…Because Sunday morning is never easy
By Dario El-Badry, NOLA Brew Bus Tour Guide
October 19, 2017
Some are able to drink half their body weight in tequila, stumble out of a bar that they’ve never heard of, hop in a cab and be at work three hours later all bright-eyed and bushy tailed. Then there’s the rest of us. Despite being older, wiser, and grayer we still haven’t figured out a miracle-cure to the hangover from hell.
Whether it be the hair of the dog, the key’s to grandpa’s medicine cabinet, or the friendly neighborhood greasy spoon, everyone has their own special remedy. In the city best known for the 24-hour bar and the go-cup, hangover helpers are never far from the doorstep.
Heart of the City, For A Reason
Few places downtown are equally as popular with locals as they are tourists. Maybe its the proximity to the big canal st hotels combined with the fact that they serve top notch food until 2AM every night of the week. Not surprisingly, St. Low is also an excellent place to nurse a Sunday morning hangover.
An excellent craft beer selection is always available on draft. Daiquiris here are made with real fruit juice rather than Slurpee mix, a true diamond in the rough.
That should be enough to bring anyone in the door, but they also make the best burger in The Quarter. Top it off with a fried egg, shredded cheddar, fried jalapenos- then try to argue! Their new sister restaurant St Cecilia (91 French Market Place) is more than worth a look, too.
No booze to be found over here, but this means it is void of the long waits and over cooked eggs that plague many favorite brunch spots. Cafe Conti is hidden away from the masses inside the Prince Conti Hotel.
The Aztec Hot Chocolate (made with espresso) and Grit Bowl, topped with eggs, bacon, and creamed spinach of the gods is usually enough to bring any troubled soul back to life. This will set you back less than $15. At this point, it’s best to scamper across the street to Erin Rose for a bit of the hair of the dog.
Every Quarter-Rat knows that Erin Rose is the place to go downtown to escape the menagerie of fishbowl-toting, bead-shrouded tourists. However many may not know about the unbeatable daytime drink specials to get the day kicked into fourth gear. From ten ’till two ‘Wake Up and Live’ specials include mimosas, screwdrivers, bloodys, and Irish Coffees for $4 or less.
Killer Po-Boys fires up in the back at noon and dishes out left-of-center versions of the famous sandwich including the Dark and Stormy- Old NOLA Rum and ginger glazed pork belly with lime slaw and garlic aioli. This is not your dad’s Po-Boy shop.
This cozy neighborhood gem might just be the easiest to remember. For the moment, they have a BYOB policy, but a liquor license in the works may change that policy very soon. Grab a bottle of cheap champagne at Quarter Master down the street, and a carafe of OJ in house.
They make a commitment to support local fisheries, farms, bakeries, and coffee roasters so the menu tends to change often to reflect the season but the quality never suffers. All of the hearty Sunday morning essentials of fried green tomatoes, buttery biscuits, bacon and eggs are here, as well as creative seasonal creations.
If there’s just one restaurant in the heart of the city that is quintessentially NOT New Orleans, that would have to be Green Goddess. No deep-fryers, lots of leafy things, and plenty of vegan options, though thankfully no cashew cheese either. Even the carnivores can get down here.
While stumbling upon picturesque exchange alley, expect the unexpected. The menu can contain cuisine from multiple continents all at once: Italian, Indian, and Cuban, just to name a few. Doesn’t sound like what most desire to cure a headache, but they keep a few local favorites like boudin and biscuits on the menu for the brunch purists. Their Bloody Mary is made with tomatoes roasted in house, a claim few if any can honestly make.
Live Music Capital of the City
While the neighborhood has certainly changed, so has Satsuma. Long gone are the days of making sandwiches in toaster ovens, but the fresh and local ingredients prepared with care that made this spot famous in the first place are still here. Somehow they’re able to sell everything on the menu for under $10.
The green eggs and ham is highly satisfying without being creepy since the green color comes from pesto and not food coloring (gross). There’s no bar, but the organic juices are squeezed to order and sure the beat any hangover in the butt; add ginger to any juice for a great boost of natural energy. Satsuma recently expanded to a new Uptown location on Maple St.
A discussion on the best BBQ in New Orleans usually goes on for upwards of 45 minutes. Opinions are strong and varied, and there’s always one wise-ass from North Carolina who will tell you that quality BBQ in the city doesn’t exist. Be sure to break a bottle over their head after spending an afternoon at The Joint.
This staple institution frequently gets name dropped in national write-ups. Tucked away deep in the Upper 9th Ward, its never difficult to find as the aroma of smoked meat usually saturates the air several blocks away. The neighbors never complain.
