There's no problem finding food and drink at French Quarter Festival, and there are new places to try not far from festival stages. Here are a few.
The nanobrewery opened April 1 off the Frenchmen Street strip, with indoor and outdoor seating. During French Quarter Festival weekend, the team will serve Three Threads Baltic Porter, Falcon Warrior IIPA, Weisses & Vitrues Weizenbock and Brieux Tang C.R.E.A.M. Ale. It does not serve food.
2115 Decatur St., (504) 304-4242; www.brieuxcarre.com
Cool off with crudo and bubbly at the spacious new Champagne and sparkling wine bar on the edge of the Quarter. Patrons can indulge with a bottle of Cristal and caviar or try one of the many sparkling wines available by the bottle or glass. Snacks from chefs Brenna Sanders and Evan Ingram (who previously ran the seafood-focused pop-up l'Americaine) include small and sharable plates, such as crudites, cheese, charcuterie, french fries, cold seafood platters and a few sweet items.
1036 N. Rampart St., (504) 509-7644; www.facebook.com/ efferevescencenola
Counter + Tap
Cool off with a dozen raw oysters and beer at the new restaurant from the Legacy Kitchen team inside the Renaissance New Orleans Pere Marquette hotel. There are oysters from nearby waters and around the Gulf South. There also are char-broiled and spicy Voodoo oyster shooters. Diners who arrive before happy hour ends at 6 p.m. can get a half-dozen raw oysters and a draught beer for $6. The full menu includes Southern-inspired "blue plates," such as fried chicken and hickory bacon-studded waffles drizzled with pepper jelly maple syrup.
Renaissance New Orleans Pere Marquette, 817 Common St., (504) 827-1651; www.legacykitchen.com
A short walk from the French Quarter is chef Michael Gulotta's Southeast Asian stunner, where he weaves bright flavors and exotic ingredients into a creative menu. A dish of cured speckled trout is served with pickled mirliton and fermented black beans. Squid ink fusilli is tossed with blue crab, chorizo, coconut butter and mint, and a Bibb lettuce chaat salad is dressed with a cool coconut and cucumber ranch.
611 O'Keefe Ave., (504) 518-6345; www.maypoprestaurant.com
In the Warehouse District, Emeril Lagasse's latest restaurant offers an expansive menu of internationally inspired small plates in an upscale casual atmosphere. Spanish-style croquettes are filled with a creamy mix of ham and manchego cheese and served with piquillo pepper sauce. Steamed mussels bask in coconut milk with lime and cilantro. The creative bar program includes refreshing drinks like the No. 20, featuring Hendricks Gin, cucumber water, lime juice and jalapeno simple syrup. The No. 50 is a white whiskey quaff combining grapefruit shrub, tarragon syrup, yuzu and prosecco.
424 Girod St., (504) 526-3745; www.emerilsrestaurants.com/meril
& Petit Lion
Catch a breeze at the Troubadour Hotel's new rooftop bar Monkey Board and sample food truck-i nspired bites (pretzel with beer cheese fondue, fried chicken sandwich), creative summertime cocktails (the Michelada Nueva combines mezcal and clarified tomato) and great views of the city. For a more elegant, sit-down affair, Chef Phillip Lopez's downstairs bistro, Petit Lion, offers a short French-leaning menu featuring crab-stuffed deviled eggs, salad Lyonnaise topped with a poached egg and lardons, and a burger topped with American cheese.
Troubadour Hotel, 1111 Gravier St.; Monkey Board, (504) 518-5600; www.monkeyboardnola.com; Petit Lion, (504) 518-5500; www.petitlionnola.com
The new dive bar from the owners of HiVolt and The Saint brings a welcome bit of grit back to the lower Decatur strip. A daily happy hour runs until 10 p.m. and includes a changing $5 cocktail special. The absinthe-heavy cocktail list includes Sazerac, Corpse Reviver and 21st Century, featuring tequila, cacao, absinthe and lemon. The bar opens at 11 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday, so it's a good spot to get your hair of the dog.
1135 Decatur St.; www.facebook.com /santosnola
This dog-friendly tavern from the folks behind the Animal Planet reality television show Pit Bulls & Parolees and the Villalobos Rescue Center features a laid-back vibe just steps from festival stages. The vegetarian-friendly menu features a list of snacks including sweet potato hummus served with flatbread, Buffalo cauliflower with blue cheese dressing and celery, and fried green tomatoes with mozzarella and pesto. Drinks include mint lemonade made with Deep Eddy Lemon Vodka.
1140 Decatur St., (504) 301-1991; www.thetahyotavern.com