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Drinking in New Orleans and Other Local Customs

SmarterTravel

Local Customs in New Orleans, Drinking

New Orleans is a town that bases its reputation on two factors: history and fun. Lassiez le bon temps roule! Or “let the good times roll!” When it comes to lifting a libation you’ll find that New Orleans puts its own special twist on drinking.

Have Drink, Will Travel

New Orleans has its own viewpoint on drinking and that is that alcohol should be free-range. You can get anything you want to go, poured into a plastic cup, called a go-cup. Then you and your beverage of choice may wander down the street, second-line, or saunter down to the river. No glass outside, please. This keeps the sidewalks free from broken glass. In New Orleans, an alcohol problem is defined as when you spill your drink.

Hurray for Hurricanes (the Drink)

The Hurricane was invented in New Orleans in the ‘40s, at Pat O’Brien’s Bar. The genesis of the name derives from the glasses used to serve it, which are shaped like hurricane lamps. This iconic New Orleans drink is sweet and fruity. The recipe’s a secret, but it’s rumored to have about four ounces of rum.

Drinking and Driving

You should not drink and drive. But if you are driving and wish to purchase a daiquiri for later, there are daiquiri bars with drive-through windows. No need to leave your vehicle.

Closing Time

New Orleans, in its celebration of bar culture, does not have a closing time. That means that there are bars, pubs, and saloons that are open for business 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Whenever you need that drink, it’s there waiting for you.

Editor’s Note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about local customs in New Orleans drinking.

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