New Orleans is famous for its fine dining, but, of the many elegant restaurants in the city,
four stand out and have become known as the "Grand Dames" of New Orleans: Antoine's,
Galatoire's, Arnaud's and Broussard's.
Antoine's is one of the oldest continually operating restaurants in the United States. It
was established in 1840 by French native Antoine Alciatore. He moved the restaurant into
the building it now occupies on St. Louis Street in 1868. Son, Jules Alciatore, apprenticed
in France for several years before returning to take over the family business in the
1880's. It was Jules who invented Oysters Rockefeller (named for the richness of the
sauce) and the recipe is still a closely guarded secret, though many have attempted to
In 1947, Frances Parkinson Keyes wrote the popular mystery novel, "Dinner at Antoine's,"
furthering the restaurant's fame, though, by then, it was already well-known as one of New
Orleans' culinary jewels.
Antoine's grandson, Roy Alciatore, headed the restaurant until the 1970's and Roy's
grandsons, William and Roy Guste, followed him, as did their sons. Today, descendants of
Antoine Alciatore still own and manage the restaurant, where visitors and locals alike
gather, as they did 170 years ago, when Antoine, himself, greeted them at the door and
invited them to enjoy an elegant and memorable "Dinner at Antoine's." -- Nancy
|President Roosevelt dines at Antoines, 1937
(Thanks to Jennifer Armand for this photo.)
|Main dining room, above, 1930's, below, 1951
(Thanks to Jennifer Armand for the photo below.)
|Two of Antoine's dining rooms: Left, 12th Night
Room; above, Rex Room. Link to Antoine's
website with additional photos is below.
|Autographed photo of French Marshall Ferdinand Foch
at a banquet held in his honor at Antoine's, 1921. A
street in Lakeview is named in honor of Marshall Foch,
who played a significant role in World War I.