The Best Spots to Get a Po’Boy in New Orleans, Louisiana

Po’boys come with a variety of fillings, including the classic fried shrimp
Po’boys come with a variety of fillings, including the classic fried shrimp | © talynshererphoto / Getty Images
Lucy Thackray

Parkway Bakery and TavernA po’boy is like a sub but with a crisp, crunchy baguette rather than pillowy Italian-style bread. Today, the New Orleans classic comes with all kinds of delicious twists for fillings, from roasted cauliflower to smoked sausage. So, the next time you’re ravenous around town, you’ll be spoiled for choice. Here are the best places to buy a tasty po’boy in the Big Easy.

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Adams Street Grocery

This no-frills grocery store is one of the more down-to-earth places in the city for an overstuffed baguette, but its catfish po’boy is unparalleled. The chunks of moist, flaky fish are battered and fried, then slathered with salad and mayo. The shrimp po’boy is a close second. You can pick up shampoo or chewing gum from the charming general store while you wait. It’s a grab-n-go street-food lunch rather than a leisurely experience, but it’s delicious.

Guy’s Po-Boys

A distinctive cobalt clapboard joint on the east side of town, Guy’s Po-Boys is a Magazine Street institution. A simple to-go counter presides over a handful of tables and chairs and a chalkboard etched with specials – visit while exploring the Garden District for a hunk of bread crammed with generous fried chicken or grilled shrimp. Alternatively, make like the locals and order the Bomb to dig into grilled shrimp and catfish, smothered in cheese.

Domilise’s Po-Boys and Bar

This place is such a cult favorite that it sells branded T-shirts and beer-can coolers as merchandise. Today, this 1918-founded establishment is run by the fourth generation of the Domilise family. The quaint wooden dining room is trimmed with black-and-white photos, vintage hot-sauce posters and signed football snaps, but you’ll likely have to queue before you get inside. The most sought-after po’boy is the surf and turf loaded with roast beef and shrimp, but there are also oyster, catfish and smoked sausage options.

Parkway Bakery and Tavern

For neophytes, the classic po’boy order is fried shrimp piled high with salad, mayo and hot sauce. And even though every local has their favorite, this unassuming clapboard tavern serves one of the best versions. Order at the window, then tuck in at communal tables under a white marquee – it has the atmosphere of a neighborhood cook-out. The bread is extra crusty and baked fresh on-site, and the shrimp plump and crisp. Also, the fried pickles are a knockout side.

Killer Poboys

Alongside the creaking old establishments with their faded signs and century-old recipes, a new generation of po’boy entrepreneurs are generating fresh buzz. In an industrial-hip cafe setting, you’ll bite into juicy glazed pork belly topped with lime slaw, chicken confit with coffee barbecue sauce or some rare veggie-friendly and vegan options, including sweet potato or roasted cauliflower. Too early for lunch? Head here for a breakfast po’boy – bet you don’t eat just one.

Crabby Jack’s

Taste “real Nawlins food” at Crabby Jack’s, a 20-minute drive across town from the main tourist center. It’s a down-home Southern diner, complete with colorful painted-metal chairs and whirring ceiling fans, proudly serving overstuffed po’boys that’ll leak brisket, shrimp, sausage and melted cheese all over your greaseproof-paper-topped table setting. Good news if your party is divided on the bread-heavy snack, as fried chicken, seafood platters and fried green tomatoes are also on the menu.

R&O Restaurant and Catering

In the Bucktown neighborhood, beside Lake Pontchartrain, this genteel wood-beamed dining room is famous for its po’boys; indeed, it’s where many locals bring visiting friends to introduce them to the city’s cuisine and delicious filled baguettes. Also serving gumbo and pizzas, it has a signature po’boy featuring ham and roast beef topped with swiss cheese and cabbage; service with a smile and the house-made bread pudding soaked with rum will leave you feeling warm and fuzzy.

Mahony’s Po-Boys and Seafood

With two locations – one uptown and one in the buzzy French Quarter – this place excels at an elevated, modern take on the humble workman’s sandwich. In sleek, wood-paneled surroundings, you can order a top-notch margarita or an old fashioned while you peruse a menu of shrimp, pork, short rib and catfish specialties, along with some unusual options, including eggplant, root-beer-glazed ham and grilled alligator. All in all, it’s a leisurely spot to try a gourmet spin on the old favorite in a glam restaurant setting.
This is an updated version of an article originally by Ann Marshall-Thomas.

Why not make a weekend of it? There’s plenty to keep you busy too, from ticking off the best things to do in New Orleans off your bucket list to exploring the best museums around and eating fresh and delicious seafood at these top restaurants.

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