Abigail Gullo, the New Yorker who runs the bar at the much-hyped new restaurant Compere Lapin, has a theory about her adoptive city: ‘They say you have to be successful to live in New York, beautiful to live in LA, but in New Orleans, you can just be yourself.’
A 6 in fleur-de-lis tattoo on her arm, the official Louisiana symbol, tells of her Big Easy love affair. ‘I cherish bartending in this city because it’s all about community.
‘When Hurricane Katrina hit, many of the bars stayed open and staff did what they could to help, offering locals shelter,’ she says. I’m not surprised.
The home of Mardi Gras, New Orleans also boasts the St Louis Cathedral and Jackson Square
Drink in the streets in other U.S. states and you’ll be pounced on by the police.
In New Orleans, they will stop for some banter or shout ‘have a good time!’ at revellers clutching their trusty Go Cups — plastic beakers you can grab from every bar and have refilled anywhere.
New Orleans’s disdain for the status quo goes back a long way — 90 years ago it was named Prohibition America’s wettest city and in 1928, when the Atlanta mayor asked Louisiana Governor Huey Long what he was doing to enforce the Prohibition Act, he reportedly replied: ‘Not a damn thing!’
The friendly locals love its bars, where you can ask for Go Cups that you can refill anywhere
On the Mississippi River, near the mouth of the Gulf of Mexico, New Orleans was in a prime position for rum-runners to ship in liquor to thirsty law-breakers…