a Seat at the Bar

Friday, November 11, 2011

I'm not really a big drinker. A glass of champagne or a cocktail, and I'll nurse that sucker all night long. So when you see me grab a seat at a restaurant's bar, it truly is just to eat.

There's a certain experience you get while dining at the bar that you won't get at a table. You've heard me talk about it before. The bar by nature is more casual, and completely social. You're physically closer to folks while perched atop that bar stool, so the tendency to introduce yourself to people you ordinarily would not is right there. You're also apt to get a bit more attention from the bartender than you would from a table-side server. That's just been my experience. Plus I like talking to bartenders.

Last night I was reminded of all this when I ended up at one of my favorite New Orleans staples with a friend. Although I had been to this spot countless times before, I had never eaten at the tiny bar. So we decided to. Half way through my cocktail & poached tuna, I noticed it was a different experience than normal for me. I was pretty much seated Indian-style on that bar stool, chatting away. Leaning over to talk here and there with those around us. The food was the same, good as always, but the whole deal was more comfortable. And just beyond the rows of liquor, there was a little pass through window where I could see the cooks preparing food in the kitchen. I watched, in between conversation with my friend, to see what a good time they were having back there, preparing my meal.

Same restaurant I know so well. Different experience entirely.

I encourage you to do the same the next time you're out at your favorite spot. Just mosey up to the bar, the far side, and eat right there. Then let me know your thoughts about it.


Image, bar at Herbsaint on St. Charles Avenue by johnmariani.com


  1. Love NEW perspectives and LOVE Herbsaint! Hope you had gnocchi too....for me!

  2. you know it my Rach! and a dark & stormy.

  3. I love sitting at the bar. I've made Diguilio Brothers in Baton Rouge my Cheers. We just pony up to the bar, eat, drink and chat with our favorite bartenders. Lately we end up making friends with whomever is sitting next to us. I also love the bar in Cochon. Mattie is the best. He remembers what I like even though I don't go in often.

  4. isn't it so refreshing & casual, comfortable even? which reminds me, we're due for an 1179 evening, start at the bar, end with pasta, when are you coming?

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