Commander’s Palace – Jazz Brunch in New Orleans

by Marla on June 15, 2011 · 64 comments

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Sunday live music brunch in New Orleans

Grace, charm, wit, enthusiasm, impeccable manners, old world pizzazz. That is Commander’s Palace in NOLA. This place is brimming with fine hospitality, vintage style and high class Creole cuisine. This is the first in my series of posts about our Food Blog Masters trip to New Orleans. There are many amazing experiences we have had here and the memories will last a lifetime. Y’all ever been to Commander’s Palace? If so then I am sure you can relate. If not, then you must visit someday.

Brunch is a heck of a lot more fun when you have a bunch of great friends to party with. Aka: Food Blog Masters….

Food Blog Masters in New Orleans

*Adam Pearson, Matt Matt Bites, Brooke Food Woolf, Maggy Three Many Cooks, Nathan Lippy

 
 

Meet Chef Tory McPhail who is most likely one of the finest chefs in the world. We were grateful to sample his mango shrimp at the Louisiana Seafood Festival. Can you tell how hot it was in there?

Tory McPhail head chef Commander's Palace in New Orleans

It was so hot that all the friends had fans. With water spritzers.

Food bloggers take a trip to New Orleans, Louisiana • Gaby What’s Gaby Cooking

The Sunday brunch at Commander’s Palace is appropriately called Chef Tory’s Jazz Brunch. The music made the whole atmosphere even more festive.

Close up trumpet and banjo instruments

We toured a very schmancy wine cellar. I don’t drink, but I was intoxicated by the abundance of fine wine!

Wine glasses and iron doors in Commander's Palace wine cellar

Here is our lovely tour guide, Dan Davis – aka: “Wine Guy.” I was smitten by the festive balloons everywhere.

Sunday Brunch at Commander's Palace. Man in bow tie

Really, I mean everywhere….

Sunday Brunch at Commander's Palace

Be prepared to be treated like royalty, the whole staff is lit with energy and fully committed to their jobs….

Waiter's in black and white uniforms at fancy restaurant These two had fun posing for me.

Sunday Brunch at Commander's Palace

We loved our waiter Edward (seen below,) he was full of information and beaming smiles. He brought me lots of Chicory coffee, which I chased with watermelon gum and water. I know, I’m full of class.

Sunday Jazz Brunch at Commander's Palace

Arrive prepared to EAT….

See that lovely tomato salad? It is about the only veggie based dish I had on the whole trip. I am usually a volume eater with the bulk of my meals derived from fresh produce. This was an experience off the beaten path for this ski freak, mountain girl. Check out my trout, it was swimming in a pool of brown butter vinaigrette. It was very good. As if you couldn’t guess.

Shrimp Tasso and Fresh Trout at Commander's Palace Sunday Brunch

New Orleans is better known for its luscious creamy sauces, creole/cajun flavors and seafood than it is for produce. It is a city with a strong foundation of food and a backbone in butter. When in this town you gotta love seafood or learn to. Check out all that locally caught shrimp, oysters, trout, crawdads, crabmeat, etc. This culture exists on Gulf Seafood & it is clearly some of the best I have ever tasted.

Of course they are known for their decadent sweets too.

Pancakes, bread pudding, cheesecake and Praline parfait

What you see in the photos above: Praline Parfait, Creole Cream Cheese Cheese Cake, Blueberry and White Chocolate Pancakes and the house specialty Creole Bread Pudding Soufflé aka: “The Queen of Creole Desserts”

How about this Peach and Blackberry Coffee Cake?

Sunday Brunch at Commander's Palace

Commander’s Palace is a place where memories have been made since 1880 and will continue for years to come.

Family at fancy brunch in Brennan restaurant

Sharing this experience with great pals was the biggest treat of all.

Ladies at Commander's Palace Sunday Brunch

•Amanda Kevin and Amanda, Marla, Jenny Picky Palate

Have you ever been to a super special Sunday Brunch? If so please share.

Fancy Party Links

Family Fresh Cooking disclosure – My expenses were paid for to dine at Commander’s Palace, attend all events & to visit NOLA. All of the opinions I proudly share with you are my own.

