what a great place. I've been to Jacques-Imo's several times, usually with out-of-towners so they can try out the local cuisine. While the wait for a table can be quite lengthy, it is worth it for the food (also, there is bar at which to wait and an extensive selection of drinks from which to choose). The decor is quite casual despite the slightly high prices. Thus far, the servers have all been quite knowledgeable about the food (delish salmon with mushrooms, delicately flavored mahi mahi, start with the alligator pie - a mix between quiche and cheesecake or the rabbit fingers - just like chicken fingers but with a better presentation and sauce) and the service has always been timely. I recommend this restaurant to locals and non-locals alike.
The penultimate microcosm of New Orleans.
If any one place in New Orleans can encompass the essence of the "Big Easy," it's Jacques-Imo's Cafe. Nothing high brow there. Everything about the restaurant puts you at ease. You'll enter the pastel colored front to arrive in an ecclectically decorated boisterous bar room filled with colorful art work by local artist Frenchy, among others. The music, if a little loud and not "local" was familiar and enjoyable. The customers seemed to range from conventioneers to college students to locals. I've eaten here pre- and post- Katrina now, and I was surprised to find the wait for my table was much shorter than I expected. I ate in the main dining area, through the kitchen to the rear of the building. The dining room remains materially unchanged from the first time I ate there, before the storm.
I found the service to be attentive and thorough, if not exceptional. Our foursome shared a selection of 3 different appetisers. The stuffed shrimp was my favorite, but the fried green tomatoes and alligator sausage cheesecake were equally satisfying. The tastes were not spicey, but flavorful. It was food that prompted audible moans of pleasure not just from our group, but from others seated around us. Another round of drinks from the bar and our entrees had arrived. I had the blackened tuna with champange oyster brie sauce. My mouth started watering as I typed that. It was delicious. The best fish dish I've ever had in New Orleans. I also tried a nibble from the stuffed porkchop, an unfinishable giant of a dish, with a rich mesh of flavors and the fried venison, which was not the gamey tasting stuff I've had at my sportsman friend's parties, but a tender satisfying plate that I intend to order for myself next time I'm there.
Compared to the touristy French Quarter options Jacques-Imo's is well worth the trip uptown and a don't miss New Orleans dining treat.
Used to be good. This used to be one of those cool "discoveries" you could take visitors for an uproarious good time. The menu was often innovative, if uneven, and the general atmosphere was good natured and genially chaotic. But today, the chaos has pretty much trumped any remnants of geniality. The mood at Jacques-Imo's has always depended on Jack Leonardi, the dipsomaniacal host. He was that cheerful sot who hovered over the proceedings, making sure every glass stayed full - so even the longest wait flew by quickly. What's changed is that Jack has become a mean drunk: unpredictable, abusive, and unpleasant to be around. A lot of the kitchen and front-of-house team that made the place fun have escaped to better jobs, while the remaining staff look around nervously for Jack. They know that he can show up suddenly and create a scene that ruins a table's evening (and any chance of a decent tip). Wish you could have been there a few years ago, but these days, stay away.
go for the food and service...avoid for ethical reasons. Our experience at Jacques-Imo's was like stepping into the twilight zone. The staff was phenomenal and anticipated our every need. The food was outstanding: comfort food to leave you satisfied for days. It was our first experience and we would love to go back again and again except for the owner. I have never witnessed anything as horrific as his treatment toward his employees and drunken disregard for his customers. He was disrupting the entire bar with stumbling, yelling, and drinking. He was very inappropriate toward my date and clearly made the majority of his advances toward the young attractive women in the bar and restaurant. Then, while waiting for the bathroom (hidden away in the waiters station!), I saw him belittling and screaming at some of his staff members in the kitchen. We loved the food and staff so much, we can't decide whether to go back for them, or stay away because of the owner.
Great Food, Great atmosphere, Bad Owner & One Very Annoying Waiter that is ALWAYS there. You should definitely try this place. The food is great, the restaurant is very fun & lively. The owner is an infamous crazy and not nice man who scares off scores of employees, and we would like to never go back because of him, but we have to keep going back, because it's so great! All the service is great except for one guy who is always there and in your face and obnoxious. But you must go try this place. You must!
