Vaughan’s Lounge

Walk into Vaughan’s and chill out. This is a low key place, that sometimes kicks into high energy depending on the band, and how late the hour. • 4229 Dauphine St, New Orleans, LA 70117

vaughan's lounge bywater new orleans - nolaplaces photo

Go for: Low key vibe, live music and the spirit of the neighborhood

Vaughan’s Lounge is something to experience at least once or twice. It is a neighborhood dive bar that has been around for over 60 years. Not much has changed throughout the years except for the people. Look around the building both inside and out. It has some of the most interesting things to see.

A dilapidated and ramshackle exterior gives way to a warm and cozy bar. It’s the type of place you can drink alone, or make friends. Have great conversations, or just laugh and dance the night away.

People gather to hear the locals play some of the sweetest music ever created.

Some come to hear Kermit Ruffins and try his BBQ which he cooks during the time he is not playing music. Others come to just sit and throw back some reasonably priced beverages. The cast of characters come from all races and walks of life. Some are moody, some happy and some are just happy to be alive. They come for the energy that pulses out of the walls at night when the horn section starts to wail. They dress up. They dress down. They come to dance to whatever rhythm is playing that night. Grab a partner or dance by yourself. No one judges here and if they do, no one cares. Mardi Gras Indians may make an appearance or maybe Dr. John. Although since he has passed, just his spirit now.

Parking is on the street, but I would recommend not driving. The libations are cold and they tend to go down super easy. You lose track of time down here. Is that the sun peaking in through the door? Yup. Time to head home. — Christine Sory