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IVCA Rally Celebrates 200th Anniversary Of The Bicycle Photo by Alexander Scheuber/Getty Images

Cyling, Eating, and Drinking Along the Northshore’s Tammany Trace

It’s worth the drive (bring your bike)

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The Northshore is home to several craft beer breweries and great restaurants , many accessible through a 31-mile railroad-turned-bike route called the Tammany Trace. Along the shady Trace dotted with towns and trailheads, you’ll also get to cruise through Bogue Chitto State Park and Fountainebleu State Park (both perfect for bird-watching).

In this guide, we’ve included breweries, brewpubs, and restaurants that are easily accessible from the Tammany Trace and a few restaurants that are a little further and worth the drive (or some extra bike-riding if you have the time).

If you don’t have a bike of your own, you can rent one at Brooks Bike Shop. If you are driving to the Northshore from New Orleans (or elsewhere), stay the night at the Southern Hotel (also home of Oxlot 9 restaurant).

Did we miss a favorite? We’d love to hear about it.

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Abita Brewing Company

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The big poppa of New Orleans breweries has an excellent brewery tour and tasting room on the North Shore. The 30 minute tours include tastings and are offered every half hour on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 2 pm – 3 pm, Fridays from 1 pm – 3 pm, Saturdays from 10:30am – 3pm, and on Sundays from 2 – 3pm. If you really just want to drink Abita and eat some burgers, look up the Abita Brewhouse and Pub.

BRASTED

Celebrating its tenth year of business in Covington, Lola restaurant comes from Nealy Frentz and her husband Keith Frentz, both chefs. The Southern-centered spot is located in the historic Covington depot and serves a casual lunch Monday-Friday and and upscale dinner Thursday-Saturday. Think: chargrilled Spanish octopus, crawfish cakes, and shrimp and grits (pork belly, Tin Roof shrimp broth, grilled bread). Plus, these two were once crowned the King and Queen of Louisiana Seafood. If you are doing the Tammany Trace bike option, this is a restaurant that is right on the Trace.

BRASTED

Covington Brewhouse

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This brewery, formerly Heiner Brau Brewery, is located in a former hardware store. The space also had past lives as a gymnasium and cotton processing warehouse. Brewery tours happen every Saturday at 11:30 am and 12:30 pm. Easily accessible from the Trace.

Brasted

Meribo, pronounced "Muh-REE-bo," combines the two Italian words meridionale (southern) and cibo (food) to indicate the restaurant's dedication to combining southern Italian recipes with American southern ingredients, like wild boar and Benton's bacon. The interior is clean and modern and mostly white with floor-to-ceiling windows and chrome and red accents. The restaurant is known as a pizzeria (and an excellent one at that), but be sure to consider other dishes, like the crawfish boil gnocchi or crispy chicken livers, as well. It’s just off Tammany Trace.

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Ox Lot 9

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Even though the North Shore isn't that far away, the trip over Lake Pontchartrain can make it seem like a road trip to another world. If you decide to go ahead and spend the night after a day of eating and drinking on the North Shore, you’re staying at the elegant Southern Hotel. And if you are staying at the elegant Southern Hotel (And even if you’re not), you’re eating at Oxlot 9. With a simple yet sophisticated approach to food, them menu changes often, but sometimes includes Royal Red shrimp ceviche, pork belly “yakamein,” and soft shell crawfish caprese. Also, check out the Sunday brunch, which features a “knife and fork” chicken biscuit, grillades and grits, and other items to get your a.m. fun started. It’s easily accessible from the Trace and ultra-close to Lola and Covington Brewhouse.

BRASTED

Del Porto Restaurant

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The menu changes often at this intimate, high hospitality North Shore gem from chefs and husband and wife team David and Torre Solazzo. The menu is creative and elegant. Great happy hour too. Easily accessible to the Trace. Also right by the Southern Hotel.