 

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{ 62 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga June 15, 2011 at 3:29 pm

Marla seeing this post makes me wish, so much, soooo much, that I could have been on this amazing trip with you!!! The people (all of them are amazing!!!) and I know the bond and comraderie that you all already shared and now probably have taken it to new levels….so happy for you! (and secretly wishing I was there, too!) It looks like an absolute blast!

You look awesome, everyone does. And like you’re all having the time of your lives.

And you don’t drink? Why did I never know this about you?! We can chat over coffee next week. Can’t wait to see you and catch up in person on this AWESOME trip you’ve just been on (and the other 2 before this one!…you jetsetter! :))

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2 Marla June 15, 2011 at 3:56 pm

Averie, nope I don’t drink & don’t miss it at all. The travel bug is here to stay ;)

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3 Maris(In Good Taste) June 15, 2011 at 3:35 pm

Thanks for sharing all these wonderful photos!

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4 lynn @ the actor's diet June 15, 2011 at 5:26 pm

i’m going to NOLA for the third time this xmas. i’ve yet to have brunch here but it’s on my list!!!

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5 Marla June 15, 2011 at 5:46 pm

Lynn, Christmas will be beautiful! You must plan a special trip to Commander’s Palace. I can’t even imagine what the winter/holiday menu must be like!

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6 Rosa June 15, 2011 at 10:35 pm

A lovely event! The food looks wonderful.

Cheers,

Rosa

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7 yummychunklet June 15, 2011 at 10:38 pm

Looks like an awesomely fun and tasty trip!

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8 Allison [Girl's Guide to Social Media] June 16, 2011 at 5:16 am

Great post. Everyone looks fab and the food looks amaaazing!

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9 Marla June 16, 2011 at 5:35 am

Allison, I have to say that everyone was grinning ear to ear during this whole brunch and the entire time we were in NOLA. Commander’s Palace took such great care of us as they do for each and every person who walks through their door. That food was beyond ahhhh-maaaazing!! Glad you enjoyed the virtual party :)

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10 Jenny Flake June 16, 2011 at 6:07 am

Oh my gosh girl, your Commander’s photos are out of this world. Mine will go up Monday morning, it’s been so much fun re-living our trip. Excellent post girl and safe travels today!!

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11 Marla June 16, 2011 at 6:31 am

Jenny, I can’t wait to see your photos! It is always fun to relive these great times through each others eyes :) See you back in the OC.

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12 Amanda June 16, 2011 at 6:08 am

What a fabulous time!!! Everything looks amazing!

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13 Marla June 16, 2011 at 6:33 am

With you there miss Amanda this would have been even more fun! Miss you girl. I know you are busy with sweet mr. Eddie & the rest of your cuties :)

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14 rebecca June 16, 2011 at 6:14 am

wow what fun the elite food blogging circle :-) love New Orleans some of the best food in America

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15 Marla June 16, 2011 at 8:28 am

Rebecca, a great group of people that is for certain! Always makes a trip more fun to share it with friends :)

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16 Georgia Pellegrini June 16, 2011 at 6:41 am

This looks like such a blast! There’s nothing like New Orleans with friends.

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17 Marla June 16, 2011 at 6:47 am

Hey Georgia, the nice thing was we had lots of time together and good amounts of down time alone too. For me that is always the perfect formula. This gal also needs ample quiet time to collect her thoughts (and for exercise!) Once I have that I can’t wait to meet up with the buddies for more action packed fun!

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18 brandi June 16, 2011 at 6:52 am

sounds like such a fun trip! and that food – it all looks incredible :)

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19 Katrina June 16, 2011 at 7:11 am

Everything looks so lovely! Thanks for sharing :)

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20 Esi June 16, 2011 at 7:44 am

Super fun! My friend made their bread pudding once and it made me want to hop on a plane to NOLA

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21 Marla June 16, 2011 at 8:27 am

Esi, that is so cool that your friend baked up that bread pudding. You must get to NOLA for Commander’s version some day.

