Maurice and Margaret Fitzgerald had been selling seafood from a West End roadside shack for years when they opened a full restaurant in 1946. For generations of New Orleanians, Fitzgerald’s, perched on piers over the waters of Lake Pontchartrain, was a regular weekend destination.
Diners would cross the wooden bridge to the clapboard building for boiled shrimp, stuffed crabs and fried seafood piled on slices of toast. Some felt the quality of the restaurant began to decline in the 1970s. When people had to start paying for parking in the 1980s, all the West End restaurants were hurt. Hurricane Georges eventually wiped out Fitzgerald’s in 1989.
Readers who ate at Fitzgerald’s shared these memories:
“Ate there every Friday night when I was a kid. I loved the house salad dressing.” — Evie Katner
“Used to go every Sunday with my family when I was a little girl.” — Rachel Piercey
“The best boiled shrimp and onion rings ever.” — Karen Nienaber McNeill
“I wish there were cool places like this now.” — Robyn Flanery
“You could watch the fish eat the table scraps they threw in the water.” — Paul Terranova
“Colored many works of art on those tables. So fun as a kid!” — Michele Spansel McCune
“I remember how packed it always was. It seemed like all the other seafood restaurants in that semi-circle were in business just to handle Fitzgerald’s overflow.” — Jacque Egan Post
Share your memories and photos at www.facebook.com/groups/whereNOLAeats.