Best Bars in New Orleans

Sarah Ambrose

To find the best bars in New Orleans, it's time to get off of Bourbon Street. Sure, a night on Bourbon St. has its place, but if you want to drink like a local, you need to step out (or stumble out) of the French Quarter. In this list, you'll find New Orleans bars that celebrate its long-standing cocktail tradition, international influences, and hidden neighborhood hangouts. The best bars in New Orleans host some of the quirkiest humans you'll find.. well, really anywhere. This list is a great fit for your 1st or 50th trip to the Big Easy.

Batture Bistro and Bar, Pal's Lounge, The Avenue Pub, Vaughan's Lounge, Cane and Table, Bacchanal Fine Wine & Spirits, Hot Tin

  • Batture Bistro and Bar in New Orleans, United States

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      If you're looking for a sophisticated (but cozy!) spot for drinks in the French Quarter, Batture Bistro and Bar is your place. With an extensive food and drunk menu, you can spend an entire day sitting back, relaxing, and taste testing. If it's a nice day, ask for a spot on their climate controlled patio. If you can only have one meal here, try their brunch!

  • Pal's Lounge in New Orleans, United States

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      Located in a residential part of New Orleans, Pal's Lounge is where you head when you're ready to break away from the mayhem. Pal's is literally a couple of blocks from Bayou St. John and directly in the Bayou St. John neighborhood which technically speaking is the oldest neighborhood in the city (the French started to settle it before the French Quarter). The Lounge itself is cute. Sometimes you have to buzz yourself in giving it a kind of speakeasy vibe. The crowd is always vibrant and cool. Food trucks and pop ups rotate in regularly and as for drinks, Pal's crafts house cocktails as well as provides full bar offerings. Here's a tip, get in earlier to nab a seat before the crowd rolls in. This place gets packed on the weekends!

  • The Avenue Pub in New Orleans, United States

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      Beer and whiskey lovers rejoice! There are beer bars and then there's The Avenue Pub with literally hundreds of beers and whiskeys to choose from curated by actual experts. No seriously, their staff make regular trips to Belgium just to glean inspiration and for the all important "research" you have to do to run a place as impressive as this. Enjoy over 20 beers on tap that rotate along with an ever-expanding list of seriously exciting brews from across the globe. IPA? check Sours? check Hefeweizen? check. Stouts? Check Gose? Check What about Geuze? Yeah, that too. Sip your exotic brews outside and listen to the streetcar roll by. Want a more quiet night? Check out the bar upstairs!

  • Vaughan's Lounge in New Orleans, United States

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      Don't pass up this quirky neighborhood classic! Vaughn's Lounge has been around since the 1950s and is filled with old souls and new souls- characters from all walks of life. The drinks list is straight to the point, but you don't come here for the mixology program. You come for the friendly vibes, great music, and most importantly the "now there's something you don't see every day" moments that happen all of the time. Anyone wanna join in a goat parade? Line up at Vaughn's.

  • Cane and Table in New Orleans, United States

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      1913 or 2013? As a bar, Cane and Table has everything you could dream of when it comes to quintessential New Orleans flare. Their cocktail list features Caribbean-inspired flavors mixed to perfection, and their patio is full of charm, exotic plants, and that certain "je ne sais quois" found only in Nola. Though only a recent addition to the city, Cane and Table manages to feel like a timeless classic.

  • Bacchanal Fine Wine & Spirits in New Orleans, United States

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      Part wine bar, part restaurant, part music venue. This backyard party tucked away in the historic Bywater is where to head if you are looking for a great start to your date night, for a first visit to New Orleans, or simply as a cozy and enjoyable hangout for live music nearly every night of the week. Check the Live Wire on WWOZ to stay up-to-date on their live music calendar. The incredible wine list, line up of musicians, and the atmosphere make Bacchanal the spot to return to again and again.

  • Hot Tin in New Orleans, United States

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      When you think of grabbing a drink in New Orleans, you hope and dream of a setting ripe with history, culture, views, and the best cocktails to boot. But do you ever really get that? Yeah, you do. At Tin Roof, do a cheers with friends in the same space that Tennessee Williams penned Cat on a Hot Tin Roof while overlooking the New Orleans skyline and the Mississippi river. The cocktails are on point and the atmosphere is full of 1920s charm.