The Blue Crab Restaurant and Oyster Bar
7900 Lakeshore Drive, (504) 284-2898; www.thebluecrabnola.com; @thebluecrabnola
With picturesque views of Lake Pontchartrain and West End Marina, this seafood restaurant offers a relaxed, family-friendly environment and plentiful outdoor seating. Its bar features an array of signature cocktails, including the popular Blue Crab Collins. An additional downstairs bar opens from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. weekends. Open Tue.-Sun. Full restaurant menu. Happy hour 4 p.m.-6:30 p.m. Tue.-Fri.
Bob Roth's Lounge
5129 Canal Blvd., (504) 486-7684
The neighborhood bar was established in 1956, and features an open-mic from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday. There's a dog-friendly patio, and inside there's a pool table, TVs for watching sports and video poker. The bar plans to offer Memphis-style barbecue soon. A popular drink order is the Happy Meal, Miller High Life or PBR in a can with a shot of Jameson. Open daily. No food. Happy hour 5 p.m.-7 p.m. Mon.-Sat.
618 Homedale St., (504) 488-5519; www.thehomedaleinn.com
All New Orleans Saints, Pelicans and Louisiana State University games are screened on multiple TVs at this classic beer joint that's old-school enough (established 1937) to still sport a Jax Beer sign. The wooden deck has the rustic charm and feel of a south Louisiana fishing camp. There's free food for all Saints games. Wednesday is trivia night. Open daily. No food. Happy hour 2 p.m.-7 p.m. Mon.-Fri.
203 Homedale St., (504) 483-0978
There is minimal signage to direct a thirsty newcomer to this minimalist bar tucked on the edges of Lakeview and Mid-City. The house-like exterior houses a large bar-top, video poker and pool. They offer bucket beer specials for New Orleans Saints and Louisiana State University football games and have a covered smoking area and outdoor patio. Dogs welcome. Open daily. Happy hour 11 a.m.-7 p.m. daily.
870 Harrison Ave., (504) 304-6338
Parlay's claims it has the longest bar in the city. The neighborhood lounge is especially festive during New Orleans Saints and Louisiana State University games, when it offers a spread of free food in the back room. There are daily drink specials, and $3 bloody marys on Sunday. Open daily. No food. Happy hour 4 p.m.-midnight daily.
The Steak Knife
888 Harrison Ave., (504) 488-8981; www.steakkniferestaurant.com
Stop by the restaurant lounge for a drink before or after your meal. If it's after, be sure to cap off your night with a Brandy Alexander Freeze — a blended dessert drink of dark creme de cacao, brandy and ice cream. Open Tue.-Sat. Full restaurant menu.
The Velvet Cactus
6300 Argonne Blvd., (504) 301-2083; www.thevelvetcactus.com
The Velvet Cactus' decor is a riot of color, from the string lights hung around the open-air patio to the funky local art on the walls (and for sale). Seasonal margaritas, like strawberry jalapeno or blood orange mango, are specialties but the bar also serves sangria, wine, beer and a variety of tequila and mezcal. Open daily. Full restaurant menu. Happy hour 4:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m. Mon.-Thu., 2:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m. Fri.