Natchez Riverboat Dinner Jazz Cruise

Natchez Riverboat Dinner Jazz Cruise

Toulouse Street Wharf - Behind Jax Brewery
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 569-1401
www.steamboatnatchez.com
cruises@neworleanssteamboat.com
 
natchez-steamboat
Natchez Riverboat Dinner Jazz Cruise
 

Let it be known that many native New Orleanians are aware of the beauty that lives within this wonderful, beautiful, photogenic city. Taking into account the long-running advertisement, “Be a tourist in your own hometown,” I was bound for the Mississippi River and The Natchez Riverboat Dinner Jazz Cruise. It was an evening well spent! The view from the river of the city at sunset is breathtaking. As the sun goes down, the city and its skyline of lights come to life. From the many colorful lights of Harrah’s Casino to the lights of the many hotels that line the river, it is a sight to behold. The majesty of the Mighty Mississippi is a sight better seen then told and there is no better view than cruising amongst its powerful, muddy waves. Be it a birthday celebration, anniversary, reunion, or if you just want to experience life cruising on an authentic steamboat, The Natchez is the place to be. It is and has been a popular destination for locals and tourist alike. If you decide to take this venture, hourly parking is available a short walk away at the lot on Decatur Street (not included in cost of cruise ticket).

There are two ways to experience The Natchez. It can serve as a dinner buffet (lunch and a Sunday Jazz Brunch are also available), or you can just board to take in the atmosphere, scenic view from the deck and the wonderful music of a Grammy nominated authentic jazz band, the Dukes of Dixieland. The sights and sounds package is at a cheaper price of $43.00 for adults (children 6-12 are $21.50 and 2-5) are free. This is an ideal choice for families who are traveling on a budget. Payment is accepted in all forms from traveler’s checks to credit cards. My partner and I decided to splurge and take in the dinner buffet, sights along the river, and the sounds of the Dukes of Dixieland. At a price of $72.50 for adults (children 6-12 are $34.00 and children 2-5 are $14.00), a buffet of regional food was served piping hot. It included a green salad, dark roux file gumbo with shrimp, Andouille sausage and chicken, Louisiana style fried catfish, pork lion with Creole mustard sauce, maque choux (a Cajun dish of deep roasted corn and tomatoes, creole spices, peppers and celery), creole creamed spinach, and to top it off, bread pudding deliciously complimented with a Jim Beam bourbon sauce. No meal is complete in New Orleans without French bread and French Market coffee, and this buffet is no exception. There is also bottomless unsweetened tea to quench your thirst if you prefer not to purchase the alcoholic beverages and sodas available at the well-stocked bar on board. I found the wait staff to be very friendly and courtesy. Many held conversations with the tourists regarding suggestions on attractions to visit before leaving the city.

Dinner Cruise

If your plans are to attend the dinner cruise, note that there are two seatings. You are given the choice of a 7:00 p.m. seating or a 9:00 p.m. seating. The riverboat boards at 6:00 p.m. and cruises promptly at 7:00 p.m., so make sure you are on time. There is a lot to take in at The Jax Brewery if you would like to go down to this area early to ascertain you arrive on time. If you decide not to purchase the dinner, lunch or brunch on The Natchez, there are loads of places around to catch a quick bite. Shopping is also plentiful in this area. The city’s first H&M Store opened recently and I hear bargains are plentiful. Tickets for The Natchez can be purchased in advance online or you can take a chance if it’s a last minute decision and purchase them dockside at the Lighthouse ticket office if spaces are still available. It is recommended that groups of 10 or more make reservations to make sure they are accommodated and to receive a special group rate. There is a package deal with Gray Line Tours which also includes a city tour for the cost of $102.00 and $49.00 for children 6-12. We opted for the second seating of 9:00 p.m. so that we can take in the sights along the river in daylight. We were also able to view the magnificent sunset with this choice. Make sure to have your camera ready because the best view of The St. Louis Cathedral can be seen from the river’s view from the left side of the boat. The captain will point out locations and bits of historical information to you as you cruise along the river over the loud speakers. It’s a good idea to take along a sweater or jacket.Some may find the breeze from the river to be a bit cool. You can always revert to inside quarters, but it is better to experience the ride and view from the deck. There will also be Natchez employed photographers on board to capture you on your cruise. The photos will be made available to you when you debark. If you are not ready to purchase, you will be given a card with information instructing you on how to view and purchase your photos online at a later time.

