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March 04, 2019

Mardi Gras 2019: Where to go in Philly for parades, crawfish and hurricanes

The city is celebrating with parties and specials

Food & Drink Mardi Gras
Hurricane cocktail for Mardi Gras Courtesy of/PUNCH MEDIA

Enjoy Falernum Hurricanes for $8 at Rex 1516.

March 5 is Mardi Gras – or Fat Tuesday – and Philly is ready to celebrate with parties and specials.

There will be hurricanes, crawfish, King Cake and more to eat and drink, plus parades, jazz, beads and open bars.

Below are nine spots (We added to the list!) to check out in Philly for some Mardi Gras fun.

RELATED: Celebrate St. Patrick's Day early at Irish Spirit Speakeasy in Rittenhouse | High Street's Sandwich Battle is a mashup of March Madness, "Chopped"

Chris' Jazz Cafe

Chef/owner Mark DeNinno has created a special Fat Tuesday menu, and he's offering free buckets of crawfish to the first 25 guests who order from it on March 5.

Dishes include crawfish potpie, crawfish cheesesteak, crawfish mac & cheese and jambalaya.

Chris' Jazz Cafe bartender Brittany Koole, a New Orleans native, has also crafted a Mardi Gras cocktail menu. All the speciality drinks will be $15.

That's not all, though. There will be a parade led by The Hoppin’ John Orchestra at 6:15 p.m. and everyone is welcome to join in the fun on Broad and Chestnut streets. 

After, the band will perform inside the restaurant. Admission to the show will be $15.

Tuesday, March 5
11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
1421 Sansom St., Philadelphia, PA 19102
(215) 568-3131

The Bourse

Carroll - The Philadelphia Bourse Barrys BunsThom Carroll/PhillyVoice

Barry's Buns - An all-natural made-from-scratch bakery. Originating in Chestnut Hill, this husband and wife business specializes in cinnamon and sticky buns. Pictured is a sampling of buns and baked goods.

There will be an all-day party at The Bourse in Old City to celebrate Mardi Gras. Visitors to the food hall can expect live jazz music, burlesque, a costume contest and lots of New Orleans-inspired food.

Enjoy hurricanes at Bluebird Distilling, mini King Cakes at Barry’s Buns, spicy fried shrimp at Ka’Moon and more.

The vendors will open at 7 a.m., but the real fun will start in the evening. From 7 to 10 p.m., Drew Nugent and the Midnight Society will set the mood with lively jazz and parades around the food hall. 

In between sets, burlesque dancers from Envoute will perform.

Tuesday, March 5
All day, beginning at 7 a.m.
111 S. Independence Mall E., Philadelphia, PA 19106

Bourbon Blue

Party at Manyunk's Bourbon Blue on March 5. The New Orleans-inspired restaurant is offering a two-hour open bar package for $20 and a three-hour open bar package for $30. Tickets can be purchased here.

In addition, there will be live music, prizes, masks and beads.

Tuesday, March 5
8 p.m. to 2 a.m.
2 Rector St., Philadelphia, PA 19127
(215) 508-3360

Rex 1516

The King Cake Burger at Rex 1516Courtesy of/PUNCH MEDIA

The King Cake Burger at Rex 1516.

Stop by this Southern restaurant on South Street for two festive specials.

Indulge in the King Cake Burger, an 8-ounce beef patty with cheddar, bacon, lettuce and pickles on a king cake roll, with a Newbold IPA and a shot of Jim Beam Devil's Cut Bourbon for $17.

Also try a falernum hurricane. The $8 cocktail is made with aged rum, white rum and falernum, a liqueur often used in tropical drinks.

Tuesday, March 5
1516 South St., Philadelphia, PA 19146
(267) 319-1366

Red Owl Tavern

Head to Old City for $10 Mardi Gras drink specials at Red Owl Tavern, located by Independence Hall. 

Try the King Cake Milk Punch, made with brown butter washed bourbon, vanilla and nutmeg. 

For a pick-me-up, go for the Café NOLA, a cocktail with coffee, praline syrup and Cognac. 

Sazerac, a New Orleans classic made with rye whiskey, absinthe, sugar and bitters, will also be available.

Tuesday, March 5
433 Chestnut St., Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 923-2267

Urban Farmer

shrimp and grits at Urban Farmer for Mardi GrasCourtesy of/PUNCH MEDIA

Enjoy shrimp and grits for $18 during Mardi Gras.

The Logan Square steakhouse is adding a popular southern dish to its menu for Mardi Gras. All day, guests can enjoy shrimp and grits for $18.

The mouthwatering dish includes a poached egg, fried shrimp, tasso ham and cheesy, creamy grits.

Tuesday, March 5
1850 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy, Philadelphia, PA 19103
(215) 963-2788

The Good King Tavern

French restaurant The Good King Tavern is hosting a cocktail carnival on Tuesday.

Beginning at 9 p.m., bartenders will stir and shake up fat and oil-washed cocktails. It is a day to indulge, right?

The cocktails ($12-$14) will be variations on classics like the Negroni and Manhattan.

And as per tradition in some small towns in France on Mardi Gras, the kitchen will be whipping up specialty waffles for the occasion.

614 S. 7th St., Philadelphia, PA 19147
(215) 625-3700 

Square 1682

For Mardi Gras, Square 1682 will offer jerk chicken over pan fried cabbage with 1682 hot sauce for $24. Add warm cornbread with house-churned butter and honey for an extra $5. 

Sounds delicious, right?

To pair with the Southern food, ask for a Sazerac. The cocktail will be $10.

Tuesday, March 5
121 S. 17th St., Philadelphia, PA 19103
(215) 563-5008

The Rittenhouse restaurant will offer special dishes in honor of Mardi Gras. Enjoy muffuletta ($15), étouffée ($14), suckling pig ($32) and beignets ($8).

135 S. 18th St., Philadelphia, PA 19103
(215) 825-7030

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