The first thing I thought of when visiting New Orleans was Bourbon Street. It's the hotspot especially during Mardi Gras. A street filled with colorful people and never-ending bars and beads. So of cousre, that was my first stop. I mean I can't have a post about New Orleans bars and not go to Bourbon St.
So I went, I drank and honestly I wasn't that impressed. Now please note I did not go during Mardi Gras and the street wasn't as lively. There were drinks but also rowdy kids and adults and it was a little smelly. It wasn't all a bust I got what I expected from the night but it wasn't this crazy experience I was told about.
But not all was lost! I was given the scoop from the locals of another street where you can get a great drink, hear amazing live jazz and have a great time -- Frenchmen Street. No more than four blocks away, it holds more charm and great night life (in my opinion) than the whole Bourbon strip.
Small detour - Here are a few stops you should make before hitting Frenchmen
1. Hotel Monteleone, inside is the Carousel Bar & Lounge. The bar is literally a carousel, meaning you go around the bar in a circle while you enjoy your cocktail. (Quick Tip: make this your first stop and not your last )
2. Pat O'Brien's - Yeah its a little touristy but get your hurricane and keep the glass. The cool thing is if you don't want your glass you can return it to the bar and they'll refund you $3 since the glass is included in the drink price.
OK back to Frenchmen!
1. The Spotted Cat - Come in, get a drink and enjoy some great jazz, earlier in the evening they have swing dance class in the club so you'll see people jump up and break into a number.
2. Maison - Probably one of my favorite places on the street to hear amazing music and dance the night away.
3. Yuki Izakaya - Japanese bar and restaurant with delicious infused Sake (make sure to try the Mango). The other pull for this location is the soulful singer at the bar, she belted out the hits from Stevie Wonder to Etta James.
4. This next spot is literally on the corner of Frenchmen and Chartres. Its not a bar but a group of EXTREMELY talented young men who play for tips. They had a group of at least 50 people all dancing in the street, you can catch them there almost every night so go by, support and dance the night away.
Side note: If you get hungry while your partying go to Dat Dog across the street from the young men playing at Frenchmen & Chartres. Try the Turducken dog you won't regret it!
I'll be back with more outtakes!