The Natchez has a wonderful informative website (www.steamboatnatchez.com) that answers many of the questions you may have regarding in climate weather to reservations and discounts. The Natchez Riverboat has it all! Great regional food, New Orleans jazz, and sightseeing from a picturesque vantage point, all while cruising down the river on an authentic steamboat. Wow! Because this is all obtainable in one location, Nola Roux recommends this attraction by awarding 4 fleurs-di-lis. During the cruise, make sure you take time to visit the gift shop to take home a remembrance of your time spent on the waters of the Mighty Mississippi.

Restaurants in New Orleans

Nola Roux
November 2013
 

Five New Orleans Neighborhood Bars

New Orleans Dives

New Orleans is a great place for drinking. With actual bike tours dedicated to the craft of cocktails, we take our alcohol pretty seriously. While there’s no shortage of high-brow bars around town, with their award-winning mixologists and vintage liquor cabinets, sometimes you just want simple. So for those craving an authentic local New Orleans experience with some cheap beer and great conversation with some real New Orleans characters, we’ve rounded up the top neighborhood dives, from Uptown to Downtown.

Uptown Dive Bars

Snake and Jake’s Christmas Club Lounge, University Area

Brother’s III Lounge, Magazine Street

Downtown Dive Bars

Claire’s Pour House, French Quarter

The Friendly Bar, Marigny

BJ’s Lounge, Bywater

See full story on New Orleans Dive Bars: Uptown and Downtown  gonola.com

by Elizabeth Heideman on April 24, 2014

 

 

Jazz Fest New Orleans Best Food

Well it's the Jazz Fest turn next on the list of festivals in New Orleans. Celebrating it's 45th year, the Jazz Fest features scores of local and international musicians and artists. The dates are April 25,26,27 and May 1,2,3,4 from 11:00 am to 7:00 pm. People come from all over the world to the New Orleans Fairgrounds for seven full days of music, arts and food! Yes, that's right not just the music and art but the food are a big draw as well. Check out the article By Scott Gold

If you've never been to the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, you've probably still heard about it. It is, by all accounts, one of the longest-running, largest, and most-renowned music festivals in the Crescent City (if not the world!), and while theres a TON of amazing music, one of the best reasons to head down to the Fair Grounds actually has nothing to do with jazz, gospel, funk, rock, blues, or even Bruce Springsteen. It's the food. You can literally spend an entire day at Jazz Fest doing nothing but eating, and even then, you probably wouldn't be able to handle everything the vendors have to offer. Here's the best of what's there...

Alligator Pie
Cajun Nights Catering
African Combo Plate
Bennachin Restaurant
Cochon De Lait Poboy
Love at First Bite
Cracklins
Fattys Cracklins
Crawfish Sausage
Vaucresson Sausage Co.
Cuban Sandwich
Cansecos Markets
Japanese Yakiniku Po-Boy
Ninja Sushi Restaurant
Lamb Tagine and Merguez Sausage
Jamilas Cafe
Combo Plate
Pattons Caterers
Pheasant, Quail, and Andouille Gumbo
Prejeans Restaurant
Barbecue Turkey Wings and Meaty White Beans
Down Home Creole Cookin
Vietnamese Shrimp Bun
Ba Mien Vietnamese Cuisine

See full story on The Best Food To Find At Jazz Fest

You must check out the Jazz Fest this year. Admission is $70 per day, $5 ages 2-10, and $55 advance (before April 24). VIP packages are available as well. I know it's costly but well worth it and I will see you in the food lines!

