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DFW Speakeasies to Get Excited About

by Steven Doyle

A speakeasy, also called a blind pig or blind tiger, is an establishment that sells alcoholic beverages, or a retro style bar that replicates aspects of historical speakeasies. Speakeasy bars came into prominence in the United States during the Prohibition era. During that time, the sale, manufacture, and transportation of alcoholic beverages was illegal throughout the United States.

Speakeasies largely disappeared after Prohibition ended in 1933. The speakeasy-style trend began in 2000 with the opening of the bar Milk & Honey, which has since closed. Once tucked discreetly behind a little black door in the heart of Soho since 2002. It was at the vanguard of the speakeasy movement in London.

Our favorite speakeasy is located in New York City and is accessed through a phone booth located in Crif’s Hotdogs. Please Don’t Tell serves amazing cocktails and is available with reservations only.

DFW has its fair share of speakeasys, and we tell you about a few we enjoy with the hope you keep these explicitly secret.

Atwater Alley

This was actually a true modern-day speakeasy as it was discovered by a new tenant that now occupies Henry’s Majestic. Guests, including scene writers of Dallas, where told not to discuss this alley accessible speakeasy tucked behind the dumpster at the restaurant. The word has since spread. There is also a secret entrance attached to the kitchen. The bar itself is a small but lavish nod to another era serving amazing Prohibition-esque cocktails and oysters to a festive handful of guests. This writer has spent far too many evenings speaking easy.

La Viuda Negra

Tucked behind a bridal shop, La Viuda Negra is a speakeasy run by brothers Javier and Luis Villalva. The very tiny bar is stacked with a bevy variety of agave-based spirits, tequilas, and mezcals. If arriving late night, it may be a struggle to grab a cocktail, so we suggest ordering two then hightail it to the narrow outdoors tucked away between El Come Taco shop and the cocktail hide-a-way.

Scat Jazz Lounge

Easier to find under a bright neon announcement, Scat Jazz is in an alleyway and features music of a forgotten era with drinks to match. Located in Fort Worth, you will enjoy time here.

Thompson’s Bookstore

Another hidden gem in Fort Worth, Thompson’s Bookstore is a homey prohibition-style cocktail lounge with the spirits to match. Outfitted with leather lounge chairs, deep wood furnishings, velvet drapes, and antler mounts, the bar resembles that of a frontier saloon.

Rare Books Bar

The interior of the bar is outfitted in leather, exposed brick walls, chandeliers, and dusty bookshelves. In true literary tradition, the bar serves an extensive list of top-shelf spirits, with over 400 fine scotches and whiskeys. Cocktail-wise, the bar a special assortment of whiskey-based drinks, specialty cocktails, martinis, as well as tequila-based cocktails.

Truth and Alibi

Hidden behind the facade of a candy shop, is one of the bougiest spots in Dallas. Truth and Alibi is an exciting hidden gem. Garishly decorated in velvet and incandescent chandeliers, Truth and Alibi offers Dallasites a hip setting to sip on luscious cocktails and a burlesque show.

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