New Orleans is one of the few US cities with a genuinely original cuisine all of its own. Cajun cuisine is named after the “Acadian” French settlers who moved to Louisiana in the 1700s after they were displaced by the British conquest of Acadia in Canada. This style of cooking is noted for its heavy seasoning.
Creoles were originally the descendants of the French and Spanish upper class that ruled New Orleans in the 18th century, but their descendants had broader heritage, and their cuisine reflects this melting pot of influences.
Creole and Cajun cooking are what give New Orleans its distinctive appeal, with dishes such as gumbo (thick, spicy soup) and jamabalaya (the local variation of paella, usually with smoked sausage).
The city’s rich history has left it with beautiful Spanish and French architecture, as well as its unusual shotgun shacks. Its neighbourhoods The Garden District and French Quarter neighbourhoods are home to many fine restaurants. Some go back a long time, such as Antoine’s, established in 1840 and with a series of distinctive private rooms and salons. Commander’s Palace is another old-stager, dating back to 1880, though its food has seen better days.