BRASTED

Bacobar

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Carl Schaubhut’s North Shore restaurant was built around the concept of creative bacos (a blend of Latin and Asian influences on a Chinese steam bun here) and features a unique cocktail program created by the legendary bartender Lu Brow. Try the excellent yellowfin tuna poke tostado or the kimchi fries. It’s not a great choice if you are trying to stick with the bike ride along the Trace, but it’s worth it for a bite after you’re done and have packed up your bike.

Bacobar
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Dakota Restaurant

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An elegant charmer that has set the bar for North Shore restaurants since its opening in 1990 by Kenny LaCour and Kim Kringlie. The lump crabmeat and brie soup is a perennial favorite, but be sure to try the New Orleans barbecue shrimp and mussels, the lump crabmeat sandwich, and the liver and onions.

BRASTED

Chafunkta Brewery

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Arguably some of the best local beer along St. Tammany Trace, it’s about five miles from both Old Rail Brewing and the Abita Brewery. The brewery is small and tours feel intimate. The owners, Josh and Jamie Erickson, keep the brewery open Thursday and Friday from 5 -- 9 pm, Saturday 11am - 9 pm, and Sunday 12 pm - 6 pm. It’s a great stop if you’re doing a cycling route along the St. Tammany Trace. Be sure to try the Old 504 vanilla and coffee-infused porter. Accessible from the Trace.

BRASTED

Old Rail Brewing Co.

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It’s not a manufacturing brewery but a brewpub, or restaurant that brews its own beer for on-site consumption only. The food is great and there’s a viewing window into the brewing operation. Plus it’s located just across from the Mandeville Trailhead, making it a perfect spot on a bicycle tour of the St. Tammany Trace.

La Provence

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Is La Provence still worth the drive after the stunning sale of the once John Besh owned restaurant? Absolutely. Texas natives Chef Eric Hunter and Jennifer Pittman Hunter, the new owners, lived on the property for months learning about the food and everything else. Eric Hunter, who grew up on the North Shore, has known John Besh since their sisters were roommates in college. Should we expect changes? Not really, but keep a look out for some cool wine tastings (some from Texas, where the Hunters moved from) and maybe some a retail side of the restaurant. Trust us, John Besh took the sale of La Provence very seriously and chose the best person for its next era. It’s also accessible from the Trace.

Brasted

Palmetto's On The Bayou

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Accessible from the Tammany Trace, this spot is a ride. It’s about 19 miles past Old Rail Brewing, count on a bike ride (partly through Fountainbleu State Park) that will last about an hour and a half. That said, it’s a picturesque restaurant that covers the basics on its menu: crab cakes, trout amandine, and steaks.

Abita Brewing Company

The big poppa of New Orleans breweries has an excellent brewery tour and tasting room on the North Shore. The 30 minute tours include tastings and are offered every half hour on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 2 pm – 3 pm, Fridays from 1 pm – 3 pm, Saturdays from 10:30am – 3pm, and on Sundays from 2 – 3pm. If you really just want to drink Abita and eat some burgers, look up the Abita Brewhouse and Pub.

BRASTED

LOLA

Celebrating its tenth year of business in Covington, Lola restaurant comes from Nealy Frentz and her husband Keith Frentz, both chefs. The Southern-centered spot is located in the historic Covington depot and serves a casual lunch Monday-Friday and and upscale dinner Thursday-Saturday. Think: chargrilled Spanish octopus, crawfish cakes, and shrimp and grits (pork belly, Tin Roof shrimp broth, grilled bread). Plus, these two were once crowned the King and Queen of Louisiana Seafood. If you are doing the Tammany Trace bike option, this is a restaurant that is right on the Trace.

BRASTED

Covington Brewhouse

This brewery, formerly Heiner Brau Brewery, is located in a former hardware store. The space also had past lives as a gymnasium and cotton processing warehouse. Brewery tours happen every Saturday at 11:30 am and 12:30 pm. Easily accessible from the Trace.

