We were in New Orleans the week before Mardi Gras for work, and Luis has some photos of the French Quarter at One Photograph A Day. There were many parades and parties in progress and I learned that Mardi Gras is really about a two-week progression up to the main event.
It was our first trip to New Orleans post-Katrina (we were there in May 2005) and the French Quarter, Warehouse District (next to the convention center) and Garden District looked fine. However, Luis was in a couple of other areas of the city, including the Lower Ninth Ward. Things are still not so good there–many abanonded houses and buildings, and a lot of rebuilding still going on. I looked up population estimates and the city supposedly has about 290,000 people compared to 490,000 pre-Katrina.
Some of my favorites photos of New Orleans on One Photograph A Day: New Orleans: Blue Dog… Canal Street: Mardi Gras Parade… Moon Walk on the Mississippi… Streets of New Orleans… and Eating Out in New Orleans.
A quick note on Commander’s Palace: If you go to New Orleans, you MUST eat at Commander’s Place in the Garden District; it’s worth the price. Commander’s Palace is Creole-French-New Orleans food, and one of the Brennan family restaurants (although there was a feud and the properties have apparently been split among family members). The proprietor of Commander’s Palace is Miss Dottie Brennan. The food? I wouldn’t even know how to begin to describe how good it was. I had oyster and chicken gumbo, pecan-encrusted gulf fish and a strawberry shortcake… and a few bites of my friend’s Creole Bread Pudding.