I was fortunate enough to spend a few days in New Orleans and it was… different.
It’s actually a beautiful area. Every street looks like it was plucked straight out of a movie. Music can be heard all day. And you can smell food cooking wherever you go. But that doesn’t mean I liked it.
Like the Las Vegas strip, Bourbon Street is all about excess. It’s a place where you can buy a $30 piece of fish, right next door to a strip club. Where you can walk into a hundred different bars with live bands, or just carry your alcohol right down the street. There’s gambling, trashy souvenirs, and enough opportunity for sex to make a nun spontaneously combust.
But I think Vegas pulls it off better. Vegas is just as much about indulging every crazy fantasy you might have, but at least in Vegas there’s the pretense of class. It’s all Sinatra and high stakes and luxury. Bourbon Street doesn’t even bother with that illusion. Vegas is martinis and prime rib. Bourbon Street is cheap shooters and crayfish. And beads. Lots of beads.
For a city that’s so in love with music, the music on Bourbon Street is disappointing. Every bar has a live band, but they all play the same crappy covers. It’s a shame when, just a few blocks away, you can find just as many bands playing great blues and jazz. But this review isn’t about a few blocks away, so suck on that, Bourbon Street! (Actually, don’t. I don’t want the herps)
The food was good, but there really isn’t much variety. There’s only so many ways you can eat crayfish before you realize that it’s just a tiny lobster. And alligator is just a scaly cow that will eat you if you get too close… Actually, alligator’s not really like cow at all. Forget that part.
Oh, and the street is filled to the brim with douchebags. Just thought I’d mention that.
Final verdict: It’s a shame that Bourbon Street gets all the hype. There are dozens of streets in New Orleans that are better (and dozens more where you’ll get stabbed. So umm… be careful?) Despite all the excess and potential sinning, I give it a .6 on the Las Vegas scale. (With 1 being Las Vegas and 0 being Flint, MI)