Commence your weekend with starter such as crawfish-and-artichoke dip ($12) or a bacon-chocked steakhouse salad with green-peppercorn buttermilk dressing ($7). Entree salads include larger, decadent options like the McIlhenny, masa-fried oysters over greens with homemade buttermilk dressing and McIlhenny tabasco chipotle ($11), or a Southern fried-chicken salad with a Jack Daniel's mustard vinaigrette ($10.50). Get back on the meatwagon with the steakhouse bacon cheeseburger ($9.50) or the blackened prime rib, served with roasted-pepper and portobello-mushroom salad ($24), or dive below the surface of the plate for barbecue shrimp smothered in Abita Amber sauce ($16.50).
Summon the senses out of bed with the efficiency of a rooster with an alarm clock with Oceana's kicky menu of morning tastes. Try the Cajun omelette ($12.50), with spicy seasonings, mushrooms, and onions, or maw maw's Cajun breakfast ($12), packed with bacon, ham, shrimp, eggs, and rice. Crêpes ($15–$18) call out to lovers of foldable fare with the St. Marie (spinach, cheddar, chicken, and hollandaise) and the St. James (shrimp, crabmeat, onions, red peppers, and cheese). Midday grub includes fried-catfish po’ boys ($9.50), classic cheeseburgers ($9.50), and crab-cake burgers ($9.50). Louisiana-style dinner entrees such as the grilled ahi-tuna "la boheme" topped with barbecued shrimp and served with sautéed veggies ($20) and smoked duck sided with potatoes and vegetables ($21) take care of heartier appetites.
For more than 30 years, Star Steak and Lobster House's doorman Joey has been opening the restaurant's door to fill the French Quarter sidewalks with the aromas of aged USDA prime steaks and buttery lobster. After passing through the entryway, patrons can take their seats at sleek wooden tables to share Cajun gator sausage with creole sauce and housemade Louisiana crab cakes glazed with crawfish and mushroom cream sauce. Signature dinner entrees include slow-roasted prime rib and the Cajun filet mignon stuffed with crab, lobster, shrimp, and crawfish tails. To complement the food's lively flavors, every Wednesday through Sunday night bands perform jazz, blues, and classic rock tunes while bartenders mix black-cherry-peach mojitos and pour pint glasses of beer into other pint glasses until infinity is achieved.
Against a backdrop of burnished wood walls, an intricately wrought gilded frame surrounds a Budweiser poster. This playful contrast between sophistication and informality extends to the rest of the dining room, where candles cast circles of light on crisp white tablecloths and a wood-beam ceiling as crowds enjoy live rock music played during happy hour.
When it comes to the cuisine, chefs prepare the same steakhouse fare they unveiled in 1969. Succulent slabs of steak cook on the grill alongside fresh seafood dishes, which are then topped with elegant flourishes such as crawfish rémoulade or jumbo lump crabmeat in the shape of a top hat.
This meatark of USDA-graded steaks includes four bacon-wrapped 9-ounce filets, four center-cut sirloins, four 10-ounce New York strips, four flat-iron tenders, six mixed sirloin/filet chopped steaks, and two 17-ounce porterhouses. Ponderosa's steaks are cut from the finest top third of the cattle class of 2010, then flash frozen and sealed in special Cyrovac bags that preserve the meat's red perfection for up to two years with nary a spot of freezer burn. With no nasty preservatives, Ponderosa's steaks taste fresh-picked off the animal, delicious all the way down to the T-bone.