Eating in New Orleans can be a full time pleasure activity. Many folks who live or visit here adopt the “Live to Eat,” attitude because there are just so many delicious foods, culinary styles, and restaurants to satisfy even the greatest of appetites. Another interesting note about New orleans food is that almost all of it is super delicious. The biggest question that has to be asked sometimes is what kind of environment do we want to be in while we enjoy this delicious food. Whether it is white table clothes or standing outside a food truck in front of a bar at 2am, the quality will be there most times, but the scenery can be vastly different. A eatery that falls on the more casual side of dining but has some of the best New Orleans comfort food is a place on Decatur Street known as Coop’s.
Since 1983, Coop’s has been serving a taste of New Orleans down on lower Decatur at 1109 Decatur Street. Described by the Coop’s website as the place “where the not so elite meet,” yet the food is pretty amazing. New Orleans restaurant Critic Ian McNulty has this to say about their Jambalaya,
|“The best restaurant jambalaya I’ve found, by far, comes from Coop’s Place, a veritable late-night emporium of good Cajun-style eating in the Quarter.”
Coop’s is also known for their fried chicken, whether a mix of dark or white meat, the seasonings helps Coop’s to stand out amongst the talent of Fried chicken places in New Orleans (check out our Fried Chicken Festival, for our love of Fried Chicken: https://www.neworleans.com/event/national-fried-chicken-fest.)
One of the coolest things about Coop’s is some of their own Southern inspired dishes: Duck Quesadilla with salsa and sour cream, Marinated lamb ribs with pepper jelly and these are just some of the appetizers. The entree dish that I consistently order almost every time is the Chicken Tchoupitoulas( I go back and forth between this and the fried chicken.) A boneless chicken breast smothered in a cream sauce loaded with sauteed shrimp and house made tasso(spice ham) cut into thick chunks served over rice and creole green beans( smothered in a tomato bacon sauce,) which also be ordered as a side. The menu includes pasta dishes, Po boys, seafood dishes and as Ian mentioned a super delicious but not traditional rabbit and sausage jambalaya. I have had purists put their nose up at the jambalaya because it is different from a traditional jambalaya, but the flavor is so wonderful, I choose flavor over tradition.
The bartenders can be a little surly, but if you have been to enough places here in the French Quarter, one may come to understand the surliness as some rustic charm. I enjoy the staff every time I visit and I make sure to get a delicious bloody mary or a mint julep. The kitchen opens at 11am and serves until late( midnightish, depending on how busy they may be.) So head on over to Coop’s, you may have one of the greatest meals in New Orleans.