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A martini glass contains a pale clear liquid sitting next to a chilled garnish dish filled with a cocktail onion, olive, lemon peel and pickled quail egg.
A Tuxedo Tails from Jewel of the South.
Randy Schmidt/Jewel of the South

15 Spots Serving Marvelous Martinis in New Orleans

Classic, creative, and yes, sometimes espresso

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A Tuxedo Tails from Jewel of the South.
| Randy Schmidt/Jewel of the South

There’s something about ordering a martini that exudes confidence and sophistication — specifically, a classic martini with gin (as it was intended) and preferably with blue cheese stuffed olives for nourishment. Whether your preference is gin or vodka, shaken or stirred, straight up or on the rocks, with a twist or with olives, dry or Mississippi River dirty, there is a martini for everyone. It’s safe to say, the classic cocktail has stood the test of time with its simple recipe and versatility. Even its trendier, caffeinated version has outlasted all the other recent cocktail trends.

With all its iterations and even its easy accessibility, it must be noted that the martini should not be ordered just anywhere. Knowing where to go — where the martini, its many variations, and the ambiance hit just right — is a science. Below, where to drink martinis in New Orleans.

Don’t get this confused with a general cocktail list. Eater also has recommendations for where to find essential New Orleans cocktails. Don’t see your favorite martini in town? Send us a tip.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
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Clancy's Restaurant

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What pairs best with a classic martini? A white tablecloth in an equally as classic restaurant, like Clancy’s. The restaurant’s handwritten menu, uniforms, and layout haven’t changed in nearly four decades, but that’s what makes it so reliable and comforting. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it — and no one should ever say otherwise about the lamb chops Webster or a chilled martini.

The dining room at Clancy’s.
Bill Addison/Eater

For over a decade now, Cure has been a pioneer of the craft cocktail scene Uptown. With awards, an extensive spirit selection, and a cocktail book recently released by the bar’s founder, Cure has solidified its role in the hospitality scene. However fashion forward the cocktails may be, the classics there should not be overlooked. Martini purists can enjoy the 1980s martini, made with vintage Plymouth gin from the 1980’s, dry vermouth blend, and lemon peel. It’s a pricey cocktail at $65, but it might be a small price to pay to summon the vibes of a thriving 1980’s Wallstreet banker. 

Sake Cafe

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For those who like flavored martinis, Sake Café on Magazine Street has a colorful martini menu that includes favorites like the lycheetini, French martini, and lemon drop. Added bonus: all drinks are half off during their daily happy hour between 3 and 6 p.m. This menu is not for the purists, so those who argue that flavored vodka poured in a martini glass does not meet the requirements of an adequate martini have been warned to look away.

Hot Tin

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Martinis just taste better at a hotel bar. Combine that logic with one of the best views of the New Orleans skyline and Hot Tin, atop the Pontchartrain Hotel, has all the makings of a great setting to enjoy a martini. While hotel bartenders are typically experts at making a meaningful, classic martini — which the folks at Hot Tin are — they also offer a few modern approaches to the classic drink. The Savoring Spring, for instance, includes the basic characteristics of a martini but altered with a basil and jalapeno-infused vodka, olive brine, and lemon. 

Jewel of the South

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Housed in a cozy 19th century Creole cottage off Rampart St., Jewel of the South is just out of reach from Bourbon Street tourists and unassuming enough to miss — a literal hidden jewel of the French Quarter. The cocktail den has won national acclaim for its Sazerac and for resurrecting the Brandy Crusta, but another star is its variation of another martini variation: Tuxedo Tails. The inherently meta concoction, influenced by the recipes for Tuxedo No. 1 and  No. 2 martinis, is made with gin, manzanilla sherry, maraschino, and orange bitters, then served alongside a sidecar of an assortment of garnishes; it includes a cocktail onion, olive, lemon peel, and pickled quail egg.

