2 Fleur
Average check per person $5-$15
BreakfastNo Breakfast SundayNo Breakfast MondayNo Breakfast TuesdayNo Breakfast WednesdayNo Breakfast ThursdayNo Breakfast FridayNo Breakfast Saturday
LunchLunch SundayLunch MondayLunch TuesdayLunch WednesdayLunch ThursdayLunch FridayLunch Saturday
DinnerDinner SundayDinner MondayDinner TuesdayDinner WednesdayDinner ThursdayDinner FridayDinner Saturday

Rivershack Tavern

Jefferson: 3449 River Road. 504-834-4938. Map.
Very Casual
AE DS MC V
Website

WHY IT’S NOTEWORTHY
The name captures not only the look of the place but the scene, the mood, and the food. It’s really a bar (so people can and do smoke), but it has a major kitchen operation, particularly at lunch. The menu is a typical collection of New Orleans casual eats, heavy on the seafood, burgers, and poor boy sandwiches. The daily lunch specials are the most ambitious offerings, including not just the expected red beans and rice but the unexpected lamb chops and steaks.

WHAT’S GOOD
Despite the wild decor wacky menu, this place cooks its food well enough to have established a strong lunch business from the neighborhood–particularly from nearby Ochsner Hospital. The portions are enormous, the prices are low, and unless you order something outlandish, the food will be better than you expect.

BACKSTORY
The building went up some time in the early 1900s as a grocery store. In those days, the suburbs of New Orleans were the roughest parts of town, particularly those along the riverfront, as what is now Old Jefferson was in those days. For almost all of its history this was a bar. The current owners took it over in 1990, and in the process of renovating found an astonishing collection of hand-painted advertising signs under the facades of the exterior walls. After these were cleaned up, the Rivershack became impossible to pass without stopping for a look.

DINING ROOM
“The Home Of The Tacky Ashtray” is the motto of this fascinating dive. Customers who bring in a really ugly ashtray get a drink in trade for it. But that’s only the beginning of the unique decor. The bar stools have fake human legs, dressed up and shod in a laughable range of coverings. Everything else about the decor is exactly what you’d expect to see inside a building that looks like this one does on the outside. It’s all honest and real. There’s live music several nights a week.

ESSENTIAL DISHES
Starters
Alligator sausage
»Meat pies
Buffalo wings
»Buffalo shrimp
»Buffalo oysters
Chicken fingers
Catfish fingers
Fried green tomatoes
»Onion rings
Nachos
Fried vegetable platter
Chef salad
Caesar salad
Grilled chicken salad
»Buffalo chicken tender salad
Grilled tuna salad
Sandwiches
»Hamburgers
»Shank-you burger (ground beef and hot sausage)
»Alligator sausage poor boy
»Fried catfish, shrimp, or oyster poor boy
Roast beef poor boy
Grilled chicken poor boy
»Hot sausage poor boy
Ham or turkey poor boy
BLT
Deli-style sandwiches
Club sandwich
Grilled tuna or mahi-mahi sandwich
Entrees
Grilled chicken
»Rib-eye steak
»Fried seafood platters
»Daily specials

FOR BEST RESULTS
The lunch specials here are the best food to get, followed closely by the Shank-You burger (perhaps the city’s best offbeat hamburgers) and the appetizers.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR IMPROVEMENT
The place gets smoky at times, but nothing can be done about that without wrecking the scene.

FACTORS OTHER THAN FOOD
Up to three points, positive or negative, for these characteristics. Absence of points denotes average performance in the matter.

  • Dining Environment +1
  • Consistency +1
  • Service
  • Value +2
  • Attitude +1
  • Wine & Bar
  • Hipness +2
  • Local Color +3

 

SPECIAL ATTRIBUTES

  • Live music some nights
  • Open Sunday lunch and dinner
  • Open Monday lunch and dinner
  • Open some holidays
  • Open after 10 p.m.
  • Open all afternoon
  • Historic
  • Unusually large servings
  • Quick, good meal
  • Easy, nearby parking
  • No reservations

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