business food and drink

Say hello to Ciao Tapas Bar on Tulane Avenue

Performer Bobbi Rae takes a star turn behind the bar at Ciao Tapas Bar & Lounge. (photos via Instagram)

By Marielle Songy, Mid-City Messenger

Ciao Tapas Bar & Lounge has been bringing cocktails and brunch to the Tulane Avenue corridor since early February.

Owner Nicholas Reed is at the helm of the lounge that has a club feel with delicious eats. Reed was born and raised in New Orleans and attended Xavier University. Along with his business partner Blake Owens, he founded Get Up N Ride Nola, a bicycle social ride group, in 2015.

Then, taking his love of social events to the next level, Reed started a bar at 4033 Tulane Ave. called Bar Culture.

Bar Culture is now Ciao, a combination restaurant and lounge that Reed hopes will enhance the social scene in the area. Reed is also co-owner of Culture Park on Franklin Avenue in Gentilly. 

“I like to consider Ciao a hybrid,” Reed said. “It’s a lounge, but it still has a restaurant feel. We host DJs and live bands. It’s a place where people can come on a Saturday night and get that club feel and then on Sunday they can come in for brunch.”

Reed said that his new spot could fit into many categories, but one thing that has him excited is the food menu. Chef Chris Malachi runs the kitchen at Ciao. He’s a young chef a few years out of culinary school who Reed said delivers excellent food and a standout menu.

Chicken Biscuit at Ciao (via Instagram)

Selections include Thai Chili Wings, Yo Momma Chicken, Shrimp Scampi Flatbread and Seafood Eggrolls. Sunday Brunch includes classics such as Fried Chicken Biscuit with Maple Buffalo Mornay and boneless fried chicken thigh, Chicken and Waffles, French Toast, and Shrimp and Grits.

The cocktail program includes a Ciao 75, the lounge’s take on the classic French 75 made with Roku Gin, fresh lemon and St. Germain topped with champagne; Uncle Nearest Old Fashioned made with Uncle Nearest Whiskey, simple syrup and bitters; and Black Raspberry D’ussé Sidecar made with D’ussé cognac, black raspberry Chambord and fresh lemon.

Ciao Lounge hosts private events and offers hookah and bottle service. The lounge will also open a patio in the coming weeks.

Thai Chili Wings at Ciao

Ciao Tapas Bar & Lounge
4033 Tulane Ave.
Instagram: @ciaonola

Hours: Wednesday with a live band from 7 p.m. to midnight, Thursday from 6 p.m. to midnight, Friday and Saturday from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.



Reporter Marielle Songy can be reached at

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