Where to drink
Where to drink in Fort Worth right now: 7 best new bars for March
A fresh batch of new bars has popped up in recent weeks, and this round is prime for spring sipping. All offer either expansive patios or picturesque interiors, and there’s plenty of space at each to spread out; so going with a group is welcomed. Live music is also a common theme with this collection of new spots – five of the seven places offer it regularly. Add these to your must-visit list and start checking it off.
Old Texas Brewing Company
The Burleson-based brewery and restaurant has breathed new life into the former Baker Street Pub location at 6333 Camp Bowie Blvd., which has sat dormant since December 2017. Opened in late February, the 7,000-square-foot space has been completely renovated to offer a 360-degree bar, spacious seating, live music, and TVs galore. While Old Texas Brewing Company is not currently “brewing” its own beers, there is a wide selection of local craft options and lots of happy hour specials for domestic beers and well drinks. (Note that Friday is “full price Friday.”) Also go hungry for tacos, barbecue, seafood, pastas, burgers, sandwiches, flatbreads, and weekend brunch.
When Dallas’ Bishop Cider acquired Fort Worth-based Wild Acre Brewing last May, changes were in store for Wild Acre’s satellite burger and beer joint at 6473 Camp Bowie Blvd. Now the restaurant and bar has officially transformed into Boozie’s Brewery & Gourmet Sandwiches, with former Wild Acre chef David Hollister now leading the helm as a co-owner. (A Fairview location is also in the works.) The interior looks mostly the same, but the menu has been updated with a big focus on gourmet sandwiches – think house-brined Wagyu pastrami and croque madame with bechamel sauce. An on-site brewery is in the works, but until then, Boozie’s offers 12 local beers on tap along with wine. There are also craft cocktails thanks to a new mixed beverage license for the space. Try the Nylund, a rose-infused cosmopolitan shaken with super chilled vodka and topped with an airy foam, or the bacon fat-washed old fashioned called Buzzed Belly that’s garnished with a bacon-infused cherry.
Goat & Vine Restaurant and Winery
Could this Italian restaurant and Instagrammer’s paradise perhaps be the GOAT for a cursed Montgomery Plaza corner space? At least nine restaurants have opened and closed in what’s been referred to as the “Bermuda Triangle” of West Seventh Street. But Goat & Vine may change that. Owned by Chicago-based restaurant group WeEat Hospitality, the concept serves its own private label wine along with house-made pastas, bottomless brunch packages, and photo-worthy dessert towers, cocktails, and spaghetti flambeed tableside in a parmesan wheel. (There’s also a location in Plano and another in Allen on the way.) The decorative interior is also a draw, with its separate bar area offering velvet, high-back stools and low chairs, a shiny black-and-white tiled floor, and plenty of photo ops with chandeliers and faux greenery. Try the Rose Spritz made with Aperol, Goat & Vine rose, Grand Marnier, and club soda; or the Silver Lining with tequila, pomegranate juice, plum bitters, and elderflower. During happy hour, Monday through Friday from 4-6 pm, all signature cocktails are $10 and wines by the glass and bottle are half-off.
Truck Yard Alliance
Dallas’ favorite “backyard bar garden” opened its fourth location in mid-January in the booming Alliance region of far north Fort Worth, at 3101 Prairie Vista Dr. Two months in, the come-as-you-are hangout is hitting its stride just in time for spring. The indoor-outdoor destination sits on almost two acres – enough space for everything from fire pits to an operational Ferris wheel. The Truck Yard is known for its food truck fare (think nachos and cheesesteaks), live music, and vintage decor – including old trucks that have bench seating in the bed. A sister concept to Second Rodeo Brewing in the Fort Worth Stockyards, the Truck Yard serves Second Rodeo draft beer along with craft cocktails on tap, frozen drinks, and even top shelf flasks. This location has debuted new technology that allows for ordering drinks by phone from any table to be delivered by a server, so prepare to sit and stay awhile.
Opened on March 3, this swanky new speakeasy is located inside Arlington’s Choctaw Stadium, where the Texas Rangers used to play. The luxe space, with its jewel tone lounge seating, velvet pintuck booths, and gold tiled bar display, has lots to offer. There’s upscale dining for lunch, brunch, and dinner, a stage for live lounge music, private lockers for wine and spirits, and a rooftop cigar patio overlooking Choctaw field. Craft cocktails on the menu include Raspberry Tart made with gin, lemon juice, and rose syrup, and Joe’s Old Fashioned featuring TX Bourbon and Fireball. Note that Hearsay has a dress code, meaning no shorts, flip-flops, or gym wear. Save this destination for when you're feeling fancy.
Branch & Bird
While not new, this sky-high downtown bar and restaurant has just reopened after an extensive renovation that took nearly three months. Perched on the 12th floor Sky Lobby level of the Frost Tower at 640 Taylor St., Branch & Bird comes back with a sophisticated new look. The dining area now offers sleek booth and table seating in tones of muted blue, while the updated separate bar area features cush high-back seating and a lit bar that glows like a setting sun. All areas provide skyline views, especially the breezy patio. Branch & Bird is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but don’t miss high-rise happy hour, Tuesday- Friday from 4-6 pm. It’s when craft beer, margaritas, and the featured cocktail are only $5, and domestic beers are only $3. There’s also live music on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
Koe Wetzel’s Riot Room (coming soon)
Make your calendars: March 16 is the soft opening date for Koe Wetzel’s Riot Room, new in the corner spot at 1100 Foch St. that was once home to The Dogwood, Punch Bowl Social, and Times Ten Cellars. Music artist and East Texas native Koe Wetzel has a longtime cult following for his edgy songs that teeter between Texas country and rock genres – and he’s sure to make an appearance on occasion. Hospitality heavyweight Emil Bragdon (Whiskey Garden, Reservoir, Your Mom’s House) is a partner in the venture and says the space will feature an expansive patio and a DJ booth that’s been fabricated from the front of a Ford F-350. A full dining menu will feature dishes with influence from Wetzel, like cornmeal crusted catfish, slow-smoked beer can-stuffed chicken, and The Sancho – a “surefire remedy for one of Koe’s hangovers” – featuring a brisket-stuffed grilled cheese sandwich on garlic toast with a side of brisket queso. Wetzel fans know the Jack Daniels is sure to flow freely here – it’s Wetzel’s beverage of choice (by the bottle) during concerts.