Your fresh, hip cousin’s house: A day in the Bywater

The Bywater has a laid-back energy and a free-spirited vibe.

by Mary Staes
May 13, 2019

I secretly love the Bywater. It’s that cool, hip place that’s laid back (but not lazy) and folks like the finer things in life. Wine, art, poolside living. So I decided, what better to do then dip my pinky toe into the (By)water?

Morning

Elizabeth’s Restaurant

Two words: praline bacon. That’s all I needed to read before deciding this was the space for me. If you’re into waffles, the duck waffle is the special; thicker than most because it’s made with cornbread. I got the bananas foster stuffed French toast. Not sure if this is the part of the morning where I went into a food coma. The decor is funky and colorful, with lots of reminders from local folk artist Dr. Bob (more on him later) to “Be Nice or Leave.”

The outside has murals that describes the food inside, and there’s plenty of seating upstairs and downstairs. If you’re coming on a weekend morning, be prepared for a wait. This place is known for its brunch, and there’s consistently a crowd waiting no matter if its festival season or not. As for parking, there’s lots of it. You can hit up the lot for Crescent Park across the street. Prices range from $11-$30.

 

Elizabeth's
$$$$
Getting there
601 Gallier St, New Orleans, LA 70117, USA
Hours
Mon-Tue 8am–2:30pm
Wed Closed
Thu-Sun 8am–2:30pm
More Info

Crescent Park 

View at the top of the Piety Crossing aka the “Rusty Rainbow”.

Back in 2006, I used to work at the now-defunct Poland Avenue military base and at least three times a week I would run along the river for exercise. Back then, it was a vast road of nothing. So, imagine my surprise when I crossed the “Rusty Rainbow” to find a whole new world. A park, workout spots, a garden. They do have access via elevator toward one end of the park for those that need it. It’s also a terrific spot to check out fireworks for the Fourth of July or to ring in the new year.

The park regularly offers free fitness classes from 5:45-6:45 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and if you just want to run, it encompasses 1.4 miles and 20 acres.  Click here for more information on the park and upcoming events. 

Crescent Park
Getting there
Crescent Park Trail, 2300 N Peters St, New Orleans, LA 70117, USA
Hours
Mon-Sun 6am–7:30pm
More Info

Satsuma Cafe

 

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Happy Friday! #breakfast #lunch #coffee #juice #housemade #bakedgoods #nola #neworleans #satsumamaple

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The Friday I decided to explore the Bywater, a morning storm rolled through. I decided to take shelter at Satsuma Cafe, a funky eatery and coffee shop that makes its own pressed juice. It wasn’t empty, but wasn’t packed to the brim — just enough people to be busy. Lots of other people had their laptops out, working as well. The cafe offers plenty of breakfast options. Their Satsuma Breakfast featured fresh fruits, toats of a biscuit, black beans and bacon. I ordered the iced coffee, and you can add your own creamer and simple syrup at the bar.

Parent pro tip: The bathroom here is spacious and had an actual changing table. Read as: a wooden one that you’d have at your house, not the flimsy plastic ones at the mall.

Satsuma Cafe
$$$$
Getting there
3218 Dauphine St, New Orleans, LA 70117, USA
Hours
Mon-Tue 8am–3pm
Wed Closed
Thu-Sun 8am–3pm
More Info

Frady’s One Stop

 

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Oyster Po’Boy Beauty! #original #poboys at #Fradys

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This neighborhood corner store might look a little shabby on the outside, but on the inside, the muffelattas and po-boys are legit. If you’re looking for a sit-down experience, this isn’t it, but if you want a Big Shot, chips and a killer sandwich, look no further. Price range: under $10.

Frady's One Stop Food Store
$$$$
Getting there
3231 Dauphine St, New Orleans, LA 70117, USA
Hours
Mon-Fri 7:30am–3pm
Sat 9am–3pm
Sun Closed
More Info

Afternoon

Studio Be

 

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2941 Royal St.

