Harbor Bar and Grill (3024 17th St., Metairie, 832-4117) is a neighborhood watering hole with a reputation for cooking up great burgers at all hours. It has become something of a Metairie landmark and is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year.
Manager Christina Saucier attributes Harbor's success to loyal customers who make the restaurant their gathering place and help give it a reputation as a friendly, family-run joint with something for everyone.
"It's like Cheers," Saucier says. "Everybody knows everybody's name and everybody's business."
Most of Harbor's employees have known the business' regular customers for years. The bar's location near the Causeway means a lot of Northshore commuters often stop in for a burger or a chat before heading over the bridge to their homes after work.
"One of our bartenders has been here for 20 years," Saucier says. "He knows everyone and everyone knows him."
Although Saucier says the daytime crowd is great, the restaurant draws its biggest crowds late at night. The kitchen serves signature burgers, steaks and seafood until 5 a.m., which makes Harbor an after-work destination for many local service-industry workers whose shifts often end after midnight.
"We've got good late-night food," Saucier says. "We do a lot of business with the restaurant workers. Some of them have been coming in forever."
Spring crawfish boils also are big at Harbor, and Saucier says it was one of the first restaurants in the neighborhood to boil crawfish fresh for patrons. "People know us for our crawfish boils," she says. "A lot of other sports bars do crawfish now, but we've been doing crawfish for years."
After this crawfish season, the restaurant will serve fresh boiled crabs, which Saucier says are hard to find outside of the area's casinos.
Prices are reasonable. The most expensive thing on the menu is the $15.50 filet, and most burgers are about $8. Harbor also offers daily lunch specials starting at 11 a.m., including a rotating menu of red beans and rice, pork chops, fried chicken, pork loin, chicken-fried steak, spaghetti and meatballs, lasagna and various types of etoufee.
- Eugenia Uhl
- Proprietors Christina and Jason Saucier serve up two Harbor Bar and Grill favorites: burgers and boiled crawfish.