New Orleans’ cocktail scene is world-renowned. Some of the most famous cocktails ever to be made were created right here in the Crescent City. Plus, food and drink is an integral part of the culture here, so it’s no surprise that the beer scene has seen a huge resurgence. From local breweries to tiny-but-mighty micro-breweries, and award-winning beer bars, this city is heaven for beer lovers. We’ve mapped out all the ways you can explore NOLA’s beer scene below.
Breweries & Microbreweries
Come here for Free Beer Fridays, stay for McClure’s Barbecue. NOLA Brewing Tap Room, located on Tchoupitoulas Street, is a locally famous brewery - you can find their beers in lots of restaurants and bars outside of the brewery itself. But coming to the brewery means you can taste every variety, get a tour of the facilities, and order some BBQ to accompany your brews. Pro tip: head to NOLA Brewing on Fridays from 2 p.m. - 3 p.m. to join in on Free Beer Fridays, when you’ll receive a free 15 minute tour of the brewery, along with a complimentary beer.
Urban South Brewery is another local brewery with beers that you may have sampled outside of the brewery itself. But the interior of Urban South is worth a trip to the location on its own: it’s spacious, and aside from the actual brewery, Urban South is filled with tons of tables, arcade games, and cornhole. They also have a steady rotation of food trucks, and are known for being especially family-friendly.
Parleaux Beer Lab is a microbrewery and an oasis from city life in NOLA. It’s nestled in the very end of the Bywater, on the corner of Lesseps Street. When you walk inside you’ll find the brewery, and you can order your selection of constantly rotating beers. Enjoy your drink inside or head outside to the spacious garden, where you’ll find swings, board games, patio furniture, and hanging lights. Parleaux also often hosts community events like yoga classes and food pop-ups, so be sure to check with their site directly to see what they have going on.
This small-batch nanobrewery in the Garden District is a perfect hangout for day or night. Inside you don’t get to tour the brewing facilities, but you can taste their ever-evolving varieties of beers, stouts, IPA’s, and more, and then enjoy it outside along with their daily rotating food trucks. The atmosphere is laid back and casual, and you’ll always try something new.
Port Orleans Brewing Co. is aptly named, as it is located on Tchoupitoulas Street nearby the Port of New Orleans. The brewery’s motto is “brewed below sea level” and is committed to serving the local community excellent craft beer. The outdoor patio is dog-friendly, and the brewery room is kid-friendly, as long as no one under 21 is drinking!, and the kitchen serves up exceptionally good food for all ages.
Pubs & Beer Gardens
If you’ve heard of Avenue Pub before, it’s because the bar has won tons of awards and accolades for its beer selection (yes, it was named one of the Top 100 Beer Bars in America). You can enjoy your selection on a balcony overlooking St. Charles Avenue, inside the bar, or at an outdoor table, and you can order food as well. But the best part about Avenue Pub is its extensive selection of beers from New Orleans and beyond. Plus, the pub is open 24/7. Great beer, great location, great people watching.
The Bulldog has two locations: one Uptown on Magazine Street and one in Mid-City. Both offer dog-friendly patios that feature beer-tap fountains, and a seemingly endless menu of beer options (and mixed drinks, too). On Wednesday nights, you can take your Bulldog pint glasses home with you as a souvenir. Every weeknight has a different special, so be sure to check the official website for details. The pub fare at The Bulldog is award-winning: we recommend cheese fries for the table, at least!
Bayou Beer Garden is just steps away from the beautiful Bayou St. John. The atmosphere is lively, with a large outdoor garden that hosts events like crawfish boils. Bayou Beer Garden is great for groups, as you can order buckets of beer or each taste your own favorite after a day of kayaking on the bayou or exploring City Park.
Bratz Y’all, conveniently located next to Pizza Delicious, is a casual beer garden in the Bywater neighborhood of New Orleans. There’s a small indoor area, but really, the atmosphere is best enjoyed during lovely weather so you can sit at the outside tables, play a game of cornhole, or listen to live music when the venue hosts musicians. Bratz Y’all is a German beer garden, so you can have traditional German food (the pretzels are a must) and German beers like pilsners.
Freret Beer Room is one of the many dining and drinking establishments that has opened up on thriving Freret Street in recent years. The restaurant’s culinary and drinks team takes craft beer and pairs it with food, but not typical “bar food.” Instead, at Freret Beer Room you’ll find a totally unpretentious vibe with lots of light bites that have been prepared to enjoy with beer.
If you’re in town for a short visit and want to experience as much of the craft beer scene here in NOLA as possible, check out one of these brewery tours around the city. You’ll either meet a tour bus/truck or it will pick you up, and you’ll have a designated driver and tour guide take you from brewery to brewery so you can have a local show you around, and you can taste tons of beers. Some options to explore are:
These are just a few of the ways you can try beers around New Orleans. There are plenty more bars and breweries to visit, which you can find in our listings here.