With four of its art-deco bedecked establishments open 24 hours, Dots Diner awakens morning munchers and lulls late-night eaters with fresh ingredients and made-to-order fare piled generously atop platters. Dots' fixed menu, fashioned from family recipes and teeming with eggs, grits, buttermilk pancakes ($3.99), and burgers ($1.39–$5.99), is available for breakfast, lunch, and twilight brunch. The house specialty, new orleans omelet packs crawfish, savory sauce, and swiss cheese in an eggy embrace ($7.99), and the fried shrimp po' boy dresses crispy shrimp in lettuce, tomato, pickles, french bread, and a beret ($6.99). Greet sweet teeth of all ages with apple pie à la mode ($3.69) or sip a root-beer float, lavishing your taste buds with ice cream and soft drink ($2.99), a fusion as memorable as whiskey and cookies.
Fusing classic comfort food with zesty local favorites, the family-owned, 24-hour City Diner has captured the hearts and stomachs of hunger-hounds with a vast and inventive menu. Breakfast delectables such as the big breakfast sandwich ($5.99) and crab cakes Benedict ($10.99), served atop two seasoned polenta cakes, are available around the clock. New Orleans–inspired nourishment culls Crescent City cravings, with the Bottom of the Bowl ($10.99) melding shrimp, crawfish, crabmeat, and a Cajun cream sauce into a seasoned bread bowl. Other spicy seafood swims politely among land creatures in the diner's imaginative hash-brown creations, such as the crawfish and andouille plate ($8.99). Atop the list of burgers is the blue cheeseburger ($8.99), a tongue-tantalizing treat sure to be enjoyed by meat lovers and cannibalistic bovines alike.
Slim Goodies Diner inspires an unusual amount of loyalty. Visitors to the diner often leave sporting T-shirts decorated with the diner's logo, a sunny-side-up egg with blue angel wings. This allegiance is part of what helped the Garden District eatery survive in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. At the time, owner Kappa Horn told The New York Times that when she reopened the restaurant three weeks after the storm, she found customers waiting for her in the parking lot each morning. What they were anticipating was an eclectic menu of breakfast, brunch, and lunch food, from the Jewish Coonass—a savory dish of potato latkes crowned with two eggs and crayfish étouffée—to the Guatamalan, a traditional Antiguan breakfast with two eggs, avocado, and plantains. Perhaps they were also salivating over the thought of feasting on a stack of sweet potato pancakes at one of the diner's red booths, which sit beneath the Polaroid pictures that line the powder-blue walls.
But as anyone who's ever hidden an engagement ring in a Twinkie knows, true bliss is found in dessert, which is why Slim Goodies offers both milk shakes, banana splits, and Blue Bell ice cream. The diner also recently expanded to include a coffee house within and extended its weekday hours until 6 p.m. Thanks to a brand new espresso machine, Slim Goodies can now provide pick-me-ups throughout the day.
Husband-and-wife team Billy and Kelly aren't content to just own their restaurant. The pair can regularly be found in the kitchen, getting their hands dirty side-by-side with the staff. While Billy fills in as short-order cook, bartender, dishwasher, and resident soup-maker, Kelly—a social worker by day—bakes up the eatery's bourbon pecan pie and ever-changing rice crispy treats made with different types of cereal. Their cozy dining room decorated with teal walls and chalkboard menus is reflected in their bite-sized spread of sliders. Miniature white and wheat buns sandwich Black Angus patties, BBQ pork, and grilled Portobello mushrooms dressed with basil or lemon-dill mayo, chili, or horizontal stripes that make them look bigger. They treat guests to home-cooked tastes in the form of corned beef hash, reubens, and a daily menu of house specials ranging from lasagna to fried catfish.
When you've got toppings like homemade pickle preserves or zinfandel, bacon, and onion compote, you don't need more than one burger option. Cowbell dresses up its grass-fed "locally world famous" burger thusly, and can even swap the beef for a patty made from brown rice, red beans, and roasted veggies.
X-treme Burger's menu lets burger connoisseurs architect towering creations from the bun up. Adorn a half-pound beef, turkey, or veggie burger with a Carmen Miranda hat of pineapple, avocado, and onion rings, or take a less-traveled road with bacon, chipotle, and peanut butter. Beside the flock of possible toppings, the sandwiches are customizable with sesame buns, whole wheat, or texas toast, and can be drizzled with sauces such as barbecue, honey mustard, or the house X-treme sauce and served with sides such as sweet potato fries and baked macaroni. Shakes or malts provide a sweet finish for dining duets, who can also opt to feed each other spoonfuls of a classic banana split in a recreation of the Nixon-Kennedy presidential debate. Meal-seekers can also opt to apply the $12 value toward breakfast eats ($2.49–$5.49 for entrees) including short stacks of fluffy pancakes or a country breakfast of grits and eggs.