jukebox

R Bar

This bar has a great local vibe – people often spill onto the street outside drinking and chatting in the sunshine. Back inside, it’s all classical American in style – there’s a pool table and jukebox – so you can live out your dive bar dream.

Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop Bar

Lafitte’s claims to be the oldest bar in America, so we’re justifying this drink under “historical significance”. Although located on Bourbon Street (which is, as a rule, to be avoided at all costs), this bar is worth a visit. The duelling pianos make for a musical spectacle.

Frenchmen Street

Now that tourists have taken over Bourbon Street, NOLA natives have relocated across town to drink. Get your fix of authentic Louisiana on Frenchmen Street instead, which is full of music venues and bars. Follow your ears and have a drink wherever the music takes you. If you’re spoiled for choice, we like D.B.A., The Spotted Cat and Blue Nile the best.

Cane and Table

Cane & Table is all exposed brick and chandeliers, making it a great place to go for a pre-dinner drink or two. Their cocktails are some of the best in the city – historically-themed with influences ranging from the Caribbean to London. We love the Barbadian Gin Punch, made from fresh coconut water and the Banana Manhattan.

Blue Nile

Frenchmen Street is one of the best places to go for a night out in New Orleans. It’s less touristy than Bourbon Street, which has a bit of a Magaluf vibe about it. Live music, playing in every bar, spills out onto the streets. Head to hotspot Blue Nile for local funk, blues and soul performances and, on the weekends, bounce nights.

Vaughan’s Lounge

To get inside this elusive Bywater jazz and blues joint, brimming with New Orleans character, you must head to the side door and ring the buzzer. Inside you’ll find live music and cheap drinks, with regular weekly performances from famous jazz trumpeter Kermit Ruffins, all set inside a distinctly New Orleans shotgun house.

Mimi’s in the Marigny

With live music, pool tables and a small-plate menu served into the wee hours, Mimi’s is the go-to place for late night fun. With a bit of an intimate house party feel, this hip neighbourhood bar is the perfect place to meet eccentric locals.

Maple Leaf Bar

Every night of the week this live-music venue invites local musicians and touring performers to its stage. With jazz, rock, blues, R&B and funk, Maple Leaf Bar is the perfect place to groove with local cool cats and meet new people. Frequent performers include the Rebirth Brass Band, Papa Grows Funk, as well as the legendary Henry Butler.

NOLA Brewery

Louisiana’s largest independently owned craft brewery offers a diverse beer lineup with a variety of choices to please any beer aficionado. The New Orleans Lager and Ale Brewing Company prides itself on its unique, local ales and lagers, including refreshing 7th Street lemon and basil wheat brew. Go on a free tour of the brewery, taste beers in the taproom and relax on the upper-level balcony.

  • 3001 Tchoupitoulas Street
    70115

Snake & Jake’s Christmas Club Lounge

While it might look like an abandoned shack during the day, Snake & Jake’s is the ultimate dive for night owls looking for a party. With a bar open until 7AM, you never know what you’ll find or who you’ll meet in the early hours of the morning. Decorated with red fairy lights, people from all over New Orleans (and, indeed, the world) gather at this dimly-lit haven to drink, dance and be merry. The owner’s playful labrador is a regular.

Golden Lantern

Known to show its punters a good time, the Golden Lantern is something of an institution in New Orleans. Open day and night, come for the drag show and stay for the bar’s famous Bloody Mary – loaded with pickles and peppers.

Friendly Bar

This gay bar draws a good crowd. Head down on Wednesday evenings, when the house fires the outside grill (it’s BYOM – and yes “M” stands for meat.) Happy hour runs Monday through Friday from 4-8PM, so come early and stay until late.

Kajuns

This place has karaoke every night… Curse or gift, either way, Kajuns is a fun (read: noisy) spot to while away an evening. Open 24 hours a day, it has become a honeypot for locals and visitors.

Junction

This place is strictly 21 and up so make sure to remember your ID. Set in an historic building on the lakeside of the St Claude corridor, Junction serves more than 40 beers on tap and some of the freshest, most creative burgers in New Orleans.

Saturn Bar

On the corner of Saint Claude Avenue, this bar-cum-nightclub spins a mix of British Invasion, Motown and funk. A dive bar as cute as they come, we can’t remember when it closes, we just know it’s open late.

Cosimos Bar

This classic French Quarter dive is beloved for its dirt-cheap nightly specials. Gorge on crawfish by the bucket you can rack up a game of pool and wash it down with a cold craft brew. Grab a perch along the mahogany bar next to a crowd of fun-loving residents.

Bud Rips

A solid spot to catch the Saints game and shoot some pool, Bud Rips is a stalwart of low-key NOLA nightlife. Order an inexpensive bottle of red and dance the night away under the original pressed-tin ceiling.

Blue Nile

Vaughan’s Lounge

Mimi’s in the Marigny

Maple Leaf Bar

NOLA Brewery

Snake & Jake’s Christmas Club Lounge

R Bar

Frenchmen Street

Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop Bar

Cane and Table

Golden Lantern

Friendly Bar

Kajuns

Junction

Saturn Bar

Cosimos Bar

Bud Rips

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