It’s with an unfortunate heart that O’Flaherty’s Irish Channel Pub is no longer with us, and hasn’t been in over ten years since Hurricane Katrina.
Nevertheless, its ghosts still deserve a mention, and since the property is now the New Orleans Creole Cookery, it’s quite possible that these spirits are still making themselves known to a completely different clientele.
So, should you be wanting to jump on the chance to come in contact with the ghosts of O’Flaherty’s, don’t be shy in making a reservation at the New Orleans Creole Cookery.
You never know who (or what) you might run into while enjoying your meal.
Originally known as the “Lanoix House,” this property at 510-514 Toulouse Street is one of the oldest townhouses in the area.
Built around 1818, it was home to the Peyroux family in the nineteenth century. Funnily enough, the Peyroux family also once owned the property that is now the prestigious and haunted Hotel St. Pierre just a few blocks away on Burgundy Street.
By the early 1900s, however, the Peyroux family no longer owned the property and instead notarial records show that at this time it belonged to the Jackson Brewing Company, and had gotten a head-start on serving alcohol to the many patrons who waltzed in through its front doors.
Danny O’Flaherty, who owned the Irish pub, was a native of Ireland and who put on quite a show when he purchased the building and converted it into an Irish pub. Celtic and folk performers would come from all over the UK and America to perform, and often O’Flaherty did so as well.
But for all of the jovial entertainment and great food provided to its patrons, this Irish pub (and as the current-day New Orleans Creole Cookery) was also known to be one of the most haunted locations in the French Quarter. Those who knew it best said that that old Ballad Room balcony was the most active spot on the entire property.
The pub’s staff even gave the ghostly woman who appeared there a name: Angelique.
According to local lore, in 1810, owner of the property Joseph Bapentier moved to 510 Toulouse Street. He’d only been recently married, but refused to give up his mistress, Angelique.
For years, bitter jealousy tore at Angelique. She despaired over watching her lover with his wife, despite the fact that Angelique was the woman who allegedly held Joseph Bapentier’s heart.
One night, that jealousy proved too much for Angelique. She stalked Bapentier up to the second floor where he was doing business. Envy crawled its way up her spine, even as heartache stung tears to her eyes. She begged him to get rid of his wife, but Bapentier had had enough. He wrapped his hand around her neck, and shoved her straight off the balcony. Her body fell to the first flow, her neck splintering upon impact.
Awareness dawned over what he had done. Bapentier hanged himself in his apartment before the authorities could arrive. His wife, Mary, died not long after at only thirty-five years old.
Since that tragic day, Angelique’s apparition has often been seen looking down over the balcony when the Ballad Room is empty, but also when it is completely packed. Swaying back and forth, it seems that the ghostly Angelique is as enamored with the music playing at O’Flaherty’s as much as the pub’s living patrons are.
Current staff of the New Orleans Creole Cookery have claimed Mary’s spirit to be very aggressive. Employees report being shoved, and many believe that it is Mary, still furious over her husband’s indiscretions--even in death.
But according to staff, Bapentier’s ghost is the angriest of the bunch. Should you catch a glimpse of Angelique’s spirit swaying or dancing, be sure to look away quickly. Bapentier is still a jealous lover, and his spirit has been known to physically throw things at the people who pay Angelique a tad too much attention.
While Angelique’s ghost reportedly haunts the upstairs balcony area, her lover’s apparition is more commonly seen downstairs in the courtyard.
While O'Flaherty's Irish Channel Pub is unfortunately no longer with us, that doesn't mean that you can't still enjoy a visit to 510-514 Toulouse Street in the French Quarter.
Head on down to the New Orleans Creole Cookery for a drink or a hot meal. You may come for the jovial atmosphere, but we can promise that you'll keep going back, always hopeful for a glimpse of Angelique, Mary or Joseph Bapentier!