Dallas had itself many amazing restaurant openings this year, but what if you feel like a drink? Order one from one of said restaurants, because many of them serve booze? Sure, if you want to do it the EASY way. In all seriousness, sometimes you just need a good bar. Or a great bar. Luckily, these 11 bars that debuted this year are ready to cater to all your imbibing needs:
Dallas' 11 best new bars of the year
Earlier this year, Eddie "Lucky" Campbell opened the handsome, Prohibition-era styled Parliament, nestled in an intimate space in State Allen (previously Four Lounge). The result? Amazing. Those who remember Lucky from the now-bygone Chesterfield know he understands a thing or two about making a cocktail. Try the Ramos Gin Fizz, if for nothing more than to watch him make it. But that’s not all -- what really sets this bar apart is the team; the whole crew is friendly as hell, and the longest wait you’ll have is for your drink to be made, even in a packed house. Take notice Dallas, this is how it's done.
Housed in the former location of Tex-Mex fave Primos, off of McKinney Ave, So & So's had big shoes to fill, and fill they did. There's an impressive lineup of eats (Jameson Pickleback Pizza!) and a healthy lineup of beers and cocktails (including four on draft, from Pimm's Cups to Palomas). Oh, and there are also quite a few beautiful people, particularly on Thursdays (live music) and weekends (DJ). The patio is particularly busy on weekends, so get there early for 7oz High Life ponies with an Alibi whiskey back. Bottoms up.
Just a few steps from the Joule Hotel lobby hangs a bright neon sign that reads, "COCKTAILS". Go there. Two flights of stairs down, and you’re in cocktail heaven. Chad Solomon and Christy Pope of Cuffs & Buttons are the masterminds behind the outstanding cocktail menu. Try the shared Hogo A-Go-Go Punch (serves four), made with Jamaica rum, lime, West Indian bay leaf falernum, hibiscus, and nutmeg. Just remember, don't be a hero and try to take it down by yourself.
Truth & Alibi's got a Willy Wonka candy shop-vibe up front, and you have to know the password to get yourself access to the real treats (candy is dandy but liquor is quicker!). Once inside the cozy space, you’re greeted by long bar with goodies of the adult variety, like the Tax Evasion (Glenmorangie, Yellow Chartreuse, elderflower liqueur, orange bitters) and a thumping DJ. Make sure to get there early on weekends -- and remember to check for the password.
It doesn’t take a detective to figure out that good booze and good writing go hand in hand, unless of course, you’re Wild Detectives, who fused the winning combination of bar and bookstore in Bishop Arts. Grab some literature, belly up to the bar, and order yourself a local brew. If you feel so inclined, you can order coffee instead, but don’t expect to be the next Hemingway or Bukowski going that route.
Another ode to boozy multitasking! Have you ever been shopping for a record (or music of any kind, if you aren't that hip) and found yourself really craving a drink? Well, bar-meets-record store Off The Record has you covered with 20 drafts on tap, a full bar, and 2,000 vinyl selections hand-picked by Good Records off Lower Greenville. No spilling!
Once upon a time, you could only drink Deep Ellum Brewery beer on tour days. Dark times they were, indeed. But they're gone! Pop in to Deep Ellum Taproom any day of the week from 3pm-10pm and try everything Deep Ellum Brewery has in its sudsy arsenal, with a few few specialty brews (like Oak Cliff Coffee Ale), only found at the brewery. There are also TVs for game viewing, and live music performances from time to time. This is your new happy place.
With all the Deep Ellum watering holes that made this list, it’s fair to say that Deep Ellum is back in a good way. But what about when you just need to DANCE?! Red Light Lounge is there for you, with two different DJs, a sexy lounge area, and a 3,000sqft rooftop terrace. Do your best Night at The Roxbury impression and get there as fast as you can, just try not to run into Richard Grieco on your way.
Named after the ivy on the side of the building (well played!), this new bar is a welcoming neighborhood hang that's worth leaving YOUR neighborhood to visit. You have drink specials like $4 Texas craft drafts on Thursdays, and $2 domestics on Mondays. And you have a damn fine bar food with a bit of a Greek accent. But the real draw is the enclosed patio. Play some darts or corn hole or chat up that cute stranger -- this patio is like a friend's backyard party, only you don’t have to clean up.
Don’t mistake this for a brewery, because this, friends, is a cidery -- Dallas’ first, to be exact. You should absolutely tour the place when they're running them, but sometimes you don't have time for stuff like "learning". Luckily, if you just want to drink, the tasting room is open Fridays from 6pm-12pm, Saturdays from 12pm-12am, and Sundays from 12pm-6pm. There you'll find plenty of their ciders are on tap, along with more than 30 hand-selected varieties, both imported and domestic, in bottles and cans. Sweet! Literally.
