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Making Dallas Even Better

Flashback Friday: The Last Real Bars

This May 1986 feature story examines all of the “true” Dallas neighborhood bars at the time. The piece kicks off with an ode to the late Lakewood Yacht Club (which shuttered in 1983), profiles five different bartenders, mentions some of the best bar food at the time and then finishes with a list of ten genuine neighborhood bars, which “are as scarce as blizzards in Dallas,” according to the writer. Some of the watering holes mentioned include Lakewood Landing, Sons of Hermann Hall and recently-closed, Club Schmitz.

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First Take: Front Room Tavern at Hotel Lumen

Front Room Tavern (previously The Front Room) has undergone a complete makeover. There’s a new chef, updated menu and recently refurbished interior. I was invited to dine at the restaurant over the weekend — I’d attended the grand opening of The Front Room back in 2012 — so, naturally I was curious to see the changes. The first thing I noticed after swinging open the gigantic glass door was the aroma of coffee. It practically smacked me in the face — in the most delightful way. Turns out, there’s now a coffee bar at Hotel Lumen, which uses freshly roasted beans from Drip Coffee Company. The bar serves up typical beverages like espresso, macchiatos and cappuccinos, as well as pastries. Pastry Chef, Alison Morse makes everything in-house, offering an assortment of muffins, bagels, biscuits and other carb-laden treats. The pastry case hasn’t been installed yet, but I was told that it should be ready sometime this week.

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Restaurant Review: The Standard Pour in Dallas

Technically, The Standard Pour is located on the corner of McKinney & Allen but, if you live in Uptown Dallas, you might as well consider it Main & Main. Center of the Universe. With the closing of Sfuzzi Uptown, TSP has formally established dominance as the perennial powerhouse for all things haute-cocktails and gourmet fare.

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Pour Judgment: Great Service and Good Craft Cocktails at the Bowen House

When popular vintage shop Ahab Bowen closed in 2011, Dallas fashionistas were devastated. The house stood unused until five weeks ago, when it reopened as another business honoring the past, Victorian era-themed bar, Bowen House. I stopped by Saturday night at 9 pm to get a feel for the place and to sample the drinks.

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Where to Watch the Final Four Play in Dallas

Even if you’re not among the lucky few who scored tickets, there are still ample opportunities to get in on the action. Superfans should check out Bracket Town, a meet-up for anyone bitten by the March Madness bug. And even if you couldn’t care less about the sport, there’s a free music festival for you, Friday through Sunday. If you’re only interested in the proceedings for bragging rights in your office tournament and as an excuse for the few extra drinks you’re allowing yourself this week, here’s where you should watch your teams.

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Lakewood Brewing Co. Releases Raspberry Temptress for Valentine’s Day

Well, since this is the sexiest week of the year, Lakewood Brewing Co. decided to strip the pantyhose and don this dark Temptress beauty with some yacht-level lingerie. They added a raspberry puree to the finishing process. This Raspberry Temptress is a mouth-watering Imperial Milk Stout. It’s sophisticated, sweet, dense and oh-so-sexy on the palate.

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Into Shelley’s Belly: Work Bar & Grill in Deep Ellum

As much as it may confuse you, I suggest you go to Work Bar & Grill at 2618 Elm Street after you finish work today. As insufficiently humorous as that opener may be, it’s all I have today after the meat mountain I climbed and fell from last night. My ankles are swollen, my thighs are bursting through my spanks, and I don’t know which Power Ranger I want to be anymore. The existential angst is killing me. Work opened in Deep Ellum last May, so I have to ask… Why didn’t anyone tell me about this place sooner? The space is a rustic, industrial warehouse with lots of room to get weird. The working-class, brick appeal exudes a gritty, sports-bar-cool with plenty of seating and flat screens. There are a few arcade games, a stretch-limo-length bar to cozy up to, and a jukebox that hates me. I only say that because when left to its own decisions, that mother-lover played a horrendous line-up of junk-pop and honky-tonk filth. A few decent tracks were peppered in, but it’s best to take over and control it if you can. Off the box we go.

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