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22 Kristen @ Swanky Dietitian June 16, 2011 at 9:00 am

Wow! So much amazing food! Those desserts are out of this world.
What a neat experience. I would love to do something like that. Thanks for sharing! :)

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23 Marla June 16, 2011 at 8:30 pm

Kristin, those desserts were gorgeous! I have never seen so much food on one table :) Glad I could share the experience with you guys.

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24 Jen June 16, 2011 at 11:04 am

Beautiful pictures. Commander’s Palace is THE favorite restaurant for my husband and me. I’m so glad you enjoyed your meal and the Jazz Brunch is always amazing.

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25 Maria June 16, 2011 at 1:10 pm

That’s a lot of food! Looks like a good time!

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26 Dana@TheSundaySweet June 16, 2011 at 4:23 pm

First of all, I wish I had been there to eat my life away. Wow! Every single picture looks like you ate something amazing = me, jealous. Beautiful pictures too. I really enjoyed this post. :)

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27 Amy @ A Little Nosh June 16, 2011 at 4:48 pm

What an experience!!

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28 Brooke @ Food Woolf June 16, 2011 at 5:08 pm

I feel rather lucky to have been featured so much in your post. What an incredible time we all had! Thanks for such a great round up! you are fast!
xoxo

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29 Marla June 16, 2011 at 6:13 pm

I had so much fun with you Brooke! Glad we got to spend lots n’ lots of time together. I hammered on this post when the rest of the gang was deep sea fishing. It was so fun to work in the local coffee shop. Also did some prop shopping, fun little stores near our hotel :)

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30 Faith June 16, 2011 at 7:07 pm

What a great place this looks like! The food looks fantastic and when the service is as good as this, it really is the icing on the cake. But you’re right, sharing it with good friends is definitely the best part!

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31 Marla June 16, 2011 at 8:29 pm

Faith, I could totally see you hanging at Commander’s. The dishes you cook up and your presentation has such grace and charm. This would be your thing for sure!

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32 JulieD June 16, 2011 at 7:27 pm

Beautiful post and photographs, Marla! Looks like it was so much fun. It’s been so fun following the twitter & instagram feeds. The food looks amazing too!

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33 Marla June 16, 2011 at 8:28 pm

Julie, can I tell you how addicted I am to Instagram? OMG….best thing ever. It is like learning a new language overnight. Those filters are so fun. Glad you enjoyed staying in touch with me and the gang via Twitter and Instagram.

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34 Cookin' Canuck June 16, 2011 at 8:24 pm

It looks as though you are having a fantastic time, Marla. I am a big jazz music fan and really need to make a trip to NOLA someday – for both the music and the food.

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35 Marla June 16, 2011 at 8:26 pm

Dara, I would love to meet you there. Girl, we would have a blast. The food is amazing!! The culture unique and super interesting. They are passionate about good eats and everything that revolves around food ;)

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36 Angie's Recipes June 16, 2011 at 9:26 pm

That’s a wonderful place for some good food and great music!

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37 Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella June 17, 2011 at 3:14 am

What a wonderful event Marla! Everyone looks like they’re having a great time :D

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38 Nate June 17, 2011 at 7:32 am

Hey Marla,
I had an absolute blast! It was so nice to meet you and stuff our faces for a week with some of the best seafood I have experienced in awhile. Talk atcha later,
Nater

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39 Marla June 17, 2011 at 7:44 am

Hey Nathan, it was amazing spending time with you this week. You are so FUN! Can’t wait for more fun times down the road :)

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40 Sandy @ RE June 17, 2011 at 7:35 am

Look like a fabulous time! xo

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41 Lauren at Keep It Sweet June 17, 2011 at 7:44 am

That looks like a great few days! Your pictures look amazing and I am practically drooling over all that food!

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42 Marla June 17, 2011 at 10:33 am

Lauren, what I would give to have some of that for lunch today. #starving :)

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43 Dorothy at Belle of the Kitchen June 17, 2011 at 8:35 am

I love, love, love Commander’s Palace! We went there for our anniversary dinner last year; we thought that the entire wait staff was going to break out in song and dance when they were taking us through the restaurant to our table–lit with energy and fully committed indeed! We didn’t make it for a Jazz brunch. That means we have ample reason to return to New Orleans. It looks like you had a wonderful time!

