Photo Credit: Velton Hayworth

A cozy, romantic dinner with a nice bottle of red wine followed by martinis and live jazz at a swank, candle-lit basement bar. Sound like an expensive date? It doesn’t have to be.

My friend and I started out at Taverna, tucked away in the shadows of the Fort Worth skyline, for some authentic Italian fare. For an appetizer we chose the bruschetta, a healthy portion of diced tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, and basil served in a bowl with sourdough toast on top–and practically a meal in itself. The basil and garlic were just right, and the toast was the perfect complement to the fresh tomatoes.

Photo Credit: Velton Hayworth

At Taverna I usually get the pizza, which is fantastic, but on this visit I went with the homemade lasagna rustica, made with spinach pasta, Bolognese sauce, bechamel, wild mushrooms, prosciutto cotto and Parmesan cheese. The Bolognese sauce was rich and creamy. All the ingredients worked in perfect harmony and the thinly sliced prosciutto cotto, which was layered through the lasagna, took this dish to a gourmet level. My friend had the spaghetti carbonara and loved it. After dinner and a couple glasses of vino there was no room for dessert, just martinis.

Photo Credit: Velton Hayworth

So we were off! We walked a couple of blocks, took a right down a neon-lit back alley, and hopped the elevator to the basement home of the Scat Jazz Lounge, where on Sunday nights it’s hard to tell which flows more freely, the jazz or the $5 martinis. Fourteen years ago the Sunday Night Jam started at the Black Dog Tavern. The Jam has changed venues several times after the Black Dog closed, but finally found the perfect fit at the Scat Jazz Lounge. The Jam, which is open to the public, is hosted by local musicians. (They’re pretty laid back, but if you decide to jump on stage you’d better have some skills because these guys are real pros.)

Photo Credit: Velton Hayworth

Scat has a great vibe and an eclectic crowd. It’s swanky, romantic, and well…it’s the kind of place I could imagine Humphrey Bogart hanging out at back in the day. Sunday is the perfect date night. It’s a little more casual with no cover and drink specials that include the aforementioned $5 Martinis (including specialty), $3.50 well drinks, and $2.50 domestic beers.
After a wonderful night of jazz, martinis, and a couple of shots of Jagermeister it was taxi time for my friend and I. Dinner, wine, jazz, martinis and all came in at $95 plus tax and tips. I think Bogey would’ve been proud.

The Scat Jazz Lounge
111 W 4th St # 111
Fort Worth, TX 76102 (817) 870-9100
Hours: Tuesday – Thursday: 7pm-2am / Friday: 5pm-2am / Saturdays: 6pm-2am / Sundays: 7pm-2am

450 Throckmorton St
Fort Worth, TX 76102
(817) 885-7502
Hours: Open Mon-Tue 11am-9pm; Wed-Sat 11am-10pm; Sun 10am-9pm

Velton Hayworth is a local artist who blogs for his personal entertainment website To keep up with Fort Worth nightlife or to be introduced to some of The Fort’s best hole-in-the-wall and mom and pop restaurants follow Velton at

Comments (6)
  1. Joe Youngblood says:

    both of those places sound great, i’ll have to check them out.

  2. Peg Hayworth says:

    Very well written. Makes me want to come to Ft Worth for dinner and some fun. Good job Velton–Love Mom

  3. Malone says:

    Luv tha Scat!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Cortney Tiffany says:

    love teverna! Great place to get drinks and wonderful food!

  5. Chris Patterson says:

    Nice article. I live in Fort Worth and now have a new outlook on what a proper date night can be. I love going to Scat but in this connotation it takes on a whole new meaning. I see good nights for me and my significant other in the near furture. Thank you for this enlightenment..

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