Yet another welcome addition to the Deep Ellum family, CBC offers a mix of 24 local and import draft beers, along with a full bar and specialty cocktails. The spacious patio is a major attraction, as is the fact that they are pet- and bike-friendly. If you get the midnight munchies, order from the "Late Night Grub" menu. Try the PB&J, served with a side of chocolate milk. It'll take you back to childhood, except for the part where you're at a bar after midnight.
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1. Parliament2418 Allen St, Dallas
2. So & So's3309 McKinney Ave, Dallas
3. Midnight Rambler1530 Main St, Dallas
4. Truth & Alibi2618 Elm St, Dallas
5. The Wild Detectives314 W 8th St, Dallas
6. Off the Record2716 Elm St, Dallas
7. Deep Ellum Taproom2823 St Louis St, Dallas
8. Red Light Lounge2911 Main St, Dallas
9. The Ivy Tavern5334 Lemmon Ave, Dallas
10. Bishop Cider Co.509 N Bishop Ave, Ste C, Dallas
11. Cold Beer Company3600 Main st, Dallas
With craft cocktail icon Eddie "Lucky" Campbell at the helm, this bordello-lit drinking den in State Thomas boasts a lengthy leather-bound menu that has something for everyone. If you appreciate history and cocktail artistry, go for a Ramos Gin Fizz. And if you appreciate a good deal, there's an incredible happy hour where you can score standards like Old Fashioneds and gimlets for half their typical price.
So & So’s is housed in the previous home of Primos, off of McKinney Ave. They offer an impressive food menu, as well as a healthy selection of beers, wines, and specialty drinks. There’s live music every Thursday, and DJ sets on the weekends. The patio is a major attraction, and it gets busy on weekends, so get there early and try the shot & a beer special, featuring 7oz Miller High Life Ponies and Alibi whiskey.
Just a few steps from the Joule Hotel lobby hangs a bright neon sign that reads, "COCKTAILS". Go there. Two flights of stairs down, and you’re in cocktail heaven. Chad Solomon and Christy Pope of beverage consulting group Cuffs & Buttons are the masterminds behind the cocktail menu, and it’s nothing short of amazing Try the shared Hogo A-Go-Go punch for four, made with Jamaica rum, lime, West Indian bay leaf falernum, hibiscus, and nutmeg.
Truth & Alibi is a candy shop with a Willy Wonka vibe in front, and a password required to enter. Once inside the cozy space, you’re greeted by a long bar with goodies of the adult variety and a pulsating DJ. Make sure to get there early on weekends, and don’t forget your sweet tooth or password.
A combination of indie bookstore and bar/cafe in Bishop Arts, The Wild Detectives welcomes you to stop by and enjoy your favorite authors while sipping your favorite brews. Locally sourced drinks and small plates include Dallas-based Zakti tea, Texas Ale Project beer, and sweet and savory bites like pastries sourced from Rush Patisserie and breakfast tacos from El Padrino.
Craft beer (more than 20 taps), craft cocktails, and vinyl are the stars of the show at OTR. You can grab a drink at the bar and then browse the record collection, which is more than 2,000 strong.
Pop in to Deep Ellum Taproom any day of the week from 3pm-10pm and try everything Deep Ellum Brewery has to offer on tap, and even a few specialty brews like Oak Cliff Coffee Ale, only found at the brewery. There are also a TVs for watching games, and occasional live music.
Red Light Lounge is a dance club with two levels, two different DJs, a lounge area, and a 3,000sqft rooftop terrace.
Named after the ivy on the side of the building, The Ivy Tavern has awesome craft beers, delicious cocktails, and even authentic Greek bar food -- but the real draw is the enclosed patio, where you can play some darts or corn hole, or even chat up a stranger.
Don’t mistake this for a brewery because this is a cidery -- Dallas’ first to be exact. You're free to take the tour during tour hours, but if you just want to drink, checkout the tasting room on Fridays from 6pm-12pm, Saturdays from 12pm-12am, and Sundays from 12pm-6pm. Their house-brewed ciders are on tap, along with over 30 hand-selected imported and domestic bottles and cans.
CBC boasts a fairly impressive tap wall and some seriously good food. Great starters like the chips and dips and a spicy in-house Chex Mix called Bar Trash. You can follow that up with a Wagyu meatball sandwich with provolone and marinara. Don’t forget about the beer!