Restaurants / Bars

6 Vibey Spots for a Chic Summer Drink in Dallas

Summer Fridays Are a State of Mind

BY // 06.21.23

It’s that time of year, let the day drinking begin. Yes, it’s summer in Dallas and alas, many of our brothers (or sisters) in arms, have scurried to cooler climates (wink wink East Hampton and Jackson Hole). For those of us left behind, a little Summer Friday cocktailing always helps to break up the monotonous heat. The city has a collection of killer watering holes, but some feel more summer-coded than others (for example, the Mansion Bar feels undeniably wintery to me). So with that intangible qualifier in mind, I’ve gathered my six go-to Dallas bars and restaurants for a summer drink. A few offer al fresco options if you find yourself dressed appropriately (read: barely dressed). Happy cocktailing.

BTW: You might be wondering why my favorite watering hole, The Grapevine Bar, didn’t make the list. Well, it’s moving. When — still not sure. So, in case that’s early July then head there tout suite to pay homage to the infamous spot before it moves to its new digs later this summer or early fall.

Lobby Seating_HALL Arts Hotel
The lobby of HALL Arts Hotel includes artwork from Lava Thomas.

This light and airy Arts District hotel is the perfect spot to feel outside, given the numerous walls of windows. It’s also the most art immersive of the spots on this list. You’ll discover a collection of pieces by diverse artists — both emerging and established — throughout the property. And if you decide to do a staycation there this summer they offer an exclusive for hotel guests every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 4:30 pm til 5:30 pm.

The sophisticated bar menu features a personal favorite, the Flora-tini — named for the adjacent street. This refreshing cocktail is made from coconut and cranberry ice rose and finished at the table with a Ketel One Vodka and Soho Lychee Liqueur pour-over.

Designer suggestion: For girls go with a maxi dress (might I suggest this one from the divine Adam Lippes — this year’s Crystal Charity Ball designer). For boys time to bust out white jeans.

 

Swizzle Dallas
Swizzle’s interior is decked out in tiki decor and color-changing lights. (Courtesy of Swizzle)

In the heat of summer, my mind wanders to elaborate cocktails in tropical mugs with umbrellas. Swizzle is a veritable Tiki nirvana on Lower Greenville. You’ll find Mai Tai’s and Martikis, along with more adventurous Q.B. Coolers made with dark Jamaican rum and light Puerto Rican rum. (They have a limit of two on this last one.) 

Designer suggestion: Think La Vie short caftan in a bright color or Prada camp-style shirt.

 

Lee Harvey’s Dive In is one of the best summer bars in Dallas.
Lee Harvey’s Dive In is now open in the Cedars all summer long. (Courtesy)

Dive In

The creators of the iconic Dallas dive bar Lee Harveys debuted a swim club in 2022 and the Dive In is officially back for another scorching season. I love their tagline: “Poolside is the best side.” Keep that in mind for Insta selfies.

Designer suggestion: It’s time for swimwear so perhaps a Norma Kamali coverup and boys of course should be rocking Orlebar trunks (you can find a great assortment at Stanley Korshak).

 

The chic spot for the in-the-know crowd: Tango Room
The chic spot for the in-the-know crowd: Tango Room

If day drinking extends to early evening hours, go to this little Design District hideaway for those in the know — and who doesn’t want to be in the know? The Tango Room evokes Old Hollywood glamour with its leather crescent-shaped booths and subdued lighting, which could also inspire your next sip, like a Tom Collins or Pimms Cup. Channel your inner Marlene Dietrich or Errol Flynn.

Designer suggestion: A linen double-breasted Brunello Cucinelli blazer and for ladies a slinky slip with strappy heels like these exquisite ones I spied at Canary.

 

Park House has one of the best Dallas bars in the summertime.
The patio at Park House Dallas (photo by Ana Hop)

If you have an in at the members-only club in Highland Park Village, take advantage of it this summer since they open early and close late. If you’re single and caught my story on where to meet a man, then keep this on your cocktailing roster.

Designer suggestion: Find something from a chic up-and-coming designer at Forty Five Ten (stylists Dianna, Kyle, or Robin always know that makes sense and will dress you accordingly). It’ll be the perfect conversation starter if you want to meet someone new.

 

Mike’s Gemini Twin in the Cedars

This might look like a dive bar, but Mike’s Gemini Twin really has become the choice for a certain select group of the oh-so-hip and fashionable clique. Likely due to the fact that it is located in a part of town, not often visited unless you are an artist or creative — The Cedars. If you are a smoker there is a tiny patio in the back, so you don’t have to stand out front on the sometimes busy street.

Designer suggestion: Don’t wear anything that screams designer with oversized logo placement. Instead, quiet fashion. Meaning pieces from Rick Owens or CO that might look like you found on the ultimate thrift trip to Goodwill or a flea market in Marfa.

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