There's a certain air in New Orleans that sometimes sets the perfect backdrop for a romantic evening. If you're planning a romantic date night, here are some bars to include during your next toast of the town. Raise your glass to these great spots for lovers.
A trip to the Bywater brings you to Bacchanal, one of the neighborhood’s largest outdoor areas. Wine and dine in the courtyard amidst a lively mix of jazz music, gourmet food and drinks. If you stumble upon a newfound wine, you’re in luck. Check out their Old World wine shop, and bring a bottle home. Located right along the river, the casual wine store and eatery has live music almost every night. Open Sunday to Thursday from 11 a.m. to midnight and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.
Pop some bubbly at Effervescence, an elegant champagne bar at the edge of the French Quarter. Create the perfect date night at the Rampart Street bar with a champagne-focused menu featuring sparkling flights, light bites and desserts. The bar also offers live music every Wednesday and Sunday. Open Wednesday and Thursday from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 3 p.m. to 1 a.m. and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Lift your spirits at this intimate rooftop bar at the restored historic Pontchartrain Hotel. The indoor/outdoor bar boasts an unobstructed, breathtaking view of downtown New Orleans. Guests can sip on snazzy cocktails and champagne at the space modeled after a 1940s artist’s loft. Open Sunday from 2 p.m. to midnight, Monday to Thursday from 4 p.m. to midnight and Friday and Saturday from 2 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Head to this cozy spot inside the International House Hotel where “spirit handlers” will serve you from a list of seasonal cocktails. The lush room with dim lighting and comfy seating makes the perfect nightcap. Opens Monday through Thursday from 4 p.m. to midnight and Friday through Sunday from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Bayou Wine Garden
Head over to this casual Mid-City neighborhood wine bar for a fun evening in a relaxed atmosphere. Get your fill with a large selection of wines with options by the glass, bottle, or carafe. The bar also features a wine-on-tap system with 32 rotating wines at lower price points. A bridge to adjoining sister bar, Bayou Beer Garden, offers even more food and drink options. Opens Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 a.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 a.m.
The historic streetcar and beautiful mansions along St. Charles Avenue create the perfect backdrop for a great night at The Delachaise. You can’t go wrong with a pretty solid wine selection, along with house wine specials. Take in the sights and sounds of Uptown New Orleans while sipping on the outdoor patio, or journey indoors for a cozy atmosphere. The spot can get pretty crowded on the weekends, so be prepared. If you’re craving a bite, make sure you hop on the “Pommes Frites” fried in goose fat and served with malt vinegar aioli and spicy peanut satay. It’s a house favorite among patrons. Open Monday through Thursday from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. or later. Friday and Saturday, the bar opens noon to 2 a.m. or later. Opens Sunday from noon to 1 a.m. or later.
The Delachise’s sister restaurant on Maple Street offers a different experience than its older counterpart. The two-level front patio comes with servers who will provide you with some of the best food served in the neighborhood. The spot also offers a reverse happy hour from 10 p.m. to midnight on Fridays and Saturdays. Opens Tuesday to Thursday from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m., Friday from 3 p.m. to midnight, Saturday from 1 p.m. to midnight and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.
You can’t go wrong with a date night at this swanky Freret Street spot with a critically-acclaimed bar program. Enjoy some good tunes and conversation by candlelight at Cure. Plus, if you get a little hungry, check the bar menu for light bites. Opens Monday through Thursday from 5 p.m. to midnight, Friday and Saturday from 3 p.m. to 2 a.m. and Sunday from 3 p.m. and midnight.
Arnaud's French 75 Bar
Literally, toast to a good night with a French 75 at this iconic French Quarter bar. History and elegance collide at this James Beard Award-winner with interesting spins on classic cocktails. Opens Monday through Thursday from 5:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. Opens Friday from 3 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Opens Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.
