Here Come the Bridesmaids
Popping the question to your bridesmaids and the best places to celebrate
The love of your life has just asked you one of the most important questions of your life; who do you call – right after your parents, of course — you ring up your closest friends. Usually, one of the easiest wedding-related decisions a couple makes is picking the people standing next to them when they say, “I do.” The trend of presenting your besties with elaborate presents and cards when asking them to be a part of your bridal party has skyrocketed. Adorable “I can’t say ‘I Do’ without you,” and “It’s my turn to pop the question,” decorate cards, boxes with ring pops, pictures or any other trinket crafted together for your friends.
We love this new trend and believe that mementos like those will last a lifetime. We’ve been brainstorming special ways to make the moment last. Our suggestion? Why not use this time as a “girl’s night out” celebration? Take your girls to a fabulous wine bar. Sip a bottle of wine, share a cheese plate and celebrate this time together, as friends and bridesmaids.
We’ve scouted out three locations in New Orleans that offer an extensive wine list, cozy interior, delicious nibbles and a quiet enough atmosphere to be able to relax and chat.
8118 Oak Street
Open Tuesday and Wednesday, 5 p.m. to midnight, and Thursday through Saturday 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Oak is a hidden gem in the Carrollton area of Uptown. The setting and location are exactly where you and your bridal party can sit and socialize for hours. Upon entering, you are met by a U-shaped, marble-top bar set in the center of the space. Along one side are booths and tables and the other is a small stage with a piano. Take in a little live music, sip wine from the vast wine list and munch on sharable, bite-sized goodies such as eggplant bruschetta and cheese plates from St. James Cheese Co. Once you’re finished, pop next door to Ale (which shares the same owners as Oak) and meet up with your fiancé and their friends for late-night drinks.
Photos by Melanie Warner Spencer
916 Lafayette St.
Open Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to midnight; Monday through Thursday 4 p.m. to midnight; Friday 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. and Saturday 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.
If you’ve never been to Cellar Door you would probably walk right past it and never know it. If the circa-1800s brick building isn’t enough to garner your love, once you’re inside velvet, red curtains and wood flooring will bring it all together. The moody, low-key atmosphere and speakeasy vibes play into the rumor that in another lifetime, the bar was a brothel. How’s that for a conversation starter? An excellent and exotic wine list pairs perfectly with the small-plate options.
Photos by Kelly Massicot
3641 Magazine St.
Open Monday through Thursday, 4 p.m. to midnight and Friday through Saturday, 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.
This quaint, sophisticated and nearly hidden venue has a slightly more energetic flair and the food is out of this world. The exterior resembles a number of the cozy bungalows lining the sides of Magazine Street. Upon entering you are immersed in a Mad Men style restaurant and lounge-area with a long L-shaped wood bar. Their turntable-only policy sets the mood for a night of food and fun. We recommend the Gouda Beignets!
Photos by Kelly Massicot
St. James Cheese Company
5004 Prytania St.
Open Monday through Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Thursday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
You are probably used to seeing the St. James Cheese Co. name in fine establishments all over New Orleans. The purveyors of cheese have a charming, light-infused storefront on Prytannia, perfect for afternoon gatherings. The deck is nestled between two buildings and during good weather provides a delightful way to enjoy the weather over a cheese plate, sandwiches and wine or craft beers.
3442 St. Charles Ave.
Open Monday through Thursday, 5 p.m. – till and Friday through Sunday, 3 p.m. – till
While prone to a louder, more boisterous evening crowd, the Delachaise on St. Charles Avenue is for those who want to loosen up a bit and pop the bridesmaid question in a more festive atmosphere. Reminiscent of a vintage train car, the always-bustling wine and tapas bar has style to spare. Sit on the patio overlooking the avenue or grab a banquette inside. Order drinks and food at the bar and toast the night away over crispy frog legs, the wine special of the day and the goose fat fries that you are sure to become addicted to after the first bite.