Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Walking in New Orleans - Part 3

(Catch up on Part 1 and Part 2 here)

The morning was spent with Holly and Stan running the New Orleans Marathon while Dave and Pam Race Chased. Afterwards, we went back to our Bourbon Street Hotel and prepared for some food and fun in The Quarter.

We really didn't do too much walking the rest of the day, but we did hit seven establishments. Our first concern was getting some food. We walked a few doors over to Bayou Burger. The downstairs dining room had a clean, modern sports bar feel. Since the temperature wasn't too bad out we asked to sit outdoors on their Bourbon Street balcony. Lots of fun to have this vantage point of all the fun passing by. Their burgers were great and included some interesting builds. The beer on tap was varied and included many southern options.

Our next stop was Beer Fest for some more draft beer sampling. They had quite a bit on tap, but there were a few things about the location we did not enjoy. First, there was someone smoking inside, which we really did not encounter too much, and someone in our party thought they saw a mouse or a rat in the back of house area. Drink up!

We were in search of some live music this afternoon and there is plenty to find around Bourbon Street. The sounds of the accordion drew us into Bourbon Heat. A guy was doing a one-man show with accordion, guitar, and drum-machine. We were lured in by his zydeco songs and accordion skills, but after just a couple of songs he took out the guitar and kicked off that set with "Smooth" by Santana. Check please. Since we sat by the door we really didn't take-in all that Bourbon Heat may have had to offer.

It was time to introduce Stan to one of our New Orleans favorites: a Shark Attack from Tropical Isle. This is a cocktail filled with theatrics. The base drink of vodka and (Sprite maybe) is first mixed up and a small toy animal or person is placed on top. Then the bartender fills grenadine into a plastic shark, plunges it in your drink, all while blowing a whistle and yelling warnings of a shark attack. Fun!

Now that we've moved onto liquor, it was time to go to Pat O'Brein's. Instead of hitting the patio again we decided to go to the piano bar. Since it was early we did not have to wait on a line to get in. We were shown to a table up front so we had an excellent view of the dueling piano action. All the performers were great, especially the lady would could do "Scenes from an Italian Restaurant" at 3x speed. Since we had such good seats we decided it was a perfect time to just relax and enjoy the show while having a few hurricanes.

After Pat's we wanted to find some jazz. Our Tropical Isle bartender suggested we either go a few doors down to Fritzel's or hoof it passed the French Market to an area just outside The Quarter known for jazz bars. We chose to stay on Bourbon and hit Fritzel's. When we told a local about our choice the next day he looked at us with such disappointment for hitting a tourist place. Guess what? WE ARE TOURISTS! For our purposes it was great.

Fritzel's setup was not like a regular bar or restaurant. There were several rows of benches arranged to focus you attention to the small stage in the corner of the room. It felt like we were going to watch a show in Spanky's barn, but with booze. We could not enter the bar until the band went on break. We were once again given the front row. While waiting we decided we were hungry and inquired about food. We were told we could get a pizza cone in the back alley. Dave went out into the dank back alleyway where there was a tiny kitchen that only made these pizza things. Tasty! The jazz band was good and this proved to be a fun stop for us all.

Fatigue from a full day of racing/chasing was starting to set in. Fortunately, we had enough steam for one more stop. We made the short walk to Maison Bourbon where another jazz band was playing. We were shown to another front table. Within 5 minutes or so the band took a break. After about twenty minutes they came back and played a nice set. As tempting as another set and round would be, none of us had the stamina for it. Off to bed. We still have a full day left in the city as a group, and Dave and Holly had most of Tuesday left to go as well.









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