Wide awake and bored at midnight? Mr. Jack Daniels calling your name but you don’t feel like paying forty dollars for a couple of drinks, some second-hand smoke, and a little social interaction? You’re probably like me: I don’t mind going out to my favorite watering hole and dropping some cash, but it’s nice to go out and knock back a few $2 well drinks now and then–preferably without waiting 30 minutes just to get short-poured by the bartender while enjoying the atmosphere of a high school keg party. And there go twenty bars off the list right there. So with all that said here’s my Bar-Flies-On-A-Budget list. Enjoy, and be sure to tip your friendly bartender.
The chat room made a name for itself long before the influx of trendy restaurants and bars on Magnolia Street. The crowd is a friendly mix of musicians, artists, the hip and not so hip, freaks, geeks and those who just want to relax and enjoy a stiff drink and an intelligent conversation.
The Chat is bike friendly and the patio fence facing Magnolia makes a perfect spot for bicyclists to secure their wheels. The Chat has a pool table and a pinball machine and two computers with free internet access for those who do not enjoy the vintage entertainment.
Specials include–Monday happy hour all day/ Tuesday $3 you call it / Wednesday $2 Drafts / Thursday $2 wells.
The Grotto, which is located on the outskirts of all the new development on 7th street, is a favorite after work watering hole for many of the staff working the new bars and restaurants popping up in the area. Guests can enjoy $2 domestic pints from open to close 7 days a week, $2 well drinks every Monday and happy hour all day Sunday. The Grotto offers live music six days a week. (There are cozy back rooms and an outdoor patio for those who prefer conversation over music.) And for all you foosball fans, there’s a tournament with cash prizes every Friday night.
As I mentioned in one of my previous articles, Riding with the Night Riders, Malone’s is one of those places where everyone knows your name. All the regulars are friendly and open to the first-timers who often stumble across Malone’s on their way back to their hotel from Sundance Square. Malone’s new street- side patio is the perfect place to enjoy a beautiful view of the Fort Worth skyline while partaking of some $2 well drinks (Sunday night’s special). Monday is $3 pint night–including Guinness, Rahr Stormcloud, and Woodchuck Pear to name a few. Thursday is $1.75 domestic longnecks. Malone’s has a great jukebox, pool tables, darts and free Wi-Fi.
The Showdown is what I would call a bar, bar. There’s no karaoke, live music, or video trivia. You go to the showdown to drink, period. This place has the best prices open to close 7 days a week of any bar in town. What makes this place is the regulars–there are always plenty of intriguing characters with a story to tell. It’s the kind of place Hunter S. Thompson might have called home had he lived in Fort Worth back in the day. PBR pints are $1.85 and import pints are $3.10 seven days a week – imports include Guinness, Sam Adams, New Castle, and Stella – along with $2.75 well drinks and $4.35 premium liquor.
I feel right at home when walking into Tiffs. The guests always pick great music on the jukebox, and there’s comfortable couches and dollar Hot Dogs until 8 Monday through Friday. I couldn’t feel more comfortable in my living room–and it couldn’t be much cheaper either. There’s $2 you-call-it on Sunday and Monday’s, $3 you-call- it on Thursday, and $2.75 wells or $3 beer of the week on Saturday.
Velton Hayworth is a local artist who blogs for his personal entertainment website iloveftw.com. He’s also a professional photographer who covers nightlife and entertainment for dfw.com and the Star Telegram. 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 twitter.com/ilovefortworth