The owners of Molly’s at the Market and 13 Monaghan have made their way our to the St Claude corridor. Creative burgers made from locally sourced beef on fresh brioche rolls from the famous Dong Phong Bakery. Better yet, they’ve got over 40 drafts to choose from including several local brews such as 40 Arpent, Mudbug, and Urban South. The friendly staff and light crowds make this spot a must.
An old neighborhood favorite, for sure. Elizabeth’s menu is quirky enough to match the art of Dr. Bob that covers nearly every inch of the wall. No one can call themselves a true New Orleanian until they’ve scarfed down a plate of praline bacon or devoured a plate of Redneck Eggs (a Benedict with fried green tomatoes).
The only problem? This place is too popular for its own good. Thankfully, most of the brunch menu isn’t exclusively a weekend offering. Make the trip anytime Monday through Friday and skip the wait.
For some, the ideal way to recover from a long night is horizontally, with a grill, bar and pool all within stone’s throwing distance. The crowd ranges from barely drinking age to AARP card, pool attire includes mankinis, sarongs, and Hawaiian board shorts. All of this makes the Country Club not only the most relaxing place on this list, but also a highly entertaining way to recuperate.
The home of the neighborhood bar
What started as a delivery pop-up in the back of the Holy Ground years ago has graduated to a full fledged brick and mortar Mid-City staple on Banks St. The food is unpretentious but still exciting and fresh. As the name suggests, all of the bread is baked in house (what did you think it meant!?). Add black beans, chorizo, avocado, or pico de gallo to anything for an extra kick to the morning.
Best thing about them is deliver to nearly anywhere in the neighborhood for those who can’t make it past the front step. They do ask that you be decently dressed before you order. This means free ballers have caused some issues in the past. If you dine in, you are welcome to bring booze with you from Banks St. Bar across the street.
While not technically Mid City, it’s close enough, and the second Toast location is a welcome addition to the neighborhood. Food is simple and reasonably priced, and the service is extra friendly. Their crepes, toasts, and chicken & waffles are enough to keep anyone coming back. Delectable menu specials and a rotating selection of baked goods satisfy the most loyal customers.
The bar is limited but always features reasonably priced local drafts and day drinking essentials. Also check out the original Uptown location.
Twelve Mile Limit is the craft cocktail bar for those who hate cocktail bars. No frills, no bartender olympics, no $15 drinks that taste like moldy pineapple juice and definitely no rosemary springs. The pool table is free, the Jenga set….larger than life, and no cocktail will set you back over $8.
But you already knew all of this. Smokin’ Hot Butts is a BBQ joint that calls 12 Mile home. Their signature BBQ meets all of your brunch favorites Friday through Sunday.
There are only a few adventurous spirits out there that crave a bowl of noodle soup to make the world stop spinning, and they are truly on to something. A classic bowl of pho is really is a secret weapon to rid yourself of the Sunday morning blues. Hot savory broth cures a raspy throat, rice noodles settle the stomach and tender sliced cuts of rare beef provide the much needed protein boost.
It may be unconventional, but over 60 million Vietnamese can’t be wrong since this is a pretty standard breakfast item on the other side of the globe. Drop by Saturday and Sunday for creative takes on brunch classics. MoPho also has plenty of local offerings on tap to wash it all down.
Magazine Street and beyond
Christina Balzebre started Levee Baking Company nearly two years ago. Today her pastry is found on cafe counters across town. Her creations really shine on Saturday mornings when she opens the doors of Mosquito Supper Club to the public. The mission is to take pastry and baked goods in the city to a whole new level, always breaking the mold, but still maintaining a commitment to fresh and local ingredients.
Our favorite time to visit Live Oak is after closing down Snake and Jake’s Christmas Club Lounge in the wee hours of the morning. Wander down Oak Street and across Carrollton as the sun peeks through the trees. Take in the sweet rhythms of an upright piano and double bass. Soak up the sun, sip some coffee, and pray that none of the previous night’s debauchery winds up on social media.
This cafe can be found across the country, everywhere from LA to Miami, but they take brunch pretty seriously, and they fit in quite well on magazine street. We love their food, but its their creative take on our favorite daytime beverages that makes them stand out from the pack. Spiked iced coffees and spicy bloody mary’s should certainly turn anyone’s woeful morning around.
It could be argued that Sunday morning is the most sacred time of life in New Orleans. That being said we take our Bloody Mary’s very seriously. If you can’t serve a decent one, you may as well be closed on Sunday.
At Atchafalaya, if you don’t like your Bloody Mary, its your own damn fault, because they let you make it yourself. Pick your vodka and head to their bar to customize it just to your liking. As far as food, it’s everything you dreamed a southern breakfast would be.
That wraps up our list of hangover sanctuaries. “Hair of the dog” has never been easy, but we hope that Sunday morning headache becomes a little stressful now.
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