This was supposed to be the first stop on a ghost tour app we were listening to, but we ended up spending hours here! What a great low-key, historic atmosphere... nothing like Bourbon St. Be careful, the voodoo punch is lethal.
The building housing Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop Bar was constructed around 1722, making this the oldest building in America used as a bar. Due to its slate roof, the building was able to survive the two great New Orleans fires in 1788 and 1794. The bar is called Lafitte's because it is believed to have been used by the famous Pirate Jean Lafitte as part of their smuggling ring.
The bar has a comfortable patio to the left of the building with several tables and a fire pit. Inside, the bar is dark, especially back in the back corner near the restrooms and the piano, but near the street, the big windows let in plenty of natural light. At night almost all of the lighting is from candles, creating an eerie, old fashioned feel. The right side of the building has a small, but friendly bar and a huge old fireplace. There are also a number of chairs and small tables along the street. At night this bar is packed with people, spilling out of the doors and windows.
Not only an Historic attraction as the oldest bar in America, but also one of the top 5 bars in America. Hurricanes are better then Pat O'Brien's and the staff is friendlier. Josh was kind enough to give us a tour of the bar with a description of all the historical aspects. Michael was extremely talented singing and playing the piano, even took time to visit with us. Lafitte's has atmosphere with only being lit with candles in the evening, visit the front but quickly move to the back where the piano is located. When its cool outside have a drink on the courtyard and watch the world go by. If you go to only one bar in the French Quarter/New Orleans go to Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop on Bourbon Street. It's the best.
Dress Code: Casual
Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop Bar is one of the oldest buildings in New Orleans, and one of the oldest bars in the United States. The building itself probably dates back to the 1760s (some say it could even date back to the 1720s), and one of the popular stories about it is that it once belonged to famous pirates Jean and Pierre Lafitte, which is how it got its name. The different owners have done an amazing job of preserving the historic aspect of the place throughout the years, which makes for a pretty unique atmosphere, especially in the evening when the whole place is lit by candlelight. When we were there, someone was playing the piano and a small group had gathered around, drawn a few stools and set their drinks directly on the instrument - it was magical! Drinks are fairly expensive (if I remember correctly we paid $8 for a hurricane), but they're good and strong, and they come in a souvenir plastic cup.
Dress Code: Casual
I think that this has got to be one of the best bars in the world. Dark and private, old and modern. A little snapshot of old New Orleans! The music was superb, a lady playing piano and singing all night to her fan club sat around her piano. Brits, French, Texans and New Yorkers all singing along and smoking the odd cigarette and drinking copious amounts as we all welcomed the new arrival of a new day.
I have read the other reviews depicting rude staff and though they may not be the best they certainly could not ruin this delicious nightspot where anything is possible.
I would return to New Orleans for this place alOne!
Dress Code: Be yourself
this historic bar is located in a building dating back to 1772. it is considered the oldest bar in america. it is rumored that the pirate jean lafitte and his brother pierre used this building to house smuggled goods. today this dark bar is lit by candles and the entertainment is in the form of a piano player. an interesting and fun place to drink in the french quarter.
Dress Code: casual.
You MUST try what is called a "Voodoo Daiquiri" at this bar. It tastes like a grape kool aid slush but trust me on this one. Amazing! So unique and you won't find it anywhere like this. The atmosphere is amazing. This is definitely my favorite spot in New Orleans. Make the trip over and you won't be disappointed.
Dress Code: Totally casual
while the historic relavence of Lafittes's may be a draw for the eager New Orleans tourist, the behavoir and and demeaner of the waitstaff makes it a definite must NOT see... There are plenty of fine establishments in New Orleans that will treat you with timely, polite and adequet service. Avoid this nightlife spot at all costs, you are not missing anything here...
This tiny little shop is purported to be one of the oldest buildings in New Orleans, dating from the time Lafitte used the back area as a smuggling hold. It is now a quaint little bar, removed from the loud noises of the main Bourbon Street strip. It has several very cool features: It has no electricity in the front of the bar, meaning everything is candle-lit. This creates a great moody environment which is conducive to sitting, sipping, and talking. Second, there is a great piano player there, playing all sorts of tunes and singing along. She takes requests as well. So sit back with a Hurricane, enjoy the ambiance of a 200+ year-old bar, and enjoy the time away from the crowds.
If you need to escape the craziness of Bourbon St. you can do so - but still be on Bourbon St. Lafitte's is a hidden gem amongst the other loud bars with loud music blasting. Inside is dark and lit by candles.
A piano player belts out tunes with people loudly singing along. Post Katrina, the bar isn't as packed as I'm used to. We easily got a seat in the back corner of the bar. There was still a nice crowd inside. When we were there, there wasn't anyone sitting in the courtyard. It could have been too early in the evening, though.
Dress Code: Pretty much anything goes.
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