New Orleans: The corner stores you shouldn’t miss
Stroll through any old New Orleans neighborhood and it’ll likely be “only a matter of minutes” before you come across a corner store, said Allison Alsup in Eater.com. Part of the fabric of the city for more than a century, the traditional corner store was part grocery, part bar, and run and frequented by immigrants. But even as these shops’ numbers have dwindled, they remain gathering spots that sell both pantry items and delicious hot daily specials. Below are a few a visitor can count on.
Singleton’s Mini Mart Beau and Laura Nguyen cook and serve pho and Vietnamese-inspired chicken wings daily, but “the real draw” is the shop’s “Uptown Thursdays,” when sit-down diners can get five Korean pork tacos plus either a can of Pale Ale or a shot of scotch for $5. 7446 Garfield St., (504) 866-4741
Manchu Food Store The location isn’t idyllic: Traffic on the I-10 overpass rumbles by practically outside the entrance. But the lines in front of this lilac-colored lump of a building are there for the fried chicken—“cooked to perfection” and “supremely seasoned.” And don’t miss the yakamein, a local noodle soup famous for curing hangovers. 1413 N. Claiborne Ave., (504) 947-5507
Mardi Gras Zone The humble warehouse-style shell harbors a touchstone of cornerstore culture, a place so packed with unexpected foodstuffs that you can lose track of time. Start with an “elephant-ear-sized” slice of pizza fresh out of the wood-burning oven. And if you see lines on Monday, that’s because the rice and beans are on the house. 2706 Royal St., (504) 947-8787