Pop-up restaurants have been a delectable trend for the last couple of years, one that's still going strong with foodies, unlike some other disastrous trends we could name. (We're looking at you, cronut.) They're a great way to support a charitable cause or sample the work of a visiting chef in town for a one-off.
While many Dallas bars or restaurants have played host to guest bartenders, pop-up bars have been slower to catch on here. FLASK is a temporary drinking hole in Bishop Arts designed to create buzz for select liquor brands with pre-made cocktails served in ... flasks.
The brain behind FLASK is Melissa Maher, veteran marketer for various alcohol brands and co-creator of Double Wide’s menu. Maher also created The Dallas Drinking Society “to connect consumers and brands through meaningful experiences.” FLASK's first opening was earlier this month in a 20th-century, two-story house in the Bishop Arts District that's been converted into a commercial event space.
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"Speakeasy" comes to mind when you walk up to the door. The only sign that something different is happening inside is a white neon "YES" beckoning from a second-floor window. A doorman hands you a poker ship as your ticket, and you walk up to the second floor to a room with a bar, dim lighting and the word "flask" spotlighted on a wall. Next to the bar room you'll find a set of couches and chairs and a projector playing classic Western movies. (The Gambler was playing the night we went.) It has the vibe of an old-school boozer, a place to shut off your cell phone and rediscover the art of face-to-face conversation.
The menu was created by Alex Fletcher of Henry’s Majestic, who has branched out himself with "Shaken and Stirred," a craft cocktail catering service. The drink menu consists of three cocktails, including an ever-changing old fashioned of the week. The Campfire Cody was this night's special, a tasty mash-up of the boulevardier and old fashioned. For sippers, Buffalo Trace, High West and Macallan 12 were the browns available to set fire to your palate. A quaint selection of beer is offered as well.
With help from friends, Maher plans to keep Flask popping up Fridays and Saturdays through the end of of the month, possibly longer. She would like to see the event expand to include a campfire-themed dinner and drink tasting in the open backyard. She also has eyes set on spaces in Uptown, where she hopes to add more themes to the mix. “I have a '60s Miami hotel concept that’s begging for a bright, airy space,” she says.
FLASK opens again at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday at 301 W. Eighth St. Tickets are $20.