Enjoying a great cocktail in New Orleans is what many people love to do – whether its morning, noon or night. For decades we have sought out the most fabulous watering holes to quench or thirst and our desire for the most creative and innovative drinks. Lucky for us, there are countless bars to choose from around the city.
We also have some of the most romantic, historic and stylish hotel bars, too. They seem to be popping up constantly, and who are we to not stop in for lavish libations?
Royal Frenchman Hotel and Bar (700 Frenchman St.) is under the oaks of Washington Square Park. The building was renovated last year and has a stunning courtyard and great bar. The bar is cozy and offers an array of craft cocktails, artisan wines and spirits. Bartenders here also offer uniquely local beers. The attention to detail is inspiring, as it screams of New Orleans flair.
Piscobar (914 Union St.) inside the Catahoula Hotel has a goal of exposing you to a Peruvian cocktail culture. The cocktail program is built on pisco, a Peruvian liquor made from grapes; and the drinks here are interesting, fresh and exciting. Pisco’s history is the cornerstone of many great classic cocktails. There is also a great rooftop space that specializes in South American wine and a cocktail menu that features sherries and vermouths. If its cozy, chic and cool you're looking for, this may be your place.
Bayou Bar (2031 St. Charles Ave.) inside the Pontchartrain Hotel is a casual, tavern style approach to drinking. The bartenders at Bayou Bar honor the past with a robust whiskey list, which is celebrated every week during Whiskey Wednesday’s. On the weekends, the Steinway piano plays. There is long history in this comfy joint. It was once a drinking den for both Sinatra and Capote. A stop here takes you back in time while giving you the most up to date cocktail options around. We love the Duck Fat Sazerac, which has house infused duck fat sazerac rye, sugar, peychaud’s and herbsaint.
Just an elevator ride upstairs in the Pontchartrain Hotel, is the Hot Tin Rooftop Bar. There is a beautiful view of the city skyline and the Mississippi River. The ambiance has a 1940’s feel with honor given to Tennessee Williams, who is said to have lived in the hotel while writing "A Streetcar Named Desire." Cocktails and champagne are top of the list here.
Alto (600 Carondelet) atop the Ace Hotel is one of the hippest places around. You can sip seasonal cocktails poolside and relax while taking in views of the city. The bar offers a rotating tap, frozen drinks, craft beer and a selection of wine. To keep things exciting, the menu may change based on the season and what’s locally available. So, sit back and catch the spring and summer fever.
If you’re in the mood to bar hop while at the Ace, check out the French-Deco inspired Lobby Bar, which often has live music. Seaworthy has cocktails poised to quench the legendary thirst of sailors and New Orleanians alike, and there is Josephine Estelle on the first floor of the hotel, which has a host of classic cocktails, including a Snazzy Cocktail, that rotate weekly. Get ready, there is a lot of imbibing to do just at this one location.
Victorian Lounge (3811 St. Charles Ave.) at the Columns Hotel is simply southern and has been a city staple for ages. We love it because there is great indoor and outdoor seating, a gorgeous southern porch and nightly live music. It’s nice to grab a cocktail at this Victorian-style bar after work while taking in the sights of New Orleans along St. Charles Avenue. Classic cocktails, beer and wine are served up by the team of bartenders who know how to do it with class and style. While you marvel at the turn-of-the-century architecture, historic elegance and grand space you will enjoy sipping most anything in this romantic place.
Obviously there are so many other amazing hotel bars in the Crescent City, we are just naming a few fab spots.
If you have a favorite, let us know so we can share it with other cocktail lovers. Have a blast while hotel bar hopping as there are so many great places to choose.