food item on the menu. The French Quarter location is open twenty-four hours a day, making it the perfect final indulgence after a long, lively night.
Bon Ton Café
401 Magazine Street
You can order your food as spicy as you like here, but owners Wayne and Debbie Pierce say the authentic Cajun (not to be confused with Creole) food they serve needs no hot sauce at all. They should know, since this is the oldest surviving Cajun restaurant in the city.