New Orleans Hotspot: Frenchmen Street

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A good time is easy to find in the Crescent City—for visitors looking for some fun outside of the French Quarter, one of the happening areas of this party town is Frenchmen Street.

Located on the eastern edge of the French Quarter in the Faubourg Marigny neighborhood, this street is a distinct melange of live music, tasty restaurants, and places to just hang out.

Like much of the downtown, Frenchmen Street is filled with classic two and three story structure and just as many locals as visitors bar hopping the strip. Here’s seven places that are worthy of a visit:

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1. The owners of dba opened their first club in New York but once they got a taste of the Big Easy, opened a second locale, a perfect spot to indulge in the numerous beers on tap from around the globe. After 10:00 p.m. every night there’s live music provided by local bands such as The Hot Club of New Orleans, John Boutte, Glen David Andrews and The Palmetto Bug Stompers.

2. For those seeking southern soul food, The Praline Connection serves up a wide range of eats from crawfish etoufee and alligator sausage to bbq oysters, gumbo, stewed chicken, fried okra, jambalaya and local sandwich fave, po’boys. With its distinct neon sign in the centre of the strip, this eating establishment is rarely empty, so be prepared to lineup—it’s worth the wait.

3. Another crowded spot to hear live music is The Spotted Cat, offering jazz on tap as well as a unique mix of college kids, old school Yats and plenty of people wanting to hear the sweet sounds of brass and pianee (aka piano). This is one of the mainstays of the street, especially since it rarely charges a cover to hear The Davis Rogan Band, Jazz Vipers or Meschiya Lake and The Little Big Horns.

4. Three Muses not only satisfies the palate for New Orleans influences on traditional Spanish tapas but offers up traditional and contemporary jazz players each night. Don’t miss indulging in the unique cocktails such as a Spaghetti Western (bourbon w/ campari & rosemary simple syrup) or a glass of Euterpe Sangria made with red wine, brandy, Absolut Berri and acai with your tasty tapas selections.

5. A building that has stood since the early 1800s now houses the award-winning Blue Nile since 2000, providing another spot for live music for local and international performers from reggae to jazz, blues to rock with bands such as United Postal Project, Bayou International Reggae Night with DJ T Roy and Los Po Boy Citos.

6. For those want to fuel their love of traditional jazz, Snug Harbor Jazz Bistro has a regular lineup of the Uptown Jazz Orchestra for big band sounds and Charmaine Neville and Philip Manuel for traditional jazz standards. And there’s great snacks from the Creole menu in the dining room for pre and post music indulgences.

7. And last but not least, just off the street on Esplanade, Checkpoint Charlie’s is the club to experience rock, contemporary pop, and punk, and if there’s a need, to do your laundry.

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