Food & Drink

No sharks, no laser beams, just the drinks

Unless you're William Jennings Bryan or late-career Candlebox, meeting the gold standard means you've achieved ultimate success. Aiming to do that with a dive bar: The Usual's Brad Hensarling, opening Gold Standard this week in Ft. Worth. Having given the old 7th Haven a backdrop of faux-wood and swimming pool-colored bricks, Hensarling's going for an "anti-cocktail" cocktail bar, meaning drinks "that are head and shoulders above a normal bar's", actually served quickly and without pretense or dandruff. So, Sazeracs and other classics will be poured from chilled taps, and new, house-syrup-aided creations like the Boy Named Sue (bourbon, maple, ginger beer, bitters) and the elderflower-/black-tea-infused vodka Taxation Without Representation will be liberating your brain cells long before you can say "this mixologist is very impressive with his presentation and whatnot, but I'm ready to get my drank on". Food comes by way of the adjacent 7th St Food Court, where trucks such as Wiener Man, Food Traveler, Chile Pepper Grill, Bacon Wagon, and Grill Kings now sling everything from St. Louis ribs to brisket quesadillas w/ Ugly Pug-grilled onions. Two more vital pieces of info: church bells on the roof will play "Hells Bells" at 3p daily, and you're encouraged to tag the bathroom -- just do it as quickly as these bartenders make drinks, or your friends will leave you far behind, leave you far behind...