The chef/owner of Lilette adjacent building While this bar might look like a typical Magazine Street house from the outside, a step inside will transport you to the perfect date night. Vintage chairs and modern light fixtures set a classic atmosphere. The wine bar serves premium cocktails, small plates and offers table service. Opens Monday through Thursday from 4 p.m. to midnight and Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Above the Grid
Enjoy the city skyline and partake in its luxury at NOPSI Hotel’s rooftop bar, Above the Grid. Savor chilled drinks and creative, healthy fare. Locals are welcome to the rooftop bar every day after 4 p.m. If the weather is too cool, head to the hotel’s chic courtyard area with heated lamps. Open to the general public Sunday through Thursday from 4 p.m. to midnight and Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m.
The wine list is grouped by palate at this chic and spacious Riverbend wine bar. This spot is known for great happy hours among the professional crowd and features live performances on Friday and Saturday nights. Indulge in a menu of small plates created by chef Aaron Burgau of Patois, while the knowledgeable staff can help you pair your meal with the perfect glass of wine. Its Oak Street location also makes this wine bar the perfect place to enjoy a great night out. You can walk to other places nearby if you feel like bar hopping or shopping around. Open Tuesday through Saturday from 5 p.m. – until.
Head to The Ritz-Carlton New Orleans for cocktails with a side of jazz from the hotel’s headline entertainer Jeremy Davenport. The Davenport Lounge offers a menu of classic New Orleans cocktails, wine, champagne and light fare. Open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to midnight and Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.
The Columns Hotel
Grab a drink at the historic Columns Hotel overlooks St. Charles Avenue. The romantic Victorian Lounge features a mahogany bar and classic fifteen-foot ceilings. Open Monday through Thursday from 3 p.m. to midnight, Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to midnight.
Mimi's in the Marigny
Here’s a great recipe for late night: Fully stocked bar and a great tapas menu. Get grilled steak and lamb chops among other tasty treats into the wee hours at this neighborhood bar. If you want a casual vibe in the Marigny, the upstairs level at Mimi’s is a great idea for your outing. Open daily from 11 a.m. – until.
This swanky lounge adds a touch of romantic and rebellious French flair to the New Orleans bar scene in the Central Business District. Fresh off its opening last May, enjoy craft cocktails, natural wines and French-inflected fare. The richly-detailed lounge sits inside the Maison de la Luz boutique hotel at 544 Carondelet Street.
Claret Wine & Cocktail Bar
Take in the evening at Claret Wine & Cocktail Bar. This date night spot features window views and an outdoor patio in the Lower Garden District. The extensive drink menu features more than 25 wines by the glass, 30 domestic and imported craft beers and seasonal craft cocktails. Claret also features a wide-ranging charcuterie program planned by executive chef Marcus Woodham.
Copper Vine wine pub invites guests to a landmark building with a lush, outdoor patio. The neighborhood wine bar in the Central Business District offers a culinary and cultural experience aimed to demystify wine in a fun and relaxed setting. For the wine program at Copper Vine, guests can select from 30 wines on tap, available by-the-half-glass, glass, carafe and bottle.
Jewel of the South
Jewel of the South, a historic Creole cottage on the edge of the French Quarter, debuts a new restaurant and lounge located above the restaurant. Take your date to The Grove – an intimate cocktail lounge with booze-friendly bites on the ground floor. The new digs are open now for the public to enjoy.
An interesting new addition to the historic Orpheum Theater — an underground speakeasy — opens under the iconic performance venue in the Central Business District. The Double Dealer, a basement-level bar and lounge, hopes to add a new element to the New Orleans bar scene by tapping into prohibition-era history. Accessed through an unmarked side entrance of the Orpheum, opposite the Roosevelt Hotel, this spot is sure to add a bit of mystery to your evening.
The Elysian Bar
Brought to you by the team behind Bacchanal Wine, The Elysian Bar offers a public space with specialty food, drink, and hospitality. Literary expert and leader of the pastry department, Chef Bronwen works diligently to bring savory and sweet goods to this spot located within the Marigny Boutique Hotel, Peter and Paul. Stop by their Aperitivo Hour, 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. daily.