Tuesday, January 25, 2011
When I was a tourist: Antoine's Annex
Located at 513 Royal Street, the Annex is a clean, well-lit little coffee and sandwich joint which is, I assume from the name, affiliated with Antoine's Restaurant around the corner on St. Louis (which I have not yet visited...I know!). The black & white decor with splashes of color coming only from the photos on the wall or the food on your plate is elegant and inviting, not to mention a huge tourist magnet.
For some reason, I started thinking about when I was a tourist to this city. Over ten years ago when I first visited New Orleans with my mother, I recall the awe and wonder on our faces as we strolled through the Quarter with its historic architecture, decadent food and exquisite shops...oh the shops! I am pretty sure we walked into every single store on Royal Street from Esplanade to Canal. I suppose the memories came flooding back because Antoine's Annex was exactly the type of respite we would have sought on that long, 14-block trek. Even as I sat there, trying not to intrude on a meeting I wasn't involved in, I saw several groups of shopping bag-laden tourists stroll inside to buy a bite to eat or pick up a chocolate gator to take home.
I only stayed long enough to enjoy a delicious Butter Rum Latte, but while I was sipping, it was quite refreshing to take a small trip back into my first memories of the city. I realized that my awe of New Orleans had not diminished - only changed into a deeper, richer understanding of the culture and environs I've always loved...even before I was a wide-eyed tourist.
Written by Kim Ranjbar