Everybody wants to try a beignet here and rightly so. Café Du Monde is large and open 24 hrs so there really is no excuse. But be warned - three beignets are enough for two - we bought three more to take home and eat later. Still good, but not the same. In April 2013, two café au laits and six beignets cost under $12.
Great place to people watch - especially the "Leaving ritual" - stand up and proceed to rub yourself down, generating a cloud of powdered sugar that envelopes those around you. Wear white !
I wouldn't consider a trip to New Orleans complete without a visit to the Cafe du Monde. It's open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, closed only on Christmas and during hurricanes, so it's a great place to get a late night snack.
I've heard that they sell sandwiches here, but I've never seen anyone order one! Everyone comes for the beignets and the cafe au lait, which is made with chicory coffee.
It's a great place to sit outside and people-watch at any time of the day.
Only two caveats:
1) Don't go on Sunday morning -- there's always a huge line,
2) Be prepared to leave with powdered sugar all over your clothes! The best way to avoid "leaving white" is by eating the beignets over the brick floor.
Related story: A young man I know, who grew up in a suburb of New Orleans, said that he and his buddies used to sneak out at night and go into the city to hang out. His mother, however, noticed the powdered sugar on his clothes the next day, and he was grounded. :) The moral of the story, as he told it: When you're sneaking out to go to the Cafe du Monde, don't wear dark clothing.
Favorite Dish: Cafe du Monde is famous for its beignets -- BEN-yays -- which are small rectangular pieces of fried dough, served warm and dusted with powdered sugar. They come three to a plate. Even those who are not fond of doughnuts like beignets.
At the eastern corner of Jackson Square, you will find the famous Café du Monde. A must experience for visitors to New Orleans, though it can get pretty crowded here. You can also find their Coffee and Chicory blend to purchase in many shops and stores in the French Quarter, New Orleans as well as all over the U.S.
Favorite Dish: French-style beignets are excellent, though probably not the most healthy for you.
Cafe du Monde is one of the most famous and popular must-do's in New Orleans. Located right at the edge of Jackson Square, this local bakery/coffee shop is always hopping. It's hard to resist stopping here every time you hit the French Quarter. It's crowded and noisy with tiny birds hopping around the patios looking for dropped morsels and getting covered in icing sugar in the process, but the servers are fast and efficient at keeping everyone happy. It's a great location for people watching and taking a break from walking around exploring the neighbourhood.
Favorite Dish: Definitely their flagship item is the beignets! Round donuts served in sets of 3 and covered in icing sugar. They are served hot out of the oil and are positively addictive. If you're a coffee drinker as well then you'll need to have a cafe au lait which is likely their second most popular menu item.
Stopped here for the usual coffee and doughnuts---great coffee and good donuts---MMMM, donuts.
Very busy and crowded most of the time----we sat and got served pretty quick...long line for takeout...
Favorite Dish: black coffee
Right on the edge of the French Quarter rests this very famous little cafe. A great place to just sit and relax for dessert, or just to watch the world go by. Grab a table, and there are little menus there which discuss the offerings. Make sure you know what you want, because this place is bustling, and once your order is taken, you may not see a waitress again. The order of the day, of course is the beignets - for $2.50 you get three of the french donuts, doused in powdered sugar. They are light and delicious! I also noticed that the "to-go" window line was packed and much slower than just grabbing a table, so if you aren't in a hurry - table service is definitely your best bet.
A wonderful place to sit and sip while relaxing your aching toes from a day of touring or a night of debauching.
The latte with it's chickory is a delight. The beignets are a soft sugared donut like creation.
Favorite Dish: Latte
Still on our quest to sample most - or if possible all - of the local food available in New Orleans, we made the obligatory stop at Cafe du Monde. This little coffee place has been around since 1862, and they're mostly known for their "beignets". "Beignets" is the French translation of doughnuts, but I've never come across anything like it in French cuisine. In fact, the recipe was brought to New Orleans by Acadians (later to be known as Cajuns in the U.S.), and I'd describe it as fried dough sprinkled with powdered sugar (and in case you're wondering why they give you a small glass of water, it's actually so you can wash the sugar off your fingers once you're done eating!). I'd be scared to find out how much fat these little square pastries hold a piece, but this is definitely the kind of food you need to enjoy without thinking about calories. You can get an order (3) of beignets for $2.50, and to go with it Cafe du Monde serves fresh orange juice, regular or chocolate milk, or their famous cafe au lait. That's all there is on the menu but really, what else would you want?!
Cafe du Monde is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (except on Christmas Day).
Favorite Dish: We tried beignets at a couple more locations in New Orleans but quite honestly, my favourite ones were at Cafe du Monde.
...and doughnuts are not even their specialty. Opened in the French Market (now more commonly known as the French Quarter) in 1862 this is America's oldest doughnut destination. On Decatur Street it is just steps from Jackson Square. Today the French Quarter is the heart of New Orleans entertainment and partying but in 1862 (the second year of the US Civil War) the French Market was the creme de la creme of New Orleans shopping centers.