Brasted

Meribo

Meribo, pronounced "Muh-REE-bo," combines the two Italian words meridionale (southern) and cibo (food) to indicate the restaurant's dedication to combining southern Italian recipes with American southern ingredients, like wild boar and Benton's bacon. The interior is clean and modern and mostly white with floor-to-ceiling windows and chrome and red accents. The restaurant is known as a pizzeria (and an excellent one at that), but be sure to consider other dishes, like the crawfish boil gnocchi or crispy chicken livers, as well. It’s just off Tammany Trace.

Brasted

Ox Lot 9

Even though the North Shore isn't that far away, the trip over Lake Pontchartrain can make it seem like a road trip to another world. If you decide to go ahead and spend the night after a day of eating and drinking on the North Shore, you’re staying at the elegant Southern Hotel. And if you are staying at the elegant Southern Hotel (And even if you’re not), you’re eating at Oxlot 9. With a simple yet sophisticated approach to food, them menu changes often, but sometimes includes Royal Red shrimp ceviche, pork belly “yakamein,” and soft shell crawfish caprese. Also, check out the Sunday brunch, which features a “knife and fork” chicken biscuit, grillades and grits, and other items to get your a.m. fun started. It’s easily accessible from the Trace and ultra-close to Lola and Covington Brewhouse.

BRASTED

Del Porto Restaurant

The menu changes often at this intimate, high hospitality North Shore gem from chefs and husband and wife team David and Torre Solazzo. The menu is creative and elegant. Great happy hour too. Easily accessible to the Trace. Also right by the Southern Hotel.

BRASTED

Bacobar

Carl Schaubhut’s North Shore restaurant was built around the concept of creative bacos (a blend of Latin and Asian influences on a Chinese steam bun here) and features a unique cocktail program created by the legendary bartender Lu Brow. Try the excellent yellowfin tuna poke tostado or the kimchi fries. It’s not a great choice if you are trying to stick with the bike ride along the Trace, but it’s worth it for a bite after you’re done and have packed up your bike.

Bacobar
Brasted

Dakota Restaurant

An elegant charmer that has set the bar for North Shore restaurants since its opening in 1990 by Kenny LaCour and Kim Kringlie. The lump crabmeat and brie soup is a perennial favorite, but be sure to try the New Orleans barbecue shrimp and mussels, the lump crabmeat sandwich, and the liver and onions.

BRASTED

Chafunkta Brewery

Arguably some of the best local beer along St. Tammany Trace, it’s about five miles from both Old Rail Brewing and the Abita Brewery. The brewery is small and tours feel intimate. The owners, Josh and Jamie Erickson, keep the brewery open Thursday and Friday from 5 -- 9 pm, Saturday 11am - 9 pm, and Sunday 12 pm - 6 pm. It’s a great stop if you’re doing a cycling route along the St. Tammany Trace. Be sure to try the Old 504 vanilla and coffee-infused porter. Accessible from the Trace.

BRASTED

Old Rail Brewing Co.

It’s not a manufacturing brewery but a brewpub, or restaurant that brews its own beer for on-site consumption only. The food is great and there’s a viewing window into the brewing operation. Plus it’s located just across from the Mandeville Trailhead, making it a perfect spot on a bicycle tour of the St. Tammany Trace.

La Provence

Is La Provence still worth the drive after the stunning sale of the once John Besh owned restaurant? Absolutely. Texas natives Chef Eric Hunter and Jennifer Pittman Hunter, the new owners, lived on the property for months learning about the food and everything else. Eric Hunter, who grew up on the North Shore, has known John Besh since their sisters were roommates in college. Should we expect changes? Not really, but keep a look out for some cool wine tastings (some from Texas, where the Hunters moved from) and maybe some a retail side of the restaurant. Trust us, John Besh took the sale of La Provence very seriously and chose the best person for its next era. It’s also accessible from the Trace.

Brasted

Palmetto's On The Bayou

Accessible from the Tammany Trace, this spot is a ride. It’s about 19 miles past Old Rail Brewing, count on a bike ride (partly through Fountainbleu State Park) that will last about an hour and a half. That said, it’s a picturesque restaurant that covers the basics on its menu: crab cakes, trout amandine, and steaks.

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