 

French Quarter Festival 2014

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I had a great time at the French Quarter Festival this year. Every year the crowds are getting bigger.  Surely all attendance records were broken this year with all of the great weather we had.  If the crowds continue to grow, it may require that they stop all vehicle traffic in the French Quarter for this festival. The organization will have to revisit the parking situation in the French Quarter and surrounding area to handle the massive crowds.

French Quarter Festival is a free, annual music festival located in the historic French Quarter of New Orleans, Louisiana. Founded in 1983 with the first festival held in 1984, French Quarter Festival features 1,400 musicians across 21 stages in the French Quarter. The impressive array of music showcases a variety of popular New Orleans' genres including traditional and contemporary jazz, Cajun-Zydeco, world, brass band, blues, rock, and pop from some of New Orleans' most well-known musicians. French Quarter Festival offers cuisine from more than 65 of New Orleans' finest restaurants at the 'World's Largest Jazz Brunch'. With an annual attendance of over 560,000,[1] the festival bills itself as "The Largest Free Festival In the South."[2] The next French Quarter Festival will take place April 10-13, 2014.

French Quarter Festival is produced by French Quarter Festivals, Inc., the nonprofit organization, which also produces Satchmo SummerFest in August and Christmas New Orleans Style in December. French Quarter Festivals, Inc. promotes the Vieux Carré and the City of New Orleans through high quality special events and activities that showcase the culture and heritage of this unique city, contribute to the economic well being of the community, and instill increased pride in the people of New Orleans.

Click here for more on The French Quarter Festival

Festivals In New Orleans

The word “FUN” is nearly synonymous with the term Festivals in New Orleans. New Orleans is known to be a fun town, full of festivities, parades, music, food, art, and the Mississippi River.

Mardi Gras is just one of the many New Orleans festivals that this city can boast, and it is a very big one, indeed. From January until its huge parade on Shrove Tuesday, Mardi Gras is the big draw to the Big Easy. But there are other New Orleans festivals going on all year round in this town that never seems to sleep.

The French Quarter Festival runs during four days in mid-April where non-stop 275 hours of musical entertainment can be enjoyed on twenty stages. The festival attracts more than 500,000 participants for this New Orleans music fest. Begun in 1984, the French Quarter Festival is the largest free music festival in the South. A multitude of musical genres such as traditional and contemporary jazz, R & B, New Orleans funk, brass bands, folk, gospel, classical, opera, Zydeco, Latin World, International, and children’s music are represented. Food and drink is available in beautiful Jackson Square and a free shuttle service will take you from stage to stage.

The Satchmo Summerfest is an event that music lovers everywhere should not miss. This New Orleans jazz fest is dedicated to the life and music of New Orleans born Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong. It is a free music festival enhanced with speakers, seminars and food and drink.

There is no Christmas like Christmas New Orleans Style, a festival held during the month of December. Food, romance, art, architecture and music, this festival has it all. Enjoy the gospel choirs in the St. Louis Cathedral. Feel like a little child again as you stroll or ride along the oak trees all lit up in City Park. See the homes gaily decorated in the Garden District. Every nook and cranny of New Orleans is ready for the holidays during the entire month of the season.

Don’t miss the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in April and May. The music tents are set up in Heritage Square and Louisiana Marketplace along with a showcase of original handcrafted clothing, gorgeous leather goods and crafted musical instruments, along with a colorful array of paintings, photographs, sculptures and one-of-a-kind jewelry items. You will find delectable food items in Congo Square, Heritage Square and the other food areas selling such wares as Po-Boys, Cajun Jambalaya, Alligator Pies, Beignets, Crawfish Bisque, Pralines, and fresh pies to name a few items. It is food and music galore. On the crafty and cultural end, there are “villages” set up to represent the various heritages such as Louisiana Folklife Village where Cajun musicians handcraft accordions, boat builders ply their craft, and you will learn the traditions of Mardi Gras Indians and Marching Clubs. The Native American Village will introduce you to a real pow-wow with traditional dances, drumming and singing.

