Since opening in 2013, Dallas bar Twilite Lounge has earned a reputation for its solid lineup of free, live music and chill atmosphere, which can be a welcome retreat from the oftentimes bustling Deep Ellum neighborhood where it resides. Now, Fort Worth residents can experience the best of the bar without having to traverse Interstate 30.
Twilite Lounge opened a second location in Fort Worth's Near Southside district on Dec. 1. Co-owner Danny Balis, who locals may know from Sportsradio 1310/96.7 FM The Ticket, says he began looking to expand westward after several bands implored him to do so.
"There's not anything specifically like this" in Fort Worth, says Balis, who also plays bass in local group Calhoun. "It just made sense, and there seemed to be a demand for it."
While Twilite Lounge's ornate wallpaper and famous frozen Irish coffee will make fans of the original spot feel right at home, there are many aspects that set the new bar apart. For one, Fort Worth's indoor and patio spaces are about twice as big as its Dallas counterpart, Balis says. And then there are the po' boys.
While Twilite Lounge has always been a New Orleans-inspired joint, Balis and his partners Jess Bar and Jimmy Morton leaned into the theme in Fort Worth by adding a small kitchen that turns out massive sandwiches piled with buyer's choice of shrimp (fried or blackened), catfish (fried or blackened), turkey, ham, chicken breast and other ingredients. The roast beef po' boy comes with "debris," a house-made gravy. The kitchen also serves sides such as fried green tomatoes and red beans and rice. Nearly everything is made from scratch, Balis says.
Twilite Lounge is just one in a wave of Dallas bars expanding to Fort Worth. Off the Record West, a hybrid record store and watering hole that started in Dallas, is expected to open by the end of the year, and Deep Ellum Brewing Co. plans to open a satellite taproom there in 2018.
Twilite Lounge, 212 Lipscomb St., Fort Worth.