Monday, December 12, 2011


Thursday - Thanksgiving - was our second day in New Orleans. We had reservations for dinner at Restaurant August for 5:30 p.m. but other than that our day was open. Unfortunately, because of the holiday a lot of the touristy things to do were closed, so we used the time to relax and wander the city. But first, breakfast! Our hotel provided a "continental breakfast" that was pretty disgusting - tepid, weak coffee and stale pastry. Appetizing! We found one of the few restaurants that were open for breakfast and kicked off our day there. I had a crawfish omelet that was delicious but very rich. We hung out in the room for a bit before embarking on a walk deeper into the Quarter and a carriage ride.

Our Thanksgiving meal at August was good, and the service was great, but a few minutes before dessert I started having a GERD attack. This led to a panic attack which was not awesome. We started our dinner with a fois gras trio that was somewhat disappointing. At $26 this did not set a good tone for the meal to come. We followed it with a crab & truffle gnocchi which was delicious. For dinner I ordered duck while Alan got a fish dish. My duck was perfection, as were the grits and quince jam it was served with. Truly a delicious dinner. Unfortunately I didn't love the wine that the waiter recommended so I ended up wasting $14 on something that I wasn't going to drink. We split a dessert of a sweet potato cheese cake that had a whole mess of other things going on with it. It was good, no doubt, but it also seemed overly complicated and unfocused. Tasty, but a confusing way to end the meal.

Considering the meal and the atmosphere, I'm glad we went to August. I would recommend it to others. But I don't think it was right for Thanksgiving. And it was VERY expensive. I would probably order differently, sticking to cocktails instead of wine (which is interesting given that they're one of the restaurants in the country wine magazines rave about) and skip dessert.

Unfortunately by the time we got back to our room I was having really bad chest pains from the GERD and a host of other problems from the panic attack. It was terrible. I felt horrible that here we were in a great city, on vacation, and I was ruining everything with my continued health problems. I forced myself to get dressed and go out for a bit, but it was really hard.

We decided to go to the Lafitte Blacksmith Shop which is a great bar with a talented piano man. It's lit only by candle light, which is very atmospheric. Unfortunately because I was having trouble breathing, the smoking indoors was giving me even greater problems. I felt like I was being suffocated so we could only stay about 25 minutes.

Getting up and walking outside I felt much better, but once we were back in the room with the overbearing and stifling air freshener smell I was having problems again. I ended up taking a sleeping pill while telling myself that I wasn't having a heart attack or anything serious, and that I'd be fine in the morning. I eventually fell asleep around 3 a.m. and lo and behold, I was fine in the morning.