In this episode of “Across the Bar,” Foodable travels to the corner of Canal and Bourbon street to visit French 75. Perhaps one wouldn't expect a 1920s French-themed bar to do so well in modern-day times, but this classic concept is more than just a New Orleans icon. Arnaud's French Bar 75 has been named a James Beard finalist in the "Outstanding Bar Program" category for two years in a row, and head bartender Chris Hannah was even nominated for the 2016 Tales of the Cocktail "Bartender of the Year."
"Remember that you're taking care of guests. It's always hospitality," Hannah said when asked what makes a great bartender. "They have to come back in order to keep buying drinks, so [you have to make sure] they leave wanting to come back to the bar."
Cocktail No. 1: French 75
French 75 was named after Arnaud's favorite World War I era cocktail, the French 75. The drink itself was named after the first cannon with a recoiling system, one that was able to shoot faster — a fitting name for a cocktail that packs a punch. It's no surprise this is the bar's most popular order. Hannah says they make it more than anywhere else in the world at just over 500 of those bad boys a week.
Moet and Chandon Champagne
Cocktail No. 2: Night Tripper
The Night Tripper, named after a famous New Orleans pianist, is one of Hannah's favorite drinks. Its mix of local bitters and bourbon make it not too sweet, but it still holds the power of a classic cocktail.
Cocktail No. 3: Bastille Cup
For the last drink in the lineup, "Across the Bar" show host Paul Barron got a chance to go behind the bar and mix it up for the head bartender himself. No pressure making a drink for the guy who created it, right?
"Look at that Miami flair. I'm diggin' it," Hannah laughed as he watched on. "I'm really glad you're doing this good of a job. You know, there's this festival in town. I want to go see some of my friends. ...Here's my jacket. I'm off!"
Pineau des Charentes
Watch the full episode now!