Round-Up Saloon

Sure, it's primarily a country bar with a huge wooden dance floor, line-dance lessons and DJs who spin a variety of classic, new and crossover pop country. But with six separate bars in this enormous Cedar Springs staple, it's not just urban cowboys having a good time. There's plenty of twang to satisfy the regulars every night, but the late-night high-energy dance music sets on weekends offer them and their country-challenged friends a break from the boot-scootin'. ManCandy Retro Sunday nights are all about having a blast from the glow-stick past, and four weekly karaoke nights give you a chance to show off your best impression of George Jones or Willie Nelson–or Lady Gaga or Mick Jagger, for that matter. If that doesn't do it for you, maybe the Mr. and Miss Roundup, Miss Gay Texas and bear competitions, or the Cowboys game-watching parties will. The crowd is primarily gay dudes, but fun-loving lesbians and breeders with a taste for country music—or those who just like to have a good time—are made to feel just as welcome.

The Goat
The Goat
Adair's Saloon
Adair's Saloon
Brooklyn Jazz Cafe

The growth of culture on South Lamar in Dallas over the last few years has resulted in great restaurants, great concert venues, great retail and this little gem: Brooklyn Jazz Café. Home to some of the region's established and most talked-about jazz and R&B artists, Brookyn Jazz Café has live music almost every night of the week, as well as a $3 martini "Super Happy Hour" on Wednesday nights and a Sunday brunch. You'll typically hear a wide variety of smooth jazz, blues and old-school jazz, and you might even be inspired to get out of your seat and dance. Whether you're a seasoned jazz connoisseur or an entry-level jazz-head, you're sure to find something you'll enjoy at Brooklyn Jazz Café.

Gloria's Restaurant

OK, so Gloria's isn't your typical reggaeton-pumping Latin club, but when it opens its dance floor each Friday and Saturday for an all-night salsa dancing sweat-fest, it's tough to find a more electric place anywhere in town. Whether the amazing Cuban band Havana NRG or the delicious (and deceptively strong) margaritas remove the most inhibitions, it's hard to say. To be certain, though, the opportunity to dance with beautiful women is enough to inspire any guy to learn as much as he can at the salsa lessons they start the night with. And look out ladies, because there are plenty of seasoned salsa pros out there ready to sweep you off your feet.

The Loon

Here's our kind of drinking game: Order an uninitiated friend a cocktail or, better yet, whiskey on the rocks at The Loon. Then sit back and watch your pal's face as he has an internal debate about whether to say something to the server, like, "Excuse me, ma'am, but I didn't order a triple." The Loon, with its homey, pretense-free and clean but divey ambiance and satisfying food, doesn't need such enormous drinks to keep patrons coming back, but we're sure not complaining. A damn-near-tumbler-sized pour of booze makes us that much happier that we chose a quiet bar full of old alkies over some hip club-kid destination.

The Libertine Bar

If there's anything more American than baseball and apple pie, it's getting tanked and stuffing yourself with fried food on a stick. So it's no wonder the Libertine's celebrated the last two Fourths of July with a 15-minute corn-dog eating contest. First and second place get bar tabs, third place wins a roll of quarters, and ties are broken with shots of tequila. It's billed as a "family event," but try telling that to the trash-talking girl pretending she's pregnant, or the overzealous cheerleader threatening everyone competing against his cousin. It's first-rate farce, the essence of an eating contest, and—win, lose or yak—guaranteed to ruin your day if you compete.

Gloria's
Gloria's
Pearl
Pearl at Commerce

Best Thing That Ever Came Out Of The Ghostbar

Black Swan Saloon

Black Swan Saloon

The Black Swan Saloon is a thin sliver of a thing on Elm Street in Deep Ellum, but what it lacks in width it makes up for in depth. Figuratively and literally—the back patio's a shady place for a smoke, but Gabe, a Ghostbar ex-pat who opened the Swan this year, gives the place its soul. Behind the bar, Gabe pours little cocktails that taste a lot like sweet, sweet love—we're talking apple-cured whiskey drinks and mixes of infused vodkas fashioned from whatever Gabe picked up at Farmers Market that week. Miles away from the Ghostbar's crotch-thrusting epicenter of $30,000 millionaire action, the skinny little Black Swan Saloon has quickly become the neighborhood favorite for Deep Ellum residents craving a spot to call their own. Find patrons playing Pac-Man near the bar's entrance or just grab a stool and listen to Gabe ramble on about his LA Lakers—it's almost quaint, really, considering the Swan's thoroughly Texan spirit.

Best Of Dallas®

Best Of