Pair our Classic Fried Catfish Recipe with coleslaw, hush puppies, and baked beans for a complete meal.

Watch: Classic Fried Catfish

Photo: Beth Dreiling Hontzas

The good readers of the New Orleans Times Picayune chose their five favorite spots around the Big Easy for a hearty catfish dinner. While no one makes fried catfish like your mother (or your grandmother), you may want to add these restaurants to your New Orleans eating list.

Top of the list was Clesi’s Restaurant and Catering, which has been serving up perfect crawfish boils and jambalaya cheese fries from their cozy spot on Banks Street for two years. Almost 400 voters chose Clesi’s as their favorite place to catch a crispy catfish meal.

Longtime New Orleans seafood favorite, Middendorf’s, came in second place, which should come as no surprise to anyone who has dined at their waterfront restaurant. Their razor-thin fried catfish has earned them fans from around the world who are willing to trek out to the waterway connecting Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Maurepas to bite into the perfectly crispy speciality.

Rounding out the top three is a relative newcomer to the New Orleans dining scene —Crazy Cajuns Fish Shack, which only opened on January 16. Despite their status as the young’uns on the scene, fans of the Meraux spot turned out in force to vote and make sure that everyone knew how good their fried fish is.

Check out the rest of the list here, and add them to your itinerary for your next trip to New Orleans.