Bakery Bar

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The chocolate martini walked so the espresso martini could run, but one should never forget that it’s the original last course martini. In addition to excellent traditional (made with gin, Dolin Blanc, Cocchi di Torino, and orange blossom water) and cold brew martinis, the chocolate martini from Bakery Bar is the cocktail version of a comfy blanket at the end of the night. Cozy up to the bar of this quaint tavern after dinner and dip a beignet into your chocolate martini for an even more indulgent experience.

The Bombay Club

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It’s the wrap-around bar that takes over most of the restaurant, the dim lighting, and the live jazz that gives off all the sultry James Bond vibes at Bombay Club. The martini there is more of a mood, and not drinking one feels almost illegal. 

Mr. B's Bistro

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Lunch at Mr. B’s is the quintessential French Quarter martini lunch. Really, a meal anytime at Mr.s B’s is an iconic New Orleans experience, but it just so happens that the martinis at lunchtime will run you $1.50 each from Wednesday through Friday with the purchase of an entree. And, while it’s the BBQ Shrimp and Gumbo Ya Ya that lure in the visitors, regulars know that the best seat in the house is at the bar and the best pairing for that martini is the bistro burger. 

The Carousel Bar & Lounge

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The Carousel Bar can get overwhelmed by tourists and over-served members of a wedding party on any given Saturday night, but that’s what makes it a great place to people watch while taking sips from a martini. The martini was meant to be sipped leisurely after all, so enjoy the view and live entertainment — besides the live music — from the revolving bar that offers optimal angles of the iconic French Quarter hotel’s lounge and Royal Street shenanigans.

Marvin Allen, the Carousel Bar’s mixologist.
Hotel Monteleone

Peacock Room

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The espresso martini might be the pumpkin spice of martinis, but the Peacock Room’s version is anything but basic. The Right Place/Wrong Time is made with Grey Goose vodka, espresso, and coconut cream for a creamier take on a typically bitter drink. Like every other espresso martini, this one needs to be photographed in its Instragrammable chalice at the equally Instagram-worthy Peacock Room. 

Bijou Restaurant & Bar

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It seems fitting to start an evening at this fun French Quarter hotspot with a Dirty Dirty, a happy hour martini made with your choice of Ketel one or Grey Goose, olive brine, dry vermouth, and blue cheese olives for sustenance. Need to keep the party and martini theme going? Complete the meal with the espresso martini, because she’s not a regular espresso martini, she’s a cool one — made with Grey Goose or Ketel One, creme de cacao, demerara syrup, cold brew concentrate, and ground chocolate covered espresso beans for garnish.

Chandelier Bar

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Drinking a martini under the glamorous chandelier of the Four Seasons’ Chandelier Bar offers a certain quintessential martini mood — swank and sceney. Whether it’s a scene you’d like to blend into or one you’d like to silently judge while taking sips of that martini, both are possible here. The Chandelier martini features a blend of dry and aromatic gins, extra dry vermouth, citrus bitters and an herbal mist, served in a classic two glass setup that matches the hotel’s over-the-top vibe. Pair it with caviar from the bar’s menu to complete the opulent night out. 

The martini from Chandelier Bar.
Four Seasons Hotel New Orleans

The Italian Barrel

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The cozy French Quarter Italian eatery is best known for its authentic Northern Italian plates and entrees that undoubtedly will include some kind of pasta, heavy sauce, and a generous amount of cheese — lots of cheese. Opt for a lighter appetizer like the crabmeat martini and get a refreshing starter to the meal that includes lump crabmeat topped with an herb vinaigrette and housed in a tall martini glass. That’s not to say that you should sleep on the restaurant’s martinis. Those come with blue cheese stuffed olives that are prepared in-house.

New Orleans Art Bar

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This Marigny hotspot with a hidden backyard oasis does it all — a Sazerac, French 75, Vieux Carre, and more classics — and it does all of them well. Of course, that includes a traditional martini, but also some of the best classic variations of a martini like the Vesper and Aviation. Browse well-works by well-known and emerging Black writers and artists before bellying up to the bar or grabbing a table out back.

