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Arnaud’s isn’t the best-known of the old New Orleans restaurants, but it tops them in quality, and far exceeds them in the cocktail arena. It’s classically atmospheric, with white tile floors and dark wood accents, and the recipes are classics as well. Thus, it’s not wildly creative, but the quality and attention to detail are there. Have the signature shrimp Arnaud appetizer (topped with a spicy rémoulade sauce), and the spicy pompano Duarte or the definitive filet au poivre. We also love the quail Elzey—petite, elegant fowl stuffed with foie gras mousse, wrapped with bacon, and ensconced in a truffle-wine sauce, and no one should leave without ordering some puffy soufflé potatoes and bananas Foster, flamed tableside (see the “Anythin’ Flamin’” counsel), although our resident crème brûlée expert rates theirs very high. Allow time to visit the impressive Mardi Gras museum upstairs. A more casual jazz bistro room features nighttime entertainment (a $4 cover goes to the band)—all of which makes Arnaud’s a good fine-dining introduction for well-behaved children. Make dinner reservations well in advance during peak periods.