Tis the season for rich history, decadent dining, and the warmest of welcomes here in the heart of New Orleans. I’m Karen Brem, your guide to the gastronomic gala of the year and the Marketing Director at the Historic Mardi Gras Inn, where we’re decking the halls and prepping for the annual Reveillon Dinners.
Reveillon, a name derived from the French word for “awakening,” was a tradition brought over by the Creoles from the French-speaking countries of Europe in the early settlement days of New Orleans. The Creole community, with their deep roots and vibrant culture, have long celebrated the Reveillon as more than just a meal; it’s a festive marker of heritage and holiday spirit.
Originally, the Reveillon was a feast that broke the day-long fast on Christmas Eve, observed by the local Creoles. The air would buzz with anticipation as families prepared to gather for a night of unity and indulgence. After the solemnity of Midnight Mass, the streets of New Orleans would come alive with merriment, as the party and gift-giving continued into the early morning hours. The Reveillon Dinners of today have evolved into a culinary showcase, extending the invitation to residents and visitors alike to partake in a feast for the senses.
From the beginning of December until Christmas Day, many of the best restaurants in the French Quarter will be serving up their takes on this traditional feast. Each menu is a love letter to the season, boasting Creole classics and innovative dishes that will tantalize your taste buds. Imagine tables laden with oyster bisque, duck confit, and bûche de Noël, each bite a melody of flavors playing a carol on your palate.
The Historic Mardi Gras Inn stands as a beacon of traditional New Orleans hospitality, perfectly positioned to allow you easy access to this epicurean adventure. Just a stone’s throw from the twinkling lights and festive decorations of the French Quarter, our inn offers clean, affordable lodging and a staff that exudes the holiday spirit. We pride ourselves on being a home away from home, where you can hang your hat and fill your belly with cheer and comfort.
Indulging in a Reveillon Dinner is an experience that speaks to the most discerning of foodies. It’s an opportunity to dress in your holiday best and immerse yourself in the conviviality that’s as much a part of New Orleans as the mighty Mississippi. Each participating restaurant adds its own flair to the evening, creating a tour de force of culinary delights that embody the joy and generosity of the season.
As the evening wanes and the last morsels are savored, the spirit of the Reveillon continues. It’s found in the clink of glasses, the shared laughter, and the stories told across tables. It’s in the flicker of candlelight that dances across silverware, in the clatter of dishes that are the percussion to the symphony of conversation.
When the evening’s revelries have come to a close, let the Historic Mardi Gras Inn be the final chapter of your night’s tale. Retreat to the comfort of our inn, where the magic of the season is captured in the hospitality of our staff and the coziness of our accommodations.
The Reveillon Dinners are not just a meal; they’re a testament to the heart and soul of New Orleans—a city that, no matter the time of year, always has something to celebrate. So, make your reservations, don your festive attire, and let us welcome you to the table for a holiday tradition that’s as unforgettable as the city itself. Here’s to a Reveillon that reawakens the joy of the season in all of us. Happy holidays, and bon appétit!