A GUIDE TO DRINKING IN NEW ORLEANS, THE CITY THAT INVENTED THE COCKTAIL, AND THE FIVE MOST INFAMOUS DRINKS TO TRY
It’s easy to let the good times roll in the city that invented the cocktail. New Orleans is a hub for drinking and home to various classic concoctions. Whether it’s a Sazerac, a Hurricane, or a Creole Bloody Mary, New Orleans has a drink to keep everyone out all night.
New Orleans breeds some of the best food, parades, and music, but the classic cocktails enhance every experience. The lack of open container laws makes trying every concoction a breeze. Sip on New Orleans’ past and savor the present by visiting some of the city’s oldest restaurants and bars.
Creole Bloody Mary from Felix’s
The Creole Bloody Mary, coincidentally a go-to brunch cocktail, is believed to cure any hangover. A concoction of vodka, tomato juice, Worcestershire sauce, lime juice, and Tobasco hot sauce make up the bulk of the drink. New Orleans gets creative with garnishing — adding celery, asparagus, bacon, and shrimp.
Although the original Bloody Mary wasn’t invented in New Orleans, the city has perfected the cocktail by adding a little Creole spice. Visitors can get the whole experience at Felix’s, where it serves green beans, boiled shrimp, and a raw oyster on the half-shell with its Bloody Mary.
Grasshopper from Tujague’s
The Grasshopper, a minty delight served in a martini glass, is a quintessential way to beat the New Orleans heat. Invented in 1918 by Philibert Guichet, a New Orleanian and the owner of Tujague’s, this refreshing green drink has become a timeless classic.
The traditional recipe includes equal parts of crème de menthe, crème de cacao, and heavy cream, resulting in a cool, sweet concoction. Visitors can still savor this award-winning drink at the historic Tujague’s in the crux of the French Quarter.
Hurricane from Pat O’Brien’s
The only thing to fear about a Hurricane is its hefty amount of sweetness. A heavy hand of rum is the base of this drink, while lemon or lime juice, passion fruit syrup, and grenadine add flavor. An orange slice and a few maraschino cherries complete the cocktail.
Pat O’Brien created the Hurricane in the 1940s to utilize his surplus of rum. He served the drink in a hurricane-shaped glass, completing the New Orleans classic cocktail locals and visitors crave today. The notorious French Quarter bar, Pat O’Brien’s, still serves the original recipe.
Ramos Gin Fizz from Baroness
New Orleans has a lot of impressive cocktails, but one of the most eccentric is the Ramos Gin Fizz. Lime juice, an egg white, sugar, cream, and orange flower water create the meringue pie in a glass. This frothy, zesty drink must be shaken for 12 minutes, but the treat is worth the wait.
Henry Ramos invented the Ramos Gin Fizz at the Imperial Cabinet Saloon in 1888. Although the saloon closed years ago, the Ramos Gin Fizz lives on at Baroness on Baronne.
Sazerac from the Sazerac House
New Orleans’ first and most renowned cocktail is the Sazerac, a twist on the traditional Old Fashioned, with Sazerac-de-Forge et Fils cognac, absinthe, and bitters. The classic drink is a staple at every bar in the city.
Although the Sazerac has a complex history, it is widely believed that Antoine Amédée Peychaud is its creator. In 1838, he combined the three ingredients with the signature lemon peel garnish in his apothecary on Royal Street. Now, the Sazerac House, a museum commemorating its namesake, lives on Canal Street, offering tours, exhibits, and spirit tastings.
Discover and Enjoy the Cocktails of New Orleans at a J Collection Hotel
The J Collection represents a portfolio of independent and branded hotels in New Orleans. J Collection’s vast destinations ensure a hotel for everyone and any occasion. Whether planning a weekend staycation, a family vacation, a romantic getaway, or a business trip, our New Orleans hotels are welcome to all. Book a stay with one of J Collection’s hotels and create one-of-a-kind New Orleans memories.