Located in the swanky Roosevelt Hotel on Canal Street, on the edge of the French Quarter and the CBD, Domenica dazzles with chef, co-owner Alon Shaya's regional Italian cuisine and what may be the best thin crust pizza in town. Try a pie topped with pork shoulder fennel bacon and sweet onions or a dish of squid Ink tagliolini with crab, rich with seafood goodness. Shaya gets ingredients from partner John Besh's farm, so the emphasis is on seasonal freshness. Happy hour seven days a week from 3-6 pm is a great deal, with the gourmet pies and drinks half off.
Recommended for Restaurants near Mercedes-Benz Superdome because: This chef-driven Italian trattoria offers terrific pizza, housemade charcuterie and handmade pasta not far from the Superdome.
Beth's expert tip: Hands down the best deal in town, Domenica's daily 3-6 pm happy hour features half price pizzas, cocktails and wine.
Reginelli's is a popular pizza joint with a few spots around town including one within and easy stroll of the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The menu dishes more than just pies, with specialty salads, pastas, sandwiches and calzones among the popular specialties. A staple college favorite for years, Reginelli's has graduated to a reputation for outstanding food at great prices. Beer drinkers will appreciate the great selection of beer on tap, including locally brewed Abita. Midweek pitcher specials can have you and your pals drinking on sofa change. All of the locations are super casual, and if you don't feel like eating out after the game, grab to go or have them deliver.
Recommended for Restaurants near Mercedes-Benz Superdome because: The location at 930 Poydras is less than a half-mile from the Superdome and offers a tasty Italian meal for the budget minded.
Beth's expert tip: Try to time your visit around their beer pitcher/large pizza deal.
Fulton Alley in the New Orleans CBD is a fun locally owned destination for bowling, contemporary Southern comfort food and curated craft cocktails. The setting is sleek and urbane, with local art adding eye-popping appeal. Executive chef Mike Nirenberg is behind the contemporary Southern-influenced menu, delivering the likes of pimento cheese on toasted brioche, crispy chicken sliders and raisin bread pudding beignets right to your lane. Cocktails from the team behind Cure bring a hip night of bowling into perfect focus. The bowling lounge recently expanded to include an array of fun games, from darts and foozball to a full on bocce court and oversized chess on the patio. A creative event staff will customize a party package for your group, including everything and anything from bowling and shoes to tasty nibbles and cocktails from the premium bar.
Recommended for Restaurants near Mercedes-Benz Superdome because: Located in bustling Fulton Street, Fulton Alley gets you in the game even before kickoff.
Beth's expert tip: Friday lunch features The Pit at Fulton Alley, the city's newest pop up barbecue joint, throughout the summer.
If you're looking to relax and be treated like a VIP, the Palace Cafe is the ticket. Situated on Canal Street on the edge of the French Quarter, this restaurant boasts a Brennan pedigree and chef Brandon Muetzal's creative vision in the kitchen. Housed in the historic Werlein's music building, the two-level restaurant is filled with local art including a stunning upstairs mural in the dining room overlooking Canal Street. Enjoy an upbeat, friendly staff and relaxed atmosphere as you sample favorites like oysters pan roast, crawfish mac & cheese or the Andouille crusted local fish. A terrific list of craft cocktails will ensure that you're in a celebratory mood.
Recommended for Restaurants near Mercedes-Benz Superdome because: Gracious and elegant, this Dickie Brennan restaurant is a haven of good taste on the edge of the French Quarter.
Beth's expert tip: Climb the dramatic staircase for stunning views of busy Canal Street and the city skyline.
The Bourbon House is an authentic New Orleans seafood restaurant, with its dining room windows looking out onto the riotous Bourbon Street. Inside, calm indulgence presides, in a setting that is pure New Orleans, from its lacy, wrought-iron balcony seating to its large French windows overlooking the famous street below. The menu, a veritable catalog of Creole specialties, includes oysters Bienville, catfish pecan and a killer fried seafood platter. The bar boasts more than 90 American whiskeys, one reason why the restaurant is home to the New Orleans Bourbon Society. The expert wait staff is attentive and caring, able to guide you through the various oyster options and small batch/single barrel bourbon choices.
Recommended for Restaurants near Mercedes-Benz Superdome because: Dickie Brennan's elegant seafood-centric restaurant is proof-positive that you can get good food on Bourbon Street.
Beth's expert tip: For the best in local seafood, start with the Plateaux de Fruits de Mer, an iced tower of shucked oysters, Gulf shrimp, seasonal seafood salads and marinated crab fingers.
