I visit New Orleans at least once a year. I shop, go on tours, explore neighborhoods, visit museums, restaurants, and I drink. I’m mostly a beer gal, but in New Orleans I love to have a cocktail. The city has so many signature cocktails and having one made just for you is always such a personal, magical experience. Though I am not local, I think I visit enough to be able to suggest some cool places to grab a drink. Without further ado, five cool spots to grab a drink in New Orleans.
The Carousel Bar
Carousel bar is a located in the lobby of Hotel Monteleone. The bar includes a piano bar in the back with comfy booths and a faux-starlit sky on the ceiling, but the main draw is the actual carousel bar where the bar gets its name from. This bar has a working vintage carousel with a bar in the center. I was told that it was hard to get a seat at the actual carousel, but I was lucky and got one of those coveted 25 seats! The carousel doesn’t move very fast, only making one full rotation every 15 minutes. I got two of their signature cocktails-a Pimm’s cup and a Vieux Carre. I enjoyed the drinks and the atmosphere of the place. I can see why it was frequented by literary greats Faulkner, Hemingway, and Tennessee Williams.
Vessel is a restaurant set inside of a 1914 church. Drinks in a church? Count me in! The outside is striking, but the inside? Beautiful. I loved the interior- wood floors, vaulted high ceilings with wood beams and rafters. The stained glassed windows are beautiful and the sun beaming that day gave the entire interior an amazing glow. Besides the unique setting, the restaurant has an extensive wine list, craft beers, and handcrafted cocktails. I had a couple of cocktails and a cheese board. Everything was delightful. TIP: They have a daily happy hour from 4-6PM.
Molly’s at the Market
Molly’s at the Market on Decatur St. is a daily stop when I’m in New Orleans. Their frozen iced coffees are the perfect pick me up and start to a day of exploring. They also sell beer and other cocktails, but trust me-have a frozen Irish iced coffee. If you’re lucky enough to get there when the window seat is open, grab it! It’s the best seat in the house. I could sit there all day sipping on frozen Irish coffees and people watching.
Manolito is a teeny tiny Cuban cocktail bar in the French Quarter on Dumaine St. Though tiny, the place is full of so much character. The cocktails are amazing, the staff is friendly, and the food is good too! I told the bartender what kind of drinks I like and she made me the best cocktail I’ve had in a long time (wish I could actually remember the name). There are only 6 seats at the bar(more seating upstairs). It gets cozy, but I met the best people to my left and my right. I will definitely be stopping in every time I’m in New Orleans.
Yes, Bourbon St. is touristy and sometimes a hot mess, but SO. MUCH. FUN! Drinking on Bourbon is a must. You don’t have to go inside a bar or club. Just BYOB or buy one from one of the many beer stands around, and walk down the iconic street and enjoy the atmosphere!
There are so many cool places to drink in New Orleans and my top 5 is always changing! I also LOVE The Black Penny which has a zillion craft canned beers, Napoleon House, and Erin Rose. Have you been to New Orleans? What’s your favorite bar to have a cocktail?