Nestled along the commotion of lower Decatur, right on the edge of the French Quarter, is Cane & Table, one of the best cocktail bars and restaurants in New Orleans, if not the entire country. Year after year, Cane & Table continues to be nominated for the James Beard award for an Outstanding Bar Program (this year they are a finalist), and by your first sip of a cocktail, you will understand why.
Cane & Table is housed in an old French Quarter building. Found on the same block as favorite spots like Molly’s at the Market and Coop’s, Cane & Table attracts a quieter type of crowd. The restaurant has been standing for hundreds of years and has opened and closed under dozens of different ventures. But for the past three years, this building, with it’s exposed brick, polished bar and charming courtyard, has been home to one of the city’s premier cocktail restaurants.
The owners of the restaurant describe it as a “proto-tiki bar” and a “rum bar and island-themed restaurant.” But, unlike Margaritaville across the street, Cane & Table is not a tourist trap. Instead, the team behind the restaurant emphasizes the rum and punch culture from the colonial era onwards. The Caribbean and Colonial influence is authentic and sensory throughout your whole dining experience.
The bar itself is stocked with fruits, tinctures and syrups that compose the vast collection of cocktails available to order. The mixologists behind the bar are some of the most knowledgeable in their trade. Getting a seat at the bar to watch them work is definitely a treat. The cocktail menu changes often, usually with the seasons, and each bartender is tasked with creating a new cocktail and the best of those drinks end up making it on to the menu. The spectrum of cocktails is huge. You can order classic cocktails such as a Ginger and Bourbon or get more adventurous with one of the Mezcal cocktails. You can go for something more refreshing and fruity, or something more spirit forward and boozy. And, when you’re caught not knowing what to order, a quick conversation with the bartender will always land you with a good recommendation.
Though Cane & Table is known first and foremost for its cocktails, the food menu is nothing to take lightly. The menu features both small and large plates that are influenced by rustic colonial cuisine, which is to say that the food menu features dishes that have influences in French, Spanish and Creole cultures. The menu is seasonal, which means that the food is fresh, and most of it is sourced locally as well. The slow-cooked ribs are a customer favorite, but smaller dishes like the Brussels sprouts shouldn’t be missed.
It’s easy to pass right by this little gem on Decatur. But make sure to go in and enjoy some of the best cocktails, food and ambiance that the French Quarter has to offer.