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44 Marla June 17, 2011 at 10:38 am

Dorothy, any experience we could have at Commander’s Palace would go far beyond expectations. My hubs and I enjoyed a Thanksgiving feast there back in 2001. Unforgettable. I felt like I was in a movie walking through their kitchen. Love what you say “we thought that the entire wait staff was going to break out in song and dance when they were taking us through the restaurant to our table” LOL It does feel that way. Every move there is so well coreographed. Love that you now have a reason to return!

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45 Lucy June 17, 2011 at 8:55 am

My you had a ball – love Commanders and love Tory – did you meet Ti? I have the creole bread pud soufflé in my book – perhaps we can eat it together v soon?! I’ll make it sans whiskey sauce if you don’t want the booze – although it won’t taste as delish!

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46 Marla June 17, 2011 at 10:40 am

Lucy, how awesome that you have that bread pudding in your book!! That and the coffee cake ended up being peoples favorite desserts. I was so stuffed with the seafood I could hardly think about sweets – – that would need to be a separate meal to get the full effect. With the booze sauce ;)

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47 Rachel June 17, 2011 at 9:11 am

What a fun place to gather together. The photos probably don’t even do justice for truly telling the story and how awesome it was. The balloons really do add something extra to it all – so cute and unexpected!

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48 Marla June 17, 2011 at 10:42 am

Rachel, the room would have hardly been the same without those balloons. They added so much vibrance to the room. Very nice for photos. I actually have been there without the pop of color & was still fully enthralled by everything!

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49 The Cilantropist June 17, 2011 at 9:17 am

This event sounds incredible marla and you did a great job of capturing it with pictures! I can almost hear the music and smell the food and wine.. mmm… I would have loved to have tried the seafood, but those desserts look equally good!

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50 Marla June 17, 2011 at 10:33 am

Amanda, I am so happy that I could capture this experience for you via the virtual world. The music really enhanced the whole dining experience and the musicians were very spunky characters! Light-hearted fun people, as was everyone on this trip.

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51 Joanne June 17, 2011 at 10:12 am

This is one serious all-star brunch! So many of my favorite people, so much good food…fantastic!

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52 Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. June 17, 2011 at 12:25 pm

I love it there! So fun!

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53 Kate@Diethood June 18, 2011 at 10:51 am

Looks like a fantastic time!!
Beautiful photos!

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54 HeatherChristo June 18, 2011 at 6:55 pm

This looks wonderful Marla! I have never been to New Orleans, but it is high on my list of places to experience. Great pictures :)

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55 Marla June 18, 2011 at 9:35 pm

Thanks Heather. Hopefully some day you can make it to NOLA. It is wonderful to be immersed in a culture that plans every part of their day around the next meal.

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56 Lindsey @ Gingerbread Bagels June 19, 2011 at 6:22 am

Wow what a fun event! And the desserts look sooooo good. The creole bread pudding souffle is calling my name. :)
You look so gorgeous in the photo by the way!

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57 Marla June 19, 2011 at 1:38 pm

Thanks Lindsey! I think you need to develop a creole bread pudding souffle for us on your blog. Girl, you got those sweets in the bag! xo

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58 Lisa @ www.bakedinmaine.com June 20, 2011 at 5:48 pm

Those pancakes are to-die-for!!!
I want some sooo bad ;-)

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59 Marla June 20, 2011 at 6:37 pm

Lisa, I know it can you believe those things. White freakin’ chocolate sauce all over those bad boys. Missing New Orleans & Commander’s Palace right about now.

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60 Kristen June 22, 2011 at 9:14 pm

You took some stunning pictures, Marla!

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61 Marla June 23, 2011 at 5:39 am

Thanks Kristin, wish I could go back there now.

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62 krystel October 7, 2014 at 8:07 pm

what a nice place to be new orlenns looks very family oriented

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