Louisiana food without the tourists. OK, so I am one of the tourists, but the bartender at Phillip's Bar was kind enough to let us in on the "secret" of Jacques-Imo's. We showed up on a Thursday night, and it was packed, but they were very accomodating with a handicapped member of our party. Although most of the tables were not accessible, they reserved one of the front tables in the window for us. I had the stuffed catfish, which was very good. Portion sizes are over the top. Others in our group had the fried chicken, and were wowed by it. Our favorite was the coconut bread pudding with caramel sauce. We were on a bread pudding binge, and this was one of the best we tasted in N.O. We even drove back out the next night to get an order of it to go. Our waitress was very personable, and offered the right level of attentiveness. Definitely a place I'll stop back at when in N.O.
an NO staple. If you're in the city, you have to get down here. It's a New Orleans tradition, you can find anyone who's anyone in here. The food is great and well its typical New Orleans service so be patient.
Looks Sketchy but was well worth the trip,, A new must do on all our New Orleans trips.
I found this place on Rachel Ray and it was given a good review. I did some more research here on this forum and it all sounded like something that we would try. I lined out all our eating destinations for the weekend including Jacque-Imo and K-Paul's.
We actually had a standoff in the car as to the initial looks and location of the place but the occasional Porsche, Ferarri, and Mercedes passing us and parked nearby lent us some gumption to head on in. We entered a few minutes after opening and there were a few groups already seated.
The wife was a bit apprehensive with the general decor and such. The wait staff was very bohemian, no make up and all wearing sleeveless "wife beaters", this was no indication of the level of attention and service they would provide, Superb Service to say the least.
The wife had a fly go into her drink and had ot swap for a new one, that was the only downfall of the meal and it was prior to any food arriving, she was still not convinced.
We had the Fried Green Tomatos that were served with a few grilled shrimp and it was fantastic. They were served on a bed of lettuce and it had a great dressing. Our dinners had a spinach salad but with a different dressing, we would have preferred the dressing we had on the tomato salad.
The wife had the Chicken Pontalba and I had the Stuffed Pork Chop (Hamburger & Shrimp stuffing) and these were both great meals, perfect in every way, served piping hot and dressed to perfection. All meals have two sides as well, the meal was very filling and we are big eaters.
Get there early, don't worry about the location or looks of the place, it is well worth the trip.
The desserts were great, a little small but just perfect for after the meal. Try the Lemon Tart.
One of New Orleans best!. A few years ago, this was just a local haunt known to mostly people living uptown. But it's hard to keep a great restaurant like this a secret for long! The food is wonderful and exciting. My favorites are the alligator cheesecake and the delicious Carpetbagger steak. The desserts are out of this world (try the key lime pie!) and the funky New Orleans cajun ambiance makes the entire meal a unique experience. Try to get a seat in the main dining area behind the kitchen. The atmosphere back there is the best. Jack, the owner can usually be found wandering around greeting his guests. You'll spot him right away since he usually will be wearing a chefs coat (sometimes a chefs hat too) and shorts! If you are in New Orleans, take the time to head uptown to Oak street and dine at Jaques-Imos...you won't regret it!
Big fun, big food: Uptown classic serves eclectic, over-the-top Louisiana cuisine with gigantic portions and a raucous atmosphere to match..
Eat, drink and be patient. This pleasantly chaotic room packs early with locals and out-of-towners alike, especially during Jazz Fest. The borderline ramshackle space is comfortably downscale--packed with local folk art and colorful murals, a bustling walk-through kitchen and energetic waitstaff. Unfortunately, high volume makes quiet conversation nearly impossible.
Jack (Jacques) blends culinary styles with joyful abandon, resulting in creative yet homey cuisine with an emphasis on local seafood. Start with the earthy oyster-filled eggplant Jacques Imo (bathed in rich shitake mushroom cream) or a wonderfully excessive deep-fried roast beef po' boy. A tomato-based "Cajun bouillabaisse" is fragrant with herbs and heavy with oysters, shrimp, mussels and gulf shrimp. Crisp, tender and perfectly prepared fried chicken could make the Colonel weep.
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