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Saturday, April 26, 2014

Where to eat after Jazz Fest — Part 6: Freret Street

Posted By on Sat, Apr 26, 2014 at 10:00 AM

click to enlarge High Hat Cafe. - CHERYL GERBER
  • High Hat Cafe.

All week long, we’ll be looking at dining options around some New Orleans neighborhoods that are featuring night concerts after the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.

Part 1: The St. Claude Avenue scene.
Part 2: Around Tipitina's.
Part 3: The Canal Street theater district.
Part 4: Near City Park

Part 5: Uptown.

Live music fills this funky street, anchored by PubliQ House (4528 Freret Street, 504-826-9912) and Gasa Gasa (4920 Freret Street, 504-304-7110).

High Hat Café (4500 Freret St., 504-754-1336)

Indie drummer/High Hat manager/cocktail genius Ryan Iriarte is usually on the floor of this Southern eatery, where the tamales are Louisiana-made, the pimento cheese recipe comes from family in Georgia, and produce is from nearby Delachaise and Hollygrove gardens. In the kitchen, chef de cuisine Jeremy Wolgamott riffs with the seasons, turning out some of the city’s tastiest fruit pies, while Iriarte’s cocktails show off what’s fresh now (these days, his housemade strawberry amaro punch). A pleasing kid’s menu appeals to families, too.

Mint Modern Bistro & Bar (5100 Freret St., 504-218-5534)

Sleek seats, a sweeping menu (kimchi burger, fried chicken over pandan waffles, chopped steak and eggs) and specialty cocktails reflect the “modern” in this Freret newcomer. Providing the bass lines are standards like classic pho and bahn mi, well-priced. Chef-owner Jimmy Tran likes to mix it up, so ask for off-menu specials like lemongrass tofu over vermicelli, glazed fried shrimp, or lemongrass chicken tacos (steamed buns, bao-style). And come Sunday; unlike many traditional Vietnamese restaurants, Mint’s is open.

Cure (4905 Freret St., 504-302-2357)

Backlit liquor bottles are the scales here, played to masterful effect in revolutionary and well-balanced craft cocktails. Matching them are beefed-up plates from consulting chef Adam Biderman, who’s introduced to the menu steak tartare, ham biscuits and a stacked sandwich of fried eggs, bacon and cheddar. Bottles of wine are 40 percent off Thursdays, while classic cocktails are $6 from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. daily. The staff also spins full digital LPs, so listen for Scottish alt-rock, folk rock, and deep-tracked Stones.

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