The Franklin

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Great martinis shouldn’t be unique to swanky hotel bars. This small but chic neighborhood restaurant is great for a low key date night or solo meal out, with a big, dimly lit bar that allows for anonymity. That’s where you want to be anyways, for the best view of expertly-crafted martinis being made. Get one dry, wet, dirty, or smoked — made with dry vermouth, Islay Single Malt, and salt, or try a Gibson made with house onion brine.

Denny Culbert/The Franklin

Clancy's Restaurant

The dining room at Clancy’s.
Bill Addison/Eater

What pairs best with a classic martini? A white tablecloth in an equally as classic restaurant, like Clancy’s. The restaurant’s handwritten menu, uniforms, and layout haven’t changed in nearly four decades, but that’s what makes it so reliable and comforting. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it — and no one should ever say otherwise about the lamb chops Webster or a chilled martini.

The dining room at Clancy’s.
Bill Addison/Eater

Cure

For over a decade now, Cure has been a pioneer of the craft cocktail scene Uptown. With awards, an extensive spirit selection, and a cocktail book recently released by the bar’s founder, Cure has solidified its role in the hospitality scene. However fashion forward the cocktails may be, the classics there should not be overlooked. Martini purists can enjoy the 1980s martini, made with vintage Plymouth gin from the 1980’s, dry vermouth blend, and lemon peel. It’s a pricey cocktail at $65, but it might be a small price to pay to summon the vibes of a thriving 1980’s Wallstreet banker. 

Sake Cafe

For those who like flavored martinis, Sake Café on Magazine Street has a colorful martini menu that includes favorites like the lycheetini, French martini, and lemon drop. Added bonus: all drinks are half off during their daily happy hour between 3 and 6 p.m. This menu is not for the purists, so those who argue that flavored vodka poured in a martini glass does not meet the requirements of an adequate martini have been warned to look away.

Hot Tin

Martinis just taste better at a hotel bar. Combine that logic with one of the best views of the New Orleans skyline and Hot Tin, atop the Pontchartrain Hotel, has all the makings of a great setting to enjoy a martini. While hotel bartenders are typically experts at making a meaningful, classic martini — which the folks at Hot Tin are — they also offer a few modern approaches to the classic drink. The Savoring Spring, for instance, includes the basic characteristics of a martini but altered with a basil and jalapeno-infused vodka, olive brine, and lemon. 

Jewel of the South

Housed in a cozy 19th century Creole cottage off Rampart St., Jewel of the South is just out of reach from Bourbon Street tourists and unassuming enough to miss — a literal hidden jewel of the French Quarter. The cocktail den has won national acclaim for its Sazerac and for resurrecting the Brandy Crusta, but another star is its variation of another martini variation: Tuxedo Tails. The inherently meta concoction, influenced by the recipes for Tuxedo No. 1 and  No. 2 martinis, is made with gin, manzanilla sherry, maraschino, and orange bitters, then served alongside a sidecar of an assortment of garnishes; it includes a cocktail onion, olive, lemon peel, and pickled quail egg.

Bakery Bar

The chocolate martini walked so the espresso martini could run, but one should never forget that it’s the original last course martini. In addition to excellent traditional (made with gin, Dolin Blanc, Cocchi di Torino, and orange blossom water) and cold brew martinis, the chocolate martini from Bakery Bar is the cocktail version of a comfy blanket at the end of the night. Cozy up to the bar of this quaint tavern after dinner and dip a beignet into your chocolate martini for an even more indulgent experience.

The Bombay Club

It’s the wrap-around bar that takes over most of the restaurant, the dim lighting, and the live jazz that gives off all the sultry James Bond vibes at Bombay Club. The martini there is more of a mood, and not drinking one feels almost illegal. 