 

Must See Attractions in New Orleans

Many tourists come to Louisiana and don't get to visit the must see attractions in New Orleans. Some of the attractions are fairly obvious ones that most people know about while others are more off the beaten track. There are so many things to do in New Orleans.

carriage ride in the french quarter
most see attractions in New Orleans

Take the New Orleans School of Cooking, for instance. This is one of the few places that a visitor can take classes in classic Creole cooking, making jambalaya, shrimp Creole, or gumbo dishes. If you love authentic New Orleans cooking and want to know how it’s made, you need to visit this attraction and view a demonstration class.

Another attraction is the National World War II Museum. The focus here is on the remembrance and celebration of the American Spirit, courage and the sacrifices of the men and women who served during World War II. There are many relics on display and audiovisual demonstrations. Plan on spending at least half a day touring this fantastic museum, noted as being the best of its kind in the country.

Attractions in New Orleans Not To Be Missed!

One attractions not to be missed is a tour through the Garden District. If you contact the New Orleans Chamber of Commerce, you can get information on self-guided tours of this beautiful neighborhood. You will see antebellum mansions, gorgeous gardens and the way the “new rich” lived and built their homes in the 19th century.

Take a factory tour of the Old New Orleans Rum Distillery. The tour begins with a cocktail and ends with a tasting of four types of rum. See the process of distilling rum from beginning to end. This is a great way to spend some time on something novel to do outside of the quarter.

The Audubon Zoo is a favorite with adults and children alike. You will find an interesting swamp exhibit here, where, by the way, you can eat a meal of delicious jambalaya! You’ll also find a Cajun Village, and all of the exhibits, indoors and out, that can be expected at a top-notch zoo.

Jackson Square

The History of New Orleans
Jackson Square

For a fun outdoor walking experience, visit Jackson Square, a famous landmark facing the Mississippi River and is surrounded by the St. Louis Cathedral, the Cabildo and the Presbytere (Mardi Gras museum with the Katrina exhibit). Here is a great place to sit, relax and do some people watching. Jackson Square ties a lot of the different histories and sights of New Orleans together. In any direction you walk, you’ll see one of the New Orleans attractions you’ve heard about. You will come across Bourbon Street, St Louis Cathedral, Cafe du Monde, Marie Laveau’s, Pat O’Brien’s, The French Market, The Riverwalk and The Natchez Paddle-Wheeler. Take a horse drawn carriage ride and admire the picturesque area. There are so many things to do while in the Crescent City! Enjoy yourself and remember there are many things to do in New Orleans because NOLA never sleeps!

Snug Harbor

 

Snug Harbor Jazz Bristro

New Orleans Premier Jazz Club

626 Frenchmen Street
New Orleans, LA 70116
(504) 949-0696 
www.snugjazz.com
New Orleans premier Jazz Club
Snug Harbor

Let’s just call it “Friday Night on Frenchman.” Please do not get it twisted. This is not the only night this street comes to life. I just love the sound of it and it is fast becoming a ritual for many local New Orleanians and tourist alike.

Personally, Frenchman Street means Snug Harbor which is located in an old storefront from the 1800’s that has been renovated. Whether you are there to catch the next jazz show or settle in for a delicious meal, Snug is the place to be. Located on the edge of the French Quarters, in the neighborhood of the Faubourg Marigny (known simply as “The Marigny” to locals), it is quickly becoming the place to catch live, up close and personal, jazz music. Singer Lizzie Miles and jazz musician/composer Jelly Roll Morton were residents and this neighborhood is still home to many of the same professions. Those who are familiar with HBO’s Treme, will recognize many of the venues along this infamous street.

