Restaurants and bars celebrate New Orleans' tricentennial
There’s no better place to celebrate the 300th anniversary of New Orleans than one of the most iconic restaurants in the city: Brennan’s. On March 12, Brennan’s will host the James Beard Foundation Benefit Dinner with owners Ralph Brennan, Terry White and James Beard Finalist for Best Chef: South, Slade Rushing, through a gastronomic exploration of James Beard’s 1978 visit to New Orleans.
The five-course dinner, hosted by chef Slade Rushing, pairs original New Orleans libations and boutique wines with legendary dishes like Bananas a L’Archestrate and Crayfish a la Bordelaise.
In addition to the dinner, Brennan’s Restaurant has published its first children's book that tells the tale of 300 years of New Orleans history: 'A Topsy-Turvy History of New Orleans & Ten Tiny Turtles'.
In the International House Hotel, LOA bar is known for its inventive cocktail menu.
Creative director Alan Walter has created an entire menu centered on the historical 300th anniversary of New Orleans.
The Jean Lafitte (pictured) will use forged Spanish Moss, and there’s a Haitian Sazerac that offers a Caribbean spin on the city’s favorite cocktail. “The drink comes together to be a wonderfully affectionate New Orleans Sazerac, and a Rum Sazerac at that, which is so much more 'New Orleans' than Rye; a cocktail for the northernmost Caribbean city,” Walter says.
In addition to the cocktail menu, a preserved Banksy graffiti mural named “Looters” will be displayed in the hotel to pay reverence to the 300th anniversary.
Ralph’s on the Park has created a bar menu that pays tribute to the 300th anniversary of New Orleans with nods to the restaurant’s historic City Park Avenue building.
Ralph’s on the Park has created the Saux-Saux for the occasion, which is a take on the La Louisiane. Swirled with rye, Carpano, Chartreuse, Peychaud's and Herbsaint, the cocktail is an ode to Jean Marie Saux who first constructed the coffeehouse in the 900 City Park Avenue building in 1860.
In addition, there’s an Oak Fashioned, a twist on the Old Fashioned with bourbon, Luxardo cherry and orange, that’s served in a City Park oak-smoked glass.
In The Ritz-Carlton, New Orleans, Davenport Lounge is a favorite among visitors and locals for some of the city’s finest cocktails.
Bartender Kevin Londono has created a cocktail for the 300th anniversary, honoring the city’s diverse and multicultural history, with French, Spanish and American ingredients — a nod to the changing ownership during New Orleans’ formative years.
Londono’s cocktail is appropriately named The Tricentennial and is made with Spanish Vermouth, Hennessey XO, Sazerac Rye Whiskey, a dash of simple syrup, fresh lemon and an Herbsaint rinse.
Arguably the finest sweet shop in all New Orleans (and beyond) Sucre is an artisan dessert shop that sells everything from gelato and chocolates to sundaes and macarons.
Chef and co-founder Tariq Hanna is known for his innovative confections, especially for seasonal events. The 300th anniversary of New Orleans is no exception.
Hanna has created a Tricentennial Commemorative Chocolate Collection with eight specially made Meuniere chocolates. Each sweet treat is filled with white chocolate and brown butter folded into ganache, then covered in dark chocolate. The chocolate's exterior is splashed with black and gold and adorned with fleur de lis on the bottom, and a tricentennial logo wraps around Sucre’s signature green chocolate box.
One of the city’s most historic and celebrated restaurants, Arnaud’s is celebrating the tricentennial throughout the entire year.
Arnaud's will host private events and public affairs, like a Prohibition party (where alcohol is served in coffee cups) on May 10, and a ladies who lunch event (celebrating the founder’s daughter and former owner, Germaine C. Wells) in September.
Arnaud's chef Tommy DiGiovanni has created a dish to honor the celebration: Gulf Fish Grenobloise, a pan-seared fillet topped with sauce Grenobloise, and served with vegetable ragout.
Named for being “South of Bourbon,” SoBou is a sleek restaurant and cocktail bar in the French Quarter.
SoBou’s bar chef Laura Bellucci has created a cocktail that's especially made for sipping in celebration of the city’s tricentennial.
The concoction is a grilled Satsuma-infused Vieux Carré, French for Old Quarter and a nod to the original cocktail that was invented in the French Quarter. Bellucci adds the city’s famous citrus for a modern, celebratory spin.
Inside the stately Windsor Court Hotel, the Polo Club Lounge is the perfect spot for celebrating the 300th anniversary with a drink in hand.
The Bienville 300 will be added to the cocktail menu, paying homage to the father of New Orleans, Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne de Bienville. The tipple refers both to the tricentennial as well as the hotel’s address: 300 Gravier Street.
The beloved Commander’s Palace restaurant is celebrating 300 years of New Orleans with a special red, white and blue cocktail.
The Toast to the Tricentennial is made with Wheatley Vodka, whipped yogurt liqueur, Blue Cuaracao milk punch, and festive and fun red pop rocks.
Chef Isaac Toups of Toups South is commemorating NOLA’s 300th with a Tricentennial Prix Fixe, available for dinner service throughout January.
The two-course meal (priced at $30) will pay tribute to dishes from the 1700s, 1800s, 1900s and today. Expect items like an oyster Rockefeller soup or a Fernet Coke float.
DTB (chef Carl Schaubhut’s new restaurant that’s short for Down the Bayou) is celebrating the city’s tricentennial with a rotating menu of specialty drinks created by cocktail director Lu Brow.
Expect to see the Louisiana Cocktail, a playful spin on the Sazerac featuring sassafras-infused Sazerac rye, barrel-aged bitters, Balsam amaro and a pecan oil drizzle. More cocktails will include nods to the Brandy Milk Punch, Pimm’s Cup and Ramos Gin Fizz.
Louisiana’s most famous beer and original craft brewery, Abita Brewing Company, has created a new release in line with the tricentennial.
The Maison Blanc beer celebrates the French heritage with its name and has a mild, dry flavor with the characteristics of Sauvignon Blanc grapes. It can be found in stores now.
Cavan, a new-ish Coastal American restaurant in an 1883 mansion overlooking Magazine Street, is offering a menu to commemorate New Orleans’ tricentennial.
Chef Nathan Richard creates a prix fixe menu that features dishes that were served in New Orleans throughout the 1800s and early 1900s. Expect Chicken a la Marengo, named for Napoleon’s defeat of the Austrians in the Battle of Marengo; Shrimp Clemenceau, named for George Clemenceau, a French Prime Minister during World War I who was considered a hero to New Orleanian Creoles at the time; and Filet de Boeuf à la Robespierre, a mid-1800s dish grimly named to recall the guillotining of the influential Reign of Terror figure.
Cavan bar director Noelle Wilcox is offering pairing options to go with the menu, including the city’s original cocktails such as a Sazerac, the Ramos Gin Fizz and the Vieux Carre.