Dallas' 10 Best Bars For Drinking

Categories: Best Of Dallas

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The last bar list I put together was all about food. But if you've finished up your dinner or ate an entire hot mess for lunch, you don't always need a bar that serves up a great burger. Sometimes you just want a drink. Sometimes you just want several.

See also:
- The 10 Bars Serving the Best Bar Food in Dallas

If you're out on your own, looking to meet someone new or hanging out with a few fiends, all of these bars will all get you tilted in good fashion. Whether you're looking for a well-made cocktail or an ice cold beer and a quiet stool, there's something in this list for everyone.

Tried and True (pictured above)
Nick Badovinus is a bar food specialist, but you don't have to be starving to pay this Henderson Avenue spot a visit. The whiskey list at this place is phenomenal, and the bartenders know how to pour a drink. If you get the urge to snack and you don't want to tear into an entire burger, there are peanuts on the tables everywhere.

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You wish it was cold enough for one of these.
Black Swan Saloon
Oh, Gabe. There's nothing better than a bartender who knows your drink. Apparently Gabe Sanchez has a hard drive larger than most bartenders in Dallas. Order a cocktail once and it's yours for life. All you have to do is walk through the door and he's already working on it.

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Jay Barker
The Windmill Lounge
Want a Sazerac without flames, antics and sticker shock? The Windmill Lounge is a bartender's bar. Hardly a night goes by that you can't find one of the city's best mixologists drinking a simple and strong drink on a stool.

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The Loon
If The Windmill Lounge is bartender's bar, The Loon is a drinker's bar of the highest order. Don't come here expecting involved mixology. This is where you come to get the strongest whiskey and Coke you've ever ordered. Those tacos dorados are pretty good, too.

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Cheese abuse
Vickery Park
Don't come here to eat unless you're already drunk. But if you're sober, this is a pretty good place to get the job done. There's always a solid crowd here and most of them crowd the outdoor patio while they sip on beers and pull on cigarettes.
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Ships Lounge
If you need a cheap cold beer, or you've got a cheap scotch that needs drinking come to Ships. For $3 you can buy an ice-cold Budweiser or a set up of ice and soda to mix with your own liquor to your liver's content. Too expensive? Fine, you cheap bastard, order a PBR draft. They're only two bucks, but you better bring cash. Does it look like that register takes credit cards?

The Foundry
The best patio in Dallas coupled with a great beer selection and interesting decor makes the Foundry an obvious addition to the list. If the weather is good, find yourself a picnic table and flag down a waitress. Relax. You'll be here a while.

The Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek
You don't have to be a high-roller to enjoy this fine dining destination. The hotel bar is one of the best places to take a date for a drink. It's a dimly lit and sexy spot with live jazz on Thursdays.

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Cock and Bull
This dark East Dallas bar serves up properly poured pints of Guinness alongside some the best burgers and Reuben sandwiches you can buy in Dallas. It's a great neighborhood haunt that's hardly ever packed, but you can always find someone to talk to while sitting at the bar.
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Goodfriend Beer Garden and Burger House
Goodfriend is still kicking out great burgers with some of the best taps in town. Every time I stop in the place the bar is full, and the patio is packed with customers enjoying a solid beer selection. If you're a fan of local breweries, Goodfriend has you covered. If you like beer in general Goodfriend has you covered. Goodfriend is a good friend, indeed.

Who's thirsty?

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Tyler Satchwell
Tyler Satchwell

I'm getting a kick out of this.. as I'm sitting here at black swan saloon

P. Bishop III
P. Bishop III

I am literally going to one of these places right now!

Ariana Reyes
Ariana Reyes

Only been to two of those places. We've got some work to do!


The fact that Strangeways isn't on this list is simultaneously shitarded and a bit of a relief. 


I'm glad you didn't mention my favorite. It's already a hell of a time getting a seat, even on weeknights and especially during Happy Hour.

Good list, still.

scott.reitz moderator

@Ashley Richardson Not anymore. The place has changed a lot over the past few months

scott.reitz moderator

@monstruss Strangeways isn't on the list because the service is so slow. Each of the bars here have attentive fast bartenders. They make me feel like I'm taken care of.

That said, I love te space at Strangeways though. It's a cool bar

scott.reitz moderator

@Gipson I wonder what I missed. I promise not to tell if you let me know.


@scott.reitz Best bars for drinking, yet you don't want to wait in line like everyone else. Basically, it's a list of bars that make you feel like you're special.


@scott.reitz I see your point in the service being a little slower. Personally I don't really mind so much because I know it's just the 4 or 5 folks covering the whole place, and the quality of both the service and the drinks makes up for it. 

scott.reitz moderator

@looptwelve @scott.reitz this couldn't be further front the truth. Some of these bars know who I am when I patronize. Some do not. I hate when I get special treatment, but I love when I see bartenders hustling to make everyone feel like a special customer

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