Musicians that have regular sets at Snug are jazz vocalist Philip Manuel, jazz percussionist Herlin Riley (check out Herlin’s Facebook page), jazz pianist Ellis Marsalis (father of musician’s Wynton, Bradford and Delfeayo-who is also known to gig here), Leah Chase (namesake daughter of restaurateur Mrs. Chase of world-famous Dooky Chase on Orleans Avenue), jazz saxophonist Victor Goines, and Charmaine Neville (daughter of Charles Neville and niece of the remaining Neville Brothers). As you can see, New Orleans is a very connected city, with many families carrying on the traditions that make this city so special. Show times are 8 pm and 10 pm Monday through Sundays and tickets are purchased at the edge of the well-equipped bar. Local artists CDs can also be purchased here. There is floor seating, as well as my preference, taking the stairs to the balcony. It is best to arrive early because seats do fill fast. Also note that parking can be somewhat of a burden. There is a public lot located on Elysian Fields that charges guests by the hour. It is easier to park for the first set as opposed to the second set because Frenchmen revelers tend to come out later in the night and are present until the early morning.  Usually sets lasts approximately an hour and a half, therefore parking could be satisfied with a $10 dollar bill. This lot is a short walk to Snug and there are many sights and people watching to hold your attention. While walking you may encounter the next musician to emerge because there are many street musicians. It is not out of the ordinary to catch entertainers that are already known such as the Rebirth Brass Band. For Hollywood star followers, you never know what celebrity you may see strolling Frenchmen Street or who may show up and decide to take the stage at Snug. Also located across the street is an art alley with local artists peddling their crafts.

If you would like to dine at Snug Harbor, dinner begins at 5:00 pm and the closing time depends on the day (Sunday thru Thursday – 10:45 pm/Friday and Saturday – 11:45 pm). It is the home of one of the best steak burgers in the city, and the side baked potato is so smooth, it has the texture and consistency of a mashed potato. With a price tag of $9.75, I consider it a true bargain. If burgers are not your forte, Snug’s menu is quite extensive. Consisting of seafood, chicken, steaks, sandwiches, and of course, those wonderful burgers, I am sure you will find something that will satisfy your taste. Make sure to save room for dessert. Bread pudding with hard sauce and traditional pecan pie are listed. Reservations can be made to make sure you are seated. If you are able, request one of the tables by the window and people watch while you dine. Remember, you never know you who may stroll by!

Restaurants in New Orleans

NOLA Roux 

Restaurants in New Orleans

Some of the best food in the world can be found in the restaurants in New Orleans. No trip to this much-loved destination is complete without a foray into the local cuisine. New Orleans food is truly like no other food you can get anywhere else! A New Orleans tradition not to be missed is the Sunday Brunch. Wake up late after a Saturday night of listening to live jazz, partying or a cruise excursion. No need to worry about missing breakfast or being too early for lunch.

Must-Visit Restaurants in New Orleans

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Imagine a delightful, music-filled brunch with the most delicious food you can imagine. Brunch in New Orleans is festive and gets to the heart of the city’s pulse: food and music. Enjoy down home New Orleans southern classics such as fried green tomatoes, entrees with a New Orleans twist, to one of the scrumptious New Orleans desserts, pecan pies.

Restaurants in New Orleans
shrimp po-boy

Besides getting a Po-Boy sandwich in most of the restaurants around New Orleans be sure to try the Gumbo. This dish is full of history and flavor. Each chef has his own recipe (most say the secret is in the roux) for gumbo. There are okra gumbo, chicken and sausage gumbo, seafood gumbo and filé gumbo just to name a few. All make a nearly perfect traditional New Orleans gumbo.

If you haven’t tried crawfish yet, you must try it here. Louisiana is known for their mud bugs or crawfish “a delicacy” you probably can’t find in your hometown. Crawfish etouffee is thicker than gumbo and full of flavor. And do not forget to taste Jambalaya, a dish full of seafood, chicken, sausage, spices with hit of hot sauce.

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