October marks the true changing of seasons here in New Orleans. There is a slight reprieve from the melting humidity of those summer days which lets the city come alive long before the sun goes down. And, of course, October means not only Halloween in one of America’s most haunted cities but also a celebration of the many Hispanic cultures and traditions that have made New Orleans the city that we love.
After a relaxing day of exploring the one-of-a-kind shops on Magazine Street, it’s hard to beat Baru Bistro & Tapas for Caribbean cuisine that’s vibrant in both appearance and flavor. If it’s authenticity you crave, Taqueria Corona has Mexican fare covered, while Mangú across the river in Gretna is a hidden gem for Dominican classics. For cocktail aficionados, Manolito's extensive drink menu, Cuban eats, and French Quarter location are a must.
As one of the oldest cities in North America, it’s no surprise that New Orleans also ranks among the most haunted places in the U.S., and our restaurants are no exception. Before or after a bowl of shrimp and grits on the balcony of Muriel’s Jackson Square, be sure to enjoy an artisan cocktail in their seance room, the favorite location of the bistro’s famous ghost. Napoleon House operates out of one of the oldest buildings in New Orleans and plays host to a few different specters and a spread of local favorites like red beans and rice and their specialty Italian muffuletta sandwich. Similarly, Cafe Sbisa - the third oldest dining establishment in the French Quarter - is home to a few spirits linked to the brothel that operated above the original bar in 1899.
If you’re missing Jazz Fest as much as we are, you can still get your live music fix - along with a great ghost story and a delicious boudin omelet during jazz brunch at the historic Court of Two Sisters. Though their prime draw is their daily live music, the menus at Three Muses and The Maison on Frenchman Street will keep you fueled up to dance the night away. Or, for a taste of a few of Jazz Fest’s food vendors, Ajun Cajun, Mona’s Cafe, and Bennachin are open for dine-in, while Vucinovich’s and DiMartino’s offer takeout and delivery.
As a little lagniappe, get a taste of German culture in New Orleans as the Deutsches Haus celebrates Oktoberfest on Bayou St. John with oompah music, German foods, and naturally, a large selection of German beers, wines, and Schnapps.