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A short walk from Satsuma Cafe is Studio Be, a 35,000-square-foot warehouse featuring huge works of art by celebrated artist Brandan “BMike” Odums. It’s one thing to see his murals around town or even across the country, but to be in a space fully curated by the artist is a totally different experience. Much of his work speaks on social issues, like incarceration, police and community relations and day-to-day interactions in life. It’s easy to get lost in the giant paintings. His work with spray paint and graffiti is simply stunning, striking and moving.

Studio Be
Getting there
2941 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70117, USA
Hours
Mon-Tue Closed
Wed-Sat 2–8pm
Sun 2–6pm
More Info

Euclid Records

Surrounded by Crescent Park and Pizza Delicious, this cool little vinyl collecting joint can be overwhelming at first. However, the staff is easy to approach and won’t treat you like a record novice, even if you are. Sometimes, there are even live bands performing at the shop. Spend a little time flipping through the current and classic collections. Rare finds and slick variants spun with a knowledgeable staff make this a must for music lovers. Click here to read more about what makes this store stand out from other record shops in town.

Euclid Records New Orleans
$$$$
Getting there
3301 Chartres St, New Orleans, LA 70117, USA
Hours
Mon-Sun 11am–6pm
More Info

Dr. Bob’s Folk Art

You’ve seen his art; Dr. Bob’s famous “Be Nice or Leave” signs are in almost every business in the city. But if you’re lucky, you’ll catch him in the studio itself, and talking to this artist is a treat. His studio has been in the Bywater since the ’90s, and Dr. Bob is a living history of the art and culture his work reflects. Everywhere you look inside is crammed with framed art and work he has on display. Looking at some of the larger pieces will keep you entranced at the intricacies of the detail. And speaking with him is a whole event. He has stories and sage advice from his past that are as captivating as his paintings. Click here to read more about him. 

Dr. Bob's Folk Art
Getting there
3027 Chartres St, New Orleans, LA 70117, USA
Hours
Mon-Sun 10am–4:20pm
More Info

Evening

Capulet

Opened in 2018, Capulet is a bar/cool space to work remotely, which is settled next to (surprise!) a co-working space. There’s passion behind the capulet and it’s a jewel of the neighborhood. The building was saved by people in the neighborhood after the city threatened to tear it down when the failing facade fell in the street. During the day, it’s a cool spot to grab a sandwich and get some work done. At night, the bar transforms into an event space, hosting banquets and parties. Happy hour is Thursday, 3-8 p.m. They have roof access depending on the event and it gives a unique and rarely seen high view of the Bywater neighborhood.

Capulet
Getting there
3014 Dauphine St, New Orleans, LA 70117, USA
Hours
Mon-Thu 4–10:30pm
Fri-Sun Closed
More Info

Bacchanal

 

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Some high energy jazz fusion tonight by the Noah Young Band

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Fine, it’s one of those destination places you’ll see on every “must-do” list. But I’ve been here quite a few times and it’s a unique experience every time I step inside. Part wine store, part restaurant, part live music venue, Bacchanal offers all the ingredients for a night on the town tucked into the corner pocket of Poland and Dauphine streets. You can easily spend a couple hours here, sipping wine with your friends or on a date. It’s got all the elements for a good time. As a way to wind down the evening, you simply can’t go wrong here. And a Blue Bike rack is nearby so you can go carless if you want to take a sweet summer ride home after the fun.

Bacchanal Fine Wine & Spirits
$$$$
Getting there
600 Poland Ave, New Orleans, LA 70117, USA
Hours
Mon 12–10pm
Tue Closed
Wed-Thu 12–10pm
Fri-Sat 12–11pm
Sun 12–10pm
More Info

I only had a day to explore the Bywater, but I loved the laid-back energy and free spirited vibe of this neighborhood. I’m sure I missed a few gems, so tell me about them so I can visit at [email protected]

Mary Staes is Digital Content Lead for Very Local. She works with our freelancers and crafts content for our social media platforms and website. Before Very Local, she worked with CBS affiliate WWL-TV as a web producer and weekend assignment editor for about 4 years. She has also handled broadcast coverage for 160 Marine Reserve training facilities while she served as an active duty Marine. As a native New Orleanian, she takes being "very local" to heart. She loves being intertwined with the culture and figuring out how there are less than two degrees of separation between us all, whether...

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