Social Southern Table and Bar
Social Southern embraces a farm-to-table philosophy, but area distilleries and breweries also get props on the menu. Wine, craft beer, champagne, handcrafted cocktails and oodles of bourbon and whiskey are on offer at the gastropub’s bar. If you’re looking for a brew that’s hoppy, or perhaps you prefer something sour, they’ll point you to the right bottle. And the bartenders add new zing to old-school cocktails like the Manhattan.
3901 Johnston St., Lafayette, La. 337-456-3274, socialsouthern.com, @SocialSouthern.
Olive or Twist
The owners of this cocktail bar are looking to return to the golden age when customers cared more about handcrafted libations than simply getting sloshed. Inventive house cocktails sport such whimsical names as More Cowbell, Ground Control to Major Old Tom and Cocktail Roulette. You’ll find gin, raspberry liqueur, orgeat syrup, lemon and lime juices, raspberries and pomegranate soda in the Raspberry Beret. Patrons can deliberate over beer and shot pairings, various liquor flights, a concise wine list, umpteen craft beers and more. You can even get a spiked New Orleans-style snowball. A selection of small plates help coat stomachs, and special events uncork regularly.
7248 Perkins Road, Baton Rouge, La. 225-456-2188, oliveortwistbr.com, @oliveortwistbr.
It’s easy to scoot past the unassuming, rustic 200-year-old building in the Bywater neighborhood of New Orleans. But if you own an astute palate for wine, you might regret not darkening its green door. Inside is an old world wine shop where an insightful staff devoid of snobbery helps customers choose from a vast selection. Curious about textures, pairings or flavors? They’ll equip you with the smarts before you sip. Step out back past the outdoor wine bar to discover a vigorous yard party illuminated by strands of multicolored Christmas lights. A mostly young-blooded, hip clientele scarfs down gourmet bites while live bands play jazz. An upstairs bar and dining space offers an intimate retreat.
600 Poland Ave., New Orleans. 504-948-9111, bacchanalwine.com, @Bacchanalwine.