When a restaurant becomes as well-loved and popular as Chef John Harris' Lilette, naturally there is an expectation that another and perhaps another restaurant will follow. This expectation created some dissonance for Harris, however, mostly due to the hands-on approach he believes is necessary to create an authentic and personal dining experience. With Bouligny Tavern, Harris is literally able to be in two places at once.
Since opening Lilette, Harris had his eye on the building directly adjacent to the restaurant, and when it became available in 2010, he seized the opportunity to open a bar -- a wine bar with premium cocktails, fine dining quality small plates and table service. From the exterior, Bouligny Tavern appears to be a traditional, century-old New Orleans residence.
Upon entry, you are transported to another era. Bouligny Tavern is your father's den with your grandparents furniture and your cool uncle's record collection -- a visually smooth environment bedecked with vintage chairs, classically modern light fixtures and vinyl playing Jack Jones, Lena Horne, Miles Davis, or Nat King Cole as well as more current artists like Herb Alpert, the Animals or the Rolling Stones.