10 New Orleans Drinks & What They Really Are

Do you REALLY know what you’re drinking when you order one of New Orleans’ famous cocktails?

New Orleans is a drinking town and I’ve been drinking in this town longer than I care to admit. Here are a few drinks that NOLA is famous for and I’m here to tell people what these drinks mean to locals. I speak the truth my  little boozers.

1. Hurricane

Red Vomit. Pat O’s. Piano Night. A drink that consists of Red Drink ( no one knows what exactly is in hurricane mix), Rum and Everclear. You think you’re getting some fruity girl drink and then you feel like a hurricane developing down under. At least try to keep the cup, not for puking, but for the memories.

It's all fun and games until your sitting on Bourbon Street with no shoes.
It’s all fun and games until your sitting on Bourbon Street with no shoes.

2. Hand Grenades

Green vomit. Bourbon Street. Sugar. Hangover in a glass. They’re these super sweet drinks in the classic cup. But no one tells you how they creep up on you. No one tells you that they are ticking grenade that is going to go off in your face tomorrow morning. How you really only need 2 but you’re likely to have four before you realize that you have entered Drunkypants Land. Just find someone friendly to hold your hand and cart you around, you’re in for a rough night.

3. Sazerac

Old Men. Cigars. Fur Coats. Sazerac Bar in the Roosevelt. Classic New Orleans. Licorice. Don’t you dare put a straw in it. Night on the town. Getting drunk on Sazeracs means you don’t understand how Sazeracs work.

4. Daiquiri

High school. Mardi Gras parades. 190 Octane and the inevitable blackout. Cannot find under $10 anywhere. Bitch of a hangover. Summertime. Gallons on the River. Everclear and Sugar. Only order if you don’t have the cajones to get a real drink. Do not go to a bar and ask if they have daiquiris. If you’re going to get one, at least get the extra shot. Man up.

What Bourbon looks like after a 190 Octane Daiquiri. You have been warned.
What Bourbon looks like after a 190 Octane Daiquiri. You have been warned.

5. Abita Beer

What summer tastes like. Maturity. Springtime Strawberry. Summer Ale. Fall Fest. Mardi Gras Bock. No more ordering Bud Lite for the love of all that’s holy. More expensive, but worth it. New Orleans staple. If you refuse to drink Abita, I don’t trust you.

It's a New Orleans classic.
It’s a New Orleans classic.

6. Mint Julep

Bourbon, sugar, mint. Old school. Old South. Drink it down and love every second of it.

7. Bloody Mary

Lunch in a cup. Brunch staple. Extra everything: olives, celery, hot sauce, Vodka. Never spicy enough. Let’s drink 4 and eat until we can’t breathe then go home and sleep for the rest of the day.

8. Ramos Gin Fizz

The predecessor of the hand grenade and hurricane. The classic New Orleans cocktail. Your grandmother’s drink order.  Gin, lemon juice, lime juice, egg white, sugar, cream, orange flower water, soda water. Do not order unless it is on the menu. Your bartender doesn’t even know what this is. Been getting New Orleans drunk since 1888.

9. Brandy Milk Punch

Brandy, sugar, milk, shake hard with ice. Tastes like Christmas time. After dinner cocktail. Drinking for your dessert. Yummy.

10. Irish Coffee

Wintertime. Frozen Irish Coffees at Molly’s and 13. Jameson, Bailey’s and coffee. Drink when you’re freezing. You will drink this too fast and you will feel friggin awesome. Order after dinner to keep drinking but still be classy.

So there you have it. You don’t need to know what’s in it to know what it is. Just know when and when not to drink it and you’ll be fine.

About Morgan

Morgan was born in Georgia, raised in Louisiana, a Southern gal through and through. A graduate of the University of New Orleans, she loves her Saints, her city and inserting thinly veiled sarcasm throughout all her writing.

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