Cafe du Monde has a unique atmosphere of pandemonium and enjoying a relaxing homage to your sweet tooth. There are about 100 tables and it is not entirely unusual to feel that you are being hovered over as you eat your beignets. The noise level is probably the worst aspect of this place as it can get quite raucous but there will also be people reading papers while sipping their coffee and/or carrying on very deep conversations.
Cafe du Monde is open 24 x 7, it is an official New Orleans Landmark (complete with Historical Marker), and the beignet was officially named the state doughnut of Louisiana in 1986.
Favorite Dish: Their menu is basically coffee, milk, and beignets (pron. ben-YAYs). Beignets are square, puffy and very light fried dough, thus the reference to doughnuts. The word "beignet," though effectively co-opted by the beautiful French language was originally a Celtic word which meant "to raise" but in France it means "fritter." At Cafe du Monde, the standard order is three beignets with, or without, powdered sugar. Texans like to refer to beignets as "mini-funnel cakes." There is considerable controversy as to haw they came to be a New Orleans delicacy but the two most popular theories seem to be that they were either brought down the Mississippi River by French-Canadian traders or that they were brought by a group of Ursuline nuns who migrated from France in 1727.
I've been to New Orleans several times and each time I have to make an early morning walk along the river with Café du Monde as my destination. The beignets are wonderful and always fresh and hot when you get them. I'm not a coffee drinker so what I do is get an order to go. I have never had to wait for my order that way. I just stand at the window, pay and am on my way. I find a bench in a nice spot and enjoy! It's a nice experience watching New Orleans wake up. Just make sure you take some napkins with you! Like others have said it's a must when visiting New Orleans.
Favorite Dish: The beignets of course!!
What a busy café, it seems all the visitors of New Orleans want to go to the famous Café du Monde. It was always busy there, every time we passed by, strange thing for a place that you can only drink coffee(café au lait) and have some beignets. Of course, it’s famous because it stands there so many years now and the location is great opposite Jackson Square.
I think this place with the filthy tables is overrated, the coffee is just ok and the beignets good but nothing to die for, I still wonder if they are the same all over the city. We didn’t return as the other days we preferred other more peaceful cafes.
The staff was quick but they seemed so tired of the tourists they could hardly give a smile. And they ask to be payed when they bring the coffee, come on, we wont go away, relax…
Café du Monde is open 24h
My wife was dying to go to this place. Its conveniently located on Decatur St, just opposite the park infront of St Louis' Cathedral. We arrived at 9AM on a Saturday morning and had a short 10 minute wait. We went Sunday morning at the same time, and the wait must have been at least an hour and a half. To be honest, I don't get this place. The beignets are ok, the coffee is good ( a little expensive) and the service is terrible - the MOST unfriendly in New Orleans bar none. Why people stand in line is a mystery to me, but they do. My wife liked it.
Worth a 10 minute wait? Sure, why not. Worth 60-90 minutes? nope.
Favorite Dish: I guess its the beignets. Coffee was good. Beignets by the way are the french version of a donut, but you'd never know it by looking at them. There are 3 to a serving. Beignets and coffee for two were $15 with tip
The Cafe du Monde's coffee and beignets are often referred to in James Lee Burke's crime thrillers.
I loved the coffee and liked even more that there was often live music happening around the cafe and there are some lovely bright murals along one of the walls just outside. Limited menu (I'm veggie so I'm biased anyway!) but a nice place to stop for a coffee-fix after a long stroll through the quarter and stalls close to the waterfront.
Favorite Dish: Coffee!
It's just nice to have a european style cafe in the USA, the coffee was above average and the beignets were delicious, with heaps of powder sugar on them..which, some people shook off to the side of their table..so powder sugar is everywhere....but it was good, went every morning ..all 3 mornings.
Favorite Dish: Must have the coffee and beignets ..A MUST
OK, this place was recommended as THE place to go to try the Beignets. Apparently it IS the place to go because you can find a VERY long line of people waiting to be seated or queuing up for a to-go order.
If you can get there when no line exists you simply walk up to a table and take a seat. For our visit we sat at a table that hadn't been cleaned from the previous diners because it was the only one available. After about 15 minutes, the waiter came by, cleaned it off, and took our order.
This is a place that you may want to stop in just to say you did. It wasn't the momentous occasion I expected it to be based on what people said. It's an open air coffee house with beignets in a good location.
Favorite Dish: Your selection is pretty limited, they've sold Coffee, Milk, and Beignets since the 1800's and added soft drinks a little over 100 years later.
The Beignets come three to an order and are LOADED with Powdered Sugar. They have so much powdered sugar that they are virtually swimming in them. If you need a sugar rush to keep you going, this is the place to get it.
I thought the Beignets were good but I don't think I would wait in a long line to get them. They just didn't seem to have anything extraordinary about them.