One of the best parts about starting a new semester is seeing how excited everyone is to get back onto campus. However, not everyone is all that happy about having to go back to the dining hall. To help ease the transition, here are seven restaurants guaranteed to remind you why you love New Orleans.

The Rook Cafe

Daniella Tirse

Did you take a red-eye flight? Need some fuel to get unpacking? Missing your family a little bit? Rook's got you. This cozy coffee shop feels like you're stepping inside a giant hug. And, just like your mom, Rook always knows exactly what you need. If you're itching for some extra caffeine, order the "King", which consists of a large smooth iced coffee with a shot of espresso that's then poured over some coffee ice cubes. This drink is the perfect way to beat the heat without watering down your coffee. Now if you're feeling especially anxious about this new start, try the "Mr. Spock". This drink is made of calming Jasmine tea combined with their housemade lavender syrup and then topped off with steaming whole milk. Rook is located down Freret Street, a very popular spot for Tulane students. If you're not already convinced to try this place, I'd like to remind you that you probably don't know which box in your room has your Keurig in it. 

Luca Eats

If you're living off-campus this year or in a dorm just a little too North of Freret, another great place to get your coffee fix is Luca Eats. Home of the best avocado toast that Uptown has to offer, Luca Eats is a quaint cafe located on the corner of Cohn and Lowerline. This restaurant offers breakfast sandwiches and iced lattes as well as pesto paninis and Oreo beignets. What more could you want? Ask your roommate to tag along and catch up with them on Luca Eats' spacious front patio. 

Rimon at Tulane Hillel

Sometimes, going from your mom's elite homecooked meals to dining hall food can be a hard pill to swallow. Therefore, the best way to ease into your meal plan is to walk on over to Rimon. This restaurant is located inside Tulane Hillel but is open to all. Snuggled in on Broadway Street, Rimon is exceptionally close to campus and will be filled with familiar faces. Stop by for breakfast and get one of their flavorful bagel sandwiches to go, or take a quick break from decorating your room and grab lunch on their balcony. One meal at Rimon and it will soon make its way into your weekly dinner rotation. This kosher restaurant is so good that it'll have you coming back even after you've spent all of your Wavebucks.  

Superior Grill

One of the best things about New Orleans is how easy it is to get everywhere. While the city is very walkable, the Streetcar is a college student's best friend. There is no better way to feel the warm welcome to New Orleans than taking a ride down St. Charles. For me, the pot of gold at the end of that rainbow is Superior Grill. Stop twenty-one is home to this eclectic restaurant, loved by many locals and known to have some of the best Tex-Mex in Louisiana. This place takes "Everything is bigger in Texas" to a new meaning with its expansive seating area, large portions, and extensive menus. The comforting yet festive ambiance is almost entertaining. When you sit down, you're greeted with a complimentary basket of freshly-fried tortilla chips accompanied by a spicy red salsa, every broke student's dream. A night at Superior Grill is a great way to leave the Tulane bubble before classes ramp up. 

Chill Out Cafe

Daniella Tirse

Just in case you didn't know, Ba Chi isn't the only restaurant that deserves all the hype on Maple Street. Chill Out Cafe is a restaurant on the corner of Maple and Burdette featuring classic Thai cuisine. This is the perfect spot to grab dinner after class with some friends within walking distance of campus. The staff is always warm and welcoming, and the wrap-around porch ensures an incredible dining experience. Some of my favorites are the Fried Spring Rolls and the Pad Thai, but the menu has a lot of other great options meaning there is something for everyone. 


Now, this next restaurant is the perfect place to go to if your parents are helping you move in or if you want to start your year off with a bang. Planted on the eastern end of Magazine Street, Gris-Gris is an upscale eatery that serves elevated New Orleans cuisine. If you're brand new to Creole food or like me, who has been craving this gumbo all summer long, you simply must make a reservation here. Watching the sun go down from the balcony while enjoying dinner was an unforgettable experience. The highly decorated chef has a menu featuring twists on creole classics, like their Oyster BLT and the Shrimp and Gris-Gris Grits. This local favorite is sure to treat you to a classic Louisiana meal. 

The Camellia Grill

If you got in from MSY super late or finished watching the Bachelorette and realized almost everything is closed, I have the place for you. This New Orleans staple opened in 1946 on Carrollton Ave. Camellia Grill is a diner-style restaurant serving up southern comfort food. Whether you're having a breakfast-for-dinner moment or seeking out a classic Po-Boy, they've got what you need. The staff goes out of their way to make you feel like family here, so don't be too shy to sit at the counter. This restaurant is famous for a reason and is a must-go when you come back to New Orleans.