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New Orleans top craft cocktail bars 

Explore creative mixology at these bars and restaurants

Bar Tonique
820 N. Rampart St., 504-324-6045;
The vibe: When not crowded, a neighborhood bar; when crowded, a see-and-be-scene.
What you'll drink: Corpse Reviver No. 2, or the Blanche Dubois (gin with curacao, orgeat and fruit).

Hotel Modern, 936 St. Charles Ave., 504-962-0911;
The vibe: Deep red velvet with a bar that looks like an apothecary.
What you'll drink: Something from the long list of cobblers or a fortified wine.

The Bombay Club
830 Conti St., 504-577-2237;
The vibe: A gentleman's club (in the old definition), decorated like an English manor.
What you'll drink: The original Bombay Club martini, or a classic like a Vieux Carre or Vesper.

4905 Freret St., 504-302-2357;
The vibe: Serious cocktail bar, with a wall of illuminated bottles behind the bar.
What you'll drink: Tell the bartender what you normally like and let him or her go wild.

The Franklin
2600 Dauphine St., 504-267-0640;
The vibe: Cozy, upscale, down-to-earth, art-filled spot in the Marigny.
What you'll drink: Hemingway cocktail, wine or bartender's choice.

French 75
Arnaud's Restaurant, 813 Bienville St., 504-523-5433;
The vibe: 19th-century Parisian brasserie-meets-private club.
What you'll drink: The namesake cocktail, a definitive Sazerac or the refreshing Ellipses and a Dash (Mount Gay and El Dorado rums, allspice dram, Falernum, lime and orange juices, bitters).

High Hat Cafe
4500 Freret St., 504-754-1336;
The vibe: Neighborhood joint that led the "new Southern" restaurant movement in New Orleans.
What you'll drink: Julep, Pimm's Cup or one of the bourbon creations (the Space Cowboy has ginger syrup and mezcal).

337 Chartres St., 504-598-5005;
The vibe: Chic but casual cocktail bar that's as much a destination as the restaurant.
What you'll drink: You've never had a Pimm's Cup until you've had one from bartender Chris McMillian.

International House, 221 Camp St., 504-553-9550;
The vibe: Upscale hotel bar catering to well-dressed professional types.
What you'll drink: Let the bartender guide you to one of Loa's seasonal drinks made with fresh herbs.

Martine's Lounge
2347 Metairie Road., Metairie, 504-831-8637; martineslounge
The vibe: Friendly neighborhood bar just as happy to serve domestic beer as craft cocktails.
What you'll drink: Specialties like the "Basil-Jito" and the Canadian julep are a wallet-friendly $5-$7.

Maurepas Foods
3200 Burgundy St., 504-267-0072;
The vibe: Bywater chic; busy but friendly restaurant bar.
What you'll drink: Local beers; brunch specialties like mimosas or the Maurepas Mary (tomato juice and your choice of liquor).

Root Squared
1800 Magazine St., 504-309-7800;
The vibe: Comfortable upstairs hangout (above chef Phillip Lopez's tasting menu-only Square Root) in the Lower Garden District.
What you'll drink: If there's any place in town you should turn yourself over to the barkeep, it's Root Squared.

3835 Tulane Ave., 504-304-4878;
The vibe: An impromptu place for craft cocktails with an art gallery upstairs — from the people who brought you Finn McCool's.
What you'll drink: The Julie Andrews, a fizzy beer cocktail, or Last Night in Bangkok, a coconut milk punch.

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