The Crescent City is known across the globe for its distinctive and passionate cuisine. It’s also known for its love of a fine tipple, of course, and that shouldn’t be surprising, since New Orleans invented the cocktail. (You’re welcome by the way, entire planet.)
But if you’re looking for the best cocktails in the Big Easy, you might be surprised to find that they’re not all necessarily found in the city’s cocktail bars. That’s not to besmirch the fine name of the town’s admittedly stunning drinkeries, far from it, they’re justified every ounce, dash, and measure of praise they receive -- but rather to pay due deference to the fact that you can find a cocktail just as good, if not better, at one of New Orleans’ restaurants.
Why? Well, for one, something that’s been known in NOLA for well over a hundred years: any great restaurant in this city is going to have a great bar. In fact, it’s one of the more important criteria for judging a restaurant 'round these parts. And it means that their mixologists have access to the fresh and heavily seasonal ingredients that NOLA’s restos thrive on, and in the bulk needed to properly experiment with them. There’s also a great chef on hand to help develop the drinks, and pair them with food (or vice versa). Plus, it's easier for them to forget about using pre-made syrups and cordials, etc., with fresh ingredients constantly on hand. All in all, a bar with a resto attached leads to a delicious arms race, and a whole greater than the sum of its parts. Here are a few that stand out.