Beyond Reveillon: Arnaud’s in the Afternoon, Teddy Bears in Tow _lowres

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--Founded in 1918 Arnaud's is run by next-generation family owners Archie and Katy Casbarian. This month they resume their annual Teddy Bear Drive in conjunction with police supporters.

As the year whittles down to its final days, people everywhere are making good on those pledges to get together again over dinner. In New Orleans, this often calls up a Reveillon, those multi-course menus served this month at a circuit of restaurants around town (see our earlier story on diverse flavors running through this year’s crop).

But not all the special dining event this season fall under the official Reveillon umbrella, and for the next few days we’re highlighting a few unique offerings, special menus and Christmas-themed restaurant events.

Arnaud’s in the Afternoon, Teddy Bears in Tow

Arnaud’s serves a traditional Reveillon menu in the evenings this month. But it also continues a few of its own traditions this time of year, including a new one.

Normally open for dinner only, Arnaud’s Restaurant has a much extended lunch schedule this season, serving its a la carte French Creole menu on weekdays (through Dec. 18 this and Dec. 21-24 next, from 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.). The restaurant’s French 75 bar will be serving seasonal cocktails throughout the month, including the classic Dickens’ Toddy and Tom and Jerry and hot buttered rums.

If you go, tuck a new teddy bear along to contribute to the Teddy Bear Drive, organized by Arnaud’s in partnership with the New Orleans Police & Justice Foundation.

Begun last year, the program collects new teddy bears, which will be donated to the police department for officers to give to children who have been traumatized. In its inaugural year, the program brought in 500 bears. The goal this year is 1,500, which seems both ambitious and a sad commentary on the level of need officers see in the line of duty.

The drive continues through Dec. 31. Arnaud’s is one drop-off site. Others are the NOPJF office at 400 Poydras St., Suite 2105, and the New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau at 2020 St. Charles Ave.

Arnaud’s Restaurant

813 Bienville St., 504-523-5433

Follow Ian McNulty on Twitter @IanMcNultyNOLA.