Mr. B's Bistro

Lunch at Mr. B’s is the quintessential French Quarter martini lunch. Really, a meal anytime at Mr.s B’s is an iconic New Orleans experience, but it just so happens that the martinis at lunchtime will run you $1.50 each from Wednesday through Friday with the purchase of an entree. And, while it’s the BBQ Shrimp and Gumbo Ya Ya that lure in the visitors, regulars know that the best seat in the house is at the bar and the best pairing for that martini is the bistro burger. 

The Carousel Bar & Lounge

Marvin Allen, the Carousel Bar’s mixologist.
Hotel Monteleone

The Carousel Bar can get overwhelmed by tourists and over-served members of a wedding party on any given Saturday night, but that’s what makes it a great place to people watch while taking sips from a martini. The martini was meant to be sipped leisurely after all, so enjoy the view and live entertainment — besides the live music — from the revolving bar that offers optimal angles of the iconic French Quarter hotel’s lounge and Royal Street shenanigans.

Marvin Allen, the Carousel Bar’s mixologist.
Hotel Monteleone

Peacock Room

The espresso martini might be the pumpkin spice of martinis, but the Peacock Room’s version is anything but basic. The Right Place/Wrong Time is made with Grey Goose vodka, espresso, and coconut cream for a creamier take on a typically bitter drink. Like every other espresso martini, this one needs to be photographed in its Instragrammable chalice at the equally Instagram-worthy Peacock Room. 

Bijou Restaurant & Bar

It seems fitting to start an evening at this fun French Quarter hotspot with a Dirty Dirty, a happy hour martini made with your choice of Ketel one or Grey Goose, olive brine, dry vermouth, and blue cheese olives for sustenance. Need to keep the party and martini theme going? Complete the meal with the espresso martini, because she’s not a regular espresso martini, she’s a cool one — made with Grey Goose or Ketel One, creme de cacao, demerara syrup, cold brew concentrate, and ground chocolate covered espresso beans for garnish.

Chandelier Bar

The martini from Chandelier Bar.
Four Seasons Hotel New Orleans

Drinking a martini under the glamorous chandelier of the Four Seasons’ Chandelier Bar offers a certain quintessential martini mood — swank and sceney. Whether it’s a scene you’d like to blend into or one you’d like to silently judge while taking sips of that martini, both are possible here. The Chandelier martini features a blend of dry and aromatic gins, extra dry vermouth, citrus bitters and an herbal mist, served in a classic two glass setup that matches the hotel’s over-the-top vibe. Pair it with caviar from the bar’s menu to complete the opulent night out. 

The martini from Chandelier Bar.
Four Seasons Hotel New Orleans

The Italian Barrel

The cozy French Quarter Italian eatery is best known for its authentic Northern Italian plates and entrees that undoubtedly will include some kind of pasta, heavy sauce, and a generous amount of cheese — lots of cheese. Opt for a lighter appetizer like the crabmeat martini and get a refreshing starter to the meal that includes lump crabmeat topped with an herb vinaigrette and housed in a tall martini glass. That’s not to say that you should sleep on the restaurant’s martinis. Those come with blue cheese stuffed olives that are prepared in-house.

New Orleans Art Bar

This Marigny hotspot with a hidden backyard oasis does it all — a Sazerac, French 75, Vieux Carre, and more classics — and it does all of them well. Of course, that includes a traditional martini, but also some of the best classic variations of a martini like the Vesper and Aviation. Browse well-works by well-known and emerging Black writers and artists before bellying up to the bar or grabbing a table out back.

The Franklin

Denny Culbert/The Franklin

Great martinis shouldn’t be unique to swanky hotel bars. This small but chic neighborhood restaurant is great for a low key date night or solo meal out, with a big, dimly lit bar that allows for anonymity. That’s where you want to be anyways, for the best view of expertly-crafted martinis being made. Get one dry, wet, dirty, or smoked — made with dry vermouth, Islay Single Malt, and salt, or try a Gibson made with house onion brine.

Denny Culbert/The Franklin

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