Best Service in New Orleans

Head here for the royal treatment.
July 21, 2016
·
by Zagat Staff

With its gas lanterns, white tablecloths and Old-World charm, New Orleans knows how to make meals feel special. At Zagat’s top-rated restaurants, where hospitality shines, they become unforgettable.

Commander's Palace
Creole · Garden District · $$$
Food 4.8 · Decor 4.8 · Service 4.8

The "nostalgic" , "old-world" ambiance will "make you feel like a king or queen" at this "genteel" Garden District Creole icon – as will the "first-class" staff that treats "everyone the same: spectacularly" ; "rich" , "leisurely" dinners are an "experience to savor" , and made even more "epic" by a "phenomenal wine list" , so it's a "splurge" that's "worth every penny" , though some "prefer" the "fabulous" lunch (could it be the "25-cent martinis" ?); P.S. no shorts or T-shirts; jackets suggested for men.
Galatoires
French · French Quarter · $$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.6 · Service 4.7

This century-old "bucket-list" French Quarter "institution" offers "a true New Orleans dining experience" thanks to "decadent" , "utterly superb" (albeit "not cheap" ) French-Creole standards and truth-serum cocktails served by "waiters in dinner jackets" who "have been there for years" ( "take their recommendations seriously" insiders advise); "a place to see old New Orleans society" , the main dining room is "complete with black-and-white tiled floors" , "white tablecloths" and "loud, raucous" "laughter in the air" ; P.S. jackets required after 5 PM and all day Sunday; reservations only accepted upstairs.
Brigtsen's Restaurant
Contemporary Louisiana · Carrollton · $$$
Food 4.7 · Decor 4.3 · Service 4.7

"Incredibly talented" chef Frank Brigtsen is a "wizard with seafood" , putting a "wonderful" "spin" on Cajun-Creole "favorites" at his "tucked-away" Carrollton cottage where the prices are "reasonable" for such "reliably" "delightful" dinners; the small, "quaint" rooms have a "warm, comfortable" vibe and the staff is "so friendly you may feel like you're at home" , so some may need reminding that it's "not proper etiquette to lick your plate clean."
August
French · CBD · $$$
Food 4.7 · Decor 4.7 · Service 4.7

John Besh's "rarified" CBD flagship is a "masterpiece" whose "beautiful" , "Gone With the Wind" –style interior and "invisible but omnipresent" staff set the scene for a "genuine dining experience" focused around a "wonderfully creative" French menu with a "NOLA twist" (it also boasts "sublime" wine pairings); the "cost is high" for the "memorable experience" , but fans say it's "worth the splurge" ; P.S. Friday lunch is a "great deal."
Clancy's Restaurant
Creole · Audubon · $$$
Food 4.7 · Decor 4.4 · Service 4.6

This Audubon neighborhood "tradition" boasts "terrific" "contemporary" Creole cooking and "strong drinks" from the "well-stocked bar" , making it a "favorite of locals" who admit it's "not cheap" but agree "you get what you pay for" ; the "clubby" , whitewashed main floor can be "energetic" (read: "loud" ) while upstairs is "quiet" – either way, its "unpretentious" atmosphere makes folks "feel at home on the first visit."
Gautreau's Restaurant
New American · Uptown · $$$
Food 4.8 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.6

"One of the finest restaurants anywhere" – and certainly in New Orleans, is this "upmarket" Uptown destination features "exceptional" , "inventive" New American–New French cuisine that places an "emphasis on seafood" ; a "wonderful" staff caters to a "sophisticated local crowd" that enjoys "perfect meals" in the "intimate" setting, a converted pharmacy; P.S. reservations suggested.
GW Fins
Seafood · French Quarter · $$$
Food 4.7 · Decor 4.6 · Service 4.6

"Creative" presentations of fish resemble "fine art" at this "high-end" French Quarter restaurant helmed by the "outstanding" Tenney Flynn, who can "make a seafood lover out of anyone" (the biscuits are "addictive" too); adding to the "all-around excellent" experience, the "beautiful" , airy space is "extremely well managed" by a "polished" crew that cultivates regulars, including "hard-core foodies" , who return "time and time again."
Ralph's On The Park
Contemporary Louisiana · Mid-City · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.6 · Service 4.6

With "breathtaking" balcony views of City Park oaks "dripping with moss" , Ralph Brennan's "elegant" Mid-City namesake provides a "romantic" backdrop for enjoying "high-quality" Contemporary Louisianan fare from a "dependable kitchen" ; though pricey, it's "the perfect place to celebrate" , making anything from "company functions" to "after-work" drinks from the "cool bar" a "memorable experience."
Mr. B's Bistro
Creole · French Quarter · $$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.6 · Service 4.6

"Pure joy" rave fans about the "wonderful" Contemporary Louisiana fare at this French Quarter "masterpiece" by the Brennan family, which stars "famous" BBQ shrimp that's "worth" getting "sauce up to your elbows" (bibs are provided) and gumbo ya ya that's truly "ya, ya, ya!" ; add in an "extensive" wine list, "class-act" waiters and a "sophisticated" yet "lively" vibe, and no wonder many consider it a "go-to for family entertaining" as well as a "gold standard" for business dining.
Emeril's
Contemporary Louisiana · Warehouse District · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.6

"Master chef" Emeril Lagasse's Warehouse District "flagship" "lives up to its reputation" with an "inspired" menu of "out-of-this-world" Contemporary Louisiana staples, including signature dishes like "amazing" barbecue shrimp and "to-die-for" banana cream pie; just ignore the "pricey" tabs, "sit back and prepare to be pampered" by the "wonderful" staff in an airy, warehouse-chic space "where 'Bam!' was born."
Chophouse New Orleans
Steakhouse · CBD · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

There's an "Old New Orleans" vibe at this "special" , brick-walled CBD steakhouse, where "perfectly cooked" prime beef is paired with "excellent" appetizers (diners "would eat there just for the bread" ), "delicious" family-style sides and "strong drinks" ; yes, it's "on the pricey side" , but "unpretentious" , "wonderful" service adds value, contributing to an overall "fantastic experience."
Bayona
American · French Quarter · $$$
Food 4.7 · Decor 4.6 · Service 4.5

Chef Susan Spicer "never disappoints" at this "long-standing sparkler" in the French Quarter, where "sublime" Contemporary Louisiana fare is prepared with "innovative tweaks" and paired with an "amazing" wine list whose "sole purpose" is to complement the food; "thoughtful, personalized" service is part of the "high-end" package, helping to ensure that whether diners opt for the cottage's "intimate" interior or the "charming courtyard" , "every aspect of the experience is memorable."
Café Adelaide
Creole · Warehouse District · $$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.7 · Service 4.5

This "chic" , "gorgeous" Brennan family venture in the Loews Hotel features "creative" takes on "traditional" Creole dishes served by a "wonderful" , "witty" staff; "you can't beat" the 25-cent martinis (available with lunch only) from the "excellent" Swizzle Stick Bar, which offers what some consider the "best drink menu in town" , contributing to a "wicked fun atmosphere."
Restaurant R'evolution
Cajun · French Quarter · $$$$
Food 4.7 · Decor 4.8 · Service 4.5

"Absolutely amazing" enthuse fans of this "game-changing" collaboration between renowned chefs John Folse and Rick Tramonto in the historic Royal Sonesta Hotel, which wows diners with an "imaginative" Cajun-Creole menu that "covers all the bases (and then some)" ; the "over-the-top" ambition extends to a "huge" wine list, "phenomenal" service and the showstoppingly "gorgeous" , "refined" setting, adding up to a "wonderful special-occasion restaurant."