Copper Vine is what would happen if a swank wine bar married a craft beer joint. Owned by Brechtel Hospitality Group (BHG), the same company behind Fulton Alley and the Walk Ons franchise up the block, Copper Vine is a gorgeous spot close to the Dome, Smoothie King Center and in the heart of the CBD. If some wine bars can be snooty, this one is a breath of fresh air intent on making wine sipping approachable and fun - smart and spunky somm Lydia Kurkoski is behind the inventive flights curated with care and not a bit of attitude. BHG founder Kyle Brechtel had a vision with Copper Vine, imaging an approachable and inviting place for tasty food and 30 wines on tap. Add in the knock out interior, second floor balcony, communal tables and private dining options, and Copper Vine is sweet indeed. Chef Amy Mehrtens recently joined the team, a seasoned young CIA trained chef that worked most recently as a sous at Commander's Palace. She's already some spectacular dishes to the menu including bacon wrapped dates stuffed with Creole cream cheese and a filet brochette with wild mushrooms and a tangy roasted pepper sauce that's to die for. Don't miss her excellent gulf fish amandine with a champagne cream sauce, brown butter almonds and tobiko - absolute best version of the traditional dish in town. Substantial mains run the gamut from crawfish and andouille gnocchi to shrimp and grits and chicken piccata. The stunning Edwardian building was originally constructed in 1876 as the Maylie's residence and restaurant.
Recommended for Restaurants near Mercedes-Benz Superdome because: If you're in the mood for an elevated pre-game experience, Copper Vine is perfect!
Beth's expert tip: Happy hour is a great deal here, served 2-6 pm Monday to Friday with special drink prices and nibbles like bacon wrapped dates for $5.
Eat - Drink - Cheer is the perfect description of Manning's, the upbeat sports bar and restaurant located in the lively Fulton Street corridor. This is one of the best places to cheer for the home team in New Orleans, a partnership between the casino and former New Orleans Saints quarterback Archie Manning, who spent 12 years playing at the Superdome. The restaurant is heaven for any fan of the Manning family, with all kinds of memorabilia from Archie Manning's playing career, and that of his sons, Peyton and Eli. The sports theme at the 210 seat restaurant is driven home by 30 flat screens always tuned to one game or another. There's even a giant screen in a section called the End Zone. As for the menu, it's an intersection between Mississippi delta and Creole, with specialties like shrimp and grits and local red fish.
Recommended for Restaurants near Mercedes-Benz Superdome because: Manning's is simply one of the best places for sports fans to get their game face on before heading to the Superdome.
Beth's expert tip: If you're with a gang, call ahead to reserve the VIP viewing area called the End Zone, a section of the restaurant that feels like a luxury skybox.
For a pre-game bite or celebratory cocktail, head to Borgne, one of local celebrity chef John Besh's much touted restaurants. Situated on the ground floor of the newly renovated Hyatt on Loyala Avenue, Borgne is great choice for locally sourced Louisian seafood and coastal cuisine. Both Besh and executive chef Brian Landry grew up fishing on Lake Borgne, an eastern Louisiana Gulf-fed body of water teeming with fish. Borgne's menu celebrates coastal Louisiana with a touch of Isleño influence, a throwback to the immigrants from Malaga and the Canaries that settled in New Orleans in the late 1700s. Try the grilled Canary Island goat cheese with mjo verde sauce oyster spaghetti and seafood stuffed flounder.
Recommended for Restaurants near Mercedes-Benz Superdome because: Borgne is in the Hyatt Regency, the closest hotel to the Superdome.
Beth's expert tip: The $10 lunch special on weekdays is one of the best deals in town.
The Mexican love child of local uber chef John Besh and Food Network wunderkind Aarón Sánchez, Johnny Sánchez is the best thing to happen to Poydras Street since Sculpture for New Orleans. A place that gives the option of roasted grasshoppers on the freshly made guac gets a body's attention. The menu is locally charged and full of authentic Mexican flavors. A seasonal specialty, the fried Brussels sprouts "salad" is really a revelatory warm veg dish tossed with bits of roasted squash, pomegranate and queso. The pork belly tacos are sweet with pineapple glaze and savory with swiney goodness. Lamb enchiladas, yellowtail tostados, grilled sweetbread tacos with chorizo - what's not to like? There are some interesting (and pricey) wines by the glass along with a very good house margarita and a full list of sipping tequilas. By the way, the place also happens to be gorgeous, bright with a colorful Day of the Dead wall mural and Chihuly-style overhead chandeliers. Service is informed and attentive.
Recommended for Restaurants near Mercedes-Benz Superdome because: Two celebrity chefs are making beautiful tacos together.
Beth's expert tip: Because the restaurant stays open from 11 am til close, mid afternoon is